03/01/2015VATICAN Pope: Let us not forget those who are suffering in Syria, Iraq and Venezuela; let us pray for them Francis comments the Gospel of the Transfiguration of Christ. "Jesus reveals himself as the perfect icon of the Father, the irradiation of his glory. It is the fulfilment of revelation. [. . .] Jesus' journey always leads us to happiness [. . .]. Love transfigures everything." The task he leaves for the disciples and the faithful is simple: "Listen to and follow the Saviour." After the Marian prayer, the Holy Father issued an appeal to the peoples of the Middle East, noting that "We are praying insistently for an end to the intolerable brutality of which they are victims." Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Terrible "news continue to come out of Syria
and Iraq, about acts of violence, abduction and harassment against Christians
and other groups. Let those involved in these situations be aware that we have
not forgotten them, that we are close to them, and that we are praying insistently
for an end to the intolerable brutality of which they are...
02/28/2015VATICAN Pope encourages the growth of cooperatives as an economic model that serves the common good Cooperatives are "enterprises based on the principle of solidarity and social relations," that act as "the lever that raises and develops the weakest part of local communities and civil society," and provide "new welfare solutions" that support, facilitate and even encourage family life, because even though money is "the dung of the devil," if it is well managed, "it can be used to promote the common good."
02/27/2015NEPAL Nepal's Supreme Court rules against civil war amnesty The court struck down the amnesty provisions of a law favourable to those who committed serious human rights abuses during the civil war. The government promises to respect the court's decision. Between 1996 and 2006, more than 17,000 people were killed, 1,300 disappeared. Thousands more were displaced.
02/27/2015INDIA No more attacks on Mother Teresa, "beloved by India and the world". by Anthony Charangat* In an editorial Fr. Charangat, Director of Communications and Media for the Archdiocese of Mumbai, criticizes statements made by the head of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Accusing the founder of the Missionaries of Charity of helping the poor to get them to convert is "an arrogant, incorrect, misleading, malicious act and done in bad faith". "The Catholic Church does not recognize conversions made by force or deception".
02/26/2015BANGLADESH Prostitution and forced labour: trafficking in human beings in Bangladesh by Sumon Corraya The Asian country is a source and a transit point for victims. The cases involving women and children are the most documented, but men are victims are well. Boys under ten are more likely to be entangled in this traffic; girls tend to be aged 11 to 16. Some of victims go to the Gulf countries. In Bangladesh, the local Caritas helps the victims.
02/26/2015INDIA Hindu radicals: We will convert Christians and Muslims until the government stops us by Nirmala Carvalho The provoking remark was made by the leader of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), which will celebrate the anniversary of the extremist group in Kandhamal. In 2008 the worst anti-Christian persecution of Indian history took place there. The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC): "No concrete action of the Government after the statements on religious freedom by Prime Minister Modi."
02/26/2015INDIA Swine flu, more than 900 deaths in India since the beginning of the year It is the worst epidemic since 2010. More than 16 thousand cases of infection recorded throughout the country. The worst affected States are Rajashtan and Gujarat. In Ahmedabad, the government prohibits gatherings of more than five people, and requires the use of a face mask at weddings and funerals
02/25/2015SRI LANKA Sri Lanka, the government returns Paanama village to its inhabitants by Melani Manel Perera The land had been expropriated by the previous administration for tourist purposes. For years, the local population had launched a campaign to regain their property. Local leader: "Despite threats and abuse, we have had the courage to go on."
02/25/2015INDIA Indian Catholic physician: rethinking the health system to meet the needs of the elderly by Pascoal Carvalho* From 5 to 7 March, the Pontifical Academy for Life will hold its General Assembly. The theme of the gathering will be 'Assisting the Elderly and Palliative Care'. This is a sensitive issue in India, where the percentage of "grandparents" is quickly increasing. By 2021, there will be 140 million senior citizens. At least 30 per cent of them will be poor, without access to medical facilities and therapies.
02/25/2015BANGLADESH Bangladesh, arrest warrant for opposition leader Khaleda Zia The president of the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) did not show up at a hearing for the two cases of corruption. She is charged with having taken more than 600 thousand euro for two charities created on behalf of her husband when she was Prime Minister. Zia: "Political move to eliminate me."
02/24/2015EGYPT - ISLAM What Tayeb and Sisi said is big step towards a revolution in Islam by Samir Khalil Samir The grand imam of Al-Azhar slammed literalist interpretations of the Qur'an and the Sunnah, as fundamentalists and Islamic terrorists do. He supports the urgent need for Islam's reform, especially in terms of teaching lay people and clerics. He also calls for an end to mutual excommunication (takfir) between Sunnis and Shias. Egyptian President al-Sisi chose to fight the Islamic state group after it beheaded 21 Coptic Christians, whom he called "Egyptian citizens" with full rights.
02/24/2015INDIA Radical Hindus against Mother Teresa, but India rises up: "She is a Saint”. by Santosh Digal The head of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) paramilitary group has accused the founder of the Missionaries of Charity "of serving the poor in order to convert them." People of all faiths and walks of life condemn the words of the Hindu leader. Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC): "Mother Teresa often exhorted those who came to her to be good Hindus, Muslims, Christians or Sikhs"
02/23/2015SAUDI ARABIA - ISLAM For head of Al-Azhar, religious education reform is needed to stop Islamic extremism For Ahmed al-Tayeb, it is urgent to come up with new educational programmes to avoid "corrupt interpretations" of the Qur'an and Sunnah. Islamic terrorism undermines the unity of the Muslim world. He blames Mideast tensions on a "new global colonialism allied to world Zionism". a speech by the Saudi king is read at the conference.