September 2018

Calls for accountability over Myanmar atrocities
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

MANDALAY (UCAN): “Accountability is essential for genuine reconciliation between all ethnic groups and is a prerequisite for regional security and stability,” United Nations (UN) secretary-general, Antonio Guterres, said, as he called for accountability over the persecution of the Rohingya Muslim ethnic group in Myanmar which he described as one of the world’s worst humanitarian and human rights crises.
During his remarks to the UN Security Council on...

Bombing kills two in southern Philippines
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

Manila (UCAN): An 18-year old catechist, Jun Mark Luda, and his 15-year old cousin, Marialyn Luda, were killed in a bomb explosion in the town of Isulan in the southern Philippine province of Sultan Kudarat on September 2.
At least 14 others were reported injured in the blast at an Internet cafe in the town.
The attackers, thought to be an extremist group opposed to a peace deal with Manila, came five days after another bomb explosion killed three people...

Philippine immigration tries again to deport Sister Fox
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): On August 30, the Philippine Bureau of Immigration reaffirmed its intention to deport Australian missionary, Sister Patricia Fox, dismissing a motion for reconsideration filed by her lawyers saying it failed to raise new matters that could warrant the reversal of the expulsion order (Sunday Examiner, May 6, May 13, June 24, July 29). 
Bishop Arturo Bastes of Sorsogon, expressed disappointment over the latest decision, saying “it was...

Cubao cathedral closed after desecration
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

MANILA (UCAN): The Immaculate Conception Cathedral in Cubao, Quezon City, the Philippines was temporarily closed on August 30 after a young man, thought to be mentally disturbed, reportedly entered the church on August 25 and desecrated the tabernacle and the Blessed Sacrament. 
Bishop Honesto Ongtioco of Cubao, ordered a two-day suspension of all religious activities. He said the Catholic community would undertake acts of penance and reparation.

Around the Traps
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

Pope Francis serene despite ‘pain’ over archbishop’s letter cardinal says
VATICAN (CNS): While recent accusations by Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano have created tension in the Church, Pope Francis is approaching the situation calmly, Pietro Cardinal Parolin, the Vatican secretary of state, said in an interview posted on August 30 by Vatican Insider the online supplement of the Italian newspaper, La Stampa.

The determination of Pope Francis to reform the Church
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

Pope Francis, the first South American to become pope is from Argentina. He was born of migrant Italian parents and is the most liked and popular pope in modern times. He replaced the conservative and remote Pope Benedict XVI who retired. He is seen as the great hope and light of the People of God. Catholics and non-Catholics welcome his feelings of compassion and understanding and action for the poor, the excluded and marginalised people in society.
The pope has taken a...

Myanmar accused of blocking humanitarian aid
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

MANDALAY (UCAN): “Depriving civilians of aid in an attempt to overcome an ethnic army is a perverse, unlawful and ineffective strategy,” Matthew Smith, chief executive of Fortify Rights, said on August 30. 
“All parties to this war have a duty to protect civilians and that includes by ensuring access to adequate aid,” he said.
In their 68-page report, They Block Everything: Avoidable Deprivations in Humanitarian Aid to...

Why Church law forbids violating the seal of confession
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

VATICAN (CNS): The seal of confession is so important and sacred that a priest would be automatically excommunicated under canon law for directly revealing the contents of a confession.
The sacramental seal is absolutely inviolable and “admits no exceptions” even if the intention was to prevent an imminent evil or serious crime, said Monsignor Krzysztof Nykiel, regent of the Apostolic Penitentiary, a Vatican court dealing with matters of conscience.

Korean peace-sharing forum
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

SEOUL (SE): The Third Korean Peninsula Peace-sharing Forum was held at the Catholic University of Seoul on September 1 under the topic, Human Dignity and Peace, Paving the Way for the Korean Peninsula
Hosted by National Reconciliation Committee of Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Seoul, it brought together major Catholic leaders from countries in Asia including Andrew Cardinal Yeom Soo-jung of Seoul and Apostolic Administrator of Pyongyang; apostolic nuncio,...

Australian bishops and religious won’t violate seal of confession
(Saturday, 8 September 2018 )

SYDNEY (CNS): “We are committed to the safeguarding of children and vulnerable people while maintaining the seal. We do not see safeguarding and the seal as mutually exclusive,” Australia’s Catholic bishops and religious orders, said on August 31 in response to recommendations from the Royal Commission Into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, accepted 98 per cent of its suggestions, but stressed they could not accept recommendations that would violate the seal of...