January 2017

One of first illicitly ordained bishops dies
(Saturday, 14 January 2017 )

BEIJING (AsiaNews): One of the first of eight priests to be ordained a bishop illicitly under the self-elect, self-determination principle of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association in the late 1950s, Bishop Anthony Tu Shihua, died on the morning of January 4 in Beijing at the age of 98.

Believed to be among the illicitly ordained bishops whom Pope Francis was considering giving recognition to, Bishop Tu was ordained without a...

Catholic congress ends with a bit of official pomp and cute diplomacy
(Saturday, 14 January 2017 )

HONG KONG (UCAN): The Ninth National Congress of Catholic Representatives was doused with a bit of official pomp when Yu Zhengsheng, the chairperson of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and a high ranking leader in the Communist Party, met with delegates in the plush surrounds of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing at its conclusion on December 29.

It also managed to avoid the contentious issue of...

Was 2016 a happy year for you?
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

The year 2016 for me was challenging. Among my challenges was losing a job in the midst of big expenses in supporting my two children in college. It is worse to think that the first time I lost my job could be followed by another two consecutive terminations that made me feel empty. Thinking of my children back home, I began crying, asking why God permitted these things to happen to me.

Through the help and guidance...

Christmas present
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

My most wonderful Christmas present received is really precious. 

Raymond was a Filipino student I once taught. He was good at playing the piano and sports. But his sports shoes were torn!

So I told him that I would give him a Christmas present only when he got over 90 marks in his English exam.

And he...

Proclaiming Christ as king in Discovery Bay
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

In Philippians 2:10 St. Paul states, “That at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those that are in heaven, on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue should profess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

The parishioners of the Trinity Chapel in Discovery Bay once again publicly expressed the important truth that Jesus is the King of the Universe with a solemn...

Warfare of the spiritual life
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

I am convinced that a meaningful and true spiritual life cannot be but a warfare. I am more and more disappointed with the fluffy Christianity we are living nowadays, in which everything has to look joyful and pretty.

If there is no fight, if we are not like warriors, there is no real Christian life, but just a parody. St. Paul has said it well, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I...

The Christmas lights of the hill
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

Hiking uphill through the hot tropical afternoon to the Aeta village of Baliwit, San Marcelino, carrying our loaded backpacks was a challenge in itself. But the happy thought of bringing some Christmas cheer into the lives of the extremely poor indigenous people kept us going.

Our mission was to bring Christmas lights into their lives. For us, we discovered it to be inspiring and encouraging...

Vatican statement on China brings comfort and hope
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

HONG KONG (AsiaNews): Priests in China approached by AsiaNews all spoke with satisfaction about the statement released by the Vatican on November 20 commenting on the Congress of Catholic Representatives, scheduled from December 27 to 29, and the presence of an illicitly ordained bishop at two ordinations on November 30 and December 2 (Sunday Examiner, January 1).

Although the Vatican made no judgement on...

Catholic Congress kicks off
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

BEIJING (UCAN): The Ninth National Congress of Catholic Representatives opened in Beijing on December 27 with the chairperson of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association, Bishop Johan Fang Xinguao, saying that the Patriotic Association and the Bishops’ Conference of the Catholic Church in China have united people under the banner of love for country and Church, as well as promoted the Sinicisation of theology.


Tragic Christmas for Russia
(Saturday, 7 January 2017 )

ROME (SE): Sixty members of the world famous Russian Alexandrov Ensemble, which performed at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, the United States of America (US), on 17 December 2007, died when an aeroplane went down en route from the southern Russian city of Sochi to Syria killing all 92 on board.

The ensemble performed a Christmas Oratorio composed by the Russian Orthodox Metropolitan...