March 2017

An Irish celebration on Chinese soil
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): The Irish community of Hong Kong celebrated St. Patrick’s Day in grand style, beginning with a two-day crafts and culture exhibition on March 10 and 11 at the Comix Homebase in Wan Chai followed by the St. Patrick’s Festival Parade through the streets of Tamar on March 12.

In getting the word out that St. Patrick’s Day is on the map in Hong Kong and Macau, the consul general, Peter Ryan,...

Walking in faith with the bereaved
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): The Diocesan Pastoral Commission for Marriage and the Family launched a support programme for bereaved families in January this year.

Run by volunteers who have received training in journeying with people who are mourning a loved one, it is designed to take the bereavement ministry in many parishes a step further.

Paul Lee Chi-kwong, from the pastoral care ministry...

Pedalling their way into the Guiness Book of Records
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): Leung Shek Chee College in Sau Mau Ping broke the Guinness Book of Records record for generating the most electrical energy pedalling bicycles over an eight-hour period on February 26.

The all out assault on the record included the muscle power of around 1,000 students, alumni and parents, who took turns at riding 35 bikes from 9.15am until 5.15pm.

A total of...

Remember not his foibles but his greatness
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

BEIJING (SE): The sad circumstances of the death of Bishop Casimir Wang Milu on February 14 that saw his bishop-brother denied the opportunity to officiate at his funeral and opportunistic rumours spreading on social media, has left the life of this zealous and hardworking pastor under a mysterious cloud.

Claims that he was a secret cardinal, had ordained a young boy, a Buddhist lama and a married man, as well as others...

China publishes list of religious institutes
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

BEIJING (SE): Since 2014, the State Administration for Religious Affairs has been in the process of building an online database on religions in China on its website.

Since the end of 2015, all sites for religious activities, including Buddhist and Daoist temples that have been registered with the state, have been listed on its website.

On October 11 last year, a second online...

Women with plenty to tell the Vatican
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

VATICAN (SE): The Vatican sponsored its first Women Consultation Group to coincide with International Women’s Day on March 8. The first gathering was made up of 37 women from a variety of fields including medicine, journalism, theology and politics, among others.

Stefania Brancaccio Coelmo told Rome Reports that the pope must listen to their voices if he is going to really renew the ecology of gender relations...

D-Day for chief executive
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

Just 20 years after Hong Kong returned to Chinese sovereignty, a new chief executive will be selected on March 26 by the 1,194-strong Election Committee.

In 1997, Tung Chee-hwa left the business sector to become the first chief executive of Hong Kong. He was followed by the veteran civil servant, Donald Tsang Yam-kuen. In 2012, Leung Chun-ying, a professional who had also held...

Exile exposes Vietnam’s treatment of dissidents
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

HANOI (UCAN): A Vietnamese Catholic social advocate in exile, Francis Xavier Dang Xuan Dieu, has backed up a claim from Amnesty International that his country is guilty of physically and mentally torturing prisoners of conscience.

During a human rights summit, Dieu described treatment meted out to prisoners of conscience in the Communist country.

“In prison we have our...

What’s discrimination and what’s not
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

MANCHESTER (CNS): A ruling in the European Court of Justice allowing employers to ban employees from wearing visible religious insignia prompted Bishop Philip Egan, from Portsmouth in England, to comment that it is an infringement of human rights.

The European Court had considered two cases. One involves a company banning a Muslim woman from wearing a hijab (headscarf), as internal policy does not allow employees to...

China battens down hatches on Tibet
(Saturday, 25 March 2017 )

LHASA (SE): Human Rights Watch is critical of Beijing for staging a massive military parade in Lhasa, Tibet, just one week prior to the marking of the failed 1959 uprising that saw China finally put its stranglehold on the country.

Lhasa became a military fortress when some 5,000 troops carrying guns and shields accompanied by about 1,000 military and anti-riot vehicles marched through the streets of the Tibetan capital on...