March 2016

Universal retirement protection
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

The Catholic Church began its presence in Hong Kong in the mid-19th century with caring for the needs of the poor as one of its major aims. During those early days it addressed the many social problems in the territory, particularly since the colonial government did not have any comprehensive social welfare or educational policies.

This reflected an age-old understanding of the mission of the Church to...

There are the Rape of Nanking deniers and Bongbong Marcos
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

MANILA (SE): There are those who deny that the world is round and they are usually laughed out of town, but on a more serious level there are those who deny that the Rape of Nanking, which saw the mass extinction of hundreds and thousands of Chinese people, ever happened and their denial is regarded as willfully pernicious.

But maybe the greater tragedy is that there are also those who take them seriously.

Christ relives his passion in humanity
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

VATICAN (SE): The Via Crucis (Way of the Cross) of Jesus Christ, like that of all humanity of our age, is a thread uniting the meditations that will accompany the 14 stations at the world famous Good Friday observance at the Colosseum in Rome on March 25.

Vatican Radio reported that the text of the meditations for this year has been prepared by Gualtiero Cardinal Bassetti, the archbishop of Perugia-Citt...

Ban on students from China leaves Macau bishop perplexed
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

MACAU (SE): Bishop Stephen Lee Bun-sang said that he is quite mystified over a refusal by the mainland authorities to allow 60 students to come from China to study at the Catholic university in his diocese of Macau.

The revamped University of Saint Joseph had requested the extra students to boost its enrollment, as it is trying to increase its student body above its current level of 1,300, especially as new facilities are...

Campaign to free the defender of the crosses
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

BEIJING (UCAN): Christian rights groups have been endeavouring to build pressure on Beijing through campaigns aimed at securing the release of Christian lawyer, Zhang Kai, as he has now been held for more than six months (Sunday Examiner, March 13).

On February 26, he was criminally detained and the law requires that he must be charged with 37 days or be released.

Hopes that...

Women’s Day highlights all round raw deal
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

MANILA (UCAN): The desperation of unemployment and the modern form of worker exploitation—replacing regular employment with short-term contracts—or what has been dubbed contractualisation in The Philippines, was the main theme of Women’s Day on March 8, as thousands took to the streets demanding regular jobs and decent wages.

“Sexual discrimination in the workplace, coupled with intensified...

Women are being murdered for their land
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

MANILA (UCAN): A growing number of Filipino women, especially in rural areas, have been abused and even killed for the crime of defending their land against powerful interests that seek to steal it.

The human rights group, Karapatan, says that at least 153 women have been assassinated for defending their land since 2001.

Teresita Navacilla was shot dead in January this year for...

It is not all about numbers but…
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

VATICAN (SE): The nine years from 2005 to 2014 have seen an incremental rise in Catholic population and in the percentage it forms of the global population.

The number of Catholics increased from 1.115 billion to 1.272 billion, taking them to 17.8 per cent of the world population, up from 17.3 per cent.

Information released by the Vatican Information Service from the ...

Singapore looks to bumper crop of baptisms
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

SINGAPORE (SE): Singapore is looking towards a bumper crop of adult baptisms at Easter, as 1,127 people currently taking part in the catechumenate fronted at the rite of election, part of the rite of baptism, so far.

At Christ the King Church, 498 catechumens from a non-Christian background and 68 who are seeking full communion with the Catholic Church recently participated in the rite of election. At the Church of Our...

Mother Teresa to be canonised
(Saturday, 19 March 2016 )

VATICAN (SE): On March 15, at a ceremony in the Consistory Hall of the Vatican Apostolic Palace presided over by Pope Francis, it was formally declared that Mother Teresa of Kolkata, along with four others is to be canonised a saint.


The Vatican Information Service announced that José Gabriel del Rosario Brochero, from Argentina, is among them.