19 January 2018
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Spe salvi: the new encyclical of Benedict XVI

Pope: certainty of faith is the foundation of Christian hope
In his second encyclical Benedict XVI affirms that the current “faith” in scientific progress and contesting of God’s existence based on the injustices of this world, are incapable of giving a true answer to man’s questions on the future. Hope is learned and exercised in “places” of prayer, action, sufferance and waiting for God’s Judgement.

Pope has also hopes for atheists
With his new encyclical, Benedict XVI calls on Christians to overcome individualistic views of salvation, urging them instead to be ministers of hope for the world. He calls on atheists to have the courage to do their own self-criticism in light of failed social projects and the ambiguities of scientific progress.

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Muslims and Christians meet in Cairo for Jerusalem, 'the cause of causes'

Fady Noun

A conference was held on 16-17 January at al-Azhar. Many prominent figures from Lebanon took part, including the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi. The Arab world is divided between "complicit passivity" and "noisy but ineffective speeches". For a former Lebanese premier, coordinated actions are needed to ensure greater efficacy on behalf of Jerusalem’s "pluralistic identity " and "religious freedom". Card Al-Rahi called for joint prayers, Islamic-Christian interfaith solidarity in the Arab world, and support for the Palestinians.

Yunnan: Christians accused of membership in an apocalyptic sect get up to 13 years in prison

The Three Grades of Servants cult, an underground pseudo-Protestant sect founded in Henan, is especially strong in the countryside. Those convicted claim they are just ordinary Christians and know nothing about the sect. Defense lawyers have been threatened with loss of their license to practice.


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