08/28/2015VATICAN - IRAQ Fr. Samir of Amadiya: The Pope is the voice of Iraqi refugees by Bernardo Cervellera The Chaldean priest met Pope Francis, asking him to keep the world’s focus on Christian refugees from Mosul and the Nineveh Plain. His diocese is home to 3500 Christian families and almost half a million Yazidis who fled Islamic State violence. ISIS is not all Islam and there are Muslims who want an Iraq of coexistence. Christians might not emigrate, but remain in their own land. Aid projects for refugees: school for children, work for adults, a home for every family. An appeal to AsiaNews. Vatican City (AsiaNews) – Still deeply moved and emotional at having been able to meet and speak with Pope Francis for at least three minutes, at the end of the general audience two days ago, Fr. Samir says "it was a...
08/27/2015MYANMAR Jailed Burmese students in isolation for going a hunger strike by Francis Khoo Thwe The students are protesting the refusal by the authorities to let them out on bail to take exams scheduled for September. The four students, who are from a Mandalay university, were arrested on July 1 for demonstrating against education reform. For Myanmar activists, the four have been abused and denied their basic rights.
08/26/2015VATICAN Pope on prayer: God is "the caress that keeps us alive" At the general audience, Pope Francis explains the value of prayer in family life. Rediscovering our love for God. He is not only "the great Being, the Almighty, who created all things, the judge who controls every action." "There are mothers and fathers who could win the Nobel Prize" because in 24 hours they do things that they would need 48 hours for. "The Gospel read and pondered in the family is like a good bread that nourishes everyone’s heart". Appointment for September 1 at 17 in St. Peter for a Liturgy of the Word on the World Day of Prayer for the care of creation, together with the Orthodox.
08/26/2015MYANMAR Aung San Suu Kyi: If November elections "free and fair" the opposition will win The leader of the National League for Democracy voices concerns about possible fraud or irregularity and promises the NLD can form a government better than the current one. The danger of religion exploited "for political purposes". Little or no citizens trust in police, judiciary or electoral commission
08/24/2015MYANMAR Myanmar passes polygamy and conversion laws that please Buddhist extremists The country’s Parliament approves controversial laws that could be used against minorities and marginalised groups. Untried, the new laws make it harder on converts and on people who have extra-marital affairs. For Human Rights Watch official, the new laws will further poison relations among religions.
08/19/2015VATICAN Pope: Today’s world of work considers families a burden, a weight At the general audience Pope Francis speaks about the world of work. "To cause a loss of jobs, means to create serious social damage . “Work is sacred, work gives dignity to a family. We must pray that no family lacks work". The logic of profit only corrupts the environment and affects the poorest families. The "great mission" of families in today's world is like "David versus Goliath ... but we know how that challenge ended". A special greeting to the Taize community for the 75th anniversary of its founding. Greetings for the pilgrims from Japan and the Middle East.
08/19/2015MYANMAR An alliance between Aung San Suu Kyi and Shwe Mann could be positive, local Catholic source says by Francis Khoo Thwe Myanmar’s main opposition leader and the speaker of the lower house of parliament might be considering an alliance for the upcoming parliamentary election. Removed as chairman of his party, Shwe Mann is considered a prominent moderate figure. For a Catholic observer, an alliance between the two would be a good thing, but its impact on the election is hard to measure.
08/18/2015MYANMAR – ASIA For Myanmar cardinal, Asian Churches are united behind Francis against climate change by Francis Khoo Thwe Card Charles Bo celebrated the opening Mass of a two-day seminar of Asian bishops on climate change. Myanmar is a clear case of the consequences of global warming. In his homily, the prelate called on Catholics to defend the natural environment. Meanwhile, ordinary Myanmese continue their efforts to help victims of recent floods.
08/16/2015VATICAN Pope: The Eucharist is Jesus who gives himself entirely to us During the Angelus, Pope Francis explained the meaning of the Eucharist, the real and not symbolic presence of Jesus, and the Mass, which is not a "private prayer". For the pontiff, “Feeding on this ‘bread of life’ means becoming attuned to Christ’s heart, and assimilate his choices, thoughts, and behaviour.”
08/15/2015VATICAN Pope offers prayer for the people of Tianjin, our pilgrimage in the sign of Mary Pope Francis shares the pain for the calamity that struck the Chinese city where two explosions killed more than 50 people and injured an additional 700. The presence of 700 tonnes of sodium cyanide in the warehouse that blew up is cause for great concern. Bullies weigh on history but “God does not abandon his humble and poor children”. Life “is not about aimlessly wandering” but “is a pilgrimage that [. . .] has a safe destination: the house of the Father." The pontiff called on the faithful to visit to the ‘Salus Populi Romani’ at S. Maria Maggiore.
08/14/2015MYANMAR Floods leave 103 dead, 1.3 million displaced Central and southern states most affected. Crops at risk. Destroyed roads and bridges hamper arrival of relief and damage assessment. Government and opposition, together with the Church, appeal to the international community. Aid from Asian nations, the US, Europe and Australia.