February 2017

Duterte declares peace talks dead in water
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

MANILA (SE): The much vaunted peace talks between the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front of the Communist Party are now officially dead in the water.

A signature policy of the president, Rodrigo Duterte, peace talks began with much enthusiasm in Oslo, Norway, last August, but soured significantly before a second round that was held in the same city and finally went nowhere at a meeting in Rome at the...

Around the Traps
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

Pyongyang twins with diocese in Bosnia

PYONGYANG (UCAN): Pyongyang diocese in North Korea has twinned with Banja Luka in Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Andrew Cardinal Yeom Soo-jung, from Seoul, the apostolic administrator of Pyongyang, visited...

Japan invites the pope to pray at Hiroshima
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

HIROSHIMA (SE): “One of the things that I have learned since I arrived here in Japan and during my visit to Hiroshima is that Japan has a very particular and understandable take on the whole nuclear question,” Archbishop Paul Gallagher, the secretary for Relations with States for the Vatican, told a press conference in Hiroshima on February 2.

Archbishop Gallagher was met at the Hiroshima Peace Park by the...

Energy and joy hallmarks of the Sportsfest
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): Sport and exercise proved a good mix in generating a lot of vigour and prompting much joy among participants at the annual Sportsfest organised by the Simbayanan-KAMMPI at the Young Men’s Christian Association Wu Kai Sha Youth Village on January 30.

At an opening Mass celebrated by Father Johnson Dhos together with Father Arjay Venus at St. Francis parish in Ma On Shan, Father Dhos reminded people to...

Nuanced one child policy won’t stop population ageing
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

BEIJING (AsiaNews): The nuanced readjustment that Beijing made to its long-standing One Child Policy on January 1 last year when it increased the number from one to two, is having a positive effect, the Health and Family Planning Commission reports.

A divisional director of the commission, Yang Wenzhuang, said that statistics show more than 18.46 million babies were born in mainland hospitals in 2016—11.5 per cent...

Questions raised on ordination of women
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

ROME (SE): A recent article in the Italian Jesuit journal, Civilta Cattolica, raises questions about the teaching of Pope John Paul II that women can never be ordained to the priesthood.

The publication of the article is significant, because the contents of the journal are approved by the Vatican before going to print.

The editor, Father Antonio Spadaro SJ, is also a key...

Kidnapped to North Korea
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

SEOUL (UCAN): An American student, David Sneddon, who went missing while hiking in China is believed to still be in North Korea and still alive by Choi Sung-ryong, a Seoul-based representative of the families of people abducted to North Korea.

Choi said he has information on the Sneddon’s whereabouts.

Choi added that he received information from North Korea confirming that...

Day of shame for Church in Australia
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

SYDNEY (SE): On February 6, the Catholic Church in Australia began its 21 days of shame, as the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse launched its final intensive review of the response of the Catholic Church to the crisis at a hearing in Sydney that will involve more than 60 witnesses, including the archbishops of the six most influential dioceses.

The Commission has been gathering...

Beware martial law
(Saturday, 18 February 2017 )

MANILA (SE): “Let us continue to maintain safeguards against dictatorial martial law that our present constitution contains,” the president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of The Philippines, Archbishop Socrates Villegas, said at the completion of the bishops’ plenary meeting in January.

He warned that the president of the country, Rodrigo Duterte, is spoiling to impose martial law, pointing out...

A successful community should have...
(Saturday, 11 February 2017 )

It is important to have unity among the members of a community. Another important factor is forgiveness. There is no perfect community and we all come from different backgrounds. So hurting each other is inevitable. Therefore forgiving one another is a must. 

Humility is another important factor. When we are united as one, when we cooperate with one another and we practice humility then...