24 Letters to the Editor

posted Mar 15, 2017, 9:26 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Mar 15, 2017, 9:26 AM ]

'Viri probati' - an idea whose time 'may' have come

Sir, Pope Francis, in an interview with a German weekly, has suggested that the Church 'may' consider ordaining married men as priests, who could then work in remote areas, where there is an acute shortage of priests. In Brazil's Amazon region, for instance, there's only one priest for every 10,000 Catholics, spread far and wide. There are large communities who do not receive the Holy Eucharist for years, due to the scarcity of priests. Two Brazilian bishops have suggested that such 'married ordained priests' could ease the shortage in these areas. This, however, doesn't imply any radical change in the existing stand of the Church on clerical celibacy.

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Drug addicts and ex-convicts built toilets for women

Sir, This refers to a write-up in the Times of India dated March 12, 2017. A 15-member group called 'Back in the ring' comprising ex-convicts and drug addicts from Norway turned yoga devotees,and set up base at Mumbai Central. They decided to construct public toilets for women near Mumbai Central railway station.

This was decided by the group after seeing the deplorable state of civic amenities, especially for women. This project was jointly funded by Norwegian Charitable Organisation, BITR, along with the JSW Group.

The group initially stayed in the red light area of Grant Road, and only recently shifted to a modest hotel at Crawford Market. The group reached the site at 10 am and worked upto 5 pm.

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Green Dream

Sir, Don Bosco Organisation, which runs five schools and one college in Mumbai, plans to move towards a zero energy setup - reducing the use of coal for electricity, and increasing the consumption of solar energy by 60%. Mumbai receives 300 days of sunlight a year, making it easily possible to move away from the usual carbon-emitting process of burning coal and gas for electricity.

To read more about GREEN DREAM, visit www.infantjesusjogeshwari.in – go to GEM E-NEWSLETTER section and read the latest GEM-7/20 – GREEN DREAM.

Read in this issue of the GEM, other interesting and educative articles — 10 Resolutions for an Environmental Easter; Bishop Percival Fernandez inaugurates Cloth Bag Project at Infant Jesus Church, Jogeshwari; tribunal fines Mumbai builder Rs 40 lakh for destroying Khandala hill; Plastic waste turns into free fuel for villagers; solar-powered cooker that stores the sun's energy for fuel-free grilling every night; 30,000 guests, drones and jets at BJP leader's son's lavish wedding; This man refused to spend money on rituals, instead built a digital school; Cardinal Bo warns of 'environmental holocaust' and so on.

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Kurla stands United

Sir, The recent vandalism of Mother Mary's statue at the entrance of the Kurla Christian village just before Municipal elections in Mumbai on February 19, 2017 in the wee hours was politically motivated. The two arrested miscreants' statements that their intention was robbery cannot be accepted, as they had literally thrown the paver block to damage the statue. If their intention was that of robbery of gold articles on the statue, they would have carefully opened or broken only the glass to commit the crime.

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Vox Populi

Sir, In the absence of a vociferous, strong, aggressive and dashing leadership in the Congress, the BJP is taking full advantage of the situation and dominating the scene to have its way right, left and centre. The recent State Elections are a case in point. Both in Goa and Manipur, where the Congress had won the highest number of votes, it has still been relegated to the Opposition by hook or by crook (mostly by crook), manipulation, money power and unfair means.

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Preserve Biodiversity

Sir, The Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, Vatican, hosted a conference on 'Biodiversity' (March 2, 2017). It determined that a 'culture of waste' could be leading to the extinction of vital life species. And that changing personal habits and promoting a more equitable distribution of the earth's resources could make the difference.

Prof. Parthasarathi Dasgupta, a member of the above Academy, echoes the Holy See's view, saying that when it comes to biodiversity, an enormous proportion of life forms which are invisible – microbes, soil enrichers and decomposers — actually make up for basics in food, medicine and cosmetics. Their losses would inflict incalculable damage to our common sustainable goals, unless we maintain them.

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