17 January 2017
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    17/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Fr Inayat Bernard runs the St Mary minor seminary in Punjab’s capital. He gave new impetus to the Committee for ecumenical solidarity, a group that includes Pakistan’s four main Christian denominations. Fighting religious extremism needs deeper mutual understanding.


    by Kamran Chaudhry

    17/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: No to "parked Christians." The courage of hope


    At Mass in Santa Marta, Pope Francis exhorts people to walk in hope, which is like "an anchor" to which we are attached. "To live by hope, always looking ahead with courage ... even where everything seems dark". "Stop to selfish Christians."


     


    16/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Emeritus Bishop of Multan: his paralysed legs have not stopped him (Video)

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    Mgr Andrew Francis celebrated 45 years of priesthood. He praised Christians who struggle for their faith. In 1996, he survived an assassination attempt, whilst in 2013, a car accident left him disabled. But for him, “there is no downside in my life."


    15/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: The Church does not proclaim itself, it proclaims Christ; it does not bring itself, it brings Christ


    During the Angelus, Pope Francis said that "The Church, in every age, is called to do what John the Baptist did – show Jesus to the people." The pontiff warned though, “Woe, woe to the Church when it proclaims itself, for it loses its compass, and does not know where it goes.” On the World Day of Migrants and refugees, dedicated to migrant children, “It is necessary to take every possible measure to ensure protection and defence to migrant children, as well as their integration." Speaking to ethnic communities, he expressed his hope that they will “live peacefully in the towns that welcome you, respecting their laws and traditions and, at the same time, maintaining the values ​​of your cultures of origin.” He thanked the Migrantes Office and cited the example of Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, patron saint of migrants.


    14/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Mother Teresa is an icon for all those who treat irresponsible globalization


    In his meeting with members of the Global Foundation, Pope Francis condemned the "culture of waste" and the "capitalist system”, as had John Paul II in his encyclical Centesimus Annus. Mother Teresa welcomed “every human life, whether unborn or abandoned and discarded". For a " fraternal and cooperative" globalization, we need to learn “compassion for those suffering”, and be guided by the Church's social doctrine.


    13/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Church must listen to "the sensitivity of the faith; even the doubts and criticism" of young people


    Francis writes a Letter to present the preparatory document of the 2018 Synod, on "Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment". Online questionnaire for young people announced.


    13/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Pakistan premier praises religious harmony, but should not forget Ahmadis and other minorities

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    For Nawaz Sharif, the country will be recognized as a "friend of minorities." Ahmadi Muslims however are considered heretical by Sunnis and Shias. And in December, an Ahmadi place of worship was attacked. The Government of Sindh rejects the law against forced conversions. Protests take place on the day Salman Taseer was remembered.


    13/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: following Jesus "is not easy, but it's nice! It is always a risk". And to do that you have to get moving


    "To follow Jesus, because we need something or follow Jesus because we are in danger and that means following Jesus in faith: this is the faith. Trust in Jesus, trust Jesus. "

     


    13/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Lahore High Court stops execution of schizophrenic prisoner


    Khizar Hayat was convicted in 2003 for killing a fellow policeman. The court, the ruling on another inmate, who was also suffering from schizophrenia, for which the Supreme Court stayed the execution. Since December 2014, 427 executions have been carried out.

     


    12/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: "our life is today: now or never", tomorrow there is eternity


    "Today cannot be repeated: This is life. And the heart, an open heart, open to the Lord, not closed, not hard, not hardened, not without faith, not perverted, not seduced by the sins. "


    12/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Pakistan, another secular activist goes missing. The fifth in a week



    Samar Abbas is the president of the Civil Progressive Alliance Pakistan. He disappeared on a business trip to Islamabad. Others who have disappeared include a well-known professor of Rawalpindi and three Lahore bloggers. Activist: "alarming trend of disappearances of the Punjab intellectual class".

     


    11/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Four secular activists go missing, seized perhaps by police


    The missing men are Prof Salman Haider and bloggers Waqas Goraya, Aasim Saeed and Ahmad Raza Naseer. The four men disappeared last week in different cities. They had criticised on social media religious extremism and radical elements in government and military.


    11/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: hope in God, who never disappoints, and not in idols like power and wealth


    It is important that hope "is placed in what really can help us live and give meaning to our existence." "Placing your hope in idols, you become like them: hollow images with hands that do not touch, feet that do not walk, mouths that cannot talk", "and we, men of the Church, we run that risk when ‘we become worldly '. We have to stay in the world but defend ourselves from illusions of the world. "


    10/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Jesus had authority because he served people, was close to the people and was consistent


    Those like the doctors of the law, who pass themselves off as princes, “are clericalist” which is hypocritical, they say one thing and do another. "They will speak the truth, but without authority. Instead Jesus, who is humble, who serves, and is close to others, who does not despise people and who is consistent, has authority. And this is the authority that God's people listens to".

     


    10/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Pakistan launches first cruise missile from a submarine


    The launch took place in an unspecified area of ​​the Indian Ocean. The Babur missile is capable of carrying nuclear warheads. The test could further disrupt the delicate balance with Delhi, with Islamabad leading the race in nuclear technology.

     


    09/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Sindh rejects law against forced conversions, a big disappointment for Christians and Hindus

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    In November, the provincial assembly had adopted the law unanimously, outlawing forced conversion and marriage of minors. Every year about a thousand girls and young women are forced to repudiate their religion. Thirteen lawmakers who drafted the bill received death threats.


