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Courtyard of the Gentiles looks at society and economy

ROME (SE): “The theme chosen for the conference is intended to stimulate reflection on a key question in current political and academic debate, and about which public opinion is increasingly sensitive: the relationship between economics and society, and the need to define new, more humane and inclusive economic models,” the organisers of the Courtyard of the Gentiles told the Holy See Press Office on September 12.

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Clash of anti-discrimination and religious liberty

WASHINGTON (SE): The United States of America Commission on Civil Rights released its long awaited report on Peaceful Coexistence on September 8, which examines various legal and constitutional issues that arise when there is conflict between anti-discrimination laws and religious liberty.

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From migrant shelter to the United Nations

HONG KONG (SE): Sixteen years ago, Eni Lestari was a lost and bewildered soul taking shelter in a migrant worker refuge in Hong Kong from an abusive employer.

But in those short 16 years, her life journey has taken her from the Bethune House Migrant Women’s Refuge to stand on the podium at the United Nations in New York and present a contract migrant worker’s perspective on life to representatives of 193 nations.

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A satanic death

VATICAN (SE): “This is the thread of a satanic persecution,” Pope Francis said at a Mass celebrated on September 14 in memory of Father Jacques Hamel, the French priest who died on the sanctuary while he himself was celebrating Mass on July 26.

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Praying with Assisi

HONG KONG (SE): On September 30, Pope Francis was to journey to Assisi in Italy to join with leaders of world religions to pray for world peace.

The question that participants were asked to address during the choral prayer at Assisi this year was, “What are the principles acknowledged by all religions for peaceful coexistence? What contribution to politics, science and culture in general can we propose to draft a Decalogue of Human Coexistence?”

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Mongolia through the eyes of a new priest

ULAANBAATAR (UCAN): The ordination in Ulaanbaatar of 29-year-old Reverend Joseph Enkh Baatar as the first local person recorded as becoming a priest in 1,000 years in the Catholic Church in Mongolia on August 28 was a historic moment.

“I hope Father Enkh will be a Good Samaritan to the people of Mongolia,” Bishop Lazzaro You Heung-sik, from the diocese of Daejeon in South Korea, where Father Enkh had done his formation, said.

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Looking at possibility of sacraments for divorced

VATICAN (SE): The bishops of Argentina issued a pastoral letter in August this year containing guidelines for priests accompanying the divorced and remarried, including a guarded, but at the same time clear statement of the possibility of readmission to the sacraments in some circumstances.

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Holding the fort in South Sudan

JUBA (CNS): While most expatriate workers have left South Sudan since a brutal attack was carried out by what The Associated Press described as 80 heavily armed men, Brother Bill Firman says he believes it is a good place for a religious to be.

Reports say that the 80 men raped several women, especially singling out the Americans, beat and robbed people and carried out mock executions over nearly four hours.

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Pay day for the slave trade

GEORGETOWN (SE): While the Jesuits have been known to be involved in an extremely wide variety of endeavours, in 1838 in the United States of America (US) they had their fingers stuck in one that today they cannot hold their heads up about—the slave trade.

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Catholic teacher shot dead in Papua

JAKARTA (AsiaNews): The body of 27-year-old Yuni Yesra Patatang, a Catholic teacher responsible for a youth group ministry, the Orang Muda Katolik, was found on the evening of September 12 in Ilaga in the Puncak Jaya district of the province of Papua in Indonesia.

News of his death was released by the Commission for Youth Ministry of the Indonesian Bishops’ Conference.

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