04/18/2014PAKISTAN Good Friday in Pakistan: fasting and prayers for Asia Bibi, Sawan Masih and other blasphemy victims by Jibran Khan The country's Christian community and civil society groups express closeness to the victims of the "black law". The bishop of Islamabad also expresses his solidarity. Muslim activist joins "our Christian brothers and sisters in Good Friday celebrations." Appeals are made to the government to take "serious steps to fight intolerance and abuse." Islamabad (AsiaNews) - "Let us dedicate a special prayer for Sawan
Masih and Asia
Bibi, both on death row on charges of blasphemy. We also urge the
community of the faithful to join us in prayer for the marginalised...
04/18/2014INDONESIA Charitable works, confession and Mass fill Holy Week for Indonesian Catholics by Mathias Hariyadi This is a time of meditation, devotions and deep introspection into the faith. In the Archdiocese of Jakarta, families offer small sums of money to fund community-wide projects. The head of the Archdiocese's communications commission releases some videos. During Chrism Mass, hundreds of priests renew their pledge to their bishops.
04/18/2014NEPAL Nepali Hindus and Buddhists also celebrating Easter by Christopher Sharma Many activities are being organised in the mountain nation to celebrate the Christian holy day. A priest at Kathmandu Cathedral hopes "that all the inhabitants of the country can share the Easter message, and that Easter will soon become a festivity for all faiths and communities". Thousands of cards and e-messages are exchanged for the occasion.
04/17/2014SRI LANKA Easter should spur Catholics to defend human rights in Sri Lanka by Melani Manel Perera Interview with Sister Deepa Fernando, a nun with the Congregation of the Holy Family, and a member of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation (JPIC) and the Christian Solidarity Movement (CSM). According to her, Christians in Sri Lanka sometimes "forget that we are all brothers and sisters." For this reason, we must follow in the footsteps of Jesus, who "died to protect the rights of others."
04/17/2014INDIA Easter among India's Christians, a challenge and a mission of hope by Nirmala Carvalho Through AsiaNews, Card Telesphore Toppo, archbishop of Ranchi, calls on his community to bear witness with their lives to the light of Christ. "The Church's task is to defend man's dignity, especially that of the most vulnerable".
04/16/2014HOLY LAND For Christian religious leaders in Jerusalem, Easter brings hope for peace in the region In their traditional Easter message, Christian religious leaders in the Holy Land emphasise that true peace "springs from the Cross and is vindicated by the Resurrection." If peace "does not seek to abolish discrimination between different communities [it] is no peace at all." In their appeal, the religious leaders call on "people of good will" to pray for a resolution to the conflicts.
04/16/2014INDIA Narendra Modi's right hand man stopped for inciting hatred against Muslims Election Commission bars Amit Shah from any meeting or election speech in Uttar Pradesh. In early April, he had asked people not to vote for Muslim candidates because Muslims had raped, killed and humiliated Hindus. Modi, an ultra-nationalist Hindu, has been blamed in connection with the 2002 communal massacres in Gujarat, when almost a thousand Muslims were killed.
04/16/2014MYANMAR Benedict Rogers: My Easter in Myanmar, the land where I became a Catholic by Francis Khoo Thwe The Asian director of Christian Solidarity Worldwide speaks of his special bond with the country and the Archbishop of Yangon. Water as an element of purification, which unites Catholics and Buddhists who are celebrating major holidays together in 2014. The universality of the Church "does not mean uniformity", but appreciation of the local culture. The Burmese Church is "a vibrant Church".
04/16/2014IRAQ Mar Sako at Easter, the power of Christ's broken and risen body pushes Iraq to new life by Mar Louis Raphael I Sako The Chaldean Patriarch reminds faithful that "Jesus is the heart " of Easter, "the center of our faith," his resurrection "makes the sun rise" on Iraq and the whole of humanity . His Beatitude exhorts the faithful to come together and pray. Ahead of the upcoming general election, he appeals for a leader who embodies the values of freedom , dignity and social justice .
04/15/2014INDIA For Pune bishop, India is multi-religious because it is an authentic and healthy democracy by Nirmala Carvalho The 5th round in India's general election is set for Thursday. Mgr Thomas Dabre calls on the community in his archdiocese to vote for "candidates and parties who will take care of every citizen, [. . .] especially minorities. This is true secularism." Fearful of a victory by Hindu nationalists, the prelate notes that "No religious community has a monopoly over the nation's history and culture".
04/14/2014BANGLADESH Fr Silvano Garello, a missionary that translated Church into Bangla by Sumon Corraya The Xaverian priest, 74, has lived in the Asian country since 1970 where he has translated into Bangla Vatican II documents, the Catechism of the Catholic Church and some encyclicals. He has also written 200 Christian books directly in that language.
04/14/2014PAKISTAN Lahore: third postponement in Asia Bibi's appeal as Islamist threats against judges continue by Jibran Khan High Court began proceedings this morning, only to adjourn the hearing. A new date for a case that has lasted for years might be announced tomorrow. Optimistic, the defendant's lawyers hope to see her walk free soon. However, fundamentalist groups continue to make threats. For Lahore priest, "the situation in Pakistan is getting worse by the day, not only for minorities, but especially for women and girls."