July 2013

Faith without deeds is dead
(Saturday, 27 July 2013 )

The first encyclical to bear the name of Pope Francis, The Light of Faith (Lumen Fidei), was published on July 5. It is a continuation of Pope Benedict’s first two encyclicals, God is Love and In Hope We are Saved.

The Light of Faith serves as a completion of a reflection on the three theological virtues of faith, hope and charity. It is truly a gift to round out the Year of Faith.

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Pilgrimage to St. Francis Xavier’s resting place
(Saturday, 27 July 2013 )

JIANGMEN (SE): A pilgrimage organised by parishioners from the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart of Mary in Jiangmen, Guangdong, visited the Sanctuary of the Island in Shangchuan on July 13, where St. Francis Xavier died in 1552.

Travelling under the theme, Pray for the Church in China and for the universal Church so that the mission of evangelisation in the world and China may take its course and strengthen faith—...

An Urgent Call for Earnest Dialogue and Responsible Action
(Saturday, 27 July 2013 )

Regarding universal suffrage and civil disobedience

Statement of the Catholic Diocese of Hong Kong

In recent months there have been growing concerns that “genuine universal suffrage” for the election of the Chief Executive in 2017 might not be achieved. In particular, there are worries that Article 45 of the Basic Law might be...

Vatican state gets a legal update
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

VATICAN (SE): A Motu Proprio (papal order) signed by Pope Francis on July 11 will update criminal and civil law within the Vatican State and is specifically aimed at incorporating provisions of international conventions that the Vatican has put its name to.

They include the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 on the conduct of war crimes; the 1965 convention on racial discrimination, the 1984 convention against torture and the...

New encyclical is a balm for
a humanity lost in crisis
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

ROME (AsiaNews): The first encyclical released during the pontificate of Pope Francis, Light of Faith (Lumen fidei), can be described as a healing balm for the wounds of a humanity lost in the crisis of the world today.

With a change in language from the heavily scholarly style of the past to a more everyday structure with some poetic climaxes, the text unfolds in four chapters, revealing the power that faith in God and...

Mentality of division leads to attack on sacred Hindu place
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

Rome (Agencies): The Federation of Asian Bishops’ Conferences condemned a terrorist bombing of the Bodh Gaya (Mahabodhi) temple complex in Bihar, India.

A series of nine small blasts rocked the site injuring two monks on July 7.

Father Nithiya Sagayam, the executive secretary of the Office for Human Development, told Fides news agency, “The Asian bishops strongly...

We are all responsible for those who perish in search for hope
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

VATICAN (SE): Pope Francis told people at a Mass offered on July 8 on the island of Lampedusa, 137 kilometres off the coast of Tunisia and for many boatpeople the first point of call in their quest for a better life, that he came especially to prick a few consciences.

He said that harmony among men and women is lost when other persons cease to be a brother or sister to be loved, but become a burden disturbing the soap...

Why canonise Pope John Paul II?
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

With a second miracle recognised by the Holy See, Pope John Paul II is set to be canonised together with the late-Pope John XXIII later this year.

Pope John Paul’s case has been the fastest of recent times. The strong desire of both the people and the Holy See to see his name on the list of saints has been significant. While some talk about the impact Pope John Paul had in the public square, his pastoral care within...

Flatpack housing for world’s refugee camps
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

HONG KONG (SE): While technical innovation in building has produced great leaps forward in the quality and comfort of housing around the world, the tens of millions of people on the run huddled in refugee camps have experienced few of those improvements.

Even the best equipped camps do not look much different from their forbears of 100 years ago, with long lines of tents pitched in often inhospitable terrain.

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Bishop marks one year out of circulation
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

SHANGHAI (UCAN): The hidden bishop of Shanghai marked one year out of circulation on July 7, after being whisked off to house arrest immediately after his ordination as a bishop last year.

However, his faithful friends did not forget him in his isolation, sending greetings through cyberspace to remind him that he is still in their hearts.

Bishop Thaddeus Ma Daqin’s movements...