THE POPE VISITS LOURDES

22/12/2014 PAKISTAN
Peshawar school massacre: Pakistani police arrest a group of suspects
Those arrested are suspected of "aiding and abetting". For the Minister of Interior investigations are continuing "in the right direction." Intelligence sources: new attacks in the planning. Thousands of people have paid tribute to the 148 victims of the massacre at the military school, of whom 132 were children.
22/12/2014 SYRIA
Aleppo: Christmas among Christian families broken by war, praying for peace
A young Christian from Aleppo victim of the Syrian conflict tells his story. He went from leading a normal life with a wife and daughter to one of unemployment and separation. The war has split his family; now he can see his wife and daughter only a few hours a day. Yet, the conflict has boosted his faith. For Christmas, he calls on Christians around the world to pray "for us, Christians of Syria."
22/12/2014 INDIA
For Mgr Dabre, India should ensure respect for the rights and freedoms of all citizens
In a country with different cultures, religions, and states, "cultural nationalism" is wrong. The same is true for attempts to impose the Hindu majority's culture, sacred books, festivities and even terminology on believers of other religions. Christians do not practice forced conversions, but uphold the right to change religion as guaranteed by the Constitution.
22/12/2014 MALAYSIA
Kuala Lumpur, religious leaders: Dialogue, the basis of coexistence between different faiths
Christians, Muslims and Buddhists gathered at a conference highlight the importance of dialogue and mutual understanding. Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur: "It does not mean “giving up one's faith”, but "understanding the sensitivities of others." Indonesian Muslim scholar: tolerance and pluralism basis of dialogue.
22/12/2014 TUNISIA - ISLAM
Essebsi claims victory in presidential poll, but official results due tonight
Marzouki, the outgoing President, says the self-proclaimed winner's announcement is "undemocratic". The elections were conducted peacefully. There was only one incident in Kairouan.
21/12/2014 VATICAN
Pope: At Christmas, once more, Christ comes by and knocks on the doors of our hearts, and we should not let him get away
On the fourth Sunday of Advent, Francis emphasises two aspects in Mary's life, "a model to prepare for Christmas," namely her faith and her capacity to recognise God's time. "The example of Mary and that of her husband Joseph are an invitation to accept with total openness of mind Jesus, who became our brother out of love." What is more, "If you feel the desire to improve, Christ will come by and knock at your door: open it!"
20/12/2014 CHINA
Mongolian rights activist Hada released after 20 years
Considered a prisoner of conscience by major human rights groups, he slams Chinese authorities for torturing him and for persecuting his family. He said he would "continue to fight against the oppression of the Mongolian nationality". Like Tibet and Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia has suffered for decades from the arrival of Han Chinese settlers, whose immigration is undermining local traditions and beliefs.
20/12/2014 VATICAN
Pope: the most dangerous misery is "the presumption that we can do without God"
According to such blind misery, material wealth, the quest for power and pleasure, and the enslavement of others to achieve these goals, are the purpose of existence.
20/12/2014 INDONESIA
Bogor: apostolic nuncio ordains 12 priests and deacons to pray and serve the community
Hundreds of faithful flocked to the Holy Family Parish Church in Cibinong. Mgr Filipazzi stressed that the priesthood is a service that requires obedience and holiness. Priestly vestments should not feed "personal ambitions" but encourage to "preach the Gospel and bring God to the people."
20/12/2014 VATICAN
Pope: the most dangerous misery is "the presumption that we can do without God"
According to such blind misery, material wealth, the quest for power and pleasure, and the enslavement of others to achieve these goals, are the purpose of existence.
20/12/2014 INDONESIA
Bogor: apostolic nuncio ordains 12 priests and deacons to pray and serve the community
Hundreds of faithful flocked to the Holy Family Parish Church in Cibinong. Mgr Filipazzi stressed that the priesthood is a service that requires obedience and holiness. Priestly vestments should not feed "personal ambitions" but encourage to "preach the Gospel and bring God to the people."
20/12/2014 VATICAN
Pope: the most dangerous misery is "the presumption that we can do without God"
According to such blind misery, material wealth, the quest for power and pleasure, and the enslavement of others to achieve these goals, are the purpose of existence.
20/12/2014 BANGLADESH
Christmas carols competition held to keep Bangladeshi kids away from drugs and alcohol
Organised by MAGIS Bangla, a Jesuit-run youth group, the singing competition attracted 13 groups. A girls' school took away the first prize.
20/12/2014 CHINA
Mongolian rights activist Hada released after 20 years
Considered a prisoner of conscience by major human rights groups, he slams Chinese authorities for torturing him and for persecuting his family. He said he would "continue to fight against the oppression of the Mongolian nationality". Like Tibet and Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia has suffered for decades from the arrival of Han Chinese settlers, whose immigration is undermining local traditions and beliefs.
20/12/2014 IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch: on Christmas, Christian refugees should not feel "abandoned" or "forgotten"
Ahead of Christmas celebrations, Mar Sako issued a message to the Christian community that fled the Islamic state. Understandably, Christians are "concerned" about the loss of homes and jobs, but they should keep the "hope for a future of "peace and coexistence" alive. His Beatitude calls on the faithful to pray to keep courage alive and expressed gratitude for the help provided so far.
20/12/2014 IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch: on Christmas, Christian refugees should not feel "abandoned" or "forgotten"
Ahead of Christmas celebrations, Mar Sako issued a message to the Christian community that fled the Islamic state. Understandably, Christians are "concerned" about the loss of homes and jobs, but they should keep the "hope for a future of "peace and coexistence" alive. His Beatitude calls on the faithful to pray to keep courage alive and expressed gratitude for the help provided so far.
20/12/2014 ISRAEL - PALESTINE
Gaza: Israel launches airstrike in response to rocket fired from the Gaza Strip
This morning Israel's Air Force carried out an airstrike, the first since a truce between Israel and Hamas was brokered last August. No casualties or damages have been reported. An Israeli military spokesman said that the "Hamas terror infrastructure" was hit. Hamas did not claim responsibility for yesterday's rocket.
20/12/2014 IRAQ
Chaldean Patriarch: on Christmas, Christian refugees should not feel "abandoned" or "forgotten"
Ahead of Christmas celebrations, Mar Sako issued a message to the Christian community that fled the Islamic state. Understandably, Christians are "concerned" about the loss of homes and jobs, but they should keep the "hope for a future of "peace and coexistence" alive. His Beatitude calls on the faithful to pray to keep courage alive and expressed gratitude for the help provided so far.
20/12/2014 BANGLADESH
Christmas carols competition held to keep Bangladeshi kids away from drugs and alcohol
Organised by MAGIS Bangla, a Jesuit-run youth group, the singing competition attracted 13 groups. A girls' school took away the first prize.
20/12/2014 INDONESIA
Bogor: apostolic nuncio ordains 12 priests and deacons to pray and serve the community
Hundreds of faithful flocked to the Holy Family Parish Church in Cibinong. Mgr Filipazzi stressed that the priesthood is a service that requires obedience and holiness. Priestly vestments should not feed "personal ambitions" but encourage to "preach the Gospel and bring God to the people."
20/12/2014 CHINA
Mongolian rights activist Hada released after 20 years
Considered a prisoner of conscience by major human rights groups, he slams Chinese authorities for torturing him and for persecuting his family. He said he would "continue to fight against the oppression of the Mongolian nationality". Like Tibet and Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia has suffered for decades from the arrival of Han Chinese settlers, whose immigration is undermining local traditions and beliefs.