February 2013

Beijing marks 50 years since Vatican II
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )

BEIJING (Agencies): The 50th anniversary of Vatican II became the central theme of the Fifth Forum on Catholic Studies for Young Chinese Scholars 2012 organised by the Beijing Institute for the Study of Christian Culture held during January in Beijing.

According to information provided by Sapientia Press House of the diocese of Beijing, the forum saw the presentation of around 50 thesis and the speeches given by 40...

Freedom House calls for end to reeducation through labour
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )

WASHINGTON (SE): “The Chinese government should release all prisoners of conscience held in China’s labour camps as part of any meaningful reform of the decades-old system,” Freedom House said in a press release on January 11 in Washington DC, the United States of America.

The press release points out that the January 7 announcement in the wake of the November 2012 Eighteenth Congress of the...

Death of the dissident physicist who inspired Tiananmen mourned
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )

 BEIJING (AsiaNews): Xu Liangying, a champion of democracy in China, has died at the age of 92 in a Beijing hospital after spending most of his life fighting for political freedom.

He was one of the first members of the Communist Party, but was sentenced by Mao Zedong to 20 years hard labour in the countryside for his opposition to what he considered the betrayal of the Marxist values.


Religion is okay for the development of economy
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )

HONG KONG (SE): “Among our people, it remains secondary whether they choose to believe or not to believe in religion, or which religion they chose to believe in. The common goal of realising the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation is primary,” Xinhua reported Yu Zhengsheng, a Standing Committee member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of the China Central Committee, as saying on January 23.


Catholics take high profile in Vietnam government consultation
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )

HANOI (SE): Hundreds of intellectuals, religious leaders and political leaders in Vietnam have signed an online petition calling for a revision of the national constitution and a multi-party system of government that separates the executive, legislative and judicial powers, it was reported on January 26.

Among the points the petition says need reform is distribution of land ownership, which currently exclusively in...

Thailand believes army involved in trafficking Rohingya
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )

BANGKOK (UCAN): Thousands of Rohingya, people from a stateless Muslim minority group described by the United Nations (UN) as one of the most persecuted groups in the world, have fled their home in the Union of Myanmar in recent months, believed to be mostly heading for Malaysia.

A Thai naval official in Bangkok said more than 200 Rohingya were found on January 29 about 40 kilometres off the Thai mainland....

Lenten pastoral letter 
from Bishop Tong
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )

From the Bible to Jesus Christ


My dear brothers

and sisters in Christ,


The Church will begin the Season of Lent from Ash Wednesday, which this year falls on February 13. It is a time for us to prepare for the celebration of the Resurrection of Our Lord...

Getting ready for World Youth Day at home
(Saturday, 16 February 2013 )


HONG KONG (SE): With World Youth Day scheduled to be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, from July 23 to 28 this year, orientation programmes for the 30 young people who will represent the diocese of Hong Kong at the event have already begun.

The figure is way down on the numbers who headed off for Sydney, Australia, in 2008; and Madrid, Spain, in 2011; as the cost of the long journey across the oceans to the...

The challenge to trust
(Saturday, 9 February 2013 )

We continue our journey with Our Lord in Luke’s gospel as he calls the first of his disciples. There is more to this episode than just the call of the disciples. We are asked to reflect upon the fact that Jesus has moved to preaching to crowds of people that are following him on his journey, but Peter, along with the brothers James and John, were not in the crowd.

They were working on their nets after a poor...

Fifth Sunday of the Year
(Saturday, 9 February 2013 )

Gloria, Creed, preface of the Sunday (green).
Isaiah 6:1-2a, 3-8; 
1 Corinthians 15:1-11; 
Luke 5:1-11.

Mass of the day (green).