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Scottish church leaders Holy Week statement

Churches in Scotland have welcome the Holy Week Statement on Covid-19 by the Leaders of Churches from across the nations of Britain and Ireland.

They state: "Within Scotland, as elsewhere, we are faced with a series of unprecedented challenges that are impacting upon every aspect of the fabric of our society. In the threat to life and livelihood being experienced by so many at this time, ...

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Cardinal Pell: I hold no ill will towards my accuser

After hearing the Australian High Court decision this, Cardinal George Pell released a statement in which he reiterates that he has "consistently maintained" his innocence. The "injustice" that he received "has been remedied" today, he said.

Addressing the person who brought the charges against him, Cardinal Pell said: "I hold no ill will towards my accuser." And thinking of others who m...

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Holy See welcomes High Court decision in Cardinal Pell case

Cardinal Pell

The Holy See Press Office has issued the following statement on the decision of the Australian High Court this morning to overturn Cardinal Pell's conviction for abuse. Cardinal Pell was released from prison shortly after noon, and was taken to a Carmelite monastery in Melbourne.

'The Holy See, which has always expressed confidence in the Australian judicial authority, welcomes...

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East Anglia: Family creates virtual chapel to attend Mass

The Scotts joining live streamed Mass at Cathedral of St John the Baptist, Norwich

A family from St Edmund, King and Martyr parish in Bungay, Suffolk, have created a virtual chapel in their home as they join Mass while self-isolating.

Cathy Scott, who is self-isolating with her husband Andrew, and their daughter and son-in-law, writes below about the virtual chapel at their home in Alburgh.

'Our 'virtual chapel' was all Andrew's idea. He is a great one for wanting...

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Australia: High Court overturns Cardinal Pell's conviction

Cardinal Pell

Australia's High Court has just overturned Cardinal George Pell's conviction for child sexual abuse charges. The 78 year-old Cardinal will now immediately stop serving a six-year jail sentence.

In 2018, a jury found he had abused two boys in Melbourne in the 1990s. The conviction was upheld by a lower court last year. Cardinal Pell always maintained his innocence.

A full bench of se...

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Today's Gospel in Art - Both Judas and Peter were about to betray Jesus

The Last Supper, by Juan de Juanes 1567 © Prado Museum, Madrid

Gospel of 7th April 2020 - John 13:21-33,36-38 While at supper with his disciples, Jesus was troubled in spirit and declared, 'I tell you most solemnly, one of you will betray me.' The disciples looked at one another, wondering which he meant. The disciple Jesus loved was reclining next to Jesus; Simon Peter signed to him and said, 'Ask who it is he means', ...

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JRS joins call for increased asylum support rates in response to COVID-19 crisis

Sarah Teather

JRS UK has joined with 60 leading charities to write to the Home Secretary and the Chancellor of the Exchequer asking that they increase asylum support rates in line with Universal Credit.

In a joint letter drafted by charity Freedom from Torture, dozens of leading refugee and migrant charities, including Refugee Council, Amnesty International & Migrant Voice, have joined together calling...

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Pope Francis: Pray for detainees in overcrowded prisons

Pope Francis dedicated his Mass on Monday morning in Casa Santa Marta to prisoners, and asked everyone to pray for the serious problem of overcrowded prisons in many parts of the world.

'Where there is overcrowding, there is the danger in this pandemic that it winds up being a grave tragedy. Let us pray for those responsible, and for those who need to make decisions in this area, that the...

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Pope sets up Covid-19 emergency fund through Missio

The Holy Father has established an emergency fund through Missio (the Pontifical Mission Societies), in order to come to the aid of those people and communities who are being tragically impacted by the spread of COVID-19.

The Emergency Fund will be used to accompany impacted communities in mission countries via Church structures and institutions.

Welcoming the announcement, Cardinal...

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Ireland: Holy Week message from Protestant and Catholic church leaders

Catholic Archbishop Eamon Martin and Church of Ireland Archbishop-elect John McDowell issued a joint Holy Week and Easter message today.

"Early on the first day of the week while it was still dark…" John 20:1

The Easter story begins in darkness, in a time of great fear, sorrow and despair. The disciples were nowhere to be seen but were hidden away behind locked doors fe...

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The Passion in Seven Objects: 3 - Crown of Thorns

In the two weeks leading up to Easter we try to enter more deeply into what Jesus is doing as he walks the way to the cross. I offer these brief meditations in that spirit, each day using one of the objects that appears in the gospels.

3. CROWN OF THORNS

The soldiers, after twisting some thorns into a crown, put it on his head (Matthew 27:29)

I remember being...

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Invitation to join Million Minutes on-line conversations

How do we support young people at present? How do we prepare to walk with them after COVID-19? Calling all chaplains, youth workers and catechists. Million Minutes will be hosting a series of on-line conversations, reflecting on the first anniversary of Pope Francis' letter to young people and how the Church might continue to accompany young people during this time.

They begin on Tuesday ...

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Covid-19: Holy Week statement from British and Irish Church leaders

In an unprecedented move, church leaders from around Britain and Ireland came together in a video conference last week to hear and support one another during the coronavirus pandemic. They discussed on-line worship, pastoral care in hospitals, funeral arrangements, along with other issues - and drew up the following statement which they issued today:

Holy Week Statement from Brit...

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Today's Gospel in Art - The Anointing at Bethany

The Anointing at Bethany, by Peter Paul Rubens and Anthony Van Dyck  1618 © The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg

Gospel of 6th April 2020 - John 12:1-11 Six days before the Passover, Jesus went to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom he had raised from the dead. They gave a dinner for him there; Martha waited on them and Lazarus was among those at table. Mary brought in a pound of very costly ointment, pure nard, and with it anointed the feet of Jesus, wiping them with her hair; th...

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