25 February 2017
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  • 24/02/2017 - EGYPT – VATICAN – ISLAM

    A symposium sponsored by the Al Azhar Centre for Dialogue and the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue ended yesterday in Cairo. Participants called for action against the root causes of extremism like "violence and poverty". Protecting young people, who are the most vulnerable to extremist ideologies, is a priority. Cutting funding and weapons to terrorist groups is another.




    24/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: "In God, justice is mercy, and mercy is justice"


    Do not give in to the "logic of casuistry" that reduces the faith in terms of "can" or "cannot", but follow the path of Jesus, "the path from case study to truth and mercy". Jesus says, "Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her", but he spoke "many times with an adulteress." And in the end he said: "I do not condemn you. Sin no more. "

     


    24/02/2017 - EGYPT

    Sinai, Coptic Christian killed with a bullet to the neck, third victim in two days


    The Coptic minority is being targeted by local cells of the Islamic state. The murder took place yesterday in Al-Arich. The man's house was set on fire. Previously a 60 year old Christian and son were killed; the young man was burnt alive. Daesh announces new attacks on social networks.


     


    23/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: do not give scandal with a double life, but converted soon


    "It would be good for all of us, each one of us, today, to consider if there is something of a double life within us: ‘But, sure, the Lord will eventually forgive everything, but I’ll keep going as I have been…’ If there is something saying, “Sure, this is not going well, I will convert, but not today: tomorrow.’ Let’s think about that. And let us profit from the Word of the Lord and consider the fact that on this point, the Lord is very strict. Scandal destroys. "

     


    22/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: sin has also ruined creation, but we know that God is preparing "a new earth"


    "Human pride, exploiting Creation, destroys. However, the Lord does not leave us alone and, even in this desolate picture, He offers us a new prospect of liberation, of universal salvation." For South Sudan, where "a serious food crisis is underway which condemns millions of people to death by starvation, including many children", "declarations are not enough, concrete aid is needed".

     


    22/02/2017 - EGYPT

    A first in modern times: woman becomes governor

    by Loula Lahham

    Nadia Abdou will lead Beheira, northwest Egypt, focusing on tourism and investments to revitalise the governorate. Chronic water shortages, infrastructure and sustainable development are among the priorities to be addressed. Religious fundamentalism remains a threat.


    21/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: May "holy shame" defend us from the temptations of ambition, worldliness


    "Sometimes we say it with shame we priests, we priests: 'I wish for that parish ...' - 'But the Lord is here ...' - 'But I would like that ...'. The same. Not the way of the Lord, but that road of vanity, worldliness. Even among us bishops the same happens: worldliness becomes as temptation. "

     


    21/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: it is "our duty" to welcome, protect, promote and integrate migrants


    "The human promotion of migrants and their families begins with their communities of origin.  That is where such promotion should be guaranteed, joined to the right of being able to emigrate, as well as the right to not be constrained to emigrate." "In the face of tragedies which take the lives of so many migrants and refugees – conflicts, persecutions, forms of abuse, violence, death – expressions of empathy and compassion cannot help but spontaneously well-up."

     


    21/02/2017 - EGYPT – ISLAM

    Who was Umar ‘Abdu r-Raḥman, who preached terrorism and the Qur'an

    by Loula Lahham

    The spiritual leader of an extremist movement died at the age 79 in a North Carolina prison. He had backed the 1993 attack against the World Trade Center. Recently, the political wing of Al-jamāʻah al-islāmīyah had requested his release on health grounds. He supported terrorism as a weapon of jihad.


    21/02/2017 - ASIA

    Annual profits of the Hong Kong and Shanghai Banks down by 62%

    by Paul Wang

    The cause is "volatile financial conditions", including the US and Brexit. The greater part of the profit comes from operations in Asia. Hang Seng in Hong Kong drop by 41%.

     


    20/02/2017 - EGYPT - ISLAM

    Al Azhar under the influence of Daesh Islamism

    by Kamel Abderrahmani

    The official religious institutions and so-called Islamic universities are the cause of the immobility of the Muslim world. The programs taught and literature used at Al Azhar are the same that are applied on the ground by all armed terrorists. No comparison possible between Al Azhar and the Vatican. The Vatican has hosted Iraqi Muslims and Syrians fleeing the war. Al Azhar has never done anything for Christians and Yazidis. The persecution of Nasr Mohamed Abdellah, eager to modernize Islam. The comment of one Muslim student.


