20 March 2018
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  • 19/03/2018 - RUSSIA

    Although the tally is not yet final, Tsar Putin leads with 76.6 per cent of the vote. The "Crimea" effect and the division among liberals contributed to his success. Patriarch Kirill blessed Putin’s victory.

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    19/03/2018 - IRAQ

    For the archbishop of Kirkuk, young Christians and Muslims are the engine to rebuild Iraq

    The new generation is the true foundation on which to rebuild after years of divisions, violence and extremism, says Mgr Yousif Thoma Mirkis who met 700 university students from Mosul, lodged in Kirkuk during the Islamic State rule. Two young men from Mosul, one Christian and one Muslim, shot a video telling the story of a friendship that is stronger than the jihadi madness.

    19/03/2018 - PAKISTAN

    Catholics to work with police as Easter security threat level raised

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    Special steps are announced for Easter celebrations. Police will train volunteers before Good Friday. The Church has long called for the implementation of a court ruling to train special police task force to protect Catholic places of worship.

    19/03/2018 - VIETNAM

    Hundreds of Vietnamese nuns in the USA to complete their studies

    by J.B. An Dang

    Private organizations, even foreign ones, can participate in the educational system of the country. So far, the government has never granted permits to private organizations affiliated to the Church. In some cases, nuns can manage nurseries and childcare centers in large cities, if local authorities turn a blind eye.

    16/03/2018 - SRI LANKA

    Doubts over the new TV reconciliation channel because only Tamil can understand it

    by Melani Manel Perera

    Sri Lanka’s national television network opens a new channel dedicated to Tamil culture, identity and religion. For some it is "useless" because it cannot be understood in the south; for others it is "a positive effort” because today's Tamil youth have abandoned their culture in favour of “Western styles".

    16/03/2018 - BANGLADESH

    The manual for the 'perfect terrorist' available online

    by Sumon Corraya

    Police try to block websites that praise holy war. The number of young people radicalised online is growing. The extremist who tried to stab Prof Iqbal was inspired on the Dawahilallah forum.

    16/03/2018 - VIETNAM

    The remains of the late archbishop have come home to the archdiocese in Saigon

    by Paul Nguyen Hung

    Fr Ignatius Hồ Văn Xuân and Fr Joseph Đào Nguyên remember Mgr Paul Bùi Văn Đọc and his last days. For Catholics in Saigon, "Now Archbishop Paul belongs to the love of Jesus and the Church in heaven."

    16/03/2018 - CHINA-VATICAN

    The Year of Truth? (Truth with Chinese characteristics?)

    by Card. Joseph Zen

    The considerations of the bishop emeritus of Hong Kong on claims made by recent articles regarding the agreement between Beijing and the Holy See.

    15/03/2018 - INDIA

    BJP anti-minority policies in north-eastern India

    by Ram Puniyani*

    Last week the nationalist party won big in state elections. The anti-Bangladeshi feelings and the illusory promise of development were decisive in Tripura. Through its flexibility, the prime minister’s party has been able to use manipulation to gain power.

    15/03/2018 - BANGLADESH-MYANMAR

    Naypyitaw, less than 400 of 8 thousand Rohingya 'eligible for repatriation'

    There are no fingerprints and identification photographs of the other applicants. Three terrorists identified among them. Refugees must prove that they have lived in Rakhine since before October 9,  2016.  

    15/03/2018 - THAILAND

    An Easter letter from Thailand: The greater the pain, the greater the hope

    by Adriano Pelosin

    This is the story of an ordinary day of pain. "The greater the sin, the greater the forgiveness". God “frees us from slavery paying the price of our redemption with the Blood of his One and Only son, Jesus Christ.”

    15/03/2018 - PAKISTAN

    Lahore, Taliban kamikaze attacks a religious gathering: 9 dead

    An teenager blew himself up at the police station in Nisar. Police were deployed for the safety of a meeting at the Tableeghi Jamaat center. Maximum alert for Pakistan Super League cricket semi-final. 

