December 2011

Sister cleared of trafficking charges in Colombo
(Friday, 23 December 2011 )

 COLOMBO (Agencies): Sister Mary Eliza, from the Missionaries of Charity in Colombo, Sri Lanka, was cleared of a charge of trafficking children on December 15 at a court hearing, after spending three days in police custody before being released on bail.

Indian-born Sister Eliza was arrested on November 25, after police acted on information given by an anonymous caller accusing the sisters of profiteering from adoptions and selling children to...

Aid to Church in Need gets pontifical status
(Friday, 23 December 2011 )

VATICAN (SE): The international Catholic charity, Aid to the Church in Need, has been made a pontifical foundation with the prefect for the Congregation of the Clergy, Mauro Cardinal Piacenza, as its president.

The Vatican press release does not give any reason for this move nor does it elaborate on what influence the Vatican will have on it, other than to say that the organisation will maintain its headquarters in...

A Christmas pastoral letter from Bishop John Tong
(Friday, 23 December 2011 )

Dear brothers, sisters and friends in Christ,

Christmas is the time of caring. If we implement the spirit of Christmas throughout the year, I am sure we will be doing our part to make our world better and more humane.

The Lord Jesus was born in a manger because there was no room for his parents in the inn. Nowadays, many people in Hong Kong are having great...

Fourth Sunday of Advent
(Friday, 16 December 2011 )

Creed, preface for Advent II, Mass of the Sunday (violet). 
2 Samuel 7:1-5, 8b-12, 14a, 16; 
Romans 16:25-27; 
Luke 1:26-38.


Can we say yes 
at Christmas?
(Friday, 16 December 2011 )

 I find it important to use the writings of scriptural commentators and become familiar with the particular gospel readings for each Sunday.

In doing this, I have discovered one book in which I have a particular bookmark at a spot that has great meaning for me. Attending my first retreat on entering the seminary in preparation for my ordination, each of us was provided with a room and on the door of each room there was a scriptural quotation....

La Salle College celebrates the responsibility of heritage
(Friday, 16 December 2011 )


HONG KONG (SE): “This is your college. That is why we are here,” Brother Steve Hogan, the principal of La Salle College in Kowloon Tong told 1,650 students gathered together with staff, old boys and supporters of the school at a Mass celebrated by Bishop John Tong Hon at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Central on December 2, to mark the 80th anniversary of the foundation of the prestigious academic institution.

Christmas lights switched on in Hong Kong
(Friday, 16 December 2011 )
Research on early martyrs acknowledged
(Friday, 16 December 2011 )

VATICAN CITY ( Two special awards were granted for research on the history of martyrs at a November 30 meeting of the Pontifical Academies on the witness of martyrs.

One Pontifical Academy Prize went to the Studium Biblicum Franciscanum, which is conducting archeological work in Jerusalem. The other went to Daria Mastrorilli, an archeologist working on the cemeteries of Rome.


Targeting North Korea with a giant cross
(Friday, 16 December 2011 )

SEOUL (AsiaNews): A Christmas tree on Aegibong Peak on the South Korean side of the demilitarised zone that separates the Republic of Korea in the south from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to the north, is to be topped with a brilliantly lit crucifix that will be clearly visible from the north.

After a seven year layoff in the practice, the government in Seoul has given permission to a group of...

Celluloid star turned Benedictine to address conference
(Friday, 16 December 2011 )

PASO ROBLES (Agencies): The Central California Marian Eucharistic Conference will feature a Benedictine sister, Mother Dolores Hart, an award-winning former actress as its guest speaker in January next year. She played alongside Elvis Presley in two movies, Loving You and King Creole, and still votes for the Academy Awards, 

“We feel really blessed that she is coming,” conference organiser, Pat...