Geographical areas
In the foreground
by Vladimir Rozanskij | CENTRAL ASIA

There will soon be parliamentary elections in Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan; presidential elections in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. Authoritarianism grew during the pandemic, as did domestic violence and suicides. Tajikistan prepares for Shanghai-Five, grouping China and Russia, as well as India and Pakistan. A region in transformation 30 years after the end of the Soviet empire.

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In his message for the 29th World Day of the Sick, Francis notes that health is a primary common good. The pandemic has shown shortcomings in healthcare systems and the elderly and the most vulnerable are not always guaranteed access to treatment in an equitable manner. Still, the crisis has also highlighted the dedication and generosity of so many.

 

| 12/01/2021
| VATICAN

Francis has changed the rule in canon law that limited these offices to men. Thus, “the awareness will grow, through a liturgical act (of institution) as well, of the precious contribution that many lay persons, including women, have been offering for some time to the life and mission of the Church.”

| 11/01/2021
| VATICAN

The pontiff turns his thoughts to the victims of 6 January in Washington. “I urge government authorities and the entire population to maintain a high sense of responsibility, in order to soothe tempers, promote national reconciliation, and protect the democratic values rooted in American society.”

| 10/01/2021
| VATICAN
by Shan Ren Shen Fu (山人神父)

Foreign faithful and missionaries are singled out as the source of the new Covid-19 epidemic in Hebei. In reality, the accused villages have no Christians and the Church's religious activities have been blocked since Christmas Eve. Like Nero, looking for a scapegoat. The result: churches closed down in the name of prevention.

| 08/01/2021
| CHINA - VATICAN

On the solemnity of Epiphany, Pope Francis celebrated Mass at the Altar of the Chair. Worshippers, cardinals, bishops, and choir kept at a distance because of COVID-19. It Is urgent “to understand more fully what it means to be worshippers of the Lord.” We must ‘lift up our eyes,’ ‘set out on a journey’ and ‘see’.” We must “cast off the dictatorship of the self, the constant temptation to withdraw into ourselves and our own concerns.” “Herod and the leading citizens of Jerusalem represent a worldliness enslaved to appearances and immediate attractions.”

| 06/01/2021
| Vatican

At the Angelus, Pope Francis extended his wishes to the Orthodox who celebrate Christmas tomorrow. “Christ’s light shine[s] in every place and at every moment [. . .] through the proclamation of the Gospel,” Francis said. “The star is Christ, but we too can and must also be the star for our brothers and sisters,” he added. The pontiff also expressed hope for peace in Central Africa.

| 06/01/2021
| VATICAN
by Bernardo Cervellera
| 06/01/2021
|
by Bernardo Cervellera

Commentary on the Gospel of the 2nd Sunday of Christmas (John 1,1-18).

| 03/01/2021
|

Speaking before praying the Angelus in the library of the apostolic palace, Pope Francis emphasizes that "God always wants to communicate with us". " God became flesh … because it indicates our human condition in all its weakness, in all its frailty." In the new year "things will get better to the extent that we work for the common good, above all for the disadvantaged".

| 03/01/2021
| VATICAN

Pope Francis prays the Angelus and asks us to entrust " our anxieties and our torments " to the Mother of God. Today we celebrate the 54th World Day of Peace, which this year has as its theme "A Culture of Care as a Path to Peace". "Developing a mentality and a culture of “care taking” so that indifference, rejection and rivalry – which unfortunately prevail – will be defeated ". Prayer for the children of Yemen and for the bishop of Owerri (Nigeria), kidnapped a few days ago together with his driver.

| 01/01/2021
| VATICAN

Sciatica has forced Pope Francis to delegate the celebration of the Mass on the solemnity of the Mother of God and 54th World Day of Peace, on the theme "The culture of care as a path to peace". “Speaking badly corrupts and decays, whereas blessing restores life and gives the strength needed to begin anew”. “We are not in the world to die, but to give life”. “This will be a good year if we take care of others, as Our Lady does with us”.

| 01/01/2021
| VATICAN
by Bernardo Cervellera

Commentary on the Gospel on the Solemnity of the Mother of God (Luke 2: 16-21).

| 01/01/2021
|

Due to a “painful sciatica” Francis did not celebrate Vespers nor recite the end-of-year thanksgiving Te Deum. Cardinal Re read the Pope’s homily, which highlights the acts of “closeness” of many people working for the common good in healthcare, education and public service.

| 31/12/2020
| VATICAN
Editor's choices
 
by Vladimir Rozanskij
The Armenian president is in solitary confinement with severe symptoms of COVID-19. Total cases have reached 161,415 with 361 in one day at last count. Under Russian military protection, 50,000 Armenian refugees have returned to Nagorno-Karabakh in recent ...
| 09/01/2021
| ARMENIA – RUSSIA – TURKEY
 
by Nirmala Carvalho
The “quote” is found in a syllabus designed to prepare for a national cow exam, raising fears that it might trigger violence against Christians, Adivasis, Dalits, and Muslims. Other claims include: earthquakes are caused by slaughtering cattle ...
| 09/01/2021
| INDIA
 
by Wang Zhicheng
The decision was taken despite the fact that religious activities have had “zero infections”. Strict measures and continuous controls have led many priests to close their churches at Christmas. On social media, Catholics are accused of spreading ...
| 09/01/2021
| CHINA
 
China and other hostile powers see the incident as a sign of the decline of US democracy. Hong Kong's pro-democracy activists are not the equivalent of Trump supporters. Dictatorships come out strengthened. About 70 per cent of Americans slams the ...
| 08/01/2021
| ASIA – UNITED STATES
 
by Shan Ren Shen Fu (山人神父)
Foreign faithful and missionaries are singled out as the source of the new Covid-19 epidemic in Hebei. In reality, the accused villages have no Christians and the Church's religious activities have been blocked since Christmas Eve. Like Nero, looking ...
| 08/01/2021
| CHINA - VATICAN
 
by Vladimir Rozanskij
The new apostolic administrator of Minks was auxiliary bishop of the diocese of Pinsk and he turned 75 last May. He too is a witness of the "silent" Church of the Soviet years. He attended clandestine seminaries and was a personal friend of the former ...
| 07/01/2021
| BELARUS - RUSSIA
 
The arrests were made under the national security law. The accused were charged with trying to force Hong Kong’s chief executive to resign and block government's activity. John Clancey, a former Maryknoll missionary, was also taken into custody. ...
| 06/01/2021
| HONG KONG – CHINA
 
The local archdiocese held the event in lieu of decorations and celebrations. Blankets, towels and protective masks were handed out. For Bishop Mascarenhas, marginalised rickshaw pullers have to fight for their survival. Archbishop Toppo thanked God ...
| 04/01/2021
| INDIA
SRI LANKA: Father Amila
INDONESIA: Earthquake
VANGELO 10 Gennaio
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