Fides News - English Agency NewsenContent on this site is licensed under aAMERICA/PERU - Hundreds of thousands of casualties caused by El Niño costero - The general toll of the latest floods and landslides in Peru has resulted in 145 deaths, 18 missing, 438 injured, over 235,000 casualties and more than a million people affected. The figures date back to the recent report released by the Center for National Emergency Operations , which was sent to Fides. The climatic impact has also caused the destruction of more than 25,000 homes, another 23,000 are inaccessible and 260,000 buildings have been damaged. Floods also destroyed 79 schools and 25 health centers, hit the structures of 2,600 schools and 840 health facilities.<br />Due to natural events, 4,000 kilometers of roads and 420 bridges have been destroyed, although most have been rebuilt or repaired, some 30,000 hectares of crops have been lost. The largest number of casualties were found in the coastal area north of the country, where in the regions of Piura, Lambayeque, La Libertad and Áncash 66 deaths, 8 missing, 218 injured, about 200,000 casualties were recorded and nearly 730,000 damaged.<br />The most affected region is Piura, on the border with Ecuador, where more than 80,000 casualties, 360,000 people affected, 5,700 destroyed homes, and another 5,800 remained inaccessible. Floods have been sparked by the atypical phenomenon of "El Niño costero", which occurs when the water warming off the Peruvian coast generates intense and unusual rainfall in the country's desert, turning into floods and landslides, known in Peru as Quechua huaicos.<br />In recent weeks the rains have become sporadic and river levels have fallen, now the authorities' concern is to deal with the frosts that will be registered in the Peruvian Andes with low nocturnal temperatures close to -20 degrees Celsius. <br />Tue, 23 May 2017 14:03:37 +0200ASIA/SOUTH KOREA - A Bishop represents Korea to celebrate 70 years of diplomatic relations with the Holy See - Korea and the Holy See celebrate the 70th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations in 2017: in particular, the commemoration of the sending of the first permanent Apostolic Delegate of the Holy See in Korea. As Fides learns, for the occasion, Korean President Moon Jae-in has asked Archbishop Igino Kim Hee-Jung, who is president of the Bishops' Conference of Korea, to represent the whole Korean nation and to meet the Holy Father to celebrate this anniversary.<br />Shortly after the elections, President Moon appointed some Korean "special envoys" who will go to the United States, China, Japan, Russia, the European Union, Germany and the Holy See to celebrate special events. Archbishop Kim Hee-Jung will be accompanied by Seong Youm, former Ambassador of the Republic of Korea to the Holy See, in the special mission in the Vatican planned for the coming months.<br />The diplomatic ties between the Holy See and Korea began in 1947 when Pope Pius XII sent the first "apostolic delegate", Father Patrick James Byrne to Korea, shortly after the liberation of Korea from Japanese dominion. By sending a "Permanent Delegate", the Holy See was one of the first countries to recognize Korea as an independent nation after the liberation from the Japanese colonization. Patrick James Byrne, American missionary of the Maryknoll's fathers, was consecrated Bishop in 1949, but when the Korean War broke out in 1950, he was kidnapped and died in prison. He is now part of the group of 213 Korean priests and laity whose beatification process has begun.<br />In those years, the South Korean government sent a delegation to the Paris conference in 1948 to be recognized as the Government of the Korean peninsula. At that time the Holy See and the Apostolic Nuncio in Paris greatly helped the Korean delegation to obtain recognition from many delegations of Catholic countries. <br />Tue, 23 May 2017 13:46:26 +0200AFRICA/SOUTH AFRICA - South African Bishops denounce: "1 in 5 children have been sexually abused" - "Each crime against a woman and child causes the delicate fabric of our society to unravel that much more" denounces His Exc. Mgr. Stephen Brislin, Archbishop of Cape Town and President of SACBC in a message which denounces violence against women and children. "While some perpetrators are arrested and prosecuted through the criminal justice system, survivors face secondary victimization as the matter progresses through the courts. The social and human cost is immense", explains Archbishop Brieslin.<br />The President of SACBC reports data from a recent study which states that 1 in 5 children have been sexually abused, while 75% of boys experienced bullying at school.<br />Mgr. Brislin stresses that "the recent unfolding agony of violence against women and children has resulted in a nation numbed with shock". The brutality of this and the knowledge that so many of these crimes have been perpetrated by individuals known to the victims. "A fact that raises questions that demand answers" the Archbishop comments. Domestic violence, in schools and society are aggravated by "widespread abuse of alcohol and drugs"; young people, who often gather in gangs are those who pay a high price. "Participation in gangs is commonplace and may result in collective violence and gang rape".