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Thursday, August 25, 2016
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Zimbabwe bishop deplores domestic violence
Zimbabwe bishop deplores domestic violence

The Bishop of the Anglican Diocese of Harare, Dr Chad Nicholas Gandiya, has urged Anglicans and the broader society to shun violence in its various forms. Speaking last Saturday, he raised three issues - domestic violence, early child marriages and human trafficking as the major causes that the Anglican Church has to seriously address. He urged all Church members to make these key issues their business so that the Church is seen to be playing its important role of spreading the message of hope and peace in society. "The Anglican Diocese of Harare

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Pakistan: Asia Bibi Supreme Court Appeal date set
Pakistan: Asia Bibi Supreme Court Appeal date set

Asia Bibi, a 51-year-old Pakistani Christian women sentenced to death after drinking water meant for her Muslim colleagues, will have her appeal heard by Pakistan's Supreme Court in the second week of October. The date was confirmed to International Christian Concern and it is the final legal avenue available to avoid execution. Bibi was accused of blasphemy after the incident in June 2009. In November 2010 she was sentenced to death. There has been international pressure calling for the release of the mother of five.

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China: Forced abortion at six months - women told they 'deliberately broke law'
China: Forced abortion at six months - women told they 'deliberately broke law'

A courageous article from Shanghai online news portal Sixth Tone describes the continued desperation of re-married women in Guangdong. Six months pregnant, Anxiang and her husband were forced to choose between aborting her pregnancy or losing their government jobs, because they had violated China's new Two-Child Policy. They had thought that they were allowed to have another child, but were caught in an omission regarding remarried women in Guangdong Province. At the end of July, they were told to abort,

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Bishop of Ascoli Piceno visits survivors of central Italian earthquake
Bishop of Ascoli Piceno visits survivors of central Italian earthquake

As the death toll from the earthquake which struck central Italy early this morning continues to rise, Bishop Giovanni D'Ercole of Ascoli Piceno traveled the short 40 km to Pescara del Tronto to be with the hundreds of people affected by the disaster. Speaking to Vatican Radio this morning, Bishop D'Ercole said the scene was very distressing. "When I arrived at the break of day, I saw a destroyed village, screams, death... We are truly in a desperate situation and unfortunately this is not the only area affected, because others are

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Pope prays for victims of Italian earthquake
Pope prays for victims of Italian earthquake

Pope Francis postponed his prepared address at the General Audience today and prayed for victims of the earthquake which struck central Italy at 3.36 in the morning local time leaving at least 37 people dead and 150 missing, as rescuers search for survivors. Many of the dead were in the village of Pescara del Tronto which was levelled to the ground and there were fears the number of casualties could rise. Much of the town of Amatrice has been reduced to rubble and a family of four are feared dead nearby in Accumoli.

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Holy Land: Rabbis obtain compensation for Palestinian farmer whose home was vandalised by Israeli army
Holy Land: Rabbis obtain compensation for Palestinian farmer whose home was vandalised by Israeli army

A Palestinian farmer, whose house was seized, used an Israeli Defence Force outpost and vandalised, will receive compensation - thanks to the intervention of Rabbis For Human Rights. The vandalism included damage to property, defecation on furniture, and desecration of a copy of the Quran. Rabbis for Human Rights, with the aid of their investigator Zacharia Saada, reported on the incident to the IDF and, together with others, pressured the IDF to give compensation to the home owner who was victimized.

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Italy: Pope sends message to National Liturgical Week
Italy: Pope sends message to National Liturgical Week

...The choice of this place, inspired by the celebration of 1600 years of the Letter of Pope Innocent I to Decentius, Bishop of Gubbio (cf.. PL 20, 551-561), is particularly appropriate during the Holy Extraordinary Year of Mercy. In this document, in which the Roman Pontiff offered clarifying answers to questions posed by Pastor Eugubino, there is some interesting news about specific aspects and moments of the celebration of certain sacraments, at that precise moment in history. Among the many topics covered, one in particular is essential to our

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Kenya: Ethiopian elder shot during anniversary  Mass
Kenya: Ethiopian elder shot during anniversary Mass

A missionary community in north west Kenya is in a state of shock after a Turkana warrior stormed into a church and shot dead an elderly Ethiopian man, Lobakate Lobolemai, during a special thanksgiving Mass. The elder had crossed the border to Kenya with members of the Dassanach Catholic Church from Koro and Omorate villages in South Omo, Ethiopia, on 31 July, to attend the celebration which marked the 10th anniversary of Our Lady of Peace Todonyang Catholic Mission. The parish in Todonyang had invited their