    09/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Christian life is simple, know, worship and follow Jesus


    "This is the center of our life: Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is manifest, has shown himself to us, we are invited to know him, to recognize him, in life, in so many circumstances of life, recognizing Jesus, knowing Jesus. "


    08/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: "I like to think that the first sermon of Jesus in the stable was a cry, the first"


    Francis baptizes 28 children. “The faith given in Baptism, means a life of faith, because faith is lived, it means to walk on the road of faith and bear witness to the faith. "


    07/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    "Christmas Train for peace" between Muslims and Christians to Faisalabad

    by Shafique Khokhar

    The initiative stems from a joint project between Islamabad and the Ministry for Human Rights. The convoy departed from Rawalpindi on December 22. The carriages decorated festively with garlands, banners, Christmas trees, a Nativity Scene. Similar efforts "can build bridges between people professing different faiths."


    06/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: like the Magi, "Those who seek light, must go out and search” and “place their own life on the line”


    Some 60,000 people gather in St Peter's Square for the Angelus prayer. Francis has some volunteers, including some who are poor and homeless, hand out a booklet titled ‘Icons of Mercy’ to those present.


    06/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Magi reflect the attitudes of the believer, Herod the bewilderment of those who turn inward


    On the feast day of the Epiphany, Pope Francis stressed the different attitudes of the Magi and Herod towards the news that "a king was born". One the one hand, the Magi "in their lives have not let their hearts be anesthetized;” on the other, there is “The bewilderment of those immersed in the culture of winning at any cost, in that culture where there is only room for ‘winners’, whatever the price.”


    05/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    About 110 imams are arrested in Lahore for hailing Salman Taseer’s murder

    by Shafique Khokhar

    The arrests took place on the anniversary of the death of Punjab’s governor, murdered because he had defended a Christian, Asia Bibi. Activists and ordinary people braved death threats and attended the memorial service.


    05/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Lahore: Evangelical Christian accused of blasphemy for tearing up pages of the Qurʾān


    Shahbaz Babu risks the death penalty for writing his name on the pages of Islam’s sacred book even though he is completely illiterate. The charge appears to be due to a business dispute. The accused is also popular among some Muslims for his prayer meetings.


    05/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: We need a vocational culture, "with wide horizons and the breath of communion"


    "To be credible and be in touch with young people, priority must be given to listening, knowing how to 'waste time' in welcoming their questions and their desires. Your testimony will be more persuasive if, with joy and truth, you know how to speak of the beauty, the amazement and wonder of being in love with God".


    04/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: That prison be a place of rehabilitation and social reintegration


    "When someone asks me difficult things like 'why do children suffer' I really do not know how to answer, I just look at the crucifix and watch how God gave His son, this is why we say that God took on our pain”.


    04/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Salman Taseer’s son risks prosecution for blasphemy


    Today marks the sixth anniversary of the murder of former Punjab Governor. Salman Taseer was killed by his bodyguard for criticizing the "black law" on blasphemy and defending the Christian mother Asia Bibi. His son Shaan Taseer released a video deemed offensive.


    02/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope calls on world bishops to protect children from those who kill or exploit them


    In a letter, Francis calls on pastors to defend the "Holy Innocents" of our day, the children whose “innocence [is] robbed from them by the oppression of illegal slave labour, prostitution and exploitation”, the “Thousands of our children [who] have fallen into the hands of gangs, criminal organizations and merchants of death, who only devour and exploit their neediness.” Speaking about the shame associated with abuses by priests, he writes, “let us adhere, clearly and faithfully, to ‘zero tolerance’.”


    01/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Close in prayer to Turkish people following grave Istanbul attack


    At the Angelus Pope Francis prays for the 39 dead and 69 wounded in the terrorist attack on the Reina nightclub in Istanbul. People of good will united against terrorism. Saying "no" to "hatred and violence and 'yes' to fraternity and reconciliation." "This year will be good to the extent that each of us, with God's help, tries to do good every day." A prayer to the Mother of God for the new year.


    01/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Celebrating the Holy Mother of God reminds us that we have a Mother; we are not orphans


    Mass of the Solemnity of Mary Mother of God and the World Day of Peace, Pope Francis indicates the "motherhood of Mary," as an antidote to the "spiritual orphan hood" that destroys our sense of belonging to a family, to a people. "Mothers are the strongest antidote to our individualistic and selfish tendencies, against our closures and apathy". "That look that frees us from orphan hood ... reminds us that we are brothers, that I belong to you, you belong to me, that we are of the same flesh."


    31/12/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: Look to the New Year thinking about how to give young people a concrete future


    "As another year draws to a close, we pause before the crib, to thank all the signs of divine generosity in our lives and in our history." " Looking at the manger means recognizing that the times ahead call for bold and hope-filled initiatives, as well as the renunciation of vain self-promotion and endless concern with appearances". We live in a culture that "idolizes youth trying to make it eternal," but which "condemns our young people to have no place in society".






    Editor's choices

    CHINA – VATICAN
    Old guard and illegitimate bishops dominate the new Catholic Assembly

    Elizabeth Li

    Ma Yinglin and Fang Xingyao are re-elected presidents of the Bishops Council and the Patriotic Association, respectively. The principles of independence, autonomy, self-management and sinicisation are extolled. There is no "positive signal" as hoped by the Vatican.


    CHINA - VATICAN
    Assembly of Chinese Catholic Representatives extolls "independence and autonomy"

    Bernardo Cervellera

    59 bishops present at assembly, as well as the state administration for religious affairs director and members of the United Front. Future changes in the leadership of the Council of Bishops and the Patriotic Association. Extolling of autonomy (from the Holy See), a non-positive sign. The Global Times reiterates preconditions for dialogue. A state church. The criticism of Card. Joseph Zen and Hong Kong’s Justice and Peace. One Catholic: This assembly is a slap in the face to the Vatican.


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