March 2017

The priceless water
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

John has made the encounter between Jesus and the Samaritan woman a theological text to teach the process of conversion of those who accept the gospel of the Lord. Although the event is real it has a deeper, symbolic and metaphoric import.

It is noon when the woman comes to draw water and Jesus asks her for a drink. It is important to understand who this woman is. The way in which the...

A sham that demands attention
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): The Justice and Peace Commission is urging people to be concerned and take an interest in the selection of the next chief executive, who is set to be chosen from a running pack of three by an elite, small circle Election Committee made up of only 1,194 people on March 26.

The commission has joined various campaigns organised by civic organisations against the small circle selection process as a way of...

A journalist’s lot is not an easy one
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

SELANGOR (AsiaNews): “We cannot sell our magazines in public,” a Pakistani journalist told the Asia Journalists Roundtable in Selangor in Malaysia on March 10. Indeed, “We cannot pin our name to stories of persecution.”

The Asia Journalists’ Roundtable was sponsored by the Centre of the Council of Churches of Malaysia and organised by SIGNIS, the World Catholic Association for Communication,...

Hong Kong’s twin diocese turns 60
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): Hong Kong’s twin diocese of Essen in Germany celebrated its 60th anniversary of foundation on February 23.

It was pioneer country when the diocese was carved out of Münster, Cologne and Paderborn, encompassing the fast developing coal fields and industrial complex of the Ruhr Valley.

Offering a high volume of relatively unskilled mining and factory jobs,...

Putting nature in the context of faith
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): The Messengers of Green Consciousness urged people to show their colours and commit themselves to the preservation of nature during Lent.

Father Anthony Chang Sang-loi, the president of the group, spoke with catechumens on the importance of promoting environmental protection at a talk given at St. Vincent’s chapel in Wong Tai Sin on February 24.

Father Chang...

A Cultural Revolution in playback mode
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

BEIJING (UCAN): This year began in China with the sacking of a university professor, Deng Xiangchao, after he posted some critical messages about the first chairman of the People’s Republic of China, Mao Zedong, on social media.

Shandong Jianzhu University sacked Deng for airing his opinion on how many millions of Chinese died because of decisions made by Mao and the madness he often orchestrated.

What’s in Vatican negotiations for China?
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): The benefits of an equitable agreement coming out of the ongoing Vatican-Beijing dialogue seem obvious enough for the Catholic Church, but no one enters into an international negotiation unless there is something in it for them as well, so what’s in it for China?

Writing in the East Asia Forum on February 23, Thomas DuBois, a Hong Kong-based scholar on history and religion, says that China...

Unregistered religion under the hammer
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

HONG KONG (SE): Government interference in religion is growing in China, with authorities suppressing Islam and denigrating Christian teachings as a foreign import, a report released by Freedom House on February 28 maintains.

Radio Free Asia quoted the report as saying that to the detriment of Christianity and Islam, Beijing is promoting Chinese Buddhism and Taoism, as it sees them as being more supportive of...

Pope suggests tiny window for married clergy
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

VATICAN (SE): Despite expectations that Pope Francis may have put forward the topic of priesthood as the theme for the next Synod of Bishops, he has named young people as the theme for research and discussion.

In an interview published by the German newspaper, Die Zeit, on March 8, he gave a strong hint as to why, when he admitted that ordaining married men in some special circumstances could well evolve as a...

Diplomatic link between Vatican and Myanmar
(Saturday, 18 March 2017 )

NAYPYIDAW (SE): The parliament of the Union of Myanmar in Myanmar approved a proposal to establish formal diplomatic relations with the Holy See during a session on March 10.

The vote confirmed a government decision to formally set up full diplomatic relations with the Holy See. To date, Myanmar has maintained some relationship through an apostolic delegate based in Bangkok.

In a...