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Children and faithful citizenship

With a good foundation in the social teaching of the Church, people stand a better chance of evaluating policies and actions of government and political parties, and consequently play a more responsible role as citizens of the state, the bishops of the United States of America (US) say in a paper entitled, Faithful Citizenship.








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Good formation of the laity essential to a mature faith life

Each Pentecost, the bishop of Hong Kong celebrates a Mass for the newly-baptised at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, marking the end of the Period of Mystagogy and the completion of the process of the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. Since last year, the number of new Catholics has grown to the point that the Mass has to be celebrated twice. This should be greeted with joy and reflects the fruit of evangelisation efforts through which many have heard God’s call and joined the Church. 
 








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The silent word of the media

In the context of advanced digital age information technology, Pope Benedict XVI has chosen silence as the theme of his message for the 46th World Communications Day.

The pope says in Silence and Word: Path of Evangelisation, that he believes that human relationships can be deepened through silence, making human and media communication more meaningful and valuable, with a more profound human dimension.








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Motherhood is a vocation

One of the offshoots of the one-child policy implemented in mainland China has been forced abortions, which have left many mothers in deep anguish and despair. While Hong Kong leaves people free to make their own decisions about the size of families, many women choose to remain childless, which has resulted in its low birth rate over the past 20 years.








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Appreciating the work of human hands

 

After a more than one-month long campaign marred by scandals and smear tactics, Leung Chun-ying was finally chosen in a small-circle election as the fourth chief executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

Although the Election Committee has a mere 1,200 members, the people of Hong Kong have no choice but to accept the outcome and hope that he will not side with business conglomerates at the expense of the well-being of the city’s seven million people.








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Vocation Sunday in a time of transition

Today is celebrated as Vocation Sunday in the worldwide Church.

Speaking at the Chrism Mass on Holy Thursday, the day that the diocese celebrates the collegiality of its priests with the bishop, as well as Christ’s gift of the Eucharist to the Church, the bishop of Hong Kong dwelt on the urgent need for more people to put their names down to provide this vital service for the community.








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Keeping World Youth Day in focus

The euphoria of last year’s World Youth Day in Madrid was still building when the announcement came that the next gathering would be held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, one year ahead of schedule.

The other part of the message was to start making plans to be there.

World Youth Day has developed a time-proven path of extensive preparation done in the home diocese, participation and then follow-up programmes to put the experience into a context of local life.








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A gift without strings

A volunteer with the St. Vincent de Paul Society recalled a late night call where the single mother greeted him with a beer can in one hand and cigarette in the other.

After refusing him entry, the mother looked through the food parcel and then complained, “You forgot the nappies for the baby.”








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The devil and the deep blue sea

The arrival of the chief executive-in-waiting of Hong Kong, Leung Chun-ying, was greeted with demonstrations in various parts of the city, prayers for universal suffrage in churches and general skepticism among the public at large.








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A cardinal’s prophetic voice

The periodic rumble about domestic worker litter in the city reared its ugly head again in late February with complaints about the crowded public parks, facilities, nooks and crannies.

On March 4, the Sunday Morning Post went to bat for the migrant workers, editorialising that they have as much right to public facilities as anyone else. It suggested that instead of complaining, it would be more constructive to look to planning the provision of adequate space and conveniences.