10/21/2014PAKISTAN - ISLAM Pakistan: Forced to marry and convert to Islam by force, a young Christian girl’s struggle for justice by Shafique Khokhar In August, the 19-year old Maria Bibi was abducted and forced to marry Mohammad Zohaib, a neighbor and classmate. Now the matter is in the hands of a court. Meanwhile, the Church of Pakistan celebrates a day of fasting and prayer for Asia Bibi. Muslim leader: no innocent person should be made a victim "in the name of religion." Faisalabad (AsiaNews) - " I am not married with Mohammad Zohaib, he is telling a lie in court, he
tried to convert me forcefully to Islam and got married with me in mosque
against my will, and this marriage I do not...
10/21/2014VATICAN Pope: "The Christian is a man or a woman who knows how to wait for Jesus and this is a man or woman of hope" "Without Christ we have no identity." From "street people" he makes us "fellow citizens with the holy ones and members of the household of God". "Instead, the pagan - and we Christians often behave like pagans - forget Jesus, thinks of himself, of his things, not waiting for Jesus. The selfish pagan acts as if he were a god: 'I can manage on my own'. And this ends badly, it ends without a name, without closeness, without citizenship".
10/21/2014INDIA India, Catholics and Hindus "working together against the globalization of indifference" by Nirmala Carvalho The President of the Office for Inter-religious Dialogue and Ecumenism of the Indian Catholic Bishops Conference, Msgr. Felix Machado, speaks to AsiaNews about the Vatican’s message for the Hindu festival of Diwali: "We must not ignore the differences that separate us, but understand them and accept them. In the footsteps of Pope Francis, we must strive for the common good".
10/20/2014VATICAN Pope: We cannot resign ourselves to thinking of a Middle East without Christians Many of our brothers and sisters are being persecuted and have had to leave their homes in a brutal way" and "in the general indifference of so many". Cardinal Pietro Parolin: international community must respond to the terrorism of the Islamic State with a negotiated solution to all the problems in the Middle East, starting from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
10/20/2014BANGLADESH Diocesan assembly in Sylhet centred on the Gospel, strength and support for families by Sumon Corraya Over a hundred priests, nuns and faithful, led by the bishop, took part in the diocesan assembly on 15-18 October. Mgr D'Cruze emphasised God's word as a mysterious force that can help families meet their challenges. The family must be protected from dangers and threats. Micro-credit tools should be used to help households in need.
10/20/2014NEPAL Nepal, an "audio-Bible" to bring Christ’s message to villages by Christopher Sharma The World Mission, a Protestant Christian organization, is engaged in recent weeks in an extensive tour of the country in order to distribute "to those who are interested," a digitally recorded copy of the sacred book. "We reach out to those who ask - says the president - and then they are the ones who spread the Gospel message to family and friends".
10/20/2014INDIA Mumbai: threats to life undermine God in society, says Card Gracias by Nirmala Carvalho In conjunction with the Synod on the Family, the Church in Mumbai organised a conference on 'Protecting, Preserving and Promoting the Gift of Human Life: Emerging Challenges'. "It is sad to see that many people today think they do not need God in their lives," says Mumbai archbishop. "The traditional family has deep roots" in India, but "the country's rapid industrialisation" creates challenges that must be met right away, says a professor of moral theology.
10/20/2014PAKISTAN - ISLAM Lahore: Christian activists ask Supreme Court to deliver speedy justice for Asia Bibi by Shafique Khokhar Christian Solidarity Worldwide calls on Pakistan's highest court to guarantee her safety as well as a speedy trial to secure her release. Her conviction is evidence of the poor status of the country's justice system, plagued by bias and corruption in blasphemy cases. Michelle Chaudhry is hopeful and optimistic about an acquittal.
10/18/2014VATICAN Pope: Synod is "walking together" with the "consolation" and "temptations" of a "Church that has its doors wide open to receive the needy, the repentant and not only the righteous" The Relatio Synodi document will be the basis for discussion in next year’s synod. "The generous fidelity with which so many Christian families respond to their vocation and mission." "The crisis of faith that has affected many Catholics is often at the root of the crisis of marriage and the family." It is '"a pastoral challenge". The Church ,"while recognizing that for the baptized, there is another constraint that the sacramental wedding, and that any breach of it is against the will of God, is also aware of the fragility of many of her children who struggle on the path of faith ". For the divorced and remarried "any access to the sacraments should be preceded by a penitential journey under the responsibility of the diocesan bishop."
10/18/2014VATICAN Synod Message: Admiration and gratitude to the families who follow Christ, Way, Truth and Life The Message (which we publish in full) is addressed to "ordinary" families and speaks of the beauty of the love between a man and a woman. Little or no space to the issues discussed in the media: communion to remarried; gay families. A prayer to the Father, in union "with the family of Nazareth," which shows the family as the transforming cell of society and the world.
10/18/2014NEPAL Nepal, Muslim women defy tradition and pray in public by Christopher Sharma Sexual discrimination within the Islamic community is a big problem in the country. Human rights activists denounce: "This leads to a lack of education and poverty." The first signs of rebellion on the occasion of Friday prayers: dozens of women leave home and go to the mosque.
10/17/2014VATICAN Synod: "intense" debate in drafting of final document Card. Marx: the Pope did not convene two synods to "repeat what has always been said" but "give a strong impetus to the family pastoral care". "The Magisterium of the Church is not a static collection of sentences, but is developed. Doctrine does not change but it is understood and implemented in different ways." Msgr. Pontier: a search for "a balance between the position of those who are more focused on the question of whether a certain situation is consistent with the teaching of the Church and those who invite us to pay more attention to people's needs".
10/17/2014VATICAN - AUSTRALIA Australian couple at the Synod: the family as a domestic church and model for evangelisation "Church documents [. . .] seemed to be from another planet". The pastoral ministry falters before specials cases because it lacks preparation and openness. Catholics must start over from the living Gospel, the one experienced in families and communities, in order to rediscover the beauty of married love and the sanctity of marriage. Here is the testimony of Ron and Mavis Pirola.