April 2013

Struggle for peace in Papua recognised
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

SEOUL (UCAN): Indonesian Father Neles Tebay Kebadabi was awarded the prestigious Tji Hak-son Justice and Peace Award in the South Korean capital of Seoul on February 27 for his effort in bringing an end to the ongoing violence in the eastern Indonesian province of Papua.

Father Neles is a member of the Indonesian Bishops’ Conference, as well as belonging to the Papuan Peace Network, which has set up a new...

Can Pakistan make first democratic transition?
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

ISLAMABAD (AsiaNews): More than half of 5,000 Pakistanis between the ages of 18 and 29 surveyed on the question of whether an Islamic government operating under Islamic law is preferable to democracy, chose the Islamic option, saying that democracy has not been good for the country.

The survey carried out by the British Council found that around 94 per cent also believe that the country is currently headed down the...

Church rushes aid to displaced people in Myanmar conflict
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

Lashio (UCAN): The local Catholic Church began handing out food on April 9 to villagers displaced by recent conflicts between government troops and soldiers of the Shan State Army North. 

According to the Shan Human Rights Foundation, more than 700 people from the Shan, Lahu and Palaung tribes have found shelter in a Buddhist monastery and in local houses, while another 300 are hiding in the nearby jungle....

Long way to go getting AIDS back to zero
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

HONG KONG (SE): “I have been blessed by the support of my family and friends throughout the years, which has helped me regain confidence and move out of the shadow of my life,” Joey, an HIV positive person and volunteer worker at the Hong Kong AIDS Foundation, said at the annual AIDS Festival in Chater Road on March 31.

Sponsored by the St. John’s Cathedral HIV Education Centre, this year marked...

Deforestation blamed for Sumatra floods
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

Padang (UCAN): Thousands of people affected by flooding in the Mentawai Islands, Indonesia, received rice, clothes, blankets, drinking water, cooking utensils and other relief items from the diocese of Padang in West Sumatra on April 11.

Bruno Sagari, from Muntei village in South Siberut sub-district, said, “For two days we could not cook and waited for outside help. Our cooking utensils were carried away by...

Documents of Religious Leaders Colloquium go to university
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

HONG KONG (UCAN): The Colloquium of Six Religious Leaders of Hong Kong donated more than 3,400 documents and images, as well as a time capsule to the Department of Cultural and Religious Studies at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, to help preserve the history of interreligious dialogue in the territory.

The colloquium signed a cooperation agreement with the university department on April 10.

Pope Francis names his first bishop
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

MANILA (Agencies): The first episcopal appointment of Pope Francis was announced on April 8. 

The honour goes to Bishop Reynaldo Evangelista from The Philippines. Currently the bishop of Boac, he has now become the bishop on Imus, in Cavite, which was vacated when Asia’s bet for pope, Luis Cardinal Tagle, was moved to Manila in December 2011.

CBCP News reports...

Growth of Chinese sect causes alarm
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

HONG KONG (UCAN): The spread of a sect known as the Lightning of the East, which originated in mainland China, has drawn rare attention and a warning from a Vatican-affiliated news site, Fides.

The news agency says that the sect uses deception, blackmail of Catholic leaders, artfully constructs scandals and is “sowing confusion among evangelical Christians and even among Catholics.”

Right to strike and Catholic teaching
(Saturday, 20 April 2013 )

HONG KONG (SE): Does Catholic social teaching support the right to strike? A glance at the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church (2004) reveals that the short answer to this question is simple and definitive. It is yes.

However, as with all things, a just strike is subjected to several conditions, the foremost of which is that a strike can only be recognised as legitimate “when it cannot be avoided,...

Differing faith journeys
(Saturday, 13 April 2013 )

Senior school students often ask, “How can you be sure that there is a God?” “Why do you believe in Jesus?” They are not trying to be difficult, just asking difficult questions.

As they grow, these questions loom large in their lives. Young people are surrounded by a variety of views about the meaning of life and it is hard for them to discern the truth.