09/01/2015VATICAN Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation in St Peter's Basilica Pope Francis leads the Liturgy of the Word on the day he instituted in unity with the Orthodox Church. Representatives of all Christian churches attend the service. Without the conversion of heart to God, “ecology has not chance of succeeding." Saint Francis of Assisi is the model of caring for creation. Vatican City (AsiaNews) – Pope Francis today marked World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation in Saint Peter’s Basilica with the celebration of the Liturgy of the Word at 5 pm in the presence of representatives of the Orthodox, Anglican and Reformed Churches as well as cardinals, bishops and members of the diplomatic corps. Thousands of believers also took part in the ceremony.
The pontiff had proposed the...
09/01/2015VATICAN Pope stresses Jubilee, God’s tenderness for women who had an abortion, Lefebvrians, prisoners, the sick In a letter to Mgr Rino Fisichella, Pope Francis adds new criteria to traditional ones to receive indulgence. All priests can forgive the sin of abortion by preparing themselves to welcome sincerely the sinners. The sick and the lonely can accept “suffering as an experience of closeness to the Lord”. The Jubilee year might bring amnesty, whilst a cell’s door might become a Holy Door. Through works of mercy, one can obtain plenary indulgence. The pontiff seeks reconciliation with the Society of St Pius X.
09/01/2015MYANMAR Myanmar president signs (anti-Muslim) law that bans polygamy Thein Sein inks controversial law that bans multiple marriages and common law partnerships. Promoted by rightwing Buddhist extremists, the new legislation follows a series of measures designed to defend “race and religion”. For HRW official, the new legislation is potentially discriminatory, especially for the way it might be implemented.
09/01/2015VATICAN Pope: Our final embrace with Christ and the idleness "of chatter" As public Masses begin again in Casa Santa Marta, Pope Francis calls Christians to witness to hope (and fear) of the definitive encounter with Jesus Christ. "He will come to see me so that I may see him with my own eyes, embrace him and be with him always." "Let us comfort one another through good deeds and good words, on this road."
08/31/2015LEBANON – VATICAN Michael Malke’s beatification and the future of Iraqi and Syrian martyrs by Fady Noun The martyrdom of the Syriac Catholic bishop at the hands of the Ottoman Empire continues logically into today’s persecution in Syria, Iraq and across the whole Middle East. Now, the victims of the massacre in the Cathedral of Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad in 2010 will become the subject of a cause of beatification. Indifferent to the fate of Christians, the great powers have lost their way when it comes to refugees.
08/30/2015VATICAN For pope, the blessed martyr Flavianus Michael Malke can bring “consolation” to persecuted Mideast Christians During the Angelus, Pope Francis mentioned yesterday’s beatification in Harissa (Lebanon) of the bishop killed during the Armenian-Syriac Genocide (1915), appealing to the international community to "do something" to end violence and abuses against religious freedom. He also urged the faithful to pray for the migrants who died trying to reach Europe, with a minute of silence observed for the 71 victims who suffocated to death in a lorry on their way to Vienna. “With external attitudes, one cannot call oneself a Christian unless one changes one’s heart,” he said. “The border between good and evil does not run outside of us but within us, in our consciousness."
08/28/2015VATICAN - IRAQ Fr. Samir of Amadiya: The Pope is the voice of Iraqi refugees by Bernardo Cervellera The Chaldean priest met Pope Francis, asking him to keep the world’s focus on Christian refugees from Mosul and the Nineveh Plain. His diocese is home to 3500 Christian families and almost half a million Yazidis who fled Islamic State violence. ISIS is not all Islam and there are Muslims who want an Iraq of coexistence. Christians might not emigrate, but remain in their own land. Aid projects for refugees: school for children, work for adults, a home for every family. An appeal to AsiaNews.
08/27/2015JORDAN - ISLAM Muslims are not doing "enough" to fight the Islamic State, says Queen Rania The Queen of Jordan - in France for a number of meetings - calls for greater attention to young people in the Middle East: if they are not given jobs and opportunities they swell the ranks of Isis militias. The urgent need to create 100 thousand jobs by 2020. The global consequences.
08/26/2015INDIA India census: Muslims grew faster than Hindus but less than Christians Census data covering 2001-2011 show Muslims increased by 0.8 per cent whilst Hindus rose 0.7 per cent. Muslims and Hindus are 172 million and 966 million respectively out of a total of a population of 1.2 billion. Christians make up 2.3 per cent of the population, but grew by 15.5 per cent.
08/26/2015VATICAN Pope on prayer: God is "the caress that keeps us alive" At the general audience, Pope Francis explains the value of prayer in family life. Rediscovering our love for God. He is not only "the great Being, the Almighty, who created all things, the judge who controls every action." "There are mothers and fathers who could win the Nobel Prize" because in 24 hours they do things that they would need 48 hours for. "The Gospel read and pondered in the family is like a good bread that nourishes everyone’s heart". Appointment for September 1 at 17 in St. Peter for a Liturgy of the Word on the World Day of Prayer for the care of creation, together with the Orthodox.
08/25/2015LEBANON Muslims defend Christians’ freedom in Beirut Declaration Freedom of religion, education and opinion are defended by quoting the Qur’ān, which is the basis for the rule of law, not a religious state. Lebanese Sunnis slam violence committed in the name of God. The full declaration is reprinted here.
08/25/2015SYRIA ISIS posts pictures of Palmyra temple destruction
The Jihadi group posts a series of photos showing the destruction of the Baalshamin Temple. For archaeologist, economic interests drive attacks on heritage sites. For UNESCO, ISIS actions are a “war crime”. They “deprive the Syrian people of its knowledge, its identity and history.”
08/25/2015PAKISTAN Faisalabad: Christian family forced to flee from place to place after wife converts from Islam by Stephen Masih Khurram Naveed, 33, a Christian man, and Sobia, 25, a Muslim woman, taught at the same school. Aided by Khurram, Sobia discovered Christianity and decided to be baptised. Since they got married and had two daughters, her parents, Muslim neighbours and imams have tried to convert them to Islam or face the consequences. The two are hoping to emigrate abroad.