CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 23 September 2017

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Bishop arrested in Mindanao
MANILA (UCAN): Bishop Carlo Morales, from the Philippine Independent Church, was arrested on May 11 on a charge of harbouring a wanted criminal in Ozamiz City in Mindanao.
 
He was picked up by a combined military and police unit at a checkpoint in the village of Gango. The officers claimed one of his companions was a member of the National Democratic Front of The Philippines, a group which is currently involved in peace negotiations with the government.
 
“Be that as it may, we find no reason that the good bishop of Ozamiz to be illegally arrested, handcuffed and illegally detained in jail,” a statement released by the Church on May 12 says.
 
Priest and charity head fleecing migrants
ROME (SE): Police in Italy have arrested 68 people—including a priest and the head of a Catholic charitable agency—in a crackdown on what prosecutors describe as a bid by organised crime to siphon off funds allocated to migrants.
 
Prosecutors said that the notorious mob family, ‘Ndrangheta, had gained control of the distribution of funds to immigrants in a centre in Isola di Capo Rizzuto. The centre and a charity known as Mercy had become ATMs for the mafia.
 
Leonardo Sacco, the head of Mercy, was arrested, as well as a Father Edoardo Scordio. 
 
Egypt suspends Muslim preacher
CAIRO (SE): Salem Abdel Galil, an Islamic preacher in Egypt, has been suspended from public ministry for denouncing Christians and Jews as infidels.
 
During a television broadcast he referred to Christianity and Judaism as corrupt faiths, whose practitioners cannot go to heaven. His comments were roundly criticised by other Muslim leaders, who observed that his language was similar to that of radical preachers who had stirred up violence against the country’s Christian minority.
 
Galil said that he believes Christians and Jews hold corrupt doctrines—just as Christians and Jews believe that Islamic doctrines are corrupt. He declined to retract his statements.
 
Move to reopen case of Archbishop Romero
SAN SALVADOR (SE): Ricardo Chicas, a judge in El Salvador, reopened the case of the murder of Archbishop Oscar Romero, who was slain while offering Mass in 1980 and beatified as a martyr in 2015.
 
On May 19, the judge has asked prosecutors to press charges against Alvaro Rafael Saravia, the main suspect in the case. In 1993, charges against Saravia were dropped, because of an amnesty law. However, it has recently been rescinded.
 
Jesuit superior general gave support to Castro
ROME (SE): Father Arturo Sosa, the superior general of the Jesuits, signed a letter praising Fidel Castro in 1989 prior to a state visit to his native Venezuela by the Cuban leader.
 
The Catholic Herald reported that Father Sosa was one of several hundred intellectuals and artists who signed a public statement of praise of Castro.
 
It said that under Castro’s leadership, the Cuban regime had achieved dignity for the people and all Latin America. It added that only ideological blindness could deny this.
 
Pope congratulates Macron
ROME (SE): Pope Francis has sent a message to the newly elected president of France, Emmanuel Macron, congratulating him on his assumption of the office.
 
In a telegramme he offered his prayers that France, “faithful to the rich diversity of its moral traditions and its spiritual heritage marked also by the Christian tradition, may always endeavour to build a more just and fraternal society.”
 
“May France continue to foster, in Europe and throughout the world, the search for peace and the common good, respect for life and defense of the dignity of every person and all peoples,” the Pope wrote.
 
Five new cardinals
VATICAN (SE): Pope Francis has named five new cardinals who will be elevated at a consistory on June 28. They are: Archbishop Jean Zerbo, from Bamako in Mali; Archbishop Juan José Omella, from Barcelona in Spain; Bishop Anders Arborelius, from Stockholm in Sweden; Archbishop Luis Marie-Ling Mangkhanekhoun, the apostolic vicar of Pakse in Laos; and Bishop Gregorio Rosa Chavez, the 74-year-old auxiliary from San Salvador in El Salvador.
 
On the day after their nominations, June 29, the feast of Ss. Peter and Paul, Pope Francis announced that he will celebrate Mass with them in St. Peter’s Basilica.
 
He said that they have specifically been chosen to represent the catholicity of the Church in the many far flung regions in which it lives.

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