    14/03/2018 - PAKISTAN

    Lawyer for 'blasphemous' Christians warns of investigation irregularities in Lahore

    by Kamran Chaudhry

    Aneeqa Maria took part in the hunger strike led by the Movement for Tolerance. Almost all of Sajid Masih’s bones are broken. “Some hospital workers are even praying for [his] death”. In Pakistan, “a dead dog and a dead Christian are seen as equals”.

    14/03/2018 - CHINA - VATICAN

    Who is against a just, correct and peaceful agreement?

    by Shanren*

    Criticism of those articles that hurl arguments against Card. Zen without considering the reasons for his position. He loves the Church and the homeland. Instead many journalists remain silent on more "sensitive" topics. Everyone wants a good "agreement", but China does not respect the Cross and continues in its campaign of "sinicization" of the Church.

    14/03/2018 - INDIA

    BJP 'betrays' Hindutva to win in the north-east of India

    by John Dayal*

    Last week saw elections in Tripura, Meghalaya and Nagaland. In Tripura, the nationalists overturned 25 years of left-wing government. The party of premier Narendra Modi "compromised with the rampant corruption". "The 'Christian' image of the north-east is a myth".

    14/03/2018 - INDIA

    Tamil Nadu’s Lenten passion: four Pentecostal prayer centres attacked

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    The places of worship are all located in the Madurai district. Pastors and faithful verbally assaulted with obscene language. Hindu radicals threaten to attack the homes of Christians.

    13/03/2018 - INDIA

    Catholic hospital attacked over a land dispute in Madhya Pradesh

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    Hindu nationalist BJP member Chintamani Malviya has claimed ownership of the hospital land. Attackers beat up nurses and pushed around nuns. The Pushpa Mission Hospital was founded in 1974 at a time when no medical facilities existed in the area.

    13/03/2018 - CHINA - VATICAN

    Three bishops among assembly that made Xi Jinping president for life

    by Wang Zhicheng

    Although how they voted remains unknown, the appearance of the three bishop-delegates has already helped make the story of the biggest constitutional change in 36 years. The three are: Joseph Huang Bingzhang of Shantou, excommunicated, Guo Jincai of Chengde, illegitimately ordained and Fang Jianping, illegitimately ordained and who after receiving forgiveness participated in three illicit episcopal ordinations as consecrating or concelebrant

    13/03/2018 - SYRIA

    Marists in Aleppo: among Syrian Christians, solidarity wins over the horrors of an endless war

    The Turkish army continues its anti-Kurdish offensive in the north and surrounds Afrin. At least a thousand people need urgent medical attention in Eastern Ghouta, a rebel enclave on the outskirts of Damascus. As the conflict drags on, the "cautious optimism" about peace is giving way to "growing pessimism". In the face of death and fear, Christians remain committed to peace, justice and forgiveness.

    12/03/2018 - IRAQ

    Chaldean patriarchate mourns latest victims of anti-Christian violence in Baghdad

    A young man and a family of three have been killed in the capital in the past few weeks. The Iraqi Church has urged people to pin a black ribbon on their chest as a sign of mourning. She has also appealed to the authorities to punish the culprits. For the speaker of Iraq’s parliament, attacks on Christians are a threat to "national unity". This afternoon, a memorial Mass will be held in St Joseph’s Church in Baghdad.

    12/03/2018 - SRI LANKA

    Bishop Wickramasinghe calls for building the nation together

    by Melani Manel Perera

    The bishop of Galle makes an appeal during Lent to the faithful “not [to] confine ourselves only to external rituals”. Stronger ties of brotherhood can lead to peace in society. Tamils and Sinhalese share religious ethnic traits. People must overcome the desire to find culprits. A new mindset is needed.

    10/03/2018 - PAKISTAN

    In Lahore, a movement for tolerance holds a hunger strike against blasphemy laws

    by Shafique Khokhar

    The protest took place yesterday in front of the Provincial Assembly of Punjab. Many politicians, civil society leaders, and clerics were present. The cases of Patras Masih and his cousin Sajid, who is in hospital with serious injuries, were cited.

