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Ask first about the 
labour not the label

The collapse of the Rana Plaza clothing factory resulting in the deaths of over 1,100 people and injuries to almost 2,000 of the 3,000 who were on the job on April 24 in Dhaka, Bangladesh, has at least sent a wakeup call to the shopping denizens of the world that in choosing a purchase they should ask first about the labour not the label.








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A call to 
reconciliation

On June 4 this year, people again flocked to Victoria Park in Hong Kong to burn a candle for those who died during the massacre that took place in Tiananmen Square on that day in 1989.

On the surface, the annual memorial may seem like a simple ritual in memory of those who died combined with a call to the authorities in Beijing to vindicate their memories as patriotic citizens and not enemies of the state.








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Can law change nature?

On May 14 the Court of Final Appeal ruled the current laws governing marriage in Hong Kong are unconstitutional, as they bar transsexuals from tying the knot.

Although some media in Hong Kong have touted this decision as a step in the right direction, it could also be argued that it may be a step backwards.








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Response to relational poverty

 The 60th Anniversary International Conference organised by Caritas-Hong Kong between May 15 and 18, with an exposure tour day on May 19, ran on the theme of the worrying rise in the rate of relational poverty in modern, technologically developed societies.

The conference stressed the tremendous contribution that Christian charity can make in the community through the concrete manifestation of the face of God.








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Praying for China

The date, May 24, was especially suggested in a letter penned by Pope Benedict XVI to the Catholic people of China in 2007. He set it aside as worldwide day of prayer for China.

Then, at the end of April this year, we learned that Bishop Aloysius Jin Luxian had passed away in Shanghai.








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Labour rights should be recognised

In 1886, workers in the United States of America staged a nationwide strike to demand the adoption of an eight-hour workday. Although the strike failed to achieve an immediate outcome, it did arouse awareness the world over on labour rights.








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Who can occupy Central?

Comments coming out of the China Liaison Office naming love of Hong Kong and the People’s Republic of China as not-negotiable assets for passing muster as a candidate for chief executive may seem harmless on the surface, but the makeup of the judging panel could provide the menace.








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Labouring under illusions

In the business world, companies sell their products or services for as much as they think people will pay. This is a fundamental principle of a market economy and is regarded as a right.

However, they are not the only ones who sell their wares. Workers sell their labour and expertise and, in the same way as any commercial enterprise, are entitled to go for the highest price they think they can get.

However, that is about where the likeness ends.








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An evangelisation of listening

From its very beginnings people have tried to kill off the Church and extinguish the flicker of faith in the hearts of the people. The Romans tried persecution, but failed. It ended with the Edict of Milan signed in 313AD, which sealed a long lasting relationship between Church and state.








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A mission of love

At the Easter Vigil celebrations in Hong Kong this year around 3,560 adults were scheduled to receive the sacraments of initiation, baptism, confirmation and the Eucharist.

While the number of baptisms in recent years has indeed brought us joy, the challenge of spreading the faith must take on a broader and deeper approach to enable more people to hear the good news of Jesus Christ and allow our own faith to influence other lives, in order to build a society of charity and justice.