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Pope Francis: life is not a video game
Pope Francis: life is not a video game

"Life is not a video game or a soap opera; our life is serious and the goal to achieve is important: eternal salvation," Pope Francis told pilgrims gathered in St Peter's Square for the Angelus on Sunday. Reflecting on the day's Gospel reading in which a man asks Jesus how many people will be saved, the Pope said. "It doesn't matter how many.. but it is important that everyone knows which is the path that leads to salvation... The door to salvation lies in Jesus," he said, "and we can cross the threshold of God's mercy through love, and by

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Pope offers prayers for victims of terror attack in Turkey
Pope offers prayers for victims of terror attack in Turkey

Pope Francis offered prayers today for the victims of Saturday's bombing in southern Turkey. At least 50 people were killed and dozens wounded when a suspected suicide bomber detonated his explosives among people at a wedding party in the southern Turkish city of Gaziantep. Women and children were among those killed. Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said it was likely that so-called Islamic State militants carried out the late-night attack.

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'Fantastically corrupt' countries doing more against corruption than UK tax haven
'Fantastically corrupt' countries doing more against corruption than UK tax haven

Countries described by David Cameron as 'fantastically corrupt' are doing more to clean up their acts than UK tax haven the British Virgin Islands, it was revealed this week. Nigeria and Afghanistan are among a list of nations that have agreed to tell other countries who really owns the companies they host, which has the potential to be a massive help to police and others fighting international corruption. The two countries - which the former Prime Minister described to the Queen as 'possibly the two most corrupt countries in the world',

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Cardinal Pulić named envoy for Mother Teresa celebration in Skopje
Cardinal Pulić named envoy for Mother Teresa celebration in Skopje

Pope Francis has named Cardinal Vinko Pulić, the Archbishop of Sarajevo, as his special envoy to a celebration taking place in Skopje, Macedonia, on 11 September 2016, at the conclusion of a special day of thanksgiving for the canonization of Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta. Mother Teresa, whose birth name was Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu, was born in Skopje in 1910, when the city was part of the Ottoman Empire.

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Committee says Israel 'plans to obliterate Christian and Islamic face of Jerusalem'
Committee says Israel 'plans to obliterate Christian and Islamic face of Jerusalem'

The Islamic Christian Committee to Defend Jerusalem and Holy Sites warned yesturday against an Israeli project called the 'New Face of Modern Jerusalem' which targets the main western entrance of the city. The committee said in a press release, that the plan aims to give Jerusalem a Jewish character, obliterate its Arab Muslim and Christian identity, deface its history and create a new face that doesn't relate to the original Arab Jerusalem.

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World Humanitarian Day: praise for aid workers on front line in South Sudan
World Humanitarian Day: praise for aid workers on front line in South Sudan

On World Humanitarian Day, Friday August 19, Christian Aid is paying tribute to aid workers who face significant dangers and difficulties as they provide relief to people caught up in crisis zones. An annual initiative of the United Nations, World Humanitarian Day aims to recognise the women and men risking their lives on a daily basis to deliver aid during conflict, emergencies and disasters. Christian Aid has taken this opportunity to highlight the challenges facing its staff and partners in South Sudan,

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Reflection from South Africa: 'Women's Month'
Reflection from South Africa: 'Women's Month'

Last week a bold newspaper headline caught my attention: 'Rape does not exist in Swazi Marriages'. The article went on to explain that Indigenous and Customary Law codified that a man cannot rape his wife, he can only rape a woman that he is not married too. I couldn't help but wonder if the unspoken meaning was "a woman is her husband's possession". At the beginning of August, Pope Francis announced the institution of a new commission for the study of women deacons.

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Philippines: Not legal, but  the 'death penalty' is being used daily
Philippines: Not legal, but the 'death penalty' is being used daily

Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez and Capiz Rep Fredenil Castro want to bring back the death penalty in the Philippines as a deterrent to crime. It can be said that the death penalty is already effectively and practically in force daily. As many as ten suspects are killed daily in the war on illegal drugs. Some are killed in what is said to be police shoot-outs. Others are the work of vigilante death squads. They bind the hands and feet of the victims, gag them with tape and shoot them and leave them in a public place with a crude sign saying, "I am a pusher" or

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Pope has private meeting with French president
Pope has private meeting with French president

Pope Francis had a private meeting with President Francois Hollande on Wednesday. Their meeting at the Vatican came three weeks after the brutal murder of the elderly French priest, Father Jacques Hamel, who was killed by two young French terrorists claiming allegiance to the so-called Islamic State group whilst he was celebrating Mass in his church near the city of Rouen. Following the murder of Fr Hamel, President Hollande telephoned Pope Francis to express his closeness and told him that "when a priest is attacked all of France is wounded."

