13 December 2017
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  • 12/12/2017 - VATICAN

    In the Mass on the liturgical feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Guadalupe, Francis calls for resistance against the "homogenisation that ends up imposing – through attractive slogans – a single way of thinking, of being, of feeling, [and] of living."




    12/12/2017 - RUSSIA - SYRIA

    Russia's victory in Syria; Hilarion calls for return of Christian refugees

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    Putin announces end to fight against ISIS and orders withdrawal of a part of the troops. Western powers criticisms of Russian intervention. The unity of Orthodox, Protestant and Catholic Christians for the return of refugees to their homeland. Also the Russian Muslims mobilize for reconstruction and aid.


    12/12/2017 - NORTH KOREA

    Experts warn that North Korea is “stealing” bitcoins


    The theft occurred when exchanges of the virtual currency in South Korea were hacked. Attacks are likely to continue as long as its value continues to rise. The virtual currency provides great anonymity outside government control.


    12/12/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Protesters hold rally in Lahore over missing activist, raising fears for his life (Videos)

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    Nothing is known of the activist’s fate after 2 December. He had attended a meeting on the Islamabad protests. The National Commission for Justice and Peace joined the protest. Amnesty International calls enforced disappearance a blight on Pakistan’s reputation. Almost 300 people have disappeared between August and October.


    12/12/2017 - IRAN

    For the first time since the Islamic Revolution, a western band performs in Tehran


    Germany-based Schiller, an electronic band that has sold seven million albums, will perform for five straight evenings. For decades, Iran’s clerical rulers had banned concerts seen as a "cultural invasion". Now they are sign that the Islamic Republic is opening up under moderate President Rouhani.


    12/12/2017 - INDONESIA

    Authorities defend the religious freedom of non-Muslims in Java

    by Mathias Hariyadi

    Regulations by some Muslim community leaders had banned gatherings by minority religious groups and the use of loudspeakers. They were issued days after members of the Indonesia Bethel Church had held a ceremony. For the local police chief, national values ​​of pluralism “are not negotiable".


    12/12/2017 - INDIA

    Kerala, the Church leads a march for fishermen dispersed by the Ockhi cyclone


    The Latin rite Archdiocese of Trivandrum, calls for more reparations. At least 40 fishermen died at sea and another 5656 rescued alive. The authorities must declare the cyclone "a natural disaster".


    12/12/2017 - CHINA-US-EU-JAPAN

    US, EU and Japanese initiative to curb Chinese economic expansion


    At the WTO meeting in Buenos Aires, the United States, the European Union and Japan would announce a joint declaration against measures such as subsidies, forced transfer of technology, infringement of intellectual property rights and unfair business practices by Chinese state companies.


    12/12/2017 - SAUDI ARABIA

    After 35 years, cinema returns to Saudi Arabia


    The first cinema should open its doors next March. They were closed due to pressure from religious authorities in 1982. The crown prince's reforms continue in the context of the "Vision 2030" program, towards a more "moderate and open" country.


    12/12/2017 - BANGLADESH - USA

    The Times Square bomber, a Bengali radicalized in the US


    Akayed Ullah is 27 years old and comes from the Chittagong district. He entered the United States seven years ago and worked as a taxi driver. "He was radicalized by watching Islamic propaganda videos on the internet".


    12/12/2017 - TURKEY

    Turkey, life sentence sought for three journalists accused of complicity in (failed) coup


    Brothers Ahmet and Mehmet Altan and the 73-year-old columnist Nazli Ilicak. Judges rule they attempted to overthrow government and constitutional order and are guilty of complicity with a terrorist organization. Lawyers bail application denied. The government wants to build 228 new prisons in five years.


    11/12/2017 - MIDDLE EAST – UNITED STATES

    Mideast Christians against Trump over Jerusalem capital, a decision that destroys hope for peace


    The Chaldean patriarchate criticises a choice that complicates the situation and fuels conflicts and wars. Card al-Rahi calls the decision “destructive” and a violation of international resolutions. Coptic pope Tawadros II cancels a meeting with US Vice President Pence. Somewhat resigned, Palestinians continue their protest. For Israeli peace group, the US has abdicated its role of mediator in the region.


    11/12/2017 - INDIA

    Fr Tom Uzhunnalil receives the Mother Teresa Award 2017

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    The ceremony took place yesterday in Mumbai. The Salesian abducted in Yemen was recognised for his “dedication and commitment" and his work in "a location of great danger". For Fr Tom, "Wars are not the solution".


    11/12/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: for Christians, patients are at the centre of health care


    Pope Francis released his message for the 26th World Day of the Sick, which will be celebrated on 11 February 2018. " The image of the Church as a ‘field hospital’ that welcomes all those wounded by life is a very concrete reality”.


    11/12/2017 - INDONESIA

    Indonesian authorities on maximum terror alert over Christmas


    More than 20,000 agents will be deployed in Jakarta from 23 December to 1 January. Terrorists target Christian places of worship and government buildings. In 2000, attacks against 11 churches left 13 people dead and 100 wounded. The country’s two main moderate Islamic organisations provide security to Christians.


    11/12/2017 - KOREA

    Aid to TB patients in North Korea: healing has “no border”


    The Eugene Bell Foundation provides medicines and food for 1,500 patients in 12 centres. For more than twenty years, Fr Hammond, aka Father Grandfather, and the NGO have helped North Korean patients.


    11/12/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: it is easier to console than to be consoled, abandon bitterness and complaints


    The problem is that we are "masters of negativity", because we carry within us the wound of original sin while "we are beggars at being positive" and we do not like to beg for consolation. "It would do us all good today, each of us, to examine our conscience: how is my heart? Do I have any bitterness there? Do I have any sadness? What is my language like? Is it in praise of God, of beauty or always of complaints? And ask the Lord for the grace of courage ".


