February 2012

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.


Relic of Blessed Teresa welcomed to Hong Kong
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

HONG KONG (UCAN): In welcoming a relic of the founder of the Missionaries of Charity to Hong Kong, Bishop John Tong Hon asked people to pray that Blessed Teresa of Kolkata may intercede in helping people to make a new beginning in China-Vatican dialogue at a Mass celebrated at Ss. Cosmas and Damian parish, Tseun Wan, on February 5.

Speaking to around 1,000 people, the bishop of Hong Kong said Blessed Teresa,...

Some expectations about the future SAR government envisioned by the Catholic Church in Hong Kong
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

The political community exists, consequently, for the sake of the common good, in which it finds its full justification and significance, and the source of its inherent legitimacy. Indeed, the common good embraces the sum of those conditions of the social life whereby men, families and associations more adequately and readily may attain their own perfection. … It is clear, therefore, that the political community and public authority are founded on...

Lenten pastoral letter 
from Bishop Tong
(Saturday, 18 February 2012 )

Let’s be grateful and generous 


My dear brothers and sisters in the Lord:


The Holy Father made me a member of the College of Cardinals yesterday. He announced the appointment on the feast of the Epiphany. It is not a personal honour, but a reflection of the care and love the Holy Father is extending towards us as...

Distrust still simmers beneath peace overtures in Myanmar
(Saturday, 11 February 2012 )

MYITKYINA (UCAN): Since an outbreak of fighting between government troops and the Kachin Independence Army (KIA) shattered a 17-year-old ceasefire agreement in June last year, tens of thousands of villagers in the ethnic region have been forced to flee their homes and seek tenuous shelter in makeshift camps near the country’s border with China.

Father Paul Wanghte Lum Dau, the pastoral project coordinator for...

Around the Traps
(Saturday, 11 February 2012 )

Vatican and Palestinians discuss Church rights

VATICAN CITY (CNS): The Vatican and the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) are continuing talks aimed at a formal agreement regulating and promoting the presence and activity of the Catholic Church in the Palestinian territories.

Vatican and PLO representatives met on January 28 at the headquarters of the...

If you are not at the Vatican you miss out says Australian diplomat
(Saturday, 11 February 2012 )

ROME (Agencies): As the departing Australian ambassador to the Holy See, former leader of the National Party, Tim Fischer, packed his bags to return to Canberra from Rome on January 12, he reflected that countries without a resident diplomatic presence in Rome are losing out.

“It is so much easier to do the job if you’re on the ground in Rome,” CNA quoted Fischer as saying.