July 2016

Cardinal Tong honoured by Knights of Malta
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

HONG KONG (SE): The Sovereign Military Order of Malta (Knights of Malta) conferred the insignia of Bailiff Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion on John Cardinal Tong Hon, the bishop of Hong Kong, during a Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception on June 29.

Bishop Michael Yeung Ming-cheung, the spiritual director of the Hong Kong community of the Knights of Malta, blessed the insignia while Denis Chang Khen-lee,...

Call for universal retirement scheme
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

HONG KONG (SE): The results of a study carried out by the Caritas Hong Kong Community Development released on June 21 reveal deep worries among people at the grassroots of society in facing their sunset years, with over 60 per cent of those interviewed expressing their anger and disappointment at the refusal of the government to consider a universal retirement pension scheme.

They accused the government of ignoring the...

Demand for across the board pensions
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

HONG KONG (SE): As the consultation period on retirement protection came to a close, thousands of people, including senior citizens rallied on June 19 in Chater Road, Central, in a public demand for the government to introduce a universal pension scheme without means testing or an asset limit.

Immediately prior to the rally itself, Parish Social Concern Groups and the Hong Kong Christian Council organised a public prayer...

Is the door of caged bishop ajar?
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

SHANGHAI (SE): What began as a study of the legacy of the late Bishop Aloysius Jin Luxian, from Shanghai, and scheduled to be held on the centennial anniversary of his birth on June 20, was first disrupted when a command performance in Beijing co-opted many of its delegates, and then by the political intrigue of whether the caged Bishop Thaddeus Ma Daqin would appear or not.

Measures to rehabilitate Bishop Ma, who has been...

Ban calls for stronger civic society in China
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

HONG KONG (SE): During a visit to China from July 6 to 10, the secretary general of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, praised the Middle Kingdom for the leading work it has done in the environmental field, as well as its remarkable transformation over the past 10 years in terms of its contribution to various United Nations’ (UN) missions around the world.

A letter sent to Ban from Human Rights Watch on July 5, the day...

Pope set for World Youth Day
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

VATICAN (SE): Pope Francis is set for his visit to Poland during the upcoming World Youth Day that is to take place in Krakow from July 25 to 31.

He will fly into Krakow on July 27 and, after the usual round of meetings with civic authorities and the diplomatic corps, visit the president of Poland and the bishops.

On the following day he is set to celebrate Mass at the Shrine of...

Sharing faith, culture and history
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

During this year’s Book Fair, the local diocese will host a display zone under the theme The 175th Anniversary of the Evangelisation of Hong Kong—170th Anniversary of the Catholic Diocese of Hong Kong.

The display is aimed at promoting a greater understanding of the Church over the last century or so and providing some material for people to reflect on. It will...

A battle to usurp a memory
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

SHANGHAI (SE): Always a controversial figure, the late Bishop Aloysius Jin Luxian trod a difficult and delicate path in Shanghai, initially as the rector of the newly-reopened Sheshan Seminary and then as an illicitly ordained bishop.

Embraced by some and ostracised by others, he once said, “I try to keep the Vatican happy and I try to keep the government happy, without really succeeding at either.”...

Government push for Church money
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

WENZHOU (SE): Relations between Churches and the local government in the province of Zhejiang, China, have been stretched over the past two years with a spate of demolition of crosses from Church buildings, but China Aid Media reported that the latest clash has been over money.

The report dated July 1, says that the government is now ordering some Churches to hand over all their income, including donations, to the...

Priest to head United States religious freedom commission
(Saturday, 16 July 2016 )

WASHINGTON (SE): Father Thomas Reese is to become the first priest ever to fill the position of chairperson of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom.

A Jesuit, Father Reese was appointed by the president of the United States of America (US), Barack Obama, to a two-year term as a member of the commission in 2014 and re-appointed in 2016.

The commission is...