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Reflection

Catholic religious life in a new millennium

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st maryREFLECTION - As I walked across the lush green campus of St. Mary’s College in South Bend, Ind., at a seminar on Catholic religious life in 2014, I thought of the campus across the street, the University of Notre Dame, where I received a master’s degree in 1969. For me, these two sites and times served as bookends describing the life of women religious that I have known...

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Tradition, family up for grabs in Egypt

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REFLECTION - Sidrak was elected Catholic Patriarch of Alexandria January 15, 2013. A youthful, 59-year-old theologian who studied at Rome’s Gregorian University, he leads a minority within Egypt’s Christian minority. He’s trying to find a way to stand firmly on shifting ground. “I understand now why many people won’t accept...

 

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Vietnam debates prostitution: 'social evil' or legitimate job?

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hanoipreviewREFLECTION - For Vietnamese sex workers like Do Thi Oanh, being caught touting for business used to carry a long stint in forced "rehabilitation", but as fines replace detention, many detect a shifting attitude towards the world's oldest profession. In 2008, Oanh was sent to one of Vietnam's notorious rehabilitation camps on the outskirts of Hanoi, joining hundreds...

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"I say no to euthanasia"

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REFLECTION - Oncologist Catherine Dopchie reflects on the meaning of life and death... The pro-euthanasia front in Belgium opens up to Catholics. A debate was sparked-off by a book written by Corinne Van Oost, titled "Catholic doctor, I practice euthanasia". The book is similar to a confession in which the Belgian doctor - who dedicated...

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The distance between reality and rules

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bonnypreviewREFLECTION - "What I expect from the Synod? It shouldn't be a platonic synod, withdrawn on a reassuring island of doctrinal discussions and general rules, but rather a synod that is open to the concrete, complex reality of life". It's an excerpt from the paper written a few days ago by the titular bishop of Antwerp Mons. Johan Bonny, titled "Synod on the family...

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Albania: let the martyrs’ blood be a warning for the future

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massafrapreviewREFLECTION - Monsignor Angelo Massafra, the metropolitan archbishop of Shkodër-Pult, traces the history of a country that starts from its Christian martyrs and religious coexistence, after state atheism. “I wish that time, as well as His Holiness’ next visit to Albania, favours the work we have undertaken for years; but also that ours can become an example of brotherhood...

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Poland - Migration "orphans"

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orfanipREFLECTION - When parents go abroad to work they don't always have the possibility to bring their children with them. They amount to over 2 million (perhaps 3…) The remittances of Poles working in EU countries other than their own to family members in Poland amount to 35 billion euro. This has led, ten years since Poland's EU adhesion, to a worrying phenomenon...

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Franciscan Management Of Finances

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DOCUMENT - A Formation Aid from the General Definitorium: The Use of Our Economic Resources in Ways that areTransparent, Ethical and in Solidarity, OFM General Curia. The present document addresses all concerns, but it is a specific response to Mandate 54 of the General Chapter, which calls for “a program for Initial and Ongoing Formation...

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Israel - The end of the war between Gaza and Israel: Situation and Prospects

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gazaREFLECTION - ANS reports the story of a Salesian of the Middle East on the situation between Palestine and Israel at the end of this latest hostilities. The method of the Salesians and the style of Don Bosco that focuses on reason, religion and loving kindness, make inroads into the hearts of young Arabs, both Christians and Muslims. Finally the hostilities between Gaza and Israel is over...

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For PIME missionary, "Occupy will not stop, a social revolution is urgent in China and Hong Kong"

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HONG -KONG - In Hong Kong since 1974, Fr Franco Mella said that Beijing's stance on democracy in the Territory " was predictable;" however, "peaceful protests" will continue. "The issues of democracy and justice should not be limited to Hong Kong. We must pursue real change to unify the nation in the name of everyone's well-being."...

