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    » 05/06/2008, 00.00

    VATICAN – ASIA

    Globalisation and cultural pluralism, challenges to the Church in South Asia

    kalpit Parajuli

    The meeting that brought together representatives of various countries and the Pontifical Council for Culture focused on the “disorientation” that traditional cultures face. At stake is how to share the gift of the Good News with our Asian brothers and sisters.

    Kathmandu (AsiaNews) – The challenge to the Church that comes from globalisation, cultural pluralism and nationalism and South Asia’s vigorous local religions and cultures and the Church’s response in terms of evangelisation of cultures and engaging in intercultural dialogue were at the centre of a meeting that brought together the Pontifical Council for Culture and South Asian cultural centres.

    Held for the first time in Nepal, at the St. John Vianney Pastoral Animation Centre in Kathmandu, the four-day meeting that ended last Friday saw 37 experts—bishops, priests, religious and lay people—from various South Asian countries come together to examine the issue.

    For them the first goal is to identify the mission and role that Catholic cultural centres must undertake as laboratories where the Gospel meets cultural values, said the final statement.

    Mgr Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council, in a message read by Mgr Pedro Lopez Quintana, nuncio to India and Nepal, noted that today humanity is thirsting for life and truth, peace and happiness, which can be fully quenched by Jesus who is the Way, Life and Truth.

    At the meeting, which stressed the centrality of Jesus, the Council itself was represented by its secretary, Fr Bernard Ardura, and by Fr Theodore Mascarenhas.

    “We realise,” the statement said, “that under the impact of globalisation, traditional cultures are challenged and marginalized, leading to increasing disorientation in different societies, resulting in helplessness and despair. In this context Jesus offers us hope, and He is the light that dispels darkness and confusion.” Furthermore, participants recognised the problem that “We may be tempted to adapt hasty solutions to our present problems that can in the long run be counterproductive.”

    It ends quoting Pope John Paul II who said that the “great question now facing the Church in Asia is how to share with our Asian brothers and sisters what we treasure as the gift containing all gifts, namely, the Good News of Jesus Christ (EA, 19). The Church, the Synod Fathers noted, must be open to the new and surprising ways in which the face of Jesus might be presented in Asia (EA, 20).”

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    See also

    16/09/2008 VATICAN
    Archbishop Ravasi, overcoming the mistrust between evolutionism and theology
    An international conference has been presented at the Vatican, proposing a scientific examination of the work of Darwin, eliminating the ideological context of "evolutionist" and "creationist" that marks the mistrust between Darwinism and theology.

    27/11/2006 VATICAN – ASIA
    Pope focusing on the "joy of evangelization", dialogue and respect between religions and cultures
    Benedict XVI, in a message to the Asian bishops attending the Pan-Asian meeting of the Pontifical Council for Culture, invites the Church to renew its missionary spirit. He defines Asia as "a fertile ground for the Word of God".

    10/03/2008 VATICAN – CHINA
    Reactions to the Pope’s letter are examined by the Commission for China
    The group in charge of China’s situation is meeting today and tomorrow. All aspects of the papal document are being vetted. Some heads of dicasteries, Church leaders from Asia and experts are present at the event.

    20/10/2009 VATICAN
    Pope approves special rules and structures to welcome Anglican clergy, including married priests
    Married clergymen and bishops will be ordained by the Catholic Church but will not be able to become ordinaries, this according to the forthcoming Apostolic Constitution approved by Benedict XVI. The purpose is to allow Anglicans to retain their traditions and liturgy, whilst professing fidelity to Rome.

    05/08/2009 VATICAN
    Pope: Priests in love with Christ, against the "dictatorship of relativism"
    Benedict XVI returns to the Cure d'Ars as a model for priests during the year dedicated to them. He fought against the "dictatorship of rationalism"; Today the priest is fighting against the "dictatorship of relativism." But both rationalism and relativism do not satisfy the thirst for truth that is in the heart of man. The pastoral effectiveness of the Cure d'Ars depended on his "friendship with Christ."



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