24 August 2017
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  • 23/08/2017 - EGYPT

    Worshippers used a building as a temporary church to pray. On Sunday, police surrounded it, preventing people from entering because it did have an official permit. On the same day, in Alexandria, a Coptic woman was stabbed as she left a church.

    by Loula Lahham

    23/08/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Christian teenager arrested on false blasphemy charges in Punjab

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    Asif Masih, 16, is in jail and his life is in danger. He came close to being lynched, and was saved only by police. An imam has accused him of burning the Qurʾān. The boy is “slightly mentally retarded," a Christian activist said. “He deserves the benefit of doubt.”

    23/08/2017 - INDIA

    Instant divorce ban, a half victory for Indian Muslim women

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    Yesterday, the Supreme Court ruled against the practice and called on Parliament to come up with a law on this matter. A new Islamic marriage law must be approved within six months. For activist, "Muslim women will be able to enjoy their fundamental rights.”

    23/08/2017 - BANGLADESH

    Three Catholic women get death threats over flats in Dhaka

    by Sumon Corraya

    They had exchanged their land with a Muslim developer for flats. Now they are forced to rent and have had their lives threatened.

    23/08/2017 - VIETNAM

    La Vang, over 100,000 pilgrims at Sanctuary of the Apparitions

    by Huong Duong

    The Virgin appeared for the first time in the forest in 1798, to comfort the Catholics persecuted by the king. Bishop Dominic Nguyễn Văn Mạnh, auxiliary bishop of Đà Lạt: "Here we meet Mary in a more special way, because she promised, 'Anyone who comes here to pray to me will be heard.'" Vietnamese devotion to Our Lady.

    23/08/2017 - CHINA-VATICAN

    The pain and anguish of Chinese Catholics

    by Sergio Ticozzi

    The pressure and violence of the civil authorities control and suffocate the official Church. Underground Catholics wonder whether the Holy See has married the government's thesis, to eliminate them. The "unrealistic" hope in an agreement between China and the Holy See. The appeal of a PIME missionary, a great expert on China.

    22/08/2017 - VATICAN – ASIA

    The pope and World Day of Migrants and Refugees 2018

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    The early release of the 2018 message has been seen as a “move” to influence Italian politics at a time when the country is debating jus soli. However, the issue of migrants and migrations is a "sign of the times", something that now affects the whole planet. Filipino migrants can be found everywhere. Nepali, Indonesian and Sri Lankan migrants are treated as slaves. Religious Freedom for Filipinos and Indians living in Islamic countries is an issue. From China to Europe, "national security" has become a kind of myth that allows political authorities to forget their own citizens, not just migrants.

    22/08/2017 - INDONESIA

    Muslim woman convicted of blasphemy in Maratam

    She taught her followers that the Qurʾān does not require Muslims to pray. She also rejected the ahadith (words, actions, and habits attributed to the prophet) as religious guidelines. The court found her guilty of violating Article 156 of the Criminal Code. The prosecutor had demanded three years in prison.

    22/08/2017 - RUSSIA - VATICAN

    Hopes for a Papal trip to Moscow in Russia and the Vatican’s future

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    A very friendly meeting between Serghei Lavrov and Card. Parolin this morning. Great convergence on many international issues: terrorism, Syria, persecuted Christians. Some "differences" on the Ukrainian question. From the meeting in Havana, a new meeting between Francis and the Patriarch of Moscow Kirill anticipated.

    22/08/2017 - CHINA – GREAT BRITAIN

    Cambridge University Press makes an about-face and says no to Chinese censorship

    by Paul Wang

    The decision to obey China and remove some 300 sensitive articles sparked international criticism and an online petition to boycott the publishing house. " It is disturbing,” says one scholar, “that China is attempting to export its censorship." For Joseph Cheng, the latter "shows a lack of respect for academic freedom worldwide, and ultimately the huge feeling of insecurity that prevails in the Chinese leadership.”

