February 2016

A Good Samaritan up to his neck in water
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

MELBOURNE  (Agencies): Simon Lewis, the 32-year-old captain of the St. Kilda Surf Lifesaving Club at a popular beach in inner Melbourne, Australia, returned home on January 25 after spending 10 days as a Good Samaritan up to his neck in water helping refugees in the treacherous crossing between Turkey and the Greek islands, a well-worn route for people fleeing Syria.

SBS reported that he was inspired after...

It ain’t just about money
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

HONG KONG (SE): “It ain’t just about money” was the strong message coming out of a certificate presentation ceremony for graduates from two basic seminars on financial literacy, as well as those who had been through an entrepreneurship course at Bayanihan Centre on January 31.

CARD MRI Hong Kong, which operates under the auspices of the Philippine micro-credit organisation the Centre for Agriculture and...

Purging pastors
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

HANGZHOU (AsiaNews): Chinese state media confirmed that Reverend Joseph Gu Yuese, the pastor of the Chongyi Church in Hangzhou, the largest Protestant community in mainland China, was unceremoniously fired from his position on January 18 and later arrested on charges of embezzlement, but no further details were given.

In an open letter addressed to his congregation, Reverend Gu speaks of a cold storm that is heading for...

Confessional seal may be unconstitutional
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

DOVER (CWNews.com): A superior court judge in Delaware, the United States of America, has questioned the constitutionality of a state law that protects the secrecy of sacramental confession.

State law mandates the reporting of suspected child abuse except in cases covered by the attorney-client privilege and conversations “between priest and penitent in sacramental confession.”

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Famine in Basilan
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

MANILA (SE): Bishop Martin Jumoad, from Basilan in Mindanao, is describing the situation in his drought-stricken diocese as a famine.

“The Church and state must collaborate to help those who have no rice and have nothing to eat,” he told CBCP News. “All of us have a societal responsibility.”

Teduray tribal people in the town of South Upi in...

Crosses again begin to tumble in Zhejiang
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

HONG KONG (UCAN): Be it a fresh campaign to remove crosses from Church buildings in Zhejiang or just catch up demolition on the backlog of jobs that were not completed last year, between January 1 and February 2 this year, 18 more Church buildings in the province were stripped of their crosses by government authorities, with 13 of them in the last week of January.

Christians in the area say it is not clear whether the...

New law aimed at wiping out dynasties
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

MANILA (UCAN): A new law that, for the first time in Philippine history addresses the banning of political dynasties in the country, has received a widespread popular acclaim.

The president, Noynoy Aquino, signed the bill into law on January 19 prohibiting young people, who have relatives holding elective positions in government, from seeking a seat in the SangguniangKabataan (Youth Council).

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Churches buck the screws on refugees
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

CANBERRA (SE): Churches in Australia are offering to test the common law principle of sanctuary after the High Court in Canberra ruled that it was lawful for the government to return some 270 asylum seekers, including almost 40 children, to offshore detention camps in Nauru and on Manus Island in Papua New Guinea.

Some Anglican clergy are offering to provide sanctuary for the refugees in their churches, a concept...

Gigantic foundation stone or tiny pebble?
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

HONG KONG (SE): The Australian prime minister, Malcolm Turnbull, has described the Trans-Pacific Partnership, an agreement that was signed by 12 nations in New Zealand on February 4 that could affect the lives of 800 million people and over 40 per cent of the world economy, as a gigantic foundation stone that will deliver more jobs, absolutely!

But on the other side of the coin, the World Bank predicts that it will...

It is genocide in Syria European Union says
(Saturday, 20 February 2016 )

STRASBOURG (SE): The Council of Catholic Bishops’ Conferences of Europe has given its support to a resolution of the European Parliament to label the persecution of religious minorities by the Islamic State as genocide.

The secretary of the conference, Father Partick Daly, said in a statement, “We warmly welcome this resolution of the European Parliament as a significant step forward in facilitating...