08/05/2015VATICAN Pope: "No closed doors" to divorced and remarried, they are part of the life of the Church At the general audience, returning to his catechesies on the Family, Pope Francis asks all Christians to behave like the Good Shepherd, welcoming couples who are divorced and remarried and their children because they "are not excommunicated." They "can develop their belonging to Christ" through prayer, listening to the word of God and service to the poor, “participating in the liturgy." The Pope did not, however, mention participation in the Eucharist. A group of pilgrims from mainland China greet the Pope and sing the "Our Father" in Chinese. Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Divorced and remarried couples "are not excommunicated" and "should never be treated as such: they are always part of the Church." This was thewarm and heartfelt appeal that Pope Francis...
08/05/2015MYANMAR For Yangon cardinal, Myanmar’s flood victims need immediate food and aid by Francis Khoo Thwe Floods so far have killed 69 people, displacing another 260,000, but the final figure is expected to get much worse. The situation is critical in Rakhine state, already torn by sectarian violence. For Card Bo, aid is needed right away because of the massive devastation. The Church is playing a leading role in terms of aid and volunteers.
08/04/2015VATICAN Pope to altar servers: The joy of friendship with Jesus makes us all missionaries Meeting thousands of participants in the international pilgrimage "Here I am Lord. Send me!", involving children and young people from about 20 countries, Francis thanks the altar servers and recalls that "it was God who made the first move. God’s actions were not impeded by his imperfections; it was God’s goodness alone that enables us to take up the mission, transforming us nto a totally new person and therefore one able to respond to the call of the Lord"
08/03/2015MYANMAR 46 dead and 200 thousand displaced in Myanmar floods The government declares a state of emergency in four regions, some unreachable by rescue teams. Because of the lack of communications and infrastructure, the scale of the disaster could be worse. Pakistan, Vietnam and Nepal also affected.
08/02/2015VATICAN For pope, Jesus urges us to look for the "bread of life", which expresses His love During the Angelus, Francis commented the Gospel of John. The crowds that followed Jesus for material bread did not understand their own "spiritual blindness". Christ "is gift and the one who gives it.” In light of the encounter with Him, the sufferings of human life “will be illuminated." Remembering the Pardon of Assisi, the “Father forgives everyone,” he “always forgives everything”.
07/31/2015MYANMAR Floods kill scores, displace hundreds of thousand Severe weather has whipped the country since 16 July, especially the north and the west. Villages and mountainous areas are still inaccessible because of landslides and mudslides. The military has been deployed to help the population.
07/31/2015PHILIPPINES Artists, donors and activists among 2015 Asia’s “Nobel Prize” winners The winners came from India, Philippines, Laos, and Myanmar. The presentation ceremony for Ramon Magsaysay Award, will take place on August 31 in Manila. President of the Foundation says: “There is one thing this year’s Magsaysay laureates all share in common: a greatness of spirit that infuses their crusade for change.”
07/26/2015 VATICAN-SYRIA Pope: urgent appeal for the release of Fr. Dall'Oglio, kidnapped two years ago in Syria At the Angelus, Pope Francis recalls the Jesuit priest, the two Orthodox bishops and all those who have been kidnapped, calling on all present to join him in the recitation of a Hail Mary. Joined by the presence of two young people, he opens registration for WYD in Krakow and registers himself as teh first pilgrim online with a tablet. Commenting on today's Gospel: "Who among us does not have his" five loaves and two fish "? If we are willing to put them in the hands of the Lord, they will be a bit more love in the world to go around".
07/24/2015CHINA Wenzhou: 90-year-old bishop and 26 priests protest against cross demolitions by Joseph Yuan This is not the first time that the old bishop and his priests speak out against the demolition campaign against crosses and churches, which has touched more than 400 buildings. During the protest, police tried to disperse the group, which sought to submit a petition. The faithful recite a Crown of the Divine Mercy is in support of the Chinese Church. In Lishui, churches are expected to be torn down by 31 August.
07/24/2015VATICAN - GREAT BRITAIN For the pope, euthanasia is what “mafiosi do. There is a problem: we get rid of this guy . . .” In his message to the Catholic Church in England and Wales for this year’s Day for Life, centred on the theme of ‘Cherishing Life and Accepting Death,’ Pope Francis said that “There is nothing progressive about solving problems by eliminating a human life." For him, “considering having a baby as a right is not a scientific achievement when the child should instead be welcomed as a gift; nor is it right to use humans as laboratory rats in order to save ostensibly others.”
07/23/2015ISRAEL - IRAN After nuclear deal, Israel ought to become Iran’s best ally by Uri Avnery This is the thesis of Uri Avnery, leader of Gush Shalom, a major supporter of peace between Israelis and Palestinians. According to the great statesman and peace activist, Iran only wants to be a regional power in the Islamic world, able to trade with everyone, inspired by a sophisticated experience that goes back thousands of years. Iran, which faces backward-looking Gulf monarchies and emirates, could be a great ally against Daesh. Meanwhile in Israel Netanyahu, politicians and the media continue to blunder.
07/23/2015MYANMAR - CHINA Myanmar sentences 153 Chinese illegal loggers to life imprisonment The group were arrested in January in Kachin state, close to the Chinese border. More than 400 vehicles and 1,600 logs were seized during the raid. China has expressed concern about the severity of the sentences. Life sentences in Myanmar usually last 20 years.