Chinese regime said to intensify persecution of Christians

Rome, Italy, Nov 27, 2014 / 04:43 pm (Aid to the Church in Need).- “We shouldn’t get our hopes up. I don’t see any sign of an immediate improvement in China-Holy See relations.” Thus commented Cardinal Joseph Zen Ze-kiun, Bishop Emeritus of Hong Kong, reflecting on a symposium on mainland China held at the the Pontifical Urbaniana University in Rome. The Nov. 18 event was sponsored by AsiaNews. Now 82, the bishop told international Catholic charity Aid to the Church … [Read more...]

Pope: don’t be depressed – despite our ugly reality, we have hope

Vatican City, Nov 27, 2014 / 09:23 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his homily on Thursday Pope Francis said that although sin and corruption often seem to win out over good, Jesus gives us a promise of hope which enables us to keep “our heads held high.” “Do not give way to depression: Hope! Reality is ugly: there are many, many cities and people, so many people who are suffering; many wars, so much hatred, so much envy, so much spiritual worldliness and so much corruption. Yes, … [Read more...]

Islamic State destroys convent in Mosul

Mosul, Iraq, Nov 27, 2014 / 04:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Local media are reporting that on Monday, Islamic State militants blew up a convent and St. George's parish in Mosul, an Iraqi city captured by the Islamists in June. A resident of Mosul said “that cries of Allahu Akbar ‘God is Great’ rose from many mosques in the city as Islamist militants blew up the church located in one of Mosul’s Arab neighborhoods,” Rudaw, a Kurdish media outlet based in Erbil, … [Read more...]

Pope’s Philly trip could be a turning point on US marriage front

Rome, Italy, Nov 26, 2014 / 05:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Legal expert Alan Sears said that the push for marriage redefinition in the U.S. has provided a platform for the issue at large and that Pope Francis' visit in 2015 could mark a shift in the contentious debate. “This could be a turning point in the struggle for marriage,” he told CNA Nov. 26. “The Holy Father has the opportunity to speak in the USA, to step into the middle of this with the message of love, with a … [Read more...]

The plight of Christians in Turkey, ahead of Pope Francis’ visit

Istanbul, Turkey, Nov 26, 2014 / 04:43 pm (Aid to the Church in Need).- Since the beginning of the Iraq war in 2003, and especially since the eruption of the Syrian civil war in 2011, Turkey has become the destination—or passage way—for hundreds of thousands of refugees, many of them Christians. Many, too, are young, single people, prepared to take great risks. In early November, a boat carrying illegal migrants from Turkey to Bulgaria capsized just after coming through the … [Read more...]

The Church isn’t static – she’s a pilgrim on a journey, Pope says

Vatican City, Nov 26, 2014 / 05:20 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis in his weekly general audience said that the Church on earth is on a pilgrimage to heaven guided by the Lord, who will lead us to the fullness of joy and truth at the end of time. “In today's catechesis we reflect on the Church (that is) on pilgrimage to the kingdom,” the Pope told those present in St. Peter’s Square for his Nov. 26 audience. “As was well affirmed in the Second Vatican Council, … [Read more...]

What the Church can do about the powder keg of US racial tensions

Ferguson, Mo., Nov 26, 2014 / 04:52 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Beneath the ongoing unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, are deep-rooted societal conflicts that are boiling over, say local leaders, and the Church has an opportunity to be at the forefront of reconciliation. “This has been a long time in the making, especially the St. Louis area,” said Dr. Norm White, a professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice at St. Louis University. White spoke with CNA on the recent violence in … [Read more...]