February 2012

New cardinal shares on his vision for Hong Kong
(Saturday, 25 February 2012 )


HONG KONG (AsiaNews): “I feel very unworthy of this position. But I am also grateful for the honour,” Bishop John Tong Hong told AsiaNews on the eve of his elevation to the rank of cardinal, which took place in St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome on February 18.

“I have no reason to deserve this. It was a decision of the Holy Father, who wants to show his appreciation for the Church in China...

A wakeup call from 
the Indian bishops
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India renewed its dedication to sensitising and conscientising the faithful of the Church to the rampant human rights abuses, which the bishops say are characteristic of Indian society, in the closing statement of its two-yearly plenary assembly on February 8.

The forthright statement signed by over 160 bishops is a reminder to the whole of Asia and the world of the basic...

Invasion has decimated Iraq's Christian population
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

ROME (Agencies): Archbishop Timothy Broglio, of the military vicariate of the United States of America (US), called the collapse of the Christian population in Iraq a direct legacy of the US-led invasion of 2003.

Speaking in Rome on January 16, CNA reported him as saying, “Yes, you can say in a certain sense that the invasion of Iraq did provoke this tremendous diminution of the Christian population in that...

Church leaders ask forgiveness for protecting abusers of children
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

ROME (CNS): Marc Cardinal Ouellet presided over a vigil at St. Ignatius’ church in Rome, as part of a symposium attended by representatives from 110 bishops’ conferences and 30 religious congregations from around the world on February 7, as part of an expression of contrition for the sexual abuse of children by priests, brothers and sisters, and other Church personnel, as well as the bishops and superiors who shielded them from justice....

Priests released from detention
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

Hothot (UCAN): Four of six priests from the unofficial community in Suiyuan diocese, in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, were released after they had been detained on January 30. Earlier reports indicated that only five had been detained by the police (Sunday Examiner, February 12).

Father Chu Jianli, Father Ding Zhanmin, Father Wang Hu, and Father Zhao Runxi, who is the new parish priest of Erenhot, were freed...

Administrator of unofficial community dies in Kunming
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

KUNMING (UCAN): The 92-year-old apostolic administrator of the three ecclesiastical territories of the unofficial Church community in southwestern Yunnan, Father Lawrence Zhang Wenchang, died on February 5 in his hometown in Shilin Yi county.

Geographically, the area of his responsibility covers Kunming, Dali and Zhaotong. .

Belonging to the Sani ethnic group, Father Zhang...

Kidnapping of aid workers hampering Pakistan relief programmes
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

Lahore (UCAN): “The security of visiting Caritas partners, including officials and journalists, has been our top concern,” said Amjad Gulzar, executive secretary of Caritas Pakistan. 

Seven foreign aid workers—four in January alone—have been kidnapped in the last six months by Islamist militants hampering relief efforts in flood-affected parts of the country.


Resignation over Olympic sponsorship lauded
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

NEW DELHI (UCAN): Survivors of the 1984 gas leak from the Union Carbide-owned factory in Bhopal, India, have hailed a decision to resign in protest by watchdog commissioner, Meredith Alexander, from the Commission for a Sustainable London 2012.

The body is assigned to monitor the environmental sustainability levels of this year’s London Olympic Games.

Alexander is...

Bishop Tong to be seventh Chinese cardinal
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )


HONG KONG (SE): Bishop John Tong Hon will become a cardinal at a ceremony conducted by Pope Benedict XVI at St. Peter’s Basilica, the Vatican, on February 18.

He will become the seventh Chinese cardinal and the first Hong Kong-born person to be elevated to the rank.

He has been preceded as a Chinese cardinal by Thomas Cardinal Tian Keng-hsin, who became the...

Second red hat for Hong Kong
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )


HONG KONG (SE): Bishop John Tong Hon has been awarded a red hat by Pope Benedict XVI and will be elevated to the rank of cardinal at a ceremony in the Vatican on February 18, along with 21 others from around the world.

The pope will impose the biretta, consign the ring and assign a title. The new cardinals will concelebrate a Mass of thanksgiving with the pope on the following day.