22 International News

posted Nov 9, 2017, 2:12 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated Nov 9, 2017, 2:13 AM ]

Pope's Prayer video for Nov.

This month, the Pope asks us to pray for Asia - an enormous continent where people of diverse religions coexist, and where Christians are a minority. Let us listen to their testimony and learn from their openness to others.

"The most striking feature of Asia is the variety of its peoples who are heirs to ancient cultures, religions and traditions. On this continent, where the Church is a minority, the challenges are intense.


Pope begs: "Please Lord, stop, no more, no more war!"

Pope Francis called war "the destruction of ourselves" in an emotional homily on November 3 at a US military cemetery in Italy, as he marked All Souls' Day commemorating the dead.

During Mass at the cemetery, 60 km outside Rome, pope Francis said in an off-the-cuff homily that the sight of the many gravestones should stand as a call for peace.

"This is perhaps the prayer that naturally arises, looking at this cemetery, 'Please Lord, stop, no more, no more war, no more this useless slaughter, as [Pope] Benedict XV said'," he added. 


Vatican denies 'utterly false' reports of ecumenical Mass

A news report said that Archbishop Roche was involved in a Commission looking at the possibility of an 'ecumenical Mass', but the Vatican has strongly denied reports that a Commission has been established examining the possibility of setting up an "ecumenical Mass" which would allow Catholics and Protestants to celebrate a shared Eucharist.

Archbishop Arthur Roche, the number two official at the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, told The Tablet that reports of a joint Mass were "utterly false", while Greg Burke, Director of the Holy See Press Office, described them as "simply untrue."

A report in First Things quoted anonymous sources saying that Archbishop Roche and Archbishop Piero Marini - the former Master of Ceremonies for John Paul II - were both involved in the Commission, while the Prefect of the Congregation, Cardinal Robert Sarah, whose views on the liturgy have sometimes clashed with Pope Francis', had not been informed. The First Things story was later followed up in The Australian, who put the claims of a possible joint Mass to the Vatican, but did not receive a response. 


Prayers for 2017 Climate Agreement talks

In 2015, nations met at the UN-facilitated summit in Paris in order to agree a deal to limit global warming. Against tough odds, they succeeded. Every country in the world, except Syria, is a member of the Paris agreement.

Starting November 6, 2017, climate negotiators began a week of meetings in Bonn, Germany, to agree to a 'rule book' for the Paris framework. This meeting was co-hosted by the nation of Fiji. The people of Fiji and many of their neighbours in the Pacific Islands are under immediate threat from sea level rise. The United States has said it wants out of the deal, but the earliest date for withdrawal would be 2020.


Archbishop prays for victims of Texas church shooting

After at least 26 people were killed when a gunman opened fire at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, on Sunday, the local Catholic archbishop offered prayers and solidarity for the victims.

"We need prayers! The families affected in the shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs need prayers. The evil perpetrated on those who were gathered to worship God on the Lord's Day – especially children and the elderly – makes no sense, and will never be fully understood," Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller of San Antonio said Nov. 5.


South Sudan 
Salesians aid refugees fleeing violence 

As civil war escalates in South Sudan, the world's youngest nation, refugees fleeing violence gather over the border in northern Uganda to ask God for peace. They sing hymns and sometimes recite the Rosary. Others fall to their knees and weep in prayer in the new chapels established under trees, with pews that are planks of wood or logs dug into the ground. "We are praying daily because we want God to hear and forgive us," said catechist Peter Jok, a South Sudanese refugee who works in one of five chapels that Salesian missionaries have opened in the Palabek camp in northern Uganda. "The suffering we are going through will come to an end one day, because God is going to intervene."