25 April 2017
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  • 24/04/2017 - VATICAN

    "The Lord gives us all this Easter Spirit, to travel the paths of the Spirit without compromise, without stiffness, with the freedom to proclaim Jesus Christ as He came: in the flesh."




    23/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Mercy is a form of knowledge that opens the door of the mind and heart


    On the Sunday of Divine Mercy, established by Saint John Paul II, Francis reiterated the importance of the experience of mercy, "the concrete form in which we give visibility to the resurrection of Jesus". He also explained the meaning of Sunday ‘in Albis’, and thanked those who sent him Easter greetings.


    22/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: The persecution of Christians comes from the devil's hatred


    Francis went to the basilica of St Bartholomew on the Tiber, which, after the Jubilee of 2000, was dedicated to the memory of the new martyrs of the 20th and 21st century. “The memory of these heroic, old and recent witnesses confirms us in the awareness that the Church is a Church of martyrs,” the pope said. “Refugee camps are concentration camps. They [refugees] are left there, because international agreements seem more important than human rights."


    22/04/2017 - HOLY LAND

    The ancient tradition of tattoos in the Holy Land


    At first, the tattoo was a sign of oppression that was eventually claimed as a proof of faith. From the crusades to the present day, for pilgrims the tattoo is a permanent testament to their journey.


    22/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Vatican releases message on Buddha’s feast day (Vesakh), stresses shared path of nonviolence


    Religions must work together because religion is often used to justify violence. Christians and Buddhists recognise the need to heal evil in the heart where it originates. They must promote peace education and respect for the environment as well as reject "hate speech" in the media and rebuild "broken societies".


    20/04/2017 - ISRAEL – PALESTINE

    Christians celebrate Easter in Gaza amid restrictions and fear of terrorism


    Fr Mario Da Silva, Gaza’s parish, talks about the half-empty churches due to fear following attacks in Egypt. Fewer permits were granted for pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Christians in Gaza are fewer and fewer.


    20/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope to proclaim saints young Fatima shepherd children on 13 May


    The canonisation will take place during Francis's trip to Portugal. Francisco and Jacinta Marto will be the first children in the history of the Church to be proclaimed saints without being martyrs.


    19/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Christianity "is grace, is surprise", it is "God's search for us"


    Christianity "is not an ideology, it is not a philosophical system, but a journey of faith that starts from an event, witnessed by the first disciples": "Jesus died for our sins, was buried, and on the third day rose. And appeared to Peter and the Twelve" and then "to five hundred brothers ".


    18/04/2017 - ISRAEL - PALESTINE

    More than a thousand Palestinian prisoners begin hunger strike


    They demand better prison conditions and an end to administrative detentions. Led by Marwan Barghouti, sentenced to life for murder during the second Intifada. For Bernard Sabella "it is the sign of a lack of political perspective" and stalling of international politics. Thousands of demonstrators in the West Bank in support of prisoners.


    17/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Begin to rise again asserting the value of life


    During the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis invited all the faithful "to 'act quickly' and 'go out' to announce to the men and women of our time" the "message of hope" of the Risen Lord. We are able “to undertake acts of solidarity and welcome, and feed the universal desire for peace and the aspiration for an environment free from degradation.” May the Virgin Mary "intercede especially for the persecuted and oppressed Christian communities that are called to a more difficult and courageous testimony."


    16/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope at the Urbi et Orbi: The Risen Lord comfort the people of Syria, the Middle East, Africa, Ukraine, Latin America

    by Papa Francesco

    In his Easter message, Pope Francis recalls the massacre of refugees bombed yesterday while they were fleeing Aleppo. "The signs of the Passion" of Jesus to draw "on his way, the way of life." "The Risen Shepherd is our traveling companion of those who are forced to leave their homelands because of armed conflicts, terrorist attacks, famines, oppressive regimes." A reminder that Europe lacks "hope."


