07/03/2015INDIA Maharashtra: Hindu nationalist government cracks down on madrassas by Nirmala Carvalho State authorities prepare to inspect 1,889 registered madrassas. Those that do not teach English, maths and science will lose their formal status as educational facilities. Critics slam the decision as "unconstitutional", but the government defends himself by saying that it wants to modernise education. Jesuit theologian and Islam scholar tells AsiaNews that the state should not interfere with schools, that its action “threatens democratic values." Mumbai (AsiaNews) – Madrassas (Qur‘anic schools) that do not teach English, maths and science will lose their status as "school" and their students will be considered uneducated, the Government of the State of Maharashtra announced today. Tomorrow,...
07/03/2015ASIA 2015, young people celebrate anniversaries of Taize and Brother Roger by Frère Ghislain* Over 100 years since birth, 10 years after his death and 75 years after the foundation of the experience of Taizé, Brother Roger's charism is still alive. Gestures of prayer and solidarity across Asia: Philippines, Singapore, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam. In Calcutta, prayer around the tomb of Mother Teresa, who Frere Roger visited in 1976 and 1997. In Japan and throughout the continent an experience of the Church united "in God’s heart".
07/01/2015INDIA Raipur archbishop: Catholic schools on strike to protest nun’s rape by Nirmala Carvalho Mgr Victor Henry Thakur led today’s demonstration, which involved 30 Christian and some private schools in the state of Chhattisgarh. “Ours is a symbolic shutdown and protest to express our anguish and pain at what happened,” the prelate said.
06/30/2015INDIA Vandals attack Baptist church, damage cross, in Bhiwani by Nirmala Carvalho Four motorcyclists threw stones at the building. After a first incident, they came back half an hour later to carry out a second attack. This is the first act of violence in Bhiwani District. For the church’s pastor, the attack was "an attempt to provoke tensions in the community." According to the president of the Global Council of Indian Christians, it was “intentionally provocative and anti-Christian."
06/29/2015VATICAN Pope: Rome’s "affection and gratitude" for witness of Peter and Paul At the Angelus Pope Francis remembers the mission of the Church of Rome, that preserves the legacy of Peter and Paul: faith and charity. The " Romans centuries long devotion to the Virgin, especially invoked as Salus Populi Romani". The bond of communion of metropolitan archbishops with "the See of Peter" and "brotherly ties" with the Sister Church of Constantinople. The announcement of the trip to Ecuador, Bolivia, Paraguay 5 to 12 July.
06/29/2015VATICAN Pope to new metropolitan archbishops: The Church wants men of faith, prayer, witness On the Feasts of St. Peter and Paul, Pope Francis blesses the pallium for 46 metropolitan archbishops appointed this year. These include six Asian archbishops. The pallium will be imposed by the nuncios in the countries of origin. Orthodox delegation sent by Bartholomew I, Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople also present. The apostles and the first Christian communities with “courage carried forward the work of evangelisation, free of fear of death and martyrdom, within the social context of a pagan empire”. “Many forces in the course of history have tried, and still do, to destroy the Church, from without as well as within, but they themselves are destroyed and the Church remains alive and fruitful". " the Church does not belong to Popes, bishops, priests, nor the lay faithful; the Church in every moment belongs solely to Christ." " A Church or a Christian who does not give witness is sterile; like a dead person who thinks they are alive; like a dried up tree that produces no fruit; an empty well that offers no water! The Church has overcome evil thanks to the courageous, concrete and humble witness of her children".
06/28/2015VATICAN Pope: Believe that Jesus can heal us and awaken us from death? At the Angelus in St. Peter's Square, Pope Francis speaks of today's Gospel - of healing and resurrection - that "have a single center: the faith." A "tarnished or uncertain" faith tends to confuse "resurrection with reincarnation." "Faith ... promotes life in every situation."
06/27/2015ISLAM - MIDDLE EAST Al Azhar and Vatican against terrorism. The ambiguity of the international community by Bernardo Cervellera The influential Sunni university denounces " heinous" violence of the Islamic state and demands the world defeat this group “through every possible means". Vatican: terrorism is a threat to all humanity. France claims to fight terrorism, but then sells weapons, aircraft, helicopter gunships to Saudi Arabia, which supports Islamic fundamentalism. Kuwait tolerates Salafis who support the Nusra Front and the Islamic state. Turkey against the Kurds; the United States against Iran, Russia and China.
06/26/2015INDIA Card. Gracias: Catholic nun’s rape a national shame by Nirmala Carvalho The Salesian religious attacked a week ago in Chhattisgarh confirms that she was raped. Her head covered and supported by Christian leaders and human rights activists, the nun spoke to reporters about the attack. Archbishop of Mumbai: "Women treated as objects, and this is bad social growth. All of society must work to end this discrimination and devaluation".
06/25/2015NEPAL "Nepal is not alone" as donor countries meet after the earthquake by Christopher Sharma The United States will provide US$ 200 million; the Asian Development Bank, an additional US$ 600 million. India will provide a billion, and the European Union, € 100 million, to give the country some fiscal space. Overall, some US$ 6.7 billion are needed to rebuild. As the monsoon season nears, thousands of people still live in makeshift shelters or out in the open, depending on humanitarian aid for food and water.
06/25/2015INDIA Caritas India under watch but not yet requiring “prior approval” The charity’s executive director told AsiaNews that his organisation has not received any communication in the matter. Government sources suggest that the Catholic charity is accused of funding “anti-Indian” activities. In business for 53 years, the Catholic relief agency is into development, disaster management and rehabilitation. For Caritas Asia coordinator, the information “is unfounded”.
06/24/2015INDIA - NEPAL Card. Gracias: Farewell to Sister Nirmala, humble and enlightened by faith by Nirmala Carvalho – Christopher Sharma Millions of people in India and Nepal bid farewell to Mother Teresa’s successor, who died yesterday in Calcutta. Today the funeral. The archbishop of Mumbai to AsiaNews: "Her daily prayers have been a support for me and for the Church in India and Asia”. Remembering the sister and her origins in Kathmandu.
06/24/2015INDIA Mumbai methanol poisoner arrested, over 100 deaths The police discovered him in New Delhi, where he was hiding at a friend's house. The man had imported liquor from Gujarat, the only state in India where is the sale of alcohol prohibited. Mumbai is the worst toxic alcohol poisoning since 2004.