    11/12/2017 - PHILIPPINES

    Manila, Card. Tagle: 'Stop complaining, act!'


    Everyone has been given "gifts" to meet the challenges facing the nation. More than 2,000 people attend mass in the Cathedral of Manila for the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. "Let's look at Mary. In her, God has triumphed. His love, His grace will prevail "


    11/12/2017 - IRAQ

    The Iraqi premier announces end of war against ISIS. But the jihadist ideology remains


    Al-Abadi confirms that the Iraqi forces "have taken complete control" of the Iraqi-Syrian border. He speaks of victory as the fruit of "unity and determination" and obtained "in a short time". Previously Russia had described the mission in Syria against the Caliphate as "complete". However, a military victory does not imply the eradication of fundamentalist doctrine.


    11/12/2017 - BANGLADESH - USA

    Bangladeshi Muslims rage over Jerusalem capital

    by Sumon Corraya

    Imams opposed to Trump's decision to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. A protest on the streets of Dhaka. Muslim leaders: "Trump destroys world peace".


    11/12/2017 - JAPAN-NORWAY

    Hiroshima Survivors at Nobel Peace Prize conferral to Campaign against Nuclear Arms


    The award was accepted by Beatrice Fihn, executive director of the Ican (International Campaign for the Abolition of Nuclear Weapons) and by Hiroshima survivor Setsuko Thurlow. The ceremony was snubbed by the ambassadors of the USA, France, Great Britain. The treaty for the ban on nuclear weapons was approved by 122 nations, but not by the nine nuclear powers. So far it has received only three ratifications. The support of Pope Francis.


    10/12/2017 - VATICAN-ISRAEL-PALESTINE

    Holy See: attention and concern for Jerusalem and peace in the Middle East


    A press release from the Vatican press office reaffirms the position of the Holy See on respect for the status quo of Jerusalem. The invitation to a negotiated solution between Israelis and Palestinians.


    10/12/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Advent, fill the voids of omission, smooth the roughness of pride. Call for nuclear disarmament and care for climate


    At the Angelus Pope Francis calls for greater prayer and greater charity. The Nobel Peace Prize to the International Campaign to abolish nuclear weapons. The "strong link" between human rights and nuclear disarmament. Combating climate change and fighting for integral human development. Solidarity with the families of the victims of the Okhi cyclone in India and the flood victims of Albania.


    09/12/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Francesca Cabrini's charisma is of extraordinary actuality


    Audience to the Missionaries of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, on the occasion of the centenary of the death of their foundress, Apostle of migrants. Migrants need good laws, development programs, but "also and above all of love, friendship, human closeness". Although she wanted to go to China, Pope Leo XIII said to her: 'Not to the east, Cabrini, but to the West!' The devotion to the Sacred Heart "made her able to look at the heart of those whom she approached and assisted".


    09/12/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Lahore, pastor accused of blasphemy released. He is innocent

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    The Rev. Babu Shahbaz had been in prison for a year. A group of Muslims accused him of having torn pages from the Koran. The judge: "The evidence is not valid". Lawyer: "He can celebrate Christmas with his family".


    09/12/2017 - ISRAEL-PALESTINE

    Israeli raids on Gaza: 4 Palestinians killed


    The raids are in response to three missiles launched from the Strip that did not cause  any victims. 217 Palestinians injured in the demonstrations in East Jerusalem and the West Bank. Protests against Trump's decision on Jerusalem in many Arab and Islamic countries.


    09/12/2017 - JAPAN

    Tokyo 2020, children will choose the mascots


    The "finalist" pairs presented during a ceremony. Thousands of schools in the country will participate in the vote. The joy of children


    09/12/2017 - RUSSIA

    The Russian parliament wages war on magicians, shamans, healers

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    Over 10 thousand Russian sites offer miracle cures for a fee. Black magic, curses, removal of evil eye and other services related to spells and magical protections. One in five Russian citizens turn to fortune tellers or tarot card readers at least once in their lifetime. A draft law proposes sentences of one to three years for fraudsters. The condemnation of the Orthodox Church. Superstition and post-communism.


    09/12/2017 - MALAYSIA

    Kuala Lumpur, religious leaders unite to combat violence against women and children


    A 16-day campaign of activism launched. President of the Inter-religious Advisory Council: "Overcoming indifference and ignorance, to safeguard respect for human life". The Sisters of the Good Shepherd for awareness, reflection and action. Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur: "In order to fulfill its prophetic role, the Church needs to rise up in unity to comfort the afflicted".


    08/12/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: May Mary help us reject indifference, fear of those who are different, exploitation


    Francis paid tribute and prayed to the Immaculate in Piazza di Spagna. He visited St Mary Major to pray in front of the image of Salus Populi Romani, and Sant'Andrea delle Fratte to pay tribute to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal.






    Editor's choices

    RUSSIA-UKRAINE
    A possible reconciliation between Moscow and Kiev

    Vladimir Rozanskij

    The Extraordinary Synod for the 100th anniversary of the restoration of the Moscow Patriarchate, called for a return to communion with the Kiev Patriarchate. Filaret's response, very positive, asks for forgiveness and offers forgiveness. For years there have been prevarications, expressions of hatred, seizures of churches. The invasion of Crimea has sharpened the division. The Ukrainian government rallies against.


    VATICAN-BANGLADESH-MYANMAR
    Not just Rohingya: Pope Francis’ message to Myanmar and Bangladesh

    Bernardo Cervellera

    News coverage overly focused on "saying / not saying" the word Rohingya. The Pope avoids trial by media, opting to outline constructive paths of hope. Full citizenship for dozens of ethnic groups and a development based on human dignity. The unity between the young and the different ethnic groups, admired by Buddhists and Muslims.


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