    22/08/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Sister Ruth Pfau’s example in Pakistani textbooks

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    The German-born nun spent her life helping Pakistan’s lepers. Her state funeral was held on Saturday in Karachi. Students should learn about her to stay away from terrorism.

    22/08/2017 - INDIA

    Pastor beaten in Rajasthan, crosses destroyed in Kerala

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    Harjot Sethi was attacked while on a rally and suffered numerous injuries. The crosses were demolished at a pilgrimage site. Sajan K George: "It seems that only the majority can enjoy freedom in India."

    22/08/2017 - RUSSIA - VATICAN

    Moscow, dialogue between Orthodox and uniates in the heart of peace

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    Card. Pietro Parolin’s trip to Moscow is an opportunity to rebuild understanding between Catholics and Orthodox, marked by the wounds of the atheist past and the Ukrainian conflict. Russian Latin rite faithful seem to have a mediatory role. Yesterday there was the meeting between Card. Parolin and Metropolitan Hilarion. Today, the much anticipated meetings with Kirill and Foreign Minister Serghei Lavrov.

    21/08/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: Welcoming, protecting, promoting and integrating migrants and refugees

    Message for 2018 World Migrant and Refugee Day, which will be celebrated next January 14th, released. Exhortations and suggestions for a reception that facilitates "personal encounter". No to expulsion and aptitude. A law that guarantees citizenship in accordance with international rules. The care of minors. Ensure religious freedom for migrants. Aid to developing countries supporting the greatest number of refugees. Push the UN to approve the two global pacts on refugees and migrants.

    21/08/2017 - CHINA

    Liu Xia appears in a video asking for time and privacy. Hu Jia: She was forced

    No news of her since her husband's funeral. The video was posted on YouTube, a site censored in China. A friend and dissident is convinced that Beijing is behind the move, to isolate her.

    21/08/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Lahore, playing cricket to build harmony between religions

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    Yesterday the Pakistan Peace League final was held. The tournament was won by the team of St. Francis Church in Lahore, headed by a Muslim student. The agonistic passion "creates team spirit, which strengthens ties". Fighting religious discrimination in sport.

    19/08/2017 - VATICAN - RUSSIA

    Card. Parolin in Moscow: Ostpolitik conquers distrust

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    The theme is a meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill, not in Moscow, but in some holy place of the Christian East, or in Bari. An international conference on the future of Ukraine and Crimea. Commitment to Christians and Peace in the Middle East. 

    18/08/2017 - INDONESIA

    Jakarta, Widodo defends multiculturalism on Independence Day

    by Mathias Hariyadi

    Indonesia’s president and vice president wear traditional clothes in parliament. With this gesture, Widodo and Kalla put aside the political disagreements that marked their relationship because of the court case involving Jakarta’s former Christian governor, Basuki "Ahok" Tjahaja Purnama. The country’s “new nationalism" has found momentum in recent official ceremonies.

    18/08/2017 - INDIA

    Kolkata, Muslim students promote respect for human dignity

    The Students Islamic Organisation of India is behind the initiative. Over two weeks, young people will promote respect for life throughout the country. This comes after a series of violent actions against Dalit and Muslims. Symposia, seminars and public lectures are on the agenda. The campaign is meant to glorify “the very tenets of humankind”.

    18/08/2017 - CHINA-VATICAN

    Chinese Priest: The differences between the funeral of Msgr. Xie and Msgr. Li

    by Shan Ren Shen Fu (山人神父)

    For the first, the bishop of Urumqi, priests and faithful were banned from taking part in the funeral mass; there was no episcopal insignia in the photos; only half an hour for the ceremony. The other, bishop of Taiyuan, was surrounded by the affection and  esteem of thousands of his priests and faithful. But "the saints who welcome the two bishops to the door of Paradise are equally numerous."