    16/04/2017 - CHINA - VATICAN

    A victory for the Patriotic Association: Illicit Bishop Zhan Silu concelebrates with Bishop Ma Daqin of Shanghai

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    Zhan Silu was ordained in 2000. Ma Daqin, still under house arrest, but could "visit the Diocese of Mindong," where the ordinary bishop, Msgr. Guo Xijin, has disappeared in police custody. In the ceremony, Ma Daqin was called "bishop" and not "father" as before. The Patriotic Association undisputed master of the Church in China. "The Vatican is a joke".  The PA attempts to destroy dialogue between the Holy See and the government.


    15/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: with the Resurrection Jesus breaks down walls and asks us to change humanity


    In the face of women who go to the tomb we see "the faces we can see reflected all those who, walking the streets of our cities, feel the pain of dire poverty, the sorrow born of exploitation and human trafficking. We can also see the faces of those who are greeted with contempt because they are immigrants". "Let us go back to proclaim, to share, to reveal that it is true: the Lord is alive! He is living and he wants to rise again in all those faces that have buried hope, buried dreams, buried dignity." 


    15/04/2017 - VATICAN-ASIA

    An Easter for the Young

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    In Mark’s Gospel a young man announces the resurrection of Jesus. The crisis of youth: "distrust, indifference, indignation towards institutions", even toward the Church. They learn to live without God and the Church. The importance of next Synod and the testimony of those who are kept "young" through mission.


    14/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Via Crucis, shame for our infidelities, hope that in the end good will conquer


    Shame "for all the times that we bishops, priests, consecrated men and women have caused scandal and hurt Your Body, the Church, and forgotten our first love, leaving our consecration to rust.” Hope “that your church will try to be the voice that cries in the desert of humanity to prepare the way for your triumphant return, when you will come to judge the living and the dead.”


    13/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: "Let no one try to separate" the three Gospel graces: Truth, Mercy and Joy


    "Announcing a great joy to the poor can only be done in a respectful, humble, and even humbling, way.  Evangelization cannot be presumptuous. The integrity of the truth cannot be rigid, because the truth has become flesh, has become tenderness, he became a child, became man, became sin on the Cross. " Mother Teresa of Calcutta, "a Samaritan soul".


    13/04/2017 - CHINA - VATICAN

    Msgr. Peter Shao Zhumin, bishop of Wenzhou (underground) seized by police

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    Public security will not reveal where he was taken, but allow the faithful to deliver some clothes for their pastor. The bishop will celebrate Easter with his faithful. Pressures on the prelate to adhere to the Patriotic Association. A similar fate to that of Msgr. Guo Xijin. It is also pressure on the Holy See.


    12/04/2017 - ISRAEL – PALESTINE

    Christians in Holy Land call for an 'open Jerusalem' at Easter


    Easter celebrations began with the Palm Sunday procession. A minute of silence was held for the victims of the attacks in Egypt. A sea of pilgrims is expected, but the Israeli army shut down crossings for a week.


    12/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: the cross is the hope given by Jesus, that " changes everything "


     "And this hope sprouted precisely by the strength of love: because a love that “hopes all, endures all” (1 Corinthians 13:7), love that is God’s life, has renewed everything it has reached. So, at Easter, Jesus transformed, by taking upon himself our sin for forgiveness. "

     


    10/04/2017 - CHINA – VATICAN

    Underground Mindong Bishop Guo Xijin missing for four days

    by Wang Zhicheng

    After being detained at the Religious Affairs Office in Fuan, he was taken to an undisclosed location "to study and learn." Catholics believe that he will be pressured into joining the Patriotic Association. His refusal will likely mean that he won’t be allowed back to his diocese.


    10/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: technology has great power, but carries risks for humanity and poor nations


    For the pontiff, "people, and sometimes even those who represent and govern them" cannot fully realise the seriousness of the emerging challenges. “When the interplay between technological and economic power becomes close, interests can affect lifestyles and social orientations to the benefit of come industrial and business groups”.


