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Sister of Charity brutally murdered in India

NEW DELHI (UCAN): A 53-year-old Sister of Charity was shot dead in the state of Jharkhand, India, on November 15. Sister Valsa John, who comes from Kerala, was well known in the area for her work in defending the rights of tribal peoples.

Reports say that she was dragged from bed in the early morning by a mob of around 30 to 40 people and was stabbed and hacked to death in Pakur district, near the city of Dumka.

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Tibetan Catholic texts discovered in pristine condition

HONG KONG (Agencies): Texts in 45 volumes of the scriptures, as well as a history of the Blessed Virgin Mary written in the language of Tibet were recently discovered at the only Catholic parish that exists in the country today, Mang Kang (or Shang Yan Jing).

Fides says that the scriptures were translated in 1931 and the 489 files on the history of Our Lady date back to 1932.

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Protest in Hanoi over government use of Church property

Hanoi (UCAN): Around 1,000 people staged a peaceful protest in Hanoi, Vietnam, on the night of November 16 as government authorities began construction of a sewage treatment project on former convent land near the Dong Da hospital.

The protesters gathered at Thai Ha church to pray and demand the return of what they said is still Redemptorist-owned property, seized by the communist government in 1959 and yet to be returned.

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Asian liturgy forum calls for more incluturation for funerals rites

TAIPEI (SE): In the run up to the 15th Asian Liturgical Forum held in Taipei, Taiwan, from October 17 to 21, questions were being asked about various practices concerning the rite of Christian funerals.

One of the contentious issues was the custom in some places of scattering ashes of the dead.

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Father Ricci’s funeral acknowledged in highest possible style 400 years later

MACAU (SE): “Jesuits do not sing,” goes the old adage. But just 400 years ago almost to the day, sing they did at the funeral in Beijing of the great missionary, Father Matteo Ricci sj, on the feast of All Saints, 1 November 1611.








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Taiwan and Macau in an educational partnership

MACAU (UCAN): The diocese of Macau is offering professional training for local high school teachers with a little help from the Jesuit-run Fu Jen Catholic University in Taipei, Taiwan.

Established 80 years ago, the St Joseph Diocesan College of Macau has been offering training courses for kindergarten and primary school teachers for more than half a century, but is now, for the first time, offering a diploma course for high school teachers.

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Indonesian bishops ask for freedom in liturgical expression

VATICAN (UCAN) : The president of the Bishops’ Conference of Indonesia, Bishop Martinus Dogma Situmorang, urged the Vatican to give local Churches more space to be themselves, especially in the translation of liturgical texts, during his country’s bishops five-yearly ad limina visit to Rome.

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The insidious war games of the Sri Lankan government

COLOMBO (SE): The Sri Lankan government has announced it will take urgent measures to close the last of the camps that have housed more than 200,000 internally displaced persons, or refugees, from the war zones that covered much of the country during the 30-year civil war which ended officially in May 2009.

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Korean assassin up for beatification

SEOUL (UCAN): Thomas An Jung-geun, a Korean freedom fighter who assassinated the first prime minister of Japan, Hirobumi Ito, who was also the first resident general of the colonial Japanese government on the Korean Peninsula, is being considered by the Preparatory Committee for Beatification and Canonisation of Seoul archdiocese for beatification.

At a symposium held on September 28 at the Catholic Centre in Seoul to discuss the possibility of canonising An, he was described as a Catholic patriot.

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Vatican official calls for religious cooperation in Pakistan

VATICAN CITY (CNS): “Christian love urges us to dialogue and to promote positive and constructive relations with individuals and communities of other religions. 

“It is uplifting to hear that tremendous effort has been made in Pakistan to witness the fact that Christians and Muslims can work and walk together in peace,” said Archbishop Savio Hon Tai-Fai, in a message marking a new missionary initiative of the Church in Pakistan. 

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