April 2019

Do you object to God’s mercy?
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

Divine Mercy Sunday is the Church’s assertion of God’s boundless mercy and healing for broken humanity. Everyone is in need of some sort of healing—physical, emotional, or spiritual—simply because we mortals are broken!  
 
All of us live with some illness, either physical or emotional. It could be an illness that has caused us great pain and suffering, or some bad habits, addictions, or emotional infirmities that are so deeply...

Finding meaning of faith in cathedral blaze
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

MONTREAL (CNS): The fire that ravaged a large part of Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, France, offered an opportunity reflection on the impact the event can have on faith.
 
Popular French Catholic singer, Gregory Turpin, who joined thousands of Parisians at the scene of the tragedy, said “there is something violent and shocking” about the fire.
 
“I was present. I went all the way around Notre Dame. I saw thousands of people. Every 50 metres...

Bulldozing of crosses in Belarus condemned
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

MINSK (CNS): Catholic and Orthodox leaders condemned the bulldozing of memorial crosses at a site of communist-era mass executions in the Kuropaty Forest, outside Minsk, Belarus. The crosses marked the site where tens of thousands of execution victims were thrown in mass graves, mostly between 1937 and 1941.
 
Media reports said at least 15 protesters were arrested in early April when police cordoned off an area of the forest and bulldozers moved in to demolish about 70 15-...

Protests after murder by Indian cow vigilantes
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

NEW DELHI (UCAN): Christian and Muslim advocates joined together in New Delhi to protest violence against minorities five days after a mob of Hindus beat a Catholic man to death for suspected cow slaughter in India’s Jharkhand state.
 
Prakash Lakra and three others were attacked by a mob on April 10 on the suspicion that they had slaughtered a cow in Jhurmu village in the district of Gumla. Lakra died from his injuries hours after the attack, Church sources said....

Drought hit farmers forced to sell their animals
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

SOUTH COTABATO (UCAN): Farmers in the southern Philippine region of Soccsksargen, Mindanao, have resorted to selling their farm animals to survive the impact of a drought that has reportedly ravaged about 15,000 hectares (150 square kilometres) of farmland.
 
Father Ariel Destora, director of the social action centre of the Diocese of Marbel, said the scorching heat brought about by the El Niño phenomenon that has hit the region this year had dried up grasslands....

Heritage churches closed following Philippine earthquake
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

MANILA (UCAN): Several old churches in the province of Pampanga have been closed after a 6.1-magnitude earthquake shook the island of Luzon, the Philippines, on April 22.
 
At least 11 people have been reported killed while 24 others were missing, most of whom were residents of the town of Porac.
 
The Archdiocesan Committee on Church Heritage in San Fernando, about 80 kilometres north of the capital, Manila, announced that all heritage churches were closed...

Musical about Matteo Ricci attracts thousands
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

HONG KONG (SE): A two-and-a-half hour long Cantonese musical, Lei Matau (Matteo Ricci the Musical), telling the story of Jesuit Father Matteo Ricci’s mission in China in the late 16th and early 17th centuries was performed in Hong Kong Cultural Centre Grand Theatre in Tsim Sha Tsui, from April 20 to 28. The musical is the brainchild of Father Giovanni Giampietro, of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions, who holds great admiration for the 17th century missionary....

Commenting on Pope Benedict’s latest letter
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

VATICAN CITY (CNS): Marking Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI’s 92nd birthday on April 16, Andrea Tornielli the editorial director of the Vatican Dicastery for Communication, insisted what the retired pope recently wrote concerning the clerical sexual abuse crisis (Sunday Examiner, April 21) is essentially what Pope Francis has also said.
 
“Celebrating Joseph Ratzinger’s birthday, it can be useful to underline the approach that both Benedict XVI and his...

When we celebrate Easter
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

Easter is the time we recall the tragic events of 2,019 years ago when a Jew, a man from Palestine, was spied upon, betrayed, persecuted, falsely charged, vilified, abandoned and arrested. It started with a mock trial that handed down the death penalty for the man from Nazareth, the Son of Man; Son of God, Jesus.
 
We also celebrate the resilience, the determination and the belief and hope of the persecuted and oppressed to rise up and speak out and...

The May Fourth Movement and its impact on Catholic education in China
(Saturday, 27 April 2019 )

The May Fourth Movement and regaining the right to education 

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the May Fourth Movement. It not only affected the political environment in China, but also brought about profound changes in literature and social life. One aspect that was deeply affected was education in China.

The movement had two rallying cries: Democracy and Science. This clamour heightened the concern of the Chinese people over the...