    10/03/2018 - SRI LANKA

    In Colombo Buddhist monks express solidarity with Muslims victims of attacks

    by Melani Manel Perera

    A Buddhist group organises a silent protest in Sri Lanka’s capital. Top monks from five Colombo temples visit four mosques in ​​Ratmalana and Mount Lavinia. They call for living together “as one community”, slam communalism aroused “by various interested parties”.

    10/03/2018 - INDONESIA – ISLAM

    Islamic university in Yogyakarta bans full veil

    The rector warns that radicalisation, as exemplified by the burqa, undermines learning. Islamist movements slam the ban. Infiltration of radical ideas in student organisations and their activities on Islamic campuses and schools is a danger. The Widodo government is trying to curb the influence of Islamists.

    09/03/2018 - INDIA

    Indian Catholic Church against passive and active euthanasia

    Today the Indian Supreme Court has admitted the possibility of stopping treatment for the terminally ill. Parliament will have to legislate in the matter of living will. For the bishops, the "taking of innocent life is never a moral act." They oppose over-zealous treatment and are in favour of palliative care. “The mark of a good society is its ability and willingness to care for those who are most vulnerable.”

    09/03/2018 - TAJIKISTAN

    Tajik cities at risk of an 'Islamist explosion'

    The extremists recruited by the Islamic State tend to be young people between 18 and 30. The loss of familial ties and clerical influence has been filled by online indoctrination. Government policies against extremism have proven counterproductive.

    09/03/2018 - SRI LANKA

    Greater security at Sri Lanka’s mosques for Friday prayers following unrest

    A nation-wide state of emergency remains in force, whilst a curfew has been imposed in Kandy. Police have arrested 85 people involved in racial and ethnic violence. Strong fear grips Muslims.

    09/03/2018 - IRAQ

    Mosul, a literary café for cultural and social rebirth in aftermath of ISIS

    A place dedicated to encounter and literature opens in the former capital of the Caliphate. The jihadists burned books and whipped those who read forbidden texts. Marx and Nietzsche are also on the shelves today. The project was born thanks to the commitment of two thirty-year-old engineers who want to be "open to all sectors" and change society.

    09/03/2018 - INDIA

    Bandra, Pious Disciples of the Divine Master observe '24 hours for the Lord '

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    The chapel of Prarthanalaya will remain open until 7 o'clock tomorrow morning. The initiative offers the opportunity to gather in adoration and confession. Sr. Amita: "Come and adore the Eucharistic Lord and ask for his intercession for humanity".

    09/03/2018 - INDONESIA

    Attack on St. Zechariah church, Archbishop of Palembang: 'Render investigations public' (Photo)

    by Mathias Hariyadi

    A group of six vandals entered the church, consecrated just last March 4, blowing a a hole in the wall. A statue of the Virgin smashed, chairs stacked and set on fire. The faithful rushed to extinguish the flames. Political analysts consider this type of incident "political warming" in anticipation of the upcoming elections.

    Editor's choices

    Syrian Trappist nuns say Western powers and factional media fuel war propaganda

    In a written appeal, the religious systematically take apart the version of the conflict touted by governments, NGOs and international news organizations. In Ghouta east, jihadists attack the capital and use civilians as human shields. The Syrian government and people have a duty to defend themselves from external attacks. The conflict alone has undermined the coexistence between Christians and Muslims in the country.

    Xinjiang, crosses, domes, statues destroyed: the new 'Sinicized' Cultural Revolution

    Bernardo Cervellera

    Crosses removed from the domes and the tympanum of Yining Church as well as external decorations and crosses, and the Way of the Cross within the church. The same happened at the churches of Manas and Hutubi. The Cross represents "a foreign religious infiltration ". Prayer services forbidden even in private houses under the threat of arrests and re-education. Children and young people forbidden to enter churches. Religious revival frightens the Party.


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