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South Korea: Church holds week of events to promote peace
South Korea: Church holds week of events to promote peace

A series of events to promote peace are being held in the Archdiocese of Seoul, Korea, from August 13 - 20, on the occasion of Korea's 71st Liberation Day. The first event, organised by the committee for the Reconciliation of the Korean people, is a pilgrimage for young people titled '2016 Wind of Peace' from 13 to 19 August, to the demilitarized zone on the border between the two Koreas. The participants include expats from Serbia, Slovenia, Lebanon and South Sudan.

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Pope issues motu proprio on new Laity, Family, and Life dicastery
Pope issues motu proprio on new Laity, Family, and Life dicastery

The Vatican released a motu proprio by Pope Francis today, officially establishing the new dicastery on the Laity, Family, and Life. "For many centuries, the Church, a caring mother, has had care and respect for the laity, the family, and life, manifesting the love of the merciful Saviour for humanity," reads the new document, which was signed on August 15. "Our thoughts turn to the laity, the family, and life, to whom we wish to offer support and help,

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Pope: Migrants are an opportunity for dialogue among cultures
Pope: Migrants are an opportunity for dialogue among cultures

Pope Francis sent his support to an event taking place in the Italian Diocese of Ugento-S Maria di Leuca called 'Mediterranean: A Sea of Bridges,' which brought together young people from Europe and the countries bordering the Mediterranean to create a Charter which would help stop the Mediterranean from being a 'sea of death.' In a message, Pope Francis expressed his wish that the event "enkindle a renewed commitment to promoting a culture of hospitality and solidarity, and thus promote peace and fraternity among peoples."

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    Cuba: Church demolitions increase, 1,400 AOG churches seized
Cuba: Church demolitions increase, 1,400 AOG churches seized

The first half of 2016 has seen church demolitions in Cuba gather pace as the government crackdown on freedom of religion or belief (FoRB) on the island continues. The authorities have also begun to confiscate 1,400 Assemblies of God (AOG) churches that were earmarked for seizure in 2015. The latest report on FoRB in Cuba by Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW) details 1606 separate violations between January and July 2016. Cases include the demolition and confiscation of church buildings, the destruction of church property, arbitrary detention and

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Pope sends message to victims of wildfire on Madeira
Pope sends message to victims of wildfire on Madeira

Pope Francis has sent a letter to express his sorrow over the loss of life and property on the Portuguese island of Madeira, where wildfires have killed at least four people and forced hundreds to evacuate their homes. The letter, addressed to the bishop of Funchal, the capital city of Madeira, Antonio Carrilho, and signed by the Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, was read out during Mass for Our Lady of the Mount, Patroness of Funchal.

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Australia: JRS calls for immediate closure of refugee island 'processing centres'
Australia: JRS calls for immediate closure of refugee island 'processing centres'

Jesuit Refugee Service Australia (JRS) has urged Immigration Minister Peter Dutton to exercise "moral and political leadership" by immediately closing the offshore processing centres on Nauru and Manus Island after a series of damning reports showed that nearly 900 refugees are being held in desperately inhumane conditions. The service says in a statement: "JRS endorses the renewed call by the United Nations' refugee agency (UNHCR) for the Australian government to move without delay all refugees and

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Mongolia: Church prepares for ordination of first native priest
Mongolia: Church prepares for ordination of first native priest

The first native priest of Mongolia: Joseph Enkh, will be ordained in Ulaan Bator on 28 August 2016 by His Exc Mgr Wenceslao Padilla, Apostolic Prefect of Ulan Bator. Congolese Fr Prosper Mbumba, a member of the Congregation of the Immaculate Heart of Mary missionaries in Mongolia, said: "This event is particularly important, for our young Church, re-founded in 1992 and today has just over a thousand baptized. The ordination of a native priest will stimulate the enthusiasm and sense of belonging among the Mongolians,

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In overwhelming vote, Lutheran church urges US to stop aid to Israel
In overwhelming vote, Lutheran church urges US to stop aid to Israel

This weekend, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) overwhelmingly approved two resolutions calling on the US government to end all financial and military aid to Israel until Israel "compl[ies] with internationally recognized human rights standards", freezes settlement construction on occupied Palestinian land, and for the church to adopt an investment screen to avoid profiting from Israel's Occupation, at ELCA's triennial 2016 Churchwide Assembly in New Orleans. ELCA is one of three Lutheran church bodies in the US

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Displaying Articles 1 - 25 of 6732
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