     


    20/02/2017 - LEBANON – EGYPT

    Cairo, freedom of religion and state secularism at Muslim-Christian conference in al-Azhar

    by Fady Noun

    At the initiative of the Grand Imam Ahmed el-Tayeb, the Sunni University will host an interfaith meeting on 27-28 February. Lay people and clergy, academic and scientific figures, Christian and Muslim leaders will be present. Lebanese President Aoun, the only Christian head of state of an Arab country, has been invited.


    19/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Christians have "a duty" to do justice, but "it is forbidden to" seek revenge


    Jesus asks his disciples to suffer the bad, in fact, he asked them to react, however not with another evil, but with good. A prayer for the victims of violence in the Central Kasai region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, in particular child soldiers, and those affected by the attacks in Pakistan and Iraq.


    17/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Unity in Diversity, where there is no dialogue there is violence


    Visiting the University of Roma Tre, Francis answers questions from students. The fundamental importance of dialogue, the search for "truth, goodness and beauty"; unity that needs differences; integration and "respect" as a response to the fear of the migrant, "but each country has to see what number it can accommodate. It's true: you cannot welcome [migrants] if there are no possibilities[for them]".


    16/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: “inclusion enriches every community and society”


    Francis met with a delegation of athletes from Special Olympics, a global organisation present in 170 countries dedicated to sports for youth and adults with mental disabilities. " Sport also helps us to spread a culture of encounter and solidarity,” said the pontiff. “Together, athletes and helpers show us that there are no obstacles or barriers which cannot be overcome.”


    16/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: we must keep the peace, but it is not easy because war begins in the human heart


    "Within each of us is that seed of original sin, that is, the spirit of Cain which – for envy, jealousy, greed, and the desire to dominate – leads to war ". " give us the grace to say: ‘War is finished, crying. War is finished in my heart; war is finished in my family; war is finished in my neighborhood; war is finished in my workplace; war is finished in the world.’ In this way shall the dove, rainbow, and Covenant be strengthened".

     


    14/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Courage, prayer and humility are traits of "real missionaries" like Cyril and Methodius


    "The Word of God must be proclaimed with this frankness, with this force… with courage. The person who doesn't have courage – spiritual courage, courage of heart, who is not enamored of Jesus, and from there comes courage! – No, you will say, yes, something interesting, something moral, something that will do you good, a good philanthropy, but this is not the Word of God"

     


    13/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: jealousy and envy can destroy the bond of brotherhood, even among priests and bishops


    "This process must be nipped in the bud, at the very first sign of bitterness, stop. The bitterness is not Christian. Sorrow yes, bitterness no. Resentment is not Christian. Sorrow yes, bitterness no ".


    12/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: insulting and offending the dignity of the person is "in line" with murder


    Some behaviours "are the premise and reveal the same malevolence" of killing. "Like stealing, corruption and all other sins, adultery is first conceived in our hearts and once the wrong choice is made in the heart, it is then followed in actual behaviour.”


    11/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope Francis sends the archbishop of Warsaw to Medjugorje only for pastoral reasons


    The pope wants to understand more the needs of the faithful who come on pilgrimage to Bosnia-Herzegovina. The commission that investigated the authenticity of the apparitions finished its work long ago. Francis often jokes about ‘Our Lady the postwoman’ delivering appearances on command, or the ‘Virgin Mary superstar’ but never explicitly in relation to Medjugorje.


    10/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: The devil deceives us with "dialogue” that leads to corruption


    At Mass in Santa Marta, Pope Francis points out that you should not  "talk with the devil ", instead we must pray. The devil, "the father of lies", deceives and "leaves you naked."

     


    10/02/2017 - Egypt

    Police shut down Al-Nadim Centre, an NGO dedicated to victims of violence and torture

    by Loula Lahham

    The authorities suspend one of the country’s main human rights organisations. The doorman to its building has been detained for questioning. The Centre provides psychological support and social rehabilitation to victims. Activists and NGOs complain of the growing crackdown against human rights associations.


