18 January 2017
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    18/01/2017 - PHILIPPINES

    Some 5,000 delegates from around the world are attending the five-day congress that opened on Monday. Its main themes are mercy, compassion, and value of human life against the background of a country in a war mode.




    17/01/2017 - INDIA

    For Catholic leaders, the Indian Church must speak out against inequality

    by Santosh Digal

    Oxfam releases its report on inequality. It shows India below China and Pakistan. Overall, 1 per cent of the population owns 58 per cent of the wealth. There is no welfare state, and no health insurance for the poor. Corporate debts have been forgone, but nothing has been done in education.


    17/01/2017 - INDIA

    Mangalore hosts tenth national meeting of young Catholics

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    The event will be held January 18 to 22. Over 3 thousand youth leaders are expected from all over India. The meeting will end with a march for peace. The "Youth Cross", a symbol of Christ's love, has traveled 2 thousand kilometers.

     


    16/01/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Emeritus Bishop of Multan: his disability has not stopped him (Video)

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    Mgr Andrew Francis celebrated 45 years of priesthood. He praised Christians who struggle for their faith. In 1996, he survived an assassination attempt, whilst in 2013, a car accident left him disabled. But for him, “there is no downside in my life."


    16/01/2017 - INDIA

    Odisha soldier who converted is proud of his faith in Jesus Christ

    by Santosh Digal

    Naba Kishore Patra is a catechist in the diocese of Balasore. Born and raised in a Hindu family, he married a Catholic woman, who introduced him to the Christian faith. Vincentian priests and nuns nurtured the seed of his faith. Now he wants "to work hard for the mission".


    14/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Mother Teresa is an icon for all those who treat irresponsible globalization


    In his meeting with members of the Global Foundation, Pope Francis condemned the "culture of waste" and the "capitalist system”, as had John Paul II in his encyclical Centesimus Annus. Mother Teresa welcomed “every human life, whether unborn or abandoned and discarded". For a " fraternal and cooperative" globalization, we need to learn “compassion for those suffering”, and be guided by the Church's social doctrine.


    13/01/2017 - BANGLADESH

    Card D'Rozario tells Bangladesh priests and religious to visit more families

    by Sumon Corraya

    The cardinal met with 50 priests, 20 nuns and 30 Catholic lay people. "Family members want to hear words of hope". The family is the root of the Church. The country needs more people trained to meet their needs. Marriage is not just a social tradition, but is “the mirror of God’s love."


    13/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Church must listen to "the sensitivity of the faith; even the doubts and criticism" of young people


    Francis writes a Letter to present the preparatory document of the 2018 Synod, on "Young People, the Faith and Vocational Discernment". Online questionnaire for young people announced.


    12/01/2017 - INDIA – NEPAL

    Bangalore Cares for Nepal: a year and a half of actual help to lepers and quake victims (photos)


    An Indian priest, Fr George Kannanthanam, is behind the initiative. He left for Nepal the day after the earthquake. At first he used his own money, then found partner organisations and volunteers. After a month, he had reached 24,000 people. Later he provided temporary housing for 450 families and built homes for the 50 families of a leprosy colony.


    11/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: hope in God, who never disappoints, and not in idols like power and wealth


    It is important that hope "is placed in what really can help us live and give meaning to our existence." "Placing your hope in idols, you become like them: hollow images with hands that do not touch, feet that do not walk, mouths that cannot talk", "and we, men of the Church, we run that risk when ‘we become worldly '. We have to stay in the world but defend ourselves from illusions of the world. "


    09/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Religions can help the world find peace, no to weapons and terrorism


    In his speech to the diplomatic corps Francis stresses the importance of religions for peace and therefore their commitment to deny that one can kill in God's name, promote disarmament, particularly nuclear, and non-violence , the migrants and the protection of children, the protection of nature, the value of religious freedom.

