22 International News

posted Sep 6, 2017, 10:40 PM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Sep 6, 2017, 10:40 PM ]

Pope emphasises peace-building in meeting with Korean religious leaders

In a meeting with religious leaders from Korea on Sept. 2, Pope Francis said the world is looking to them for an example of how to work together peacefully in order to combat violence and preserve the dignity and rights of all people.

"We have, therefore, a long journey ahead of us, which must be undertaken together with humility and perseverance, not just by raising our voices, but by rolling up our sleeves," the Pope said.

We must work "to sow the hope of a future in which humanity becomes more human, a future which heeds the cry of so many who reject war and implore greater harmony between individuals and communities, between peoples and states," he continued.


Pope's condolences on death of Cardinal Murphy O'Connor

Pope Francis has sent a telegram of condolence to the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, on the passing away of Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, Archbishop Emeritus of Westminster:

"Deeply saddened to learn of the death of Cardinal Cormac Murphy-O'Connor, Archbishop Emeritus of Westminster, I hasten to offer my heartfelt condolences to you and to the clergy and faithful of the Archdiocese.  >>>


Church backs drive to protect women, children

The Catholic Church in Indonesia has joined a government-sponsored awareness campaign to combat human trafficking as well as violence against women and children. A third central aim is to promote economic justice throughout the sprawling archipelago. The campaign, titled the '3 Ends', commenced in March 2016 in provincial capitals.

Yohana Yembise, Minister of Female Empowerment and Child Protection, said on Aug. 26 that some 24 million Indonesian women face psychological and physical abuse as well as sexual violence or exploitation.

Rianti, 36, one of the millions of women who have been victims of violence, welcomed the campaign. Rianti said she had often been beaten by her husband over the performance of household tasks such as cooking and washing clothes.


Christian woman, a jihadist prisoner, freed in Tal Afar

Rana Behnam is a Christian woman who was freed in the suburbs of Tal Afar, after having been held for a long time in a place of segregation by the jihadists of the self-proclaimed Islamic State in Tal Afar, along with other Yazida women. Her release - according to Iraqi media reports - took place during the offensive that was launched by the Iraqi army and other militias to resume full control of Tal Afar, a town west of Mosul, to the border with Syria, the last stronghold of the jihadists of the Islamic State (Daesh), after the reconquest of Mosul by the Iraqi army. Photos released by ankawa.com website show Rana with two Chaldean priests and some family members.


Sri lanka
Nun fights for rights of women migrant workers

Good Shepherd Sr Mary Angela Fernando travelled to Lebanon in 2006, amid a war conducted mainly between militant Hezbollah paramilitary forces and Israel.

There were more than a thousand deaths and a massive dislocation of civilians. As well as being caught up in the conflict, many Sri Lankan migrant workers faced physical and mental harassment, as well as exploitation such as over-work and non-payment of wages. Many workers lacked legal status and some died far from home or suffered serious injuries. The majority were not Catholics, said Sr Fernando.

Upon returning to Sri Lanka, Sr Fernando continued to offer support to women still working in Lebanon as well as those who had also travelled home. Some of the returnees shared their problems when visiting the 'Christ Center', said the 82-year-old Good Shepherd nun.


Diocese of Stockholm's "rules of thumb" for social users

Kristina Hellner, Communication Officer at the Swedish Diocese, commented on the nine "rules of thumb" that the Vicar, Fr Fredrik Emanuelson and his aides have prepared at the chancery, released on the website www.katolskakyrkan.se. Since "we see many offensive comments from Catholics on social media forums," at the Chancery of Stockholm, we have issued some rules for good communication". "Show respect for other human beings, regardless of the opinions they express; use factual arguments; believe in the good faith of others; show empathy and sympathy; make no personal accusations" are some of the rules. "Do not judge, do not condemn. When you write on social media, consider if you want to follow the 'tit for tat' principle. When you share pictures or videos of other people on social media, always ask the permission of those involved." Finally, "if you express your views as a Catholic, bear in mind that you become the face of the Catholic Church." Kristina Hellner went on to say: "As all of us represent our faith, we deem it important to remind people that they should be polite and kind on social media. Actually, it should not be necessary to do that, but some people write bad and inappropriate things, and we do not want them associated with the Catholic Church."