<br />The solution cannot only be police repression and prison, the Archbishop says. "We have to go back to the beginning and look at the way we socialize our children if we wish to curb this violence. Instead of only investing huge sums of money in the criminal justice system and correctional facilities more allowance should be made for parenting programmes and support. We need interventions to combat the normalization of violence at home, at school, at church and in our communities", concludes Mgr. Brislin. <br />Tue, 23 May 2017 13:15:31 +0200AMERICA/COLOMBIA - 81 children have died of malnutrition since the beginning of the year Guajira - The National Institute of Health has recently announced the death toll for malnutrition since the beginning of the year. We are talking about 81 children under 5 years of age. In addition, two more deaths were reported in the last week. The report notes that in the departments of La Guajira, Chocó, Córdoba, Meta and Nariño 73,3% of deaths were registered: 53.3% females and 66.6% males. Statistics based on ethnic background report 4 cases of indigenous children, 3 Afro-Colombian and 8 of other groups. <br />Tue, 23 May 2017 11:21:27 +0200AMERICA/UNITED STATES - Bishops thank the government for helping Haitians who live in the United States - The President of the Commission for Migrations of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops , Mgr. Joe Steve Vásquez, Bishop of Austin, Texas, expressed his appreciation to the Secretary of the Department for National Security, John Kelly, for his decision to extend the temporary protection for a further six months to over 58,000 Haitians who live and work in the United States. However, he urged to continue the commitment and humanitarian assistance to improve living conditions in Haiti. This group of Haitians had arrived in the United States after the 2010 earthquake and had a temporary permit stay which expires this month.<br />"We encourage our government to work with the Haitian government to provide aid and assistance for reconstruction", concludes the statement sent to Fides. Through Church service networks, we will continue to help Haitian families in the United States to help the process of reconstruction in Haiti and look for opportunities to collaborate with the Church of Haiti and with the Haitian and US governments". <br />Tue, 23 May 2017 11:09:29 +0200AMERICA/COLOMBIA - Resume dialogue: Mgr. Barreto supports the people who claim fundamental rightsò - "Now or never again! This is what the people in front of the opportunity to talk and deal with the high authorities of the Colombian state say", said Mgr. Juan Carlos Barreto Barreto, Bishop of the diocese of Quibdó Western Colombia, speaking to a group of journalists yesterday, May 22. The Bishop asked the government to resume dialogue as soon as possible, both with Chocó and Buenaventura, to put an end to the general strike. "People claim their rights that are fundamental and if they are not heard through normal channels, sometimes it is necessary to resort to social mobilization", emphasized the Bishop.<br />The government committed itself in this area in 2016, promising a figure of 720 million pesos, a promise never maintained. The population demands more than anything else the construction of the hospital and the punishment of those who are corrupt at a local level.<br />"The Civic Committee insisted on the fact that it also demonstrates against the corrupt in Chocó, because there is no clear awareness that corruption must be rejected at all levels. But this does not mean that the community has to pay and must be deprived of its necessities", said Bishop Barreto. Tue, 23 May 2017 10:56:50 +0200VATICAN - "Priests and religious of Mongomo, stand up and walk in and with your Church!" exhorts Cardinal Filoni - "My presence among you is the manifestation of the solicitude of the Holy Father and of the Universal Church toward this Church-Family of God. In this sense, I would like to express the support of my affection and my prayer for the long and beautiful path you must carry out to accomplish the purpose for which the Holy Father granted the creation of your Diocese". This is what the Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, Cardinal Fernando Filoni said in the meeting with priests, religious men and women of the new diocese in Mongomo in the afternoon of May 22 .<br />The Prefect emphasized in his speech: "The great challenge to start the new Diocese, to put in place the structures necessary for the pastoral and administrative organization is up to you. But more than structures, this new Diocese needs a missionary spirit. Without the missionary spirit, the structures, though organized, will not be able to develop an authentically missionary Church". As the Apostle Paul remembers, the spiritual life of the priest and the religious "must be animated and guided by the Spirit of God", therefore the Cardinal emphasized that "the sanctification of the priest is primarily in his intimate and deep bond with Jesus, Head and Shepherd of the Church" and exhorted: <br />"You are called to live the radicality of the Gospel following the chaste, poor and obedient Christ ".<br />The Cardinal then appealed to the commitment of all priests, religious men and women for the new diocese: "The involvement of all of you, as first collaborators of the Bishop, is indispensable for starting the Diocese. I urge you to live your identity and your priestly ministry in full communion with the Bishop, whom the Lord has chosen and established as the Father and Shepherd of this Church. Love the Diocese. Be ready to cooperate faithfully and generously in the diocesan and pastoral life, by sharing your priestly and pastoral qualities as well as your organizational skills. Feel all fully responsible to give impetus to the new Diocese, and ensure its good pastoral leadership".