     


    06/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: like the Magi, "Those who seek light, must go out and search” and “place their own life on the line”


    Some 60,000 people gather in St Peter's Square for the Angelus prayer. Francis has some volunteers, including some who are poor and homeless, hand out a booklet titled ‘Icons of Mercy’ to those present.


    06/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Magi reflect the attitudes of the believer, Herod the bewilderment of those who turn inward


    On the feast day of the Epiphany, Pope Francis stressed the different attitudes of the Magi and Herod towards the news that "a king was born". One the one hand, the Magi "in their lives have not let their hearts be anesthetized;” on the other, there is “The bewilderment of those immersed in the culture of winning at any cost, in that culture where there is only room for ‘winners’, whatever the price.”


    04/01/2017 - INDIA

    Brother Paul, ready to become God’s instrument

    by Santosh Digal

    The Indian religious will be ordained next May. Meanwhile, the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament sent him to the Andaman Islands to serve the local population. “I pray to God every day so that he makes me able to break myself to feed others.”


    04/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: That prison be a place of rehabilitation and social reintegration


    "When someone asks me difficult things like 'why do children suffer' I really do not know how to answer, I just look at the crucifix and watch how God gave His son, this is why we say that God took on our pain”.


    02/01/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope calls on world bishops to protect children from those who kill or exploit them


    In a letter, Francis calls on pastors to defend the "Holy Innocents" of our day, the children whose “innocence [is] robbed from them by the oppression of illegal slave labour, prostitution and exploitation”, the “Thousands of our children [who] have fallen into the hands of gangs, criminal organizations and merchants of death, who only devour and exploit their neediness.” Speaking about the shame associated with abuses by priests, he writes, “let us adhere, clearly and faithfully, to ‘zero tolerance’.”


    31/12/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: Look to the New Year thinking about how to give young people a concrete future


    "As another year draws to a close, we pause before the crib, to thank all the signs of divine generosity in our lives and in our history." " Looking at the manger means recognizing that the times ahead call for bold and hope-filled initiatives, as well as the renunciation of vain self-promotion and endless concern with appearances". We live in a culture that "idolizes youth trying to make it eternal," but which "condemns our young people to have no place in society".


    30/12/2016 - SRI LANKA

    Oblates of Mary Immaculate gift stationery and books to 50 poor children in Colombo (photos)

    by Melani Manel Perera

    The children live in a multiethnic area of the capital that developed after 1971 for many of the city’s beggars. Children performed in a Christmas play to tell parents to stay clear of alcohol abuse.


    30/12/2016 - PAKISTAN

    Fr Joseph Louis, "activist for Lahore’s poor", has died (photos)

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    The priest was ill for some time. He served twice as Caritas executive secretary. In 1997, he set up a trust to fund education for adults and children, as well as health and professional skills development in the archdiocese’s rural areas. He also founded a housing colony for poor Christians and a centre for the blind.


    29/12/2016 - SRI LANKA

    Wewala parish gifts Christmas food bags to 139 poor families

    by Melani Manel Perera

    The packages were handed out on 24 December. The parish, which is part of the Archdiocese of Colombo, is home to 2,500 families. Parishioners chose the beneficiaries, people who find it hard to hide their poverty.


    28/12/2016 - INDIA

    Caritas India to bring fraternal and human aid to cancer patients

    by Santosh Digal

    This is part of its 2017 Lent campaign. Each year, the social arm of the Catholic Church in India pursues programmes to improve people's living conditions. In over 50 years of activity, it has funded nearly 23,000 projects worth US$ 205 million.


    27/12/2016 - SRI LANKA

    Christmas in Sri Lanka: Mass for the Catholic inmates and amnesty for 572 prisoners

    by Melani Manel Perera

    Catholic prisoners took part in Mass in Colombo Prison, and received presents. They later met with relatives and had lunch with them.


