December 2013

First blesseds for Myanmar
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

YANGON (AsiaNews): The Union of Myanmar is on the road to picking up its first saint with the announcement on December 10 that Isidore Ngei Ko Lat, a catechist from Shadaw, is to be proclaimed as a blessed.

“We are delighted to know that the first Burmese blessed will be Isidore Ngei Ko Lat. The Holy Father is close to Myanmar and this first blessed is the sign of Pope Francis and the Holy See’s love and...

Journey in faith highlight of celebration amidst great suffering
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

MYITKYINA (SE): On November 21, Father Neill Magill travelled to Myitkyina, the capital city of the Kachin State in the Union of Myanmar.

He left Mandalay, where he is working at a seminary and Higher Education Centre to attend the ordination of five young Kachin deacons to the priesthood and be present for the closing of the Year of Faith.

Father Magill is a Columban and he was...

A Year to Remember
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )


Early in the year we learned that Pope Benedict XVI wished to step down from the papacy.

This was quite a surprise because even though we knew about his failing health, we had never heard of a pope in recent times finding the freedom to resign.


Ancient texts from Vatican and Oxford online
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

VATICAN (SE): The Vatican Apostolic Library and the Bodleian Libraries of the University of Oxford have joined forces to digitise and make available online some of the most important and unique bibles in the world, as well as biblical texts from their collections, the Vatican Information Service reported.

From December 3 onwards, the digitised texts can be accessed at ...

A new brood in the Vatican
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

Without judging the overall year for the Church, it has certainly been an interesting one at the top. The shock announcement by Pope Benedict XVI in February that he would step down in favour of a new man was initially viewed with anxiety, but the emergence of Pope Francis has proved at least exciting and certainly novel, without knowing where it will end up.

From the moment he appeared on the balcony to face the world as...

Sainthood for foundation Jesuit
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

VATICAN (SE): The 16th century Jesuit, Father Peter Fabre, has been proclaimed a saint by Pope Francis through a process known as equivalent canonisation, a decision based on the fact that the person has been held in widespread reverence over a long period of time and so veneration is a fitting response.

The Vatican press office announced the decision on December 17, the day of the Jesuit pope’s 77th birthday....

A journey to faith in a foreign land
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

ROME (AsiaNews): Twenty-five-year-old Silvia Peng hails from Guangdong, China, but during a four-year stint working as a consultant in Italy, she discovered a faith in Jesus, which has turned her life around.

“Jesus is a puzzle. I tried to explain this puzzle in my heart with simple words, that he was always in my heart hidden away, or that my heart was in the dark, often for a long time. Perhaps he has always been...

Archbishop of Delhi arrested
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

New DELHI (SE): Archbishop Anil Couto was arrested in New Delhi, India, on December 11 during what he claimed was a peaceful march made up of Christians and Muslims in defence of the rights of the Dalit people (formerly known as Untouchables).

Antony Arulraj, a field worker in India from the Hong Kong-based Asian Centre for the Progress of Peoples, told the Sunday Examiner that it was inspiring to see the archbishop...

Beijing clamps down on Human Rights Day
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

BEIJING (SE): Officials in Beijing hit out at international concern over its human rights situation on December 12, Radio Free Asia reported.

It quoted officials as saying that only the Chinese people have the right to speak out on the subject.

However, it added that just two days earlier on International Human Rights Day, December 10, police in Beijing had swooped on thousands of...

Church is prophetic in social outreach
(Saturday, 28 December 2013 )

HONG KONG (SE): “The government welcomes the support of the Church, Wan Xinhua, a Chinese government official, told a conference in Shanghai sponsored by the Bible Society on November 12, the Christian Post reported.

“We lack the resources to meet all the needs that we face, so we need religious organisations in order to do so,” he explained.

Xinhua said that the...