27 July 2017
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  • 26/07/2017 - FRANCE – ISLAM

    The archbishop of Rouen led the Mass in the church where the priest was murdered. Emmanuel Macron thanks the Church of France for her "power of forgiveness". Saint-Etienne-du Rouvray has become a place of pilgrimage for Christians and Muslims.




    26/07/2017 - CHINA

    Bao Tong: Liu Xiaobo was a great Chinese patriot

    by Bao Tong

    The great statesman talks about his friendship with the great dissident, who was left to die of cancer by the authorities. Liu’s peaceful and non-violent proposals in the 2008 manifesto are almost all already in the Chinese constitution; yet Liu was convicted for "subverting state power". Bao proposes the nationalisation of the army and federalism.


    26/07/2017 - AUSTRALIA - VATICAN

    Card. Pell professes his innocence at preliminary hearing in pedophilia trial


    Today, the trial began with an administrative hearing. Although he was not required to be present, the Cardinal came to court.


    25/07/2017 - FRANCE - ISLAM

    One year on from the assassination of Fr. Jacques Hamel: what has changed in France

    by Catherine Field (*)

    Commemorations for the 85-year-old parish priest whose throat was slit in front of the altar, presided by the Archbishop of Rouen, include President Emmanuel Macron, the Interior Minister and Muslim Representatives. The unity between Catholic and Muslim communities has been strengthened. But the government's fight against jihadism has many flaws. Overcrowded prisons, unemployment and marginalization are the ingredients for recruitment and radicalization.

     


    23/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope appeals for "moderation and dialogue" in Jerusalem


    At the Angelus Francis, concerned about the violence in the Holy City, asks all to pray "so that the Lord may inspire intentions of reconciliation and peace in all." Evil and good are "intertwined" in each of us, and it is not for man to distinguish or judge.


    20/07/2017 - ASIA

    Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong, Tokyo, Beijing and Shanghai among most sought-after destinations in 2017 City Index


    New York is still first, but Abu Dhabi and Hong Kong are second and third for business. The top ten includes Tokyo (fifth), Beijing (seventh), and Shanghai (tenth). The younger generation prefer Abu Dhabi and Tokyo. The data comes from the Ipsos Global survey of the best cities in which to live, work and visit.


    19/07/2017 - BANGLADESH

    Authorities suspect 17 Islamist NGOs of funding to terrorism

    by Sumon Corraya

    Most of these NGOs are controlled by Jamaat-e-Islam, and are based in Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Bahrain. The main ones are the Bangladesh Krishi Kalyan Samity, Muslim Aid Bangladesh, Rabeta Al-Alam al-Islami, Qatar Charitable Society, Islamic Relief Agency, International Islamic Relief Organisation (IRO), Hayatul Ighachha, Revival of Islamic Heritage Society, Tawhidi Noor, and al-Muntada al-Islami.


    19/07/2017 - THAILAND

    Court hands out 21 guilty verdicts in Rohingya crisis


    Sentences were expected this morning. A general is among the 103 defendants. Charges include human trafficking, kidnapping, and murder.


    18/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope on twitter reaches 35 million followers


    Benedict XVI launched the account 3 December 2012. Available in nine languages, it is one the most followed in the world with the most retweets. In recent weeks, the pope’s thoughts about Charlie Gard and very sick children was extensively retweeted.


    17/07/2017 - CHINA

    Liu Xiaobo: a torch that enlightens human civilization


    The testimony of the great nonviolent dissident is the highest contribution to humanity in the last (sterile) 500 years of Chinese history. A priest from North China offers an elegy in memory of Liu (and his wife).


    16/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Jesus invites us to look inward and carry our rocks and brambles in the confession


    "Let us ask ourselves if our heart is open to accept faithfully the seed of the Word of God. Let us ask ourselves if the rocks of idleness are still numerous and big. Let us identify and call by name the brambles of vices. Let us find the courage to clean properly the ground, bringing our rocks and brambles to the Lord in the confession and in prayer.”


    14/07/2017 - CAMBODIA

    Thousands of undocumented Cambodian migrants leaving Thailand


    Since 28 June, 8,328 Cambodians have returned home. In Thailand, they could be fined up to US$ 3,000 or get five years in prison. Lack of money is the main factor pushing them to remain undocumented. Once home, returnees tend to stay or go back to Thailand without papers.


