17 January 2017
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    17/01/2017 - VATICAN

    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."


     




    17/01/2017 - TURKEY

    Istanbul: Masharipov, Uzbek jihadist behind New Year massacre, arrested


    The police arrested the main suspect in the attack on the nightclub, which killed 39 people. He was in the suburban district of Esenyurt, hosted by other Islamic State militants. Relief and satisfaction of Turkish authorities. Deputy prime minister confirms: "Our war on terror continues".


    16/01/2017 - TURKEY

    Turkey’s parliament takes first step in favour of a presidentialist constitution


    A second vote is scheduled for this week, to be followed by a referendum for final approval. The ruling party obtained the required three fifths needed thanks to the support of a far-right party. Kurdish MPs boycotted the vote. In recent days, MPs clashed in parliament.


    16/01/2017 - KYRGYZSTAN

    Bishkek, Turkish airplane crashes into houses: at least 32 dead


    It had left Hong Kong bound for Istanbul. The cause of the disaster seem to be the weather. The plane crashed into about 15 houses, killing entire families, some caught in their sleep. The Kyrgyz president has interrupted a trip to China to return immediately to the capital.

     


    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 - KAZAKHSTAN – RUSSIA – UNITED STATES

    Moscow to invite new Trump administration to Syria peace talks in Astana


    The Kremlin bypassed President Obama, not involved in the background work for the talks in the Kazakh capital. Outgoing administration tells Trump to honour the invitation. Russia is in favour of the "broadest possible representation of the parties." According to Ankara, the US presence is necessary.


    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 - 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. "

     


    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. "


    11/01/2017 - KAZAKHSTAN – SYRIA

    As Astana gets ready for Syria peace conference, opposition remains divided


    Kazakhstan’s role will be limited to hosting the meeting. This means that Russia, Iran and Turkey will play the main role in solving the regional crisis. Erdogan reiterates partnership with Moscow. Only Syrian opposition groups sponsored by Ankara will be at the meeting. Other groups have been blocked.


    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".

     


    09/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Religions can help the world find peace, no to weapons and terrorism


    In his speech to the diplomatic corps Francis stresses the importance of religions for peace and therefore their commitment to deny that one can kill in God's name, promote disarmament, particularly nuclear, and non-violence , the migrants and the protection of children, the protection of nature, the value of religious freedom.

     


    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. "


    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 - 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”.


    03/01/2017 - TURKEY

    For Turkish authorities, the Istanbul massacre is a “message” from the terrorists


    Police have released a photo of the attacker, saying he might be from Uzbekistan or Kyrgyzstan. Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said that the state of emergency – in force at the time of the attack – will continue as long as necessary.


    03/01/2017 - SYRIA

    Syria: "fragile" ceasefire at risk, the rebels ready to boycott peace talks


    The anti-Assad front threatens to suspend participation in preparatory talks. Rebel militias speak of "many serious violations" of the cease-fire. Accusations rejected by the government who say they respect all points. Contested areas include the rebel bastion of Wadi Barada, essential for Damascus water supply.


    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’.”


    02/01/2017 - TURKEY

    Istanbul launches manhunt for author of New Year massacre: 39 dead and 69 wounded


    A gunman opened fire with a Kalashnikov at Reina nightclub on the Bosphorus. He then escaped without leaving a trace. No official claims, but suspicions focus on the Islamic state. The condolences and prayers by Pope Francis. A bloody 2016 in Turkey.


    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".


    30/12/2016 - SYRIA - RUSSIA - TURKEY

    Truce between the Syrian government and rebels holds. Most “serious" to date


    The cease-fire came into force at midnight and seems to hold over much of the territory. Outbreaks of violence in Idlib and in the eastern part of Damascus. Analysts and experts talk of "serious" truce with a greater chance of success than in the past. Washington excluded from the negotiating table.


    29/12/2016 - SYRIA

    Mass graves and evidence of crimes against humanity found in "liberated" Aleppo


    The bodies of 21 people killed in east Aleppo are found, including five children and five women. Charges and counter-charges are made with respect to violence, human rights violations and summary executions of civilians. Moscow and Damascus slam Western governments for covering massacres perpetrated by jihadists and insurgents.


    28/12/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: "nothing is more beautiful" than trust in God


    "Faith is also struggling with God, showing Him our bitterness, no frills, 'I'm angry with God and I told Him this this and this', 'but He is Father, go in peace'. And hope is also not being afraid to see reality for what it is and accept its contradictions".


    26/12/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: Saint Stephen, even now the Church experiences severe persecution up to the supreme test of martyrdom


    In today's Angelus, Pope Francis said that martyrdom "continues to be present in the history of the Church, from Stephen to this day." For him, "The world hates Christians for the same reason it hated Jesus." The pontiff calls for closeness with "our tears" to those who now suffer martyrdom. “[T]oday’s martyrs are more numerous than those of the first centuries” with “the same cruelty”. A moment of silent prayer was held for the victims of the Russian plane crash in the Black Sea.






    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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