<br />After quoting some behaviours that "reduce the effectiveness of pastoral action and obscure the image of the priest as guardian of the flock of God, and the image of the religious as a witness of the Chaste, Poor and Obedient Christ", Cardinal Filoni specified that "a priest must be in love with Christ. The moral authority that sustains the exercise of your ministry can only come from the holiness of your life ... Consequently, you must live your priestly and religious identity faithfully and with joy. This loyalty concerns both poverty, obedience, and chastity".<br />Focusing on these three aspects, the Cardinal said among other things: "True poverty teaches us to be in solidarity with our people and to share in charity. It also warns us of material idols that obscure the authentic sense of life". "Obedience to God also passes through human mediation. The will of God is authenticated by the Church. Obey your Bishop as well as your Father. Obedience is a life in the logic of the Gospel". "Chastity must be 'fruitful', that is, chastity that translates into spiritual paternity and maternity; and in community in communion and collaboration".<br />"You must announce the Word of Life to your brothers. But this is only possible if your Church is in a permanent state of mission, that is, it is not a bureaucratic structure where to settle for life ... Dear priests and religious, stand up and walk in and with your Church!" <br /><br/><strong>Link correlati</strong> :<a href="">The full text of Cardinal Filoni's speech (in Spanish)</a>Tue, 23 May 2017 12:52:26 +0200VATICAN - For 10 years on May 24 the world prays in particular for communion with the Church in China City - On May 27, 2007, on the Solemnity of Pentecost, Pope Benedict XVI sent a Letter to Bishops, Priests, Consecrated Persons, and lay faithful of the Catholic Church in the People's Republic of China, providing some guidelines for the life of the Church and the work of evangelization in China in order to help Chinese Catholics discover what the Lord wants from them .<br />In the Letter, Pope Benedict XVI also proposed an eminently spiritual initiative: "the date 24 May could in the future become an occasion for the Catholics of the whole world to be united in prayer with the Church which is in China. This day is dedicated to the liturgical memorial of Our Lady, Help of Christians, who is venerated with great devotion at the Marian Shrine of Sheshan in Shanghai".<br />Welcomed with enthusiasm and gratitude, for 10 years this Prayer Day is lived not only by Catholic communities in mainland China, especially in the Shrine of Sheshan, but also by Chinese communities present in different parts of the world. Thus, for 10 years May 24 is an occasion to pray in particular for the spiritual harmony with the Church in China, manifesting the universality of the Church and communion with the Successor of Peter.<br />Pope Francis reminded us at the end of the Regina Coeli prayer on Sunday, May 21: "On May 24, let us all join spiritually with the Catholic faithful in China on the feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary "Help of Christians", venerated at the Sheshan Shrine in Shanghai. To Chinese Catholics, I say: Let us look up to our Mother Mary so that she may help us discern God's will about the actual path of the Church in China and support us in welcoming with generosity his project of love. May Mary encourage us to make our personal contribution to communion among believers and to harmony in the whole society. Let us not forget to bear witness to the faith through prayer and love, always open to encounter and dialogue".<br />To the Blessed Virgin Mary the Chinese faithful in the world, and those who join their prayer, will seek the help and strength to always and everywhere be witnesses of the Lord Jesus, becoming instruments of peace, harmony and progress in society and in the Church. May Mary's intercession help everyone do the will of God because, following the teachings of the Gospel and the Magisterium of the Church, everyone can keep alive the flame received on the day of Baptism: light of faith, hope and Christian love which burns in our hearts, with which we are called to illuminate our path and that of so many brothers and sisters. <br />Tue, 23 May 2017 10:36:18 +0200ASIA/NEPAL - In the delicate transition phase, the Church is committed to peace, stability, secularism of the state - Peace, stability, freedom, human rights, secularism of the state; but also committment in social service and education: these are the themes on which the Catholic Church in Nepal "will continue to contribute in its service to the country", says to Fides Fr. G. William Robins, Japanese-Canadian Jesuit who spent about 45 years in southern Asia, first with the Jesuits in Eastern Bhutan and then Nepal, mainly teaching maths and science at a high school. The Jesuit speaks to Fides of the current situation in the nation which on May 14 saw the population vote in the first phase of the administrative elections. This is the first local election after 20 years, a key step in building democracy ten years after the end of the civil war and two years after the Constitution's approval in 2015.