July 2013

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.

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...

China’s churches get cut in power bills
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

HONG KONG (UCAN): While the price of basic commodities seems to rise relentlessly all over the world, the Catholic community in China is getting some respite.

Under a new electricity price scheme, religious venues have been re-classified as residential units instead of government premises. The change should result in their power bills being cut by as much as two thirds.


Muzzling the people’s cries for democracy
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

On July 1, as many as 430,000 people marched in Hong Kong in what is being touted as the largest pro-democracy rally in the city since 2004. The turnout was closely monitored by Beijing, the incumbent chief executive of Hong Kong, Leung Chun-ying, and his administration.

Ten years ago, the first such rally to take place on the anniversary of the handover of Hong Kong from British to Chinese sovereignty took the Chinese...

Case against Pope Benedict dropped
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

THE HAGUE (SE): A prosecutor from the International Criminal Court announced on May 31 that the court would not pursue charges against multiple Vatican officials for crimes against humanity related to widespread sex abuse of minors by clergy within the Catholic Church.

The case was brought to the court at The Hague in the Netherlands in September 2011 by the Centre for Constitutional Rights and a victims’ advocacy...

Mystery guests talk on where Pope Francis wants to take the Church
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

HONG KONG (SE): What was billed as a Mystery Guest Speaker from Rome turned out to be two seminarians from the Maryknoll Mission Society at an evening sponsored by Our Lady of Mount Carmel parish in Wan Chai on July 11.

The 60 or so people present heard seminarians, Kevin Ewing, from Baltimore in the United States of America, together with Erin Kochivar, from Colorado Springs, present a reflection on New Catholic...

Delegates for both home and away World Youth Days commissioned
(Saturday, 20 July 2013 )

HONG KONG (SE): A stay-at-home World Youth Day will be held in Hong Kong in tandem with the international event scheduled to begin in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on July 23 with a Mass celebrated by Pope Francis.

Over 300 young people who have put their names down for the at-home event joined the 29-strong Brazil-bound delegation from the diocese at a commissioning Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on July 7...

A tough story
(Saturday, 13 July 2013 )

Jesus was a great story-teller. His stories have become some of the most famous the world has ever known, to the extent that certainly the English language, and many others as well, have absorbed their concepts as everyday expressions.

We often refer to Good Samaritans as people who go out of their way in order to bring some unexpected kindness of assistance to someone or respond generously, without...