This includes officials born in the 1970s. One of them will be responsible for taking over the reigns from Xi Jinping. The leader can remain party secretary until 2032 and president until 2033. Ten officials seem to have an advantage in running for top party positions. Xi's first requirement for future leaders is "political morality".
The "new crosses of today" at the center of the meditations, first of all migrants and exploited women and children. Francis prays for "the people who do not have the comfort of faith", "the consecrated who, along the way, have forgotten their first love", "the Church, your bride, who feels continually assailed from within and from without. "
Francis celebrated the ‘in coena Domini’ Mass in a prison in Velletri washing the feet of 12 inmates. "It is true that in life there are problems: we quarrel among ourselves . . . but this must be a thing that passes, a passing thing, because in our hearts there must always be the love to serve others, of being in the service of others."
Francis celebrates the Chrism Mass, which precedes the beginning of the Easter Triduum. To the priests Francis proposes faces of the "crowd" that surrounds, follows, admires Jesus. "In the soul of the people the desire to follow Jesus is awakened, arousing admiration, discernment".
Two months after the signing of the important document on "Human Fraternity", the "House of the Abrahamic family" and a fund to finance cultural activities on coexistence were founded. The search for a tolerant Islam, which avoids Wahhabism and Western liberalism. The pontiff has aroused much curiosity among Muslims. But there are still situations of violence and humiliation towards Christian workers.
Japanese citizenship is a requirement to become an elder in the Japan Sumo Association (JSA). Mönkhbatyn Davaajarga, the son of a top-ranked legend in Mongolian wrestling, has broken many sumo records. His father won Mongolia’s first Olympic medal.
During Holy Week, by praying "the Our Father, we can ask for one of these graces: to live our days for the glory of God, that is to live with love; to know how to entrust ourselves to the Father in trials and to say 'dad' to the Father and to find forgiveness and the courage to forgive in enountering the Father. Francis again recalled the fire of Notre-Dame: "the work of reconstruction: it can be a choral work, for the praise and glory of God".
Card Ravasi notes that “at a religious level the dialogue between the official Church and the so-called underground Church has begun,” so "What will happen during the Expo will be a different kind of dialogue, purely cultural. Its task is to create an atmosphere in which it is possible to speak a little more about possible exchange, not only in the religious sphere, but also in the fields of art, culture and scientific research."
The Iranian Foreign Minister: "Our thoughts are with the French and all the Catholics". The Thai Prime Minister, Prayut Chan-o-cha, expresses "pain". Japan has indicated its willingness to support France in its restoration work. South Korea announces inspections of national monuments. The South Korean Catholic community offers words of consolation and promises solidarity to the French people.
Disbelief and sadness at the "terrible fire that devastated the cathedral of Notre Dame, a symbol of Christianity in France and the world".
Persecution and martyrdom are signs of today's Christians. In Holy Week, we should remember our commitment to evangelization. Even as a minority.
The Constitutional Court ruled that an absolute ban is contrary to the Charter and called for a legislative amendment. In his Easter message the Archbishop of Seoul expresses fears for the consequences on the social fabric of the country. "A nation has the responsibility to protect the life and safety of its people under all circumstances."
Francis met with members of Italy’s National Amateur League, a football (soccer) association, on the 60th anniversary of its foundation, telling them that overcoming “all the walls that unjustly divide people” is a goal that can be achieved “by promoting the involvement and appreciation of everyone on the basis of a team spirit that is the true hope of humanity.”
In Lanzhou another priest forcibly taken away. A church destroyed in Xiangtao (Hubei). Underground priests do not feel safe: they can disappear at any time. The faithful are holding a sit-in from this morning in front of the local government office.
Fr. Anthony Yao Shun for Jining,; Fr. Stephen Xu Hongwei for Hanzhong,. Both had already been chosen by the Holy See years before. Both elections took place in a hotel, under the full control of the local civil authorities, with a single candidate imposed. There does not seem to be a need for the chosen ones to be presented to the pope for approval and appointment. Perhaps only for sheer formality.