    14/07/2017 - THAILAND

    Smart ID card for Buddhist monks


    The government measure is due to the high number of ethical and legal abuses involving monks. In recent years, there have been several cases of misappropriation of government funds in temples. The government has announced the new measure to three members of the Sangha Supreme Council. The new papers are expected “in three months,” a senior Thai government official said.


    13/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: visiting the sick or giving food to the poor "is already preaching"


    Francis’ message to the International Symposium on Catechesis in Buenos Aires, on the topic "Blessed are those who believe." "Being a catechist is a vocation of service in the Church, a gift of the Lord that changes lives."


    10/07/2017 - THAILAND

    ‘Love Missions’, the Thai soap that promotes patriotism


    The missions and love stories of four officers are the show’s main elements. An instant hit with millions of viewers, it "is military propaganda” for critics. “We are allowing them to use military camps,” said Defence Ministry Spokesman General Kongcheep Tantravanich,” and “making suggestions on the right costumes and make-up.”


    10/07/2017 - THAILAND

    The first Thai missionary, a "little seed", "already a tree capable of spreading its branches"

    by Claudio Corti*

    Fr. John Phongphan Wongarsa was ordained on July 8, during a ceremony which more than a thousand people attended. The celebrations continued the following day with traditional Thai elements. The diocese of Ubonrachathani has local nuns and priests, but Fr. Phongphan is the first missionary, a sign of a church that "produces fruits" for other churches as well.


    08/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Card Sarah: Ensure the validity of bread and wine for the Eucharist


    Letter from the Congregation for Divine Worship. Bishops must ensure that the material for the celebration is valid: wheat bread and grape wine. The exceptions for celiac and for those who do not drink wine but can drink mustum. Verification is needed because today these products are also sold in supermarkets and via the internet.


    08/07/2017 - UN

    Over 100 countries vote for the prohibition of nuclear arms, but big powers rebel


    The text was approved with 122 votes in favor, one against, one abstention. But none of the nine nuclear countries -  US, Russia, China, France, Great Britain, India, Pakistan, North Korea, Israel - took part in the debate or vote. Vatican support and the appreciation of UN Secretary-General Guterres.


    07/07/2017 - THAILAND

    Government cracks down on the Internet and social media through tighter controls and censorship


    The authorities plan to fingerprint and face-scan mobile phone owners as well as set up a social media watch centre to monitor content they deem inappropriate. This follows a press law. Source tells AsiaNews that the country is moving “towards thought control”.


    07/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope to G20: Address ongoing conflicts and migration for an inclusive and sustainable global economy


    Following the request of Angela Merkel, Pope Francis writes to heads of state and government in Hamburg for the summit of the world's major economies. A "heartfelt appeal"  to address the tragic situations of South Sudan, Lake Chad, Horn of Africa and Yemen, where there are 30 million people who have no food and water to survive. " The contradiction between apparent unity in the "common economic forums" and the persistence of "armed conflicts". Take an example from the great leaders of the recent past: Schuman, De Gasperi, Adenauer, Monnet. Bear in mind the great majority of the population, even though it represents only 10% of the world economy.


    05/07/2017 - THAILAND – MYANMAR

    Thailand’s new labour regulations cause an exodus of foreign workers

    by Weena Kowitwanij

    By the end of June, some 60,000 migrants left Thailand for fear of sanctions. Undocumented foreign workers face fines that top US$ 2,000 and five years in prison with those from Myanmar the most affected. Some Thai officials extort money from those leaving. The exodus is having negative effects on Thailand’s economy.


    03/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope tells FAO that hunger is not just a natural phenomenon, but rather the result of selfishness and wars


    In his message, Francis reminds the international community of its duty of solidarity. Malnutrition is the “result of a more complex condition of underdevelopment caused by the indifference of many or the selfishness of a few.” At the same time, “All of us realize that the intention to provide everyone with his or her daily bread is not enough. Rather, there is a need to recognize that all have a right to it and they must therefore benefit from it.”


    03/07/2017 - ASIA

    US and Russia reduce (minimally) quantity of nuclear weapons; China, India, Pakistan, North Korea and Israel increase them


    2017 Stockholm International Peace Research Institute report is published. Data reveals slowdown in the process of dismantling nuclear weapons: 14,935 nuclear warheads against 15,395 of the previous year. US and Russia are investing in modernizing their systems. The smallest arsenals in Asia are in full swing. Israel has 80 nuclear warheads. Pope Francis's appeal to the UN has not been heard.


