February 2018

Around the Traps
(Saturday, 24 February 2018 )

Official miraculous healing at Lourdes
ROME (CNS): On February 11, the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes, Bishop Jacques Benoit-Gonnin of Beauvais, France, announced  the 70th officially recognised miraculous cure of a pilgrim to the Lourdes grotto where the Virgin Mary appeared to St. Bernadette Soubirous 160 years ago. 
 
The bishop declared “the prodigious, miraculous character” of the healing of Sister Bernadette Moriau, a French...

Fighting poverty through fair trade
(Saturday, 24 February 2018 )

Fifty-seven-year-old Pepito Alvarez and his wife Conchita, are among one of the thousands of small mountain subsistence farmers who have lived just below the poverty line all their  lives. 
 
He and his fellow villagers in the Zambales mountain range just keep their families above the poverty line. When there is a mango harvest, they do much better with the Fair-Trade price they get from Preda Fair Trade project for their mangoes. But there has...

Church joins calls for Mindanao flood probe
(Saturday, 24 February 2018 )

BUTUAN CITY (UCAN): Church leaders in Mindanao have joined calls for an investigation into what caused the devastating floods that displaced thousands of families and killed at least 16 people on February 12.
 
Landslides and floods triggered by heavy rain dumped by tropical depression Sanba (Basyang) displaced at least 37,370 individuals in the southern Philippine region of Caraga.
 
The scale and speed of the flooding took many by surprise.
 ...

Iglesia ni Cristo leader named special envoy for Philippine migrants
(Saturday, 24 February 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): In what looks like payback for supporting his presidential run, Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, named Eduardo Manalo, executive minister of the Iglesia ni Cristo (Church), special envoy for Filipino migrants’ concerns.
 
In an appointment paper dated February 13, the presidential palace in Manila announced that Manalo would hold the position from January 30, until 29 January 2019.
 
“Pursuant to the provisions of the...

A one-man army waging war on drugs
(Saturday, 24 February 2018 )

From December last year through early January, 72-year-old Australian Father John Wotherspoon, of the Order of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, travelled through Latin America last this year with a unique message: No more mules, in a campaign against drug mules to Asia. A mule refers to a drug carrier who smuggles illegal substances from African and Latin American countries for the Asian market.  
 
His journey began on 26 December 2017 in...

First Sunday of Lent: The desert experience
(Saturday, 17 February 2018 )

Every year, on the first Sunday of Lent, the gospel is on the temptations of Jesus in the desert. In Mark’s brief narrative of the temptation it is the Spirit who, leads him into the wilderness.
 
If “to tempt” is tantamount to “incite to evil,” the Spirit does not do that. There are temptations that are not incitement to evil. These are the times when one is forced to make choices that are conducive occasions to make faith more...

First Sunday of Lent: Lent it go
(Saturday, 17 February 2018 )

Chinese New Year na ulit. Isa sa mga nakaugalian na, lalo na dito sa Hong Kong ay maglinis ng bahay, at magtapon ng mga luma at maruming  kasangkapan  Ang may mga kakayanan ay bumibili o nagpapalit ng mga bagong gamit sa bahay o sa pangangatawan.  Ang ganitong gawain ay hudyat na may bagong taon na darating at ito ay magandang salubungin ng may maaliwalas at malinis na pamumuhay.   
 
Sa ganito kong paraan inihahalintulad ang...

Sense of belonging comes first, young catechumens say
(Saturday, 17 February 2018 )

HONG KONG (SE): Young catechumens who will be baptised during Easter this year, said what they need most from the Church community is a sense of belonging and a participation in the mission of witnessing to God’s love. 
 
“The key to evangelisation is to help people truly apply faith to their lives, and strengthen their motivation to gain more knowledge and encourage them within a community,” said Tam Wing-fung, a catechumen from St. Alfred’s...

New regulations squeeze violates China constitution
(Saturday, 17 February 2018 )

HONG KONG (UCAN): With China’s new regulations for religious affairs having come into effect on February 1, the squeeze is on. Minors have already been banned from entering places of worship in several regions, while Protestant house churches in Henan province have been forced to close (Sunday Examiner, February 11). 
 
Joseph Cardinal Zen Ze-kiun, former bishop of Hong Kong, said that one source informed him there would be no Mass at an unofficial church...