    09/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: "Without woman, there is no harmony in the world"


    "This is the great gift of God has given us: woman." "Exploiting people is a crime against humanity: it is true. But taking advantage of a woman is more than this: it is destroying the harmony that God wanted to give to the world. It destroys. "

     


    09/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope says anti-Semitism is "contrary to Christian principles and every vision worthy of the human person”


    During a meeting with a delegation from the Anti-Defamation League, Francis said that “Faced with too much violence spreading throughout the world, we are called to a greater nonviolence, which does not mean passivity, but active promotion of the good.”


    09/02/2017 - VATICAN-CHINA-HONG KONG

    Card. Tong’s article on China-Holy See dialogue, arouses joy and dismay

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    The Hong Kong bishop’s optimism over a change in the method of appointing bishops and the function of the Patriotic Association. But it is unclear whether it is real change or just nominal, in words. Underground bishops are patriotic and love their country, but the Party is suspicious of them. Freedom in episcopal appointments is “essential", but the bishops are not free to exercise their ministry. Patriotic bishops controlled in their visits with members of the universal Church. The "bugs" (hidden microphones) in a bishop’s office.

     


    09/02/2017 - HONG KONG-CHINA-VATICAN

    Card. Tong: The future of Sino-Vatican dialogue from an ecclesiological point of view

    by Card. John Tong

    The Hong Kong Cardinal outlines the steps that hope to propel dialogue between China and the Holy See. Themes include the Pope's role in the appointment of bishops; A change of vision in the Patriotic Association; the possible integration of the underground bishops in the Episcopal Conference. A new article by card. John Tong, following a previous article published a few months ago on "Communion of the Church in China with the universal Church."


     


    08/02/2017 - VATICAN – CHINA

    As Vatican defends China over organ trafficking, Huang Jiefu says he plays no diplomatic role


    Conference participants criticise China, claiming it hides trafficking in prisoners’ organs. ““Are they doing any illegal transplantation of organs in China? We can’t say. But we want to strengthen the movement for change,” said Mgr Sánchez Morondo. Huang was invited to the Vatican only as transplant expert. Some suspect that the Holy See wants to ingratiate itself with Beijing to continue their dialogue.


    08/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope callas for prayers "for our Rohingya brothers and sisters "


    They are "tortured, killed, just because they carry on their traditions, their Muslim faith." Christian hope is not only personal, but it has a "Community, ecclesial breath", all are called to pray for one another and invoke the Holy Spirit, to "make us understand that we need not fear that the Lord is near, and takes care of us; and it is He who shapes our communities. "

     


    07/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Lent a time of conversion, it invites to listen assiduously to the Word of God


    In the Message for Lent 2017, Francis comments on the parable of the rich man and poor Lazarus saying that it "teaches us that the other is a gift. The right relationship with people is to recognize the value of" gratitude. "The Holy Spirit will guide us to make a real journey of conversion, to rediscover the gift of the Word of God, to be cleansed of sin that blinds us and serve Christ present in the needy.

     


    07/02/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: God gave man His DNA, made him lord of creation and gave him woman to accompany him


    There are three of the greatest gifts to man at creation. "We ask for the grace to keep this identity of children, to work on the gift he has given us and carry on with our work, and the grace to learn to love more each day."






    Editor's choices

    LEBANON
    Trump, Marine Le Pen and the Middle East: Lebanon against walls and divisions

    Fady Noun

    The beginning of the Trump presidency has been characterised by the "babelisation" of American society. Each country pours out his hatred against an external enemy. The current global crisis has religious roots. At the heart of the chaos there is the Jihadi threat. The third world war cannot be won with drones, but with moderation and promoting rapprochement and discussions.


    EGYPT - ISLAM
    Al Azhar under the influence of Daesh Islamism

    Kamel Abderrahmani

    The official religious institutions and so-called Islamic universities are the cause of the immobility of the Muslim world. The programs taught and literature used at Al Azhar are the same that are applied on the ground by all armed terrorists. No comparison possible between Al Azhar and the Vatican. The Vatican has hosted Iraqi Muslims and Syrians fleeing the war. Al Azhar has never done anything for Christians and Yazidis. The persecution of Nasr Mohamed Abdellah, eager to modernize Islam. The comment of one Muslim student.


     


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