    10/04/2017 - EGYPT - ISLAM

    Egypt, Catholic Church spokesman: Attacks cast a shadow on Easter and the Pope's visit


    Father Rafic Greiche emphasizes that terrorists "are stealing the joy of the feast." In spite of a climate of fear, yesterday churches across the country were packed with faithful. The government has declared a state of emergency. Need to strengthen intelligence work. He adds: Hard to know when, but "there will be more attacks."


    10/04/2017 - VATICAN-ISLAM-EGYPT

    Even the West contributes to the massacre of Christians and of hope in the Middle East

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    The cliché of the conflict of civilizations and religious wars. Daesh targets Christians, but also coexistence between Christians and Muslims. Al Sisi’s struggle for full citizenship of Christians in Egypt. Al Azhar and condemnation of fundamentalism. The West sells weapons to the Middle East, which end up in the hands of the Islamic State. Benedict XVI’s Regensburg address needs to be reconsidered.

     


    10/04/2017 - EGYPT - ISLAM

    Attacks on Egypt’s churches, what really happened

    by Loula Lahham

    The toll is of 43 dead and 114 wounded in the two attacks. A lot of the faithful want to bury the dead in the church's crypt. Daesh claims the attacks. The Muslim Brotherhood is complicit. President Al-Sisi declares a three-month state of emergency

     


    09/04/2017 - EGYPT-ISLAM

    A second terrorist attack hits church in Alexandria where Tawadros II was celebrating Mass

    by Loula Lahham

    The Coptic Orthodox Patriarch is unharmed. So far 11 are dead and 66 wounded. Initial reports indicate a suicide bomber was responsible. Egypt’s National Defence Council is set to meet. Some call for an overhaul of security measures around churches.


    09/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Palm Sunday: Jesus is neither a purveyor of illusions, nor a 'new age' prophet or an impostor, he is the great patient of human suffering, said the pope


    Pope Francis celebrated Palm Sunday with tens of thousands of young people on World Youth Day. "[A]s we joyfully acclaim our King, let us also think of the sufferings that he will have to endure in this week,” he said. “Jesus never promised honour and success. [. . .] He had always warned his friends that [. . .] the final victory would be achieved through the passion and the cross.” He did not ask us to contemplate him “only in pictures and photographs, or in the videos” but in his presence “in our many brothers and sisters who today endure sufferings like his own”. Krakow youth passed the WYD cross to their counterparts from Panama. The pontiff mentioned the recent attacks in Sweden and Egypt.


    08/04/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope tells young people to listen to their grandparents’ dreams and make them real


    Francis speaks at prayer vigil in St Mary Major Basilica ahead of tomorrow’s 32nd Diocesan World Youth Day.  Young people from Panama, host of the next World Youth Day, were present. “The pope will be there," Francis told them. "I don’t know if I'll be there,” he added, “but the pope will be there."


    07/04/2017 - SYRIA-USA

    United States: 59 missiles on a Syrian base in response to Idlib gas attack


    Shayrat airbase targeted, the base for jets that took part in the raid with chemical weapons over Idlib. Deaths and injuriesThe soldiers stationed at this base had liberated Palmyra. The Pentagon warned Russia before the attack. Tillerson: No role for Assad in Syria.






    Editor's choices

    CHINA - VATICAN
    Msgr. Peter Shao Zhumin, bishop of Wenzhou (underground) seized by police

    Bernardo Cervellera

    Public security will not reveal where he was taken, but allow the faithful to deliver some clothes for their pastor. The bishop will celebrate Easter with his faithful. Pressures on the prelate to adhere to the Patriotic Association. A similar fate to that of Msgr. Guo Xijin. It is also pressure on the Holy See.


    CHINA – VATICAN
    Underground Mindong Bishop Guo Xijin missing for four days

    Wang Zhicheng

    After being detained at the Religious Affairs Office in Fuan, he was taken to an undisclosed location "to study and learn." Catholics believe that he will be pressured into joining the Patriotic Association. His refusal will likely mean that he won’t be allowed back to his diocese.


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