 

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Dal Covolo on the youth situation: Diagnosis is all very well but it’s treatments that are lacking

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ROME - The Rector of the Lateran University has appealed for young people’s problems to be taken seriously. On the bicentennial of Don Bosco’s birth, the rector points to him as an example and says Pope Francis is no Martian, ne embodies a living Church. Your Excellency, tell us about the path that led to you becoming the Rector of the Pontifical Lateran University...

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Christian Brothers world leader signals end of Schools Ministry

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pintopreviewREFLECTION - Christian Brothers Congregational Leader Br Philip Pinto has told the order's Western Australian head that the most urgent need for Brothers is no longer in schools, and the time has come to consider more missionary work among the poor in Asia. In a letter to Holy Spirit Congregational Leader Br Kevin Ryan, he said: "The need that saw us...

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Christianity on the road

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Via FrancigenapREFLECTION - The Via Francigena, the Way of St. James, the Way of Francis are among the routes followed by thousands of pilgrims, especially during the summer. Their history is tied to that of Europe. They are the expression of Christianity journeying towards religious sites. These routes, awarded by international bodies, may serve as spiritual experiences...

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Czech Republic- Church of transparency and solidarity

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pragaREFLECTION - The latest census of 2011 shows that approximately a fifth of over 10.5 million inhabitants of the Czech Republic claim to have a religious belief. About a tenth of them are Catholic. These figures register a slight decrease compared to the 2001 Census. The Catholic Church has decided to face the problem with an active approach towards the faithful...

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The West Was Wrong in Iraq—and Christians are Paying the Price

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corenpreviewREFLECTION - At the end of June I was asked to speak in Washington, DC at a Coptic Solidarity conference. I receive similar invitations quite often these days, because while I am a dreadfully inadequate spokesman for their cause, I do speak of the suffering of Arab Christians whenever I can. Islam’s war on Christianity, in fact, is the subject of my forthcoming book...

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Church in Poland: signs that raise questions

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varsaviappreviewREFLECTION - Several reports published in the past weeks provide useful information on the situation of the Catholic Church in Poland. During the recent European Congress on Vocations in Warsaw, the European Vocation Centre (EVS) presented recent findings on the formation of candidates to the priesthood and religious in the Old Continent. Moreover...

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Why Anglicans Made Women Bishops

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women churchpreviewREFLECTION - “Allowing women to take up the role of bishop is going to change the church,” was the crisp conclusion of the current Dean of Salisbury Cathedral, The Very Revd. June Osborne after the vote which finally paved the way for women to be consecrated to the Episcopate of the Church of England. The Dean went on to add that “I think its going to change our society...

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Young people and Europe, Memory is not enough

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Eye2014previewREFLECTION - What did young European say about the two pictures of Ypres published in the press on the occasion of the recent meeting of EU leaders in the Flemish "martyr city?" In fact, one of the images depicts the beauty of the Lakehalle clothes market before the world conflicts, while the other picture portrays its ruins after the two world wars that devastated Europe...

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"Rebuilding hope". Bishops' Conferences Secretaries reflect on the Old Continent's future

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BandierapREFLECTION - Indeed, today Europe can become a banner of hope and tool for a better tomorrow, based on the coexistence of peoples, on the respect of the life of every human person, capable of creating opportunities for young people without neglecting weaker brackets that risk social marginalization; a Europe that will serve as "a point of reference"...

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OFM Congress: Enzo Bianchi’s Three Elements for Evangelization

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Congresso logo previewREFLECTION - Communications Manager Bridget Higginbotham blogs about her experience last month at the Order of Friars Minor first international congress on mission and evangelization.  What does “evangelization” mean and how do we do it? According to Enzo Bianchi, one of the first lecturers at the OFM Congresso...

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Synod on the Family: A document that gives the real picture

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DOCUMENT - The thing that is most striking when one reads the Instrumentum Laboris, the working document that will be used at the upcoming Synod on the Family, is not a specific detail,  aspect, or problem (for example the administration of the sacraments to remarried divorcees or the attitude one should take towards same-sex unions)...

 

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