April 2018

Simony is a sin
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

In 2014 Pope Francis condemned priests and lay people who turned their parishes into businesses by charging for such things as baptisms, blessings, and Mass intentions, calling it a scandal that is hard to forgive. “There are two things that the people of God cannot forgive: a priest attached to money and a priest who mistreats people,” he said in the homily.
 
The faithful are rarely taught to understand that you don’t buy a Mass, nor do you pay a priest...

Brexit could complicate Good Friday Agreement says Irish bishop
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

DUBLIN (CNS): April 10 marked the 20th anniversary of the historic Good Friday Agreement, which finally brought peace to Northern Ireland. The peace deal effectively brought an end to The Troubles, which had cast a sectarian shadow over region for three decades and resulted in the deaths of more than 3,500 people, the majority of whom were civilians.
 
The agreement saw the removal of British Army security checkpoints and watchtowers along the 498 kilometre border...

Seven German bishops seek to block intercommunion proposal
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

VATICAN (Agencies): The National Catholic Register reported on April 4 that a recent proposal by the German Bishops Conference to allow some Protestant spouses of Catholics to receive Holy Communion under certain conditions is meeting serious resistance in Germany, as well as opposition from some Church leaders elsewhere.
 
On April 4, the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger newspaper reported that seven German bishops, among them Rainer Cardinal Woelki of Cologne,...

Relic of Pope John Paul II arrives in Manila
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): “Let those who have special intentions and petitions come in veneration and prayer,” read a statement from Manila Cathedral as the Archdiocese of Manila became custodian of a precious relic of Pope St. John Paul II—a vial of his blood, as of April 7.
 
A Filipino nun based in Poland brought the relic to Manila on 11 December 2017. It is the first ever blood relic of a saint still in liquid form in the Philippines.
 
Stanislaw...

Philippine Church groups launch network for poor
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): Catholic and Protestant Church groups in the Philippines launched the Anawim Mission Network, which aims to promote political consciousness among the poor, on April 6.
 
The network is the a result of a gathering of Church groups to mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.
 
“We saw the need to transform the unity and harmony developed among Christian Churches into a mission for the poor,” said Carmelite Father Rico Ponce of...

Philippine bishops welcome resignation of justice secretary
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): “He was a secretary of injustice,” Bishop Arturo Bastes of Sorsogon said, in the wake of the resignation of Vitaliano Aguirre II, the justice secretary of the Philippines, which was announced by the president, Rodrigo Duterte, on April 5, amid questions over his job performance.
 
Bishop Bastes said he was “happy Aguirre decided to resign” because he “was not doing his job well as a secretary of justice.”
 
...

Philippine bishops back call to resume peace talks
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): Catholic and Protestant bishops in the Philippines have backed calls from Congress for the government to resume peace negotiations with communist rebels.
 
Prior to Holy Week, 61 members of the Lower House of Congress signed a resolution calling on the president, Rodrigo Duterte, to resume peace talks with the rebel National Democratic Front.
 
The resolution urged the president to complete the government’s comprehensive agreements on...

Maryknoll marks centennial of first sending of missionaries
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

MARYKNOLL (CNS): One hundred years after receiving Vatican approval to begin missionary work in China, the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers kicked off a year-long celebration of their centennial by recalling the “original inspiration and holy stubbornness” of the society’s founders during a celebratory centennial Mass on April 2 in Maryknoll, New York, the United States of America.
 
Maryknoll superior general, Father Raymond Finch, was the main celebrant of...

Around the Traps
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

Euthanasia push robs friends and family of joy says dying mother
SYDNEY (CNS): In March, as 50-year-old former nursing educator Anna Corry, lay dying from an aggressive type of breast cancer, she sent out a request to speak publicly about her opposition to euthanasia. She was diagnosed in January 2016. 
 
This January, the parishioner of St. Bernadette’s in suburban Castle Hill, and her husband, Martin, along with their sons, received the...

Death comes for a child in Philippines’ drug war killings
(Saturday, 14 April 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): On the eve of Passion Sunday, Agripino Martinez went to bed thinking that all his children were already asleep. He did not know that one of his sons went out in the middle of the night.
 
About midnight, Agripino woke up when he heard the repeated knocking on his door. Policemen had shot his 14-year-old son, Sean Christian, he was told.
 
Slowly, very slowly, Agripino drove his old jeep to the scene. While driving, the man’s body was...