    27/12/2016 - MONGOLIA

    Christmas in Mongolia: And Christ pitched his tent among us (Photo)

    by Giorgio Marengo*

    The Consolata missionary tells how the tiny Catholic community celebrated the birth of Christ. "Underpinning the universe is this child in whom the Most High has decided to incarnate." The liturgy in the tent-chapel, children's poems, the recitation of the Nativity.


    25/12/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: May Christmas bring the peace of Jesus to countries at war and to people who suffer from terrorism and violence


    In his message, Francis expressed a wish for peace for those who suffer in war, from war-torn Aleppo to the Holy Land, from Nigeria to Myanmar, and for all those wounded by violence; peace also for those who “lost a person dear to them as a result of brutal acts of terrorism,” to “exiles, migrants and refugees, to all those who in our day are subject to human trafficking,” to those who suffer economic exploitation, to children “deprived of the joys of childhood”, and “to men and women of goodwill”.


    25/12/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: in the night of Christmas, let us think about the children who even on this day suffer from war and hunger


    Today, as in Jesus’s times, “If we want to celebrate Christmas authentically, we need to contemplate this sign: the fragile simplicity of a small newborn, the meekness of where he lies, the tender affection of the swaddling clothes. God is there.”


    24/12/2016 - BANGLADESH

    Fr Cagnasso sends his heartfelt thanks to God and his doctor for letting him go back to Bangladesh

    by Franco Cagnasso

    The former regional superior of PIME in Bangladesh sent his Christmas letter. He spent 2016 with college students on the outskirts of Dhaka, helping people with TB and those with vision problems. Expenses are up and the number of missionaries is down, partly because of terrorism. He almost did not make it back, but “when I had my heart test, everything was okay”.


    23/12/2016 - SRI LANKA

    Christmas for a Catholic family in Sri Lanka means donating clothes and food to the poorest

    by Melani Manel Perera

    A Catholic mother convinced her family to have a different Christmas. They saved money for a month and decided not to have gifts in order to help two poor families, one Catholic and one Buddhist. “What I want is for my children to learn the true meaning of Christmas,” she said.


    22/12/2016 - INDIA

    Mgr Barwa: in conflict-torn Odisha, may Christmas be peaceful and joyful

    by mons. John Barwa*

    The Archbishop of Cuttack-Bhubaneshwar released his Christmas message. Although the memory of the 2008 anti-Christian persecutions is still alive, the faith has become stronger. Odisha Christians have been blessed with countless graces: 2016 has seen a growth in vocations.


    22/12/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: the reform of the Curia, "a process of conversion"


    Meeting with the heads of the Roman Curia Francis indicates the guiding criteria of  its reform. He speaks of the expected "resistance" to this process, at times even "malicious resistance, " and  promises greater space for women and laity.

     


    21/12/2016 - PAKISTAN

    Catholic foundation provides Christmas gifts to poor students in Lahore (photos)

    by Shafique Khokhar

    The Cecil Chaudhry and Iris Foundation offers quality education to poor children. Youhanabad, Pakistan’s largest Christian colony, has no state schools. A local charity collected the gifts.






    Editor's choices

    CHINA – VATICAN
    Old guard and illegitimate bishops dominate the new Catholic Assembly

    Elizabeth Li

    Ma Yinglin and Fang Xingyao are re-elected presidents of the Bishops Council and the Patriotic Association, respectively. The principles of independence, autonomy, self-management and sinicisation are extolled. There is no "positive signal" as hoped by the Vatican.


    CHINA - VATICAN
    Assembly of Chinese Catholic Representatives extolls "independence and autonomy"

    Bernardo Cervellera

    59 bishops present at assembly, as well as the state administration for religious affairs director and members of the United Front. Future changes in the leadership of the Council of Bishops and the Patriotic Association. Extolling of autonomy (from the Holy See), a non-positive sign. The Global Times reiterates preconditions for dialogue. A state church. The criticism of Card. Joseph Zen and Hong Kong’s Justice and Peace. One Catholic: This assembly is a slap in the face to the Vatican.


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