World

Stories from parishes, dioceses, religious orders and community groups all over the world. It also includes stories on specific topics such as the Vatican, the Pope, missionaries, aid projects, aid agencies, health & natural disasters.


China: Role of supportive Christian communities

Wuhan church

This is the fourth exclusive ICN report from a Catholic - who lives in Wuhan and prefers to remain anonymous - giving a first-hand account of the situation in the city at the centre of the coronovirus infection.

This afternoon I had a phone call from Han Weiwei. His daily calls are a normal part of my life in Wuhan, and have been so even before the coronavirus arrived. During the...

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Bishop: Security of life, property is no longer guaranteed in Nigeria

Bishop Paulinus Chukwuemeka Ezeokafor

A Nigerian bishop has called for the establishment of stronger security forces around the country after a series of kidnappings, attacks and killing of Christians.

Mgr Paulinus Chukwuemeka Ezeokafor, Bishop of Awka, in the State of Anambra, southern Nigeria, said: "Human beings are being slaughtered regularly by terrorists who are suspected to have targeted the Christians. Security of li...

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Letter from Manila

Manila from the air image: ICN/JS

A few times each day a helicopter passes overhead and lands on the helipad of a five star hotel near Manila bay, a service to guests who would prefer to avoid our famous traffic. Its flight path goes over the national sports stadium in whose covered alcoves the homeless sleep and store their handful of belongingsā€¦ so close, and yet so far.

The distance between rich and poor here is grea...

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Pope: Future trainee nuncios will spend a year on mission

Pope addresses Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy 25 June 2015

.Pope Francis has introduced a year of missionary experience into the curriculum of those preparing to enter service in the Holy See's diplomatic corps.

The Pope had mentioned this change in his final speech at the Synod on the Amazon, and now it has become a reality.

In a letter to Archbishop Joseph Marino, the new President of the Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy - which trains n...

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China: 98 year-old bishop recovers from Coronavirus

Bishop Zhu

Mgr Joseph Zhu Baoyu bishop of Nanyang in southwest China is believed to be the oldest patient to have recovered from the coronavirus. The 98-year-old pastor was diagnosed with Covid-19 pneumonia on February3. He has tested negative since 12 February and was given the all-clear on February 14.

Bishop Zhu was treated at the central hospital in Nanyang. In addition to the virus he had other...

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Burkina Faso: At least 24 dead in attack on evangelical church

Marauding paramilitaries - image Fides

Unidentified gunmen attacked an Evangelical church in the village of Pansi, located not far from Sebba, in the province of Yahgha, in northern Burkina Faso, yesterday, Sunday 16 February, killing at least 24 people and injuring about ten. The attack took place in the morning when the faithful were gathered in the church for Sunday worship. The perpetrators arrived by motorbike and o...

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Catholic Bishops call for urgent Cameroon peace talks

800,000 children are unable to attend school

Roman Catholic bishops from around the world are calling on the Cameroon government to hold urgent peace talks with the country's English-speaking separatists and moderates. As violence grows in the central African country, church leaders are urging President Paul Biya to enter negotiations to find a peaceful constitutional settlement that addresses the grievances of the Anglophone community.

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Singapore: Masses and meetings suspended indefinitely to protect against Coronavirus

Cathedral of the Good Shepherd

In the fight against the spread of the Coronavirus (Covid-19), the Archdiocese of Singapore yesterday decided to suspend the celebration of all Masses on Sunday and weekdays from 15 February until further notice. The Archdiocese - which includes 32 churches - has warned parish priests and lay communities that all other public events involving large numbers of people, such as faith formation mee...

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Nigeria: Another priest kidnapped

Fr Nicholas Oboh

A priest who works in the Diocese of Uromi, in the state of Edo, southeastern Nigeria was kidnapped on Friday. Fr Osi Odenore, Chancellor of the Diocese, told a press conference that Fr Nicholas Oboh, was kidnapped on 14 February. He did not give any more details, but said: "We are sure that he is alive" and said "steps were being taken" to ensure that Fr Oboh would be released safely.

F...

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Centenary celebrations for Chiara Lubich

The Centenary of Chiara Lubich's birth, the foundress of the Focolare Movement, was celebrated with nearly four hundred people on 18th January 2020 in the Elgar Concert Hall, University of Birmingham. Like the other similar events being held worldwide during this centenary year, the focus was not on remembering someone who died in 2008, but on someone who still lives on in the Charism of Unity ...

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Rome: Pope blesses painting of Our Lady of Walsingham

On Wednesday, 12 February 2020, after his weekly audience, Pope Francis blessed the 'Dowry Painting' of Our Lady of Walsingham, the Catholic National Shrine dedicated to Mary, the Mother of God, in Norfolk, England.

Present at the blessing were Cardinal Vincent Nichols, Archbishop of Westminster, Monsignor John Armitage, Rector of the Walsingham Shrine, and Amanda de Pulford, painter of t...

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Macau: Jesuit priest asks for prayers during coronavirus outbreak

Fr Fernando Azpiroz SJ

Fr Fernando Azpiroz SJ, Director of Casa Ricci Social Services in China, is asking for the prayers of Jesuit Missions supporters on his recent return from Hunan. Hunan is a neighbour province of Hubei, which is at the heart of the coronavirus epidemic.

Fr Fernando writes: Dear Jesuit Missions friends,

First of all, thank you for your prayers and concern.

I have just returned f...

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St Valentine's Day - Websites for single Catholics

Today is the feast of St Valentine, patron saint of courtship, engaged couples and happy marriages. If you are a single Catholic - or know someone else who is - here is an up-to date list of websites and organisations where you might find new friends or meet someone special.

Catholicmatch.com - The site is international, but has many members based in the UK. See: http...

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Over a thousand trafficking victims detained in prison-like conditions last year

More than 1,200 immigration detainees were found to be potential trafficking victims before, during or after time spent in immigration detention centres in 2019. The newly released Home Office figures were secured by data-mapping project After Exploitation via Freedom of Information (FOI) request.

The Home Office oversees several processes designed to recognise and prevent modern slavery...

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