June 2018

Philippine police try to spice up image with Santacruzan procession
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

TACLOBAN (UCAN): Beset by allegations of playing an active role in hundreds, if not thousands, of drug-related killings, the Philippine police have sought to boost their battered image by holding religious pageant in honour of the Blessed Virgin. 
In Tacloban, Leyte, in the central Philippines, about 300 policemen held a Santacruzan pageant to promote what they said are the police’s core values: “pro-country, pro-people, pro-environment, and pro-...

Philippine Congress passes bill creating new Muslim region
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): Philippine lawmakers finally passed a bill that will pave the way for the creation of a new Muslim region in Mindanao, but critics warn that it still does not allow the Moro people the right to self-determination.
The Lower House of Congress overwhelmingly approved the controversial and long-awaited Bangsamoro Basic Law on May 30 by 227 to 11 against with two abstentions, while the Senate passed it before dawn on May 31.
The bill was the...

Around the Traps
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

Pope names apostolic visitor to Medjugorje
VATICAN (CNS): Pope Francis named Polish Archbishop Henryk Hoser as apostolic visitor to Medjugorje, Bosnia-Herzegovina, for an indefinite period, the Vatican announced on May 31.
The retired archbishop of Warsaw-Praga, Poland, had initially sent to the town as the pope personal envoy to study the pastoral needs of the townspeople and of the thousands of pilgrims who flock to the site of the alleged Marian...

Child abuse in the Church
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

We live in a new age of freedom of expression, when the long history of suppression and covering up of the truth is crumbling and social and mainstream media have championed the voice of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse. The controlling power and influence of some leaders in traditional institutions like the Catholic Church to instill fear, bury the realities, deny crimes of child abuse and silence the complainants are being challenged, and their credibility has...

Pope ashamed by Church’s failure to listen to abuse survivors
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

VATICAN (CNS): In a letter to Catholics in Chile, Pope Francis expressed shame for the Church’s failure to listen and defend survivors of sexual abuse at the hands of the clergy.
Released by the Chilean bishops’ conference on May 31, the letter said that the time of “revision and purification” in the Church was possible through the efforts of abuse survivors “who, against all hope or painted as discredited, did not tire of looking for the...

Targeting fake papal news
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

VATICAN (CNS): When Pope Francis speaks unguardedly, “there is a risk that some of his expressions can be manipulated or interpreted incorrectly,” investigative journalist for the Italian Catholic newspaper, Avvenire, Nello Scavo, explains.
From the moment of his election, Pope Francis’ down-to-earth way of communicating the gospel has led to countless front-page headlines either praising or criticising him.
But his disarming...

Catholics won’t meddle in internal affairs of Orthodox Church
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

VATICAN CITY (CNS): “The Catholic Church must not meddle in the internal affairs of the Russian Orthodox Church nor in political questions. This is my attitude and the attitude of the Holy See today. And those who meddle are not obeying the Holy See,” Pope Francis said on May 30 when he met with a delegation led by Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, head of external relations for the Russian Orthodox Church.
With some Ukrainian politicians and leaders of...

Typhoon Haiyan victims still piecing it together four years on
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

TACLOBAN (UCAN):  To date, Caritas has been able to help about 1.8 million people affected by the destruction brought by Super Typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), which struck the central Philippines in 2013.
Five years on from the disaster, the Church’s recovery and rehabilitation programme has become one of its largest and far-reaching natural disaster responses, amounting to about US$50 million ($392 million).
It is no surprise that the Philippine...

Rohingya reluctant to return home
(Saturday, 9 June 2018 )

MANDALAY (UCAN): “It’s telling that Rohingya aren’t clamouring to return to the places where they recently survived genocidal attacks. The authorities are attempting to distract the world from mass atrocities committed by the army,” Matthew Smith, chief executive of Fortify Rights, said, as it seems that a deal between the Myanmese government and United Nations (UN) agencies has done little to inspire confidence that refugees will agree to be repatriated from...