November 2012

Advent wish list
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )

In the second reading of the liturgy today, we hear St. Paul express his ambitions for the early Christians at Thessalonica.

What he wanted for them would actually make a great wish list for each one of us as we begin this Advent season and our preparation to welcome the birth of Jesus at Christmas.

However, the difference between St. Paul’s wish list and a wish list...

First Sunday of Advent
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )

December 2 – FIRST SUNDAY OF ADVENT. Mass of the Sunday, Creed, preface for Advent I (violent). Readings: Jeremiah 33:14-16; 

1 Thessalonians 3: 12—4:2; Luke 21:25-28, 34-36.


December 3 – ST. FRANCIS XAVIER. Mass of the feast, Gloria, preface for Advent I (white). Readings: Isaiah 2:1-5; ...

Rekindling the spirit of a Church of the poor among Asian bishops
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


During this 50th year since the opening of the Second Vatican Council in 1962, the bishops of Asia will gather for their deferred meeting in Vietnam during December for the first Plenary Assembly of the Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences since they met in Manila in 2009.

The anniversary of Vatican II is significant, as the council was a momentous event, not least of all for the Church in Asia....

A kite flier needs 
a kite runner
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


Did the prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, Fernando Cardinal Filoni, really expect some official response from Beijing to his almost impassioned appeal for a reopening of dialogue between Beijing and the Holy See, or was he just flying a kite? (Sunday Examiner, November 4).

In an open letter published on October 22, he seeks to dispel what are seen as stumbling blocks for the...

Day of prayer for Middle East
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


LEEDS (SE) : December 4 has been set as a day of prayer for peace in the Middle East by the bishops of England and Wales.

Vatican Radio reported that the bishops made the decision at a meeting held in Leeds on November 15. They said, “Conscious of the civil war in Syria and its impact on neighbouring countries, as well as the continuing conflict in the Holy Land, they are calling on all people to pray...

Irish bishops defend the country’s laws on abortion
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


DUBLIN (CNS): In the face of anger and criticism, the bishops of Ireland have expressed their anguish and sorrow over the death of a woman who died in childbirth on October 28 at the University Hospital of Galway.

In an official statement released on November 19, the bishops said that any pregnant women should receive all treatment necessary to save their lives, even if the procedure results in the unintended...

A history marked by missionary zeal
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


FENGXIANG (SE): Faith and evangelisation were the key words used by Bishop Lucas Li Jing Feng at a Mass celebrating the 80th anniversary of the foundation of the diocese of Fengxiang in the province of Shaanxi on November 17.

Fides reported that the festivities began on the evening of November 17 with prayer, adoration of the blessed sacrament and a procession around the church compound.

Third volume of pope’s trilogy on Jesus released
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


VATICAN (SE): The Vatican released the Italian version of the third volume in a trilogy dedicated to the life of Jesus of Nazareth, L’Infanzia de Gesu (The Infancy Narratives), on November 21.

Written by Pope Benedict XVI under the name of Joseph Ratzinger, the book is jointly published in Italy by Rizzoli and the Vatican Publishing House. It went on sale in Italy on the same day.

Acquittal of child on blasphemy charges good precedent
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


ISLAMABAD (AsiaNews): Paul Bhatti, the special adviser to the prime minister of Pakistan on national harmony, called the acquittal of Rimsha Masih, a 14-year-old Catholic girl reported to be suffering from a mental disability, on charges of blasphemy by the High Court in Islamabad, on November 20, a source of double satisfaction.

Bhatti said that legally it is an important precedent in establishing that the...

A call to Housing Authority for minority group-sensitive services
(Saturday, 1 December 2012 )


HONG KONG (SE): The Hong Kong Pakistani Concern Group on Public Housing visited the Housing Authority on November 6 to highlight to the staff the problems that people from minority groups face in accessing public housing, simply because they cannot read the writing on the wall.

The group spoke with staff at the Housing Authority in the official language of Pakistan, Urdu, using an interpreter in order to...