An ordination ceremony in the Philippines’ Mindanao region proved to be a real family affair when three brothers were ordained into the priesthood at the same time. Jessie, Jestonie and Jerson Avenido, were all ordained priests by Archbishop Jose Cabantan of Cagayan de Oro on Sept. 8.
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The Prime Minister has announced that in England legal restrictions, for instance enforcing the wearing of masks in crowded public spaces, should be replaced by voluntary advice, leaving it up to every individual whether they comply or not. This is not going to work.
Hong Kong activists are working in the shadows to preserve digital backups of their democracy movement as the physical symbols of their resistance, including an opposition newspaper and a museum, are purged from the city's streets.
For Afghanistan’s small and already precarious Christian community, previously estimated to number up to 12,000, the return to power of the Taliban has brought fear and uncertainty. Reports received by Aid to the Church in Need (ACN) and other agencies working closely with religious and other minorities leave us in no doubt about the scale of the crisis facing Christians in Afghanistan.
At present, Catholic state education in England is at a critical impasse. Over the past ten years we have seen the decimation of local authorities as the guardians of schools and the rise and rise of academy trusts. This shift has also seen a change in the way schools are marketed.
In a post on Instagram yesterday Britney Spears wrote: “I just got back from mass...I’m Catholic now...let us pray.” The 39-year-old pop star was raised in a strict Baptist household and is a regular churchgoer, but has had a troubled relationship with her family and her fame.
Mum, when you read this message, I have been on the front line against the Covid-19 pandemic. I am terribly sorry because I did not dare to call you in advance. I feared that you would get so worried about me and not be able to sleep. I remember in the past when I only had a slight fever, you stayed up all night sitting by me.
Sacred music is often a bit of an afterthought at the Proms. There’s the odd massed choral spectacular, but it tends to be more about sensation than spirituality – Verdi’s Requiem, maybe, or a period-instrument St Matthew Passion or Messiah. Otherwise faith is pretty much exiled to lunchtime concerts and the more accommodating acoustics of Cadogan Hall.
When Simone Biles, described as the world’s greatest gymnast, announced she would not be competing in a team event with the US women’s Olympics gymnastics team and the next day withdrew from the all-round final, many people were shocked, but many supported her decision to prioritise her mental health. Biles, who is Catholic, has spoken of her dad’s constant reminder not to waste God’s gift of her talent and to use it to the best of her ability.
When Pope Francis celebrates the Mass in Rome on Sunday that will mark the Church’s first ‘World Day of Grandparents and the Elderly’, the socially-distanced congregation will include a 74-year-old grandmother of ten who was instrumental in bringing this to fruition.
The theme of migration has been part of the Italian popular music scene since the beginning of the 20th century, for example in songs such as Nebbi’ a la valle (Mist in the Valley), a traditional lament from Abruzzo about olive pickers in the Maiella area. The songs of the 1970s also deal with and bear witness to the phenomenon of Italian migration abroad, that is, the migration that forced people to go beyond national borders.
LAOS: Large-scale projects by the communist regime have left many villagers without any farmland to cultivate. Their loss of farmland is causing numerous substance farmers in rural Laos to abandon agriculture and migrate to urban areas to find work, according to experts and media reports.
Father Joachim Le Hau Han of Vinh Hoa Parish has noticed that residents in a street isolated due to Covid-19 are feeling a growing sense of alarm even though his parish has given them basic food several times. The street is in his parish with 3,500 members based in Ho Chi Minh City in southern Vietnam.
So far there have been few signs that the leaders of the Catholic Church in Britain are ready to grasp the nettle labelled “synodality”, even though it is clear that that is the direction in which Pope Francis wants to drive them. Now he is piling on the pressure and they have no choice but to respond.
Building a happy, healthy partnership takes work and may not always be easy, especially when there has been a breach of trust. Even the strongest relationships face challenges. Broken relationships are a part of the broken world that we live in. It is the emotionally disturbed or the physically wounded that hurts another.
Catholic bishops in the US have stated explicitly that they have not voted to ban some politicians from receiving Holy Communion. The US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has sought to clarify some of the “mixed messages” that came out of their spring meeting regarding a proposed document on the Eucharist.
The pressure exerted by certain groups of German Catholics is seen by some Vatican officials as a threat to "the unity of the Church". Catholics in Germany have no intention of leaving the universal Church... It’s an issue that has fueled conversations at the Vatican in recent months, particularly since the German Church launched its "synodal path" back in 2019.
A Catholic priest who uses his garden shed to livestream Mass during lockdown is a finalist in the annual Shed of the Year competition. Father Len Black, from Inverness, is in the running for the 2021 Cuprinol Shed of the Year, having converted his shed into a chapel, called the Oratory of St Joseph.
This week, the UK’s COP26 president-designate Alok Sharma visited the Vatican City to meet Catholic Church leaders. Hoping to discuss the importance of international unity when supporting communities most vulnerable to the impacts of the changing climate, the best thing that Mr Sharma can do in these talks is listen to what faith leaders are already saying.
Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson has many things to apologise for, but marrying his fiancée in Westminster Cathedral last Saturday is not one of them. He and his wife Carrie should be warmly congratulated without reservation.