    02/07/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: If you leave everything for Jesus, people will recognise the Lord in you and help you to convert. He makes an appeal to Venezuela


    During the Angelus, Pope Francis called on Christians to hold Jesus as "the centre, the whole of life." Do not have a "duplicitous heart" with a "foot in two shoes". May the " holy faithful people of God” help “us to be good priests." He dedicated a Hail Mary to Venezuela, and expressed his “closeness to the families who have lost children in the streets”.


    29/06/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Like Peter and Paul, apostles on the way, not parlour Christians

    by Papa Francesco

    At Mass for the solemnity of St. Peter and Paul, Pope Francis emphasizes the characteristics of the apostles: professing Christ, accepting persecution, being masters of prayer. In the world today "so many Christians are marginalized, slandered, discriminated, subjected to even mortal violence", and often "in a climate of silence - not often silent accomplice". The presence of the ecumenical delegation sent by Bartolomeo I, Patriarch of Constantinople.


    29/06/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: The faith of Peter and Paul, confessed, announced, crowned with the supreme test of martyrdom


    At the Angelus, Pope Francis speaks of how the two apostles were "liberated" to "proclaim the Gospel in difficult and in some cases hostile environments." "Especially in times of trial, God tends a hand to us, comes to our aid, and frees us from enemy threats." Greeting to the faithful from Indonesia and Qatar. The greeting to the new cardinals, the major archbishops who received the pallium, and the delegation of the ecumenical patriarchate of Constantinople.


    29/06/2017 - VATICAN - AUSTRALIA

    Card. George Pell accused of abuse: "I'm innocent." Pope's trust and esteem


    The Prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy takes a leave of absence to "clear" his name of charges of paedophilia, which he categorically rejects. Card. Pell is the highest Vatican personality to undergo this kind of accusation. The Holy See expresses "respect" for the Australian justice system, but affirms all its esteem for the cardinal, who has worked very hard against paedophilia. Pope's appreciation for his commitment to economic reforms. Some people think that these accusations are a "vendetta" of mafiosi groups who are now unable to use the Vatican bank in money laundering operations.


    28/06/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope tells new cardinals that they are called to look at the reality of suffering and injustice


    Francis created five new cardinals today. They come from Laos, Mali, Sweden, El Salvador and Spain. He described today’s reality in which “It is the innocent who suffer and die as victims of war and terrorism;” a world in which “forms of enslavement [. . .] continue to violate human dignity even in the age of human rights;” where “refugee camps [. . .] at times seem more like a hell than a purgatory;” and where “all that is no longer useful, people included,” is discarded.


    28/06/2017 - HONG KONG – CHINA

    What changes and what remains of the last 20 years of Hong Kong. The contribution of Christians

    by Mary Mee-Yin Yuen (*)

    The handover of the former British colony to China in 1997 did not come without pain. Still, Beijing respected Hong Kong’s way of life for several years. In recent times though, mainland meddling in Hong Kong's internal affairs has increased. This has sparked a strong reaction in favour of democracy as well as autonomy, especially among young people. The Catholic Church remains committed to the common good. Card Zen is considered a hero of democracy and the marginalised. It is still possible to build trust between rulers and ruled. What follows is an analysis by a researcher at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.


    28/06/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: "Persecution is not a contradiction to the Gospel, it is part of it"


    The Christian is a "martyr," a "witness" to good, he accepts to die "for fidelity to the Gospel" and "reproaches the idea that suicide bombers may be called martyrs. There is nothing in their end that can be likened to the attitude of the children of God ".






    Editor's choices

    CHINA - VATICAN
    60 years of the Chinese Patriotic Association: the Church subordinated to Politics

    Shan Ren Shen Fu (山人神父)

    Although in a low key - perhaps because of talks with the Vatican - the slogan for an "autonomous" and "independent" Church (from the Holy See) is completely subjugated to Party politics. Official bishops die like "state officials" far from the faithful. The Party forces its members to atheism. There are few  "witnesses" among official bishops and many  "opportunists".

     


    VATICAN
    Pope appeals for "moderation and dialogue" in Jerusalem



    At the Angelus Francis, concerned about the violence in the Holy City, asks all to pray "so that the Lord may inspire intentions of reconciliation and peace in all." Evil and good are "intertwined" in each of us, and it is not for man to distinguish or judge.


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