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A no no word for pope

YANGON (UCAN): The upcoming visit of Pope Francis to the Union of Myanmar and Bangladesh has sparked fears and hopes in both countries.
 
In Yangon, the bishops of Myanmar fear that he will mention the injustices faced by the Rohingya people over attempts to drive them from the country, while leaders of the Islamic faith hope that he will, at least in his articulated prayer.
 

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On World Day of Prayer for Creation

The story of creation presents us with a panoramic view of the world. Scripture reveals that in the beginning God intended humanity to cooperate in the preservation and protection of the natural environment.
 
At first, as we read in Genesis, “no plant of the field was yet in the earth and no herb of the field had yet sprung up—for the Lord God had not caused it to rain upon the earth and there was no one to till the ground” (2:5).
 

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Joint message from Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew for World Day of Prayer for Creation

VATICAN (SE): While joint statements from popes and ecumenical patriarchs have a longish history, the most recent one signed by Pope Francis and the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople is the first expressing the concern for the well-being of creation held by the Catholic and Orthodox Churches. 

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Liturgical reform is here to stay

ROME (SE): Pope Francis told a gathering of liturgists attending the Italian National Liturgical Week in Rome on August 24 that the liturgical reform is here to stay.
He explained that continuing the work of reform of the liturgy is a forward moving exercise and can never be a retreat back into rethinking what has gone before by reviewing choices.
 

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Pope Francis to Myanmar

MANDALAY (UCAN): Pope Francis is to pay an impromptu visit to the Union of Myanmar. His intention is to focus his visit on the troubled Rankine state where for years some one million Muslim Rohingya people have suffered persecution and dispossession.
 
Invited by the president, Htin Kyaw, Pope Francis anticipates making his visit during the dry season in November. It will be the first visit of a pope to the country.
 

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Cardinal Tong at peace prayer meet in Kyoto

KYOTO (SE): Two days after stepping down as bishop of Hong Kong, John Cardinal Tong Hon travelled to Kyoto in Japan as a representative of Pope Francis at the 30th annual Prayer Meeting on Mount Hiei, a gathering that brings people from all religions together to pray and work for peace.
 
Cardinal Tong read a letter from Pope Francis, which opened with the words, “It is my pleasure to send my cordial greetings to you and to the distinguished representatives of the different religious traditions.”
 

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Positioning the Church in the world

HONG KONG (SE): An surprising article appeared in the semi-official Vatican newspaper, Civilta Cattolica, in mid-July attacking what it called a group of right wing Catholics in the United States of America (US) for betraying Church social teaching though political alliances they have made with fundamentalist evangelical groups, especially in the area of bioethics.
 

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A scorecard on Pope Francis

Four-and-a-half years after his election, Pope Francis shows no signs of slowing down or of incapacity despite his 80 years. 
 
He has been driving deep changes in the Church and has been stringent in his critiques of clericalism and careerism.
 








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Holiday from complaints

VATICAN (SE): Pope Francis is taking a bit of a summer break, but instead of going off to the traditional summer resort of popes at Castel Gandolfo outside Rome, he is taking a break from listening to complaints while remaining at home.
 
On July 14, he stuck a notice on the door of his apartment in Santa Maria saying that all complaining is banned until further notice.
 

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Pope promises to pray for Marawi

MANILA (SE): It was a long wait for the beleaguered people of The Philippines, but after a series of disasters and tragedies Pope Francis has finally expressed his solidarity with all those affected by the violence and assured the people of Mindanao of his prayers.
 
Pope Francis gave his message to Archbishop Martin Jumoad at the Pallium Mass on the Feast of Ss. Peter and Paul at the Vatican on June 29.
 

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