    17/08/2017 - INDIA

    For Jesuit activist, India is still ruled by tyrants after 70 years of independence

    Fr Cedrik Prakash, who works for the Refugee Service in Lebanon, speaks on the 70th anniversary of India’s independence. The country has fallen into the hands of Hindu nationalists, and religious minorities, the education system, and freedom of expression are its victims. He cites the poem ‘Where the Mind does not Fear’.

    17/08/2017 - CHINA – VATICAN

    The funerals of Mgr Xie Tingzhe and Mgr Li Jiantang show the government’s double standards

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    The first, an underground bishop not recognised by the government, was cremated and hurriedly buried. The faithful and priests were forbidden to attend the funeral Mass, and taking pictures at the service was banned. The second, a bishop with the official Church and a political advisor to the Chinese parliament, was exposed for several days honoured and his funeral was open to concelebrants and the faithful.

    17/08/2017 - SAUDI ARABIA - QATAR

    Riyadh opens the border with Qatar to let pilgrims in

    King Salman orders the reopening of the Salwa border area. A gesture of courtesy towards the Muslim population and Muslims, but the deep divisions between the two countries remain. Bahrain accuses Qatar of fomenting the anti-government revolts of the past. It points to contacts between the former Doha premier and the former leader of the internal opposition.

    17/08/2017 - RUSSIA

    The Feast of the Assumption at the Kremlin

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    The cathedral of the Dormition of the Mother of God, consecrated on August 15, 1327, is erected in the historic center of Moscow. The building that is seen today is the work of a Venetian architect who has integrated Italian, Byzantine and Russian styles. The church, still functional, but more like a museum of icons, is witness to the greatest events in Russian history.

    16/08/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Christian prisoner who refused to reject his faith dies in custody in Lahore

    Indaryas Ghulam died under mysterious circumstances in police custody. He had burns and cuts on his body. He was one the 42 people arrested for lynching two Muslims after the Youhanabad church attacks. The prisoner could have saved his life had he denied Christ.

    16/08/2017 - KAZAKHSTAN

    Orthodox priest put on trial for praying with children at a summer camp in the mountains

    Officials inspected the camp and tried to interrogate the children. This is the first time an Orthodox clergyman I charged with breaking the ‘Law on Religious Activities and Religious Associations’.

    16/08/2017 - INDONESIA

    Indonesian Church: Pancasilia is the nation's philosophical and political platform

    by Mathias Hariyadi

    The basic principles of the nation reiterated in a Catholic national conference. The "Five pillars" must be protected and defended in critical situations, including intolerance and secularism.

    16/08/2017 - INDIA

    Indian Associations: On 25 August we remember the Christian victims of Kandhamal

    by Purushottam Nayak

    The National Solidarity Forum includes over 70 organizations and was born following the 2008 pogroms against Christians. "Kandhamal Day" not to forget the victims and give them justice. "Your solidarity will inspire those still struggling." The Forum's demands.

    16/08/2017 - HONG KONG - CHINA

    Activist 'kidnapped' and 'tortured by Chinese' arrested: the police doubt his version

    by Paul Wang

    Security Cameras at Yau Ma Tei picture Howard Lam always alone, wearing a hat, a surgical mask and sunglasses. He states he is not the man in the film. Doctors doubt his mental health. But the Democratic Party demands more evidence from the police and still defends Lam's version. chief of the executive Carrie Lam remains prudent .

    Editor's choices

    Card. Parolin in Moscow: Ostpolitik conquers distrust

    Vladimir Rozanskij

    The theme is a meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill, not in Moscow, but in some holy place of the Christian East, or in Bari. An international conference on the future of Ukraine and Crimea. Commitment to Christians and Peace in the Middle East. 

    For Eastern Catholic patriarchs, the genocide of Christians is an affront to all humanity

    Fady Noun

    Afflicted by wars, emigration and insecurity, Christian communities have now become "a small flock" amid the indifference of the international community. Patriarchs appeal to Pope Francis and the international community. Catholics and Orthodox share the same problems. The end of Christians in the East would be "a shameful stigma for the whole 21st century".


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