CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 18 August 2018

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Caritas migrant shelter in Tijuana under police protection after attacks
MEXICO CITY (CNS): A Caritas-run shelter for migrants in the border city of Tijuana has been put under police protection after a robbery and arson attack on consecutive days. 
 
At least six armed individuals entered the shelter in the early morning hours of May 6 and stole some of the migrants’ meagre possessions, including cash, cellphones and identity cards. 
 
On May 7, also in the small hours, the door to room where migrants were sleeping was blocked with a mattress and set on fire, said Veronica Zambrano, a spokesperson for Caritas Tijuanay. 
 
Zambrano said staff suspect local individuals, who had previously used the shelter property for illegal activities, were responsible for the attacks. No arrests had been made as at May 11. 
 
The attack on the shelter came after several hundred members of a caravan of Central American migrants, who caught the disapproving attention of United States president, Donald Trump, arrived in Tijuana after travelling the length of Mexico. 
 
Many of the migrants participating in the caravan did not travel all the way to Tijuana; some applied for asylum in Mexico or hoped to have their immigration status regularised. 
 
John Paul II’s condemnation of Mafia remembered
VATICAN (CNS): As the bishops and faithful of Sicily remembered Pope St. John Paul II’s visit in 1993 and, especially, his “prophetic invective” against the Mafia, Pope Francis urged them to continue the fight against organised crime. 
 
In a brief message read at a Mass in Agrigento, Italy, on May 9, the pope told the people that evil “is fought with the daily, meek and courageous practice of the gospel.” 
 
The papal message and the Mass marked 25 years since the visit of St. John Paul when, at the end of a Mass in Agrigento, he took hold of the microphone and spoke extemporaneously about the criminal underworld. 
 
The pope said Sicilians were being held hostage by a minority criminal culture and he described the Mafia as “a culture of death, profoundly inhuman, anti-gospel, an enemy of human dignity and civil peace.” 
 
His voice ringing with anger and his hand clenched in a fist, St. John Paul declared: “In the name of Christ, I say to those responsible: Convert! One day you will face the judgment of God!”
 
Sudanese rebel leader praises Catholic work 
NUBA MOUNTAINS (CNS): Abdelaziz Adam al-Hilu, the leader of a rebel group fighting the government of Sudan said the Catholic Church has given hope to the people of the country’s war-torn Nuba Mountains. 
 
Al-Hilu, chariperson of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army-North, said the accompaniment of the Church, under the leadership of retired Bishop Macram Max Gassis of El Obeid, has encouraged the people of the Nuba Mountains during decades of war with the government in Khartoum. 
 
“Bishop Macram gave hope to the people. He gave them courage to continue to fight for their freedom, to fight for their rights, their dignity and their humanity,” Hilu said on May 1. 
 
Bishop Gassis, who had been threatened by the Islamist government in Khartoum, relocated to Nairobi, Kenya, in the 1990s and began visiting the isolated Nuba Mountains region, often flying into clandestine airstrips to avoid detection by the Sudanese military. 
 
“His coming was a big relief to the people. It was moral support. When people saw him here, it gave them hope. They felt they weren’t alone, that they had friends, and that something good would happen,” Hilu said.
 
Church in Australia sets up group to monitor response to sex abuse
MELBOURNE (SE): The Australian Catholic Bishops Conference and Catholic Religious Australia have established the Implementation Advisory Group CathNews reported on May 4.
 
Archbishop Denis Hart of Melbourne, head of the episcopal conference, explained that the group would monitor to the response to the findings and recommendations of the Royal Commission into Institutional Response to Child Sexual Abuse, as well as the recommendations of the Church’s own Truth, Justice and Healing Council.
 
The president of Catholic Religious Australia, Ursuline Sister Ruth Durick, said, “There is a huge body of work completed by survivors, the royal commissioners and the Truth, Justice and Healing Council.”
 
CathNews reported her as saying, “The task of the Implementation Advisory Group is to be propositional as to the necessary reforms that Catholic institutions and communities will have to implement to be places of safety and transparency and places where we authentically live out our commitment to the values and vision of the gospels.” 

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