<br />The administrative vote was divided into two phases due to disorders in the southern plains bordering India, where the major ethnic minority group refuses to participate in the elections until an amendment to the constitution is approved, guaranteeing greater representativeness and redesigns the borders of the province where they live.<br />According to the institutional path drawn up two years ago, after the approval of the constitutional Charter, the local, provincial and then national elections follow. The democratic process should come to an end by 2018. <br />Fr. Robins explains to Fides: "In society there are prejudices related to castes and religions. One of the central themes today is secularism, a secular conception of the state that some interpret as secularism, believing that the secular state is an anti-religious state and therefore oppose a secular Constitution. Religion is important for most Nepalese. But this objection is based on a misinterpretation of the expression 'lay state': this means that the state is not confessional. There is still a minority that promotes a Hindu state and ideally a Hindu kingdom", the project is also supported by Hindu movements in India.<br />In this context, Christians have encountered difficulties, but they have been able to work "in the long run" by setting up institutions such as schools that are precious for the nation's future: "The Catholic Church in Nepal is known for its good educational service, but often ours is perceived as a 'foreign' service. Some groups complain of conversions to Christianity. Other Christian confessions tell us that we are not brave enough to go out and preach", adds Fr. Robins. "But we have hope that the Church will continue to grow.<br />According to the 2014 statistics, Catholics in the Apostolic Vicariate of Nepal are about 7,000 served by 18 diocesan priests and 60 religious in 11 parishes. <br />Mon, 22 May 2017 08:10:13 +0200AFRICA/MALI - "Mgr. Zerbo was pleasantly surprised of the appointment to Cardinal" - "The Archbishop was pleasantly surprised by the news. He did not expect the appoinment to Cardinal at all", said Fr. Edmond Dembele, Secretary General of the Bishops' Conference of Mali, referring to the Country's reaction to the announcement made by Pope Francis who will hold a Consistory on June 28 for the appointment of five new Cardinals, among whom there is His Exc. Mgr. Jean Zerbo, Archbishop of Bamako<br />"The news was very well received in the Country. President Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta addressed a message to congratulate the Archbishop, expressing his gratitude to Pope Francis. The other Malian Bishops are happy as well and also the Catholic faithful. The community in Bamako expressed its joy with songs and applause. But not only Catholics are happy for the appointment: throughout Mali the news was well received".<br />This is because - the priest explained - Malian people saw in the appointment of Mgr. Zerbo to Cardinal the Pope's message addressed primarily to the local Church so that the mission that has long begun continues and above all persists in efforts to reconcile the Country. But it is also an appeal launched to Mali to get out of the crisis which started in 2012 and walk on the path to reconciliation and peace".<br />The 2012 crisis had seen the north of the Country fall into the hands of several jihadist groups. The French intervention, followed by a UN mission, had allowed to free the occupied areas, but, as Fr. Dembele says "Mali must now face an asymmetric conflict with armed groups attacks in the north and center of the Country which cause strong insecurity". <br />Mon, 22 May 2017 13:30:07 +0200VATICAN - Cardinal Filoni meets the Bishops of Equatorial Guinea, "pastors, fathers and brothers" - The morning, May 22 was dedicated to the Bishops of Equatorial Guinea: the Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, Cardinal Fernando Filoni, met them in Mongomo, and therefore he presided the Eucharistic concelebration with them.<br />In his speech, the Cardinal focused in particular on the importance of communion between Bishops, clergy, with members of consecrated life, and within the People of God. "United together as Pastors and Brothers, formed as the Apostles close to their Master, a body of people responsible for the Church of Equatorial Guinea", said Cardinal Filoni, who then reiterated: "You have been chosen by Christ to be pastors, fathers and brothers". Such paternity and fraternity must be especially expressed towards the priests, first collaborators, creating a climate of understanding and solidarity. The collaboration with the religious men and women must never lack: "In your Country – he recalled - you have a good presence of institutes of consecrated life, also thanks to the historical aid from Spain. These years of tireless missionary work, of educational and catechetical commitment, of silent work in the healthcare field, really deserve great appreciation. Try to support this valuable collaboration by helping all the institutes present in your territory even in their vocational work".<br />Among the problems to be faced, the Prefect drew the attention on "the infiltration of sects among the People of God. Where we withdraw or where we lose zeal, there the door to discord opens to sects". "You have been entrusted with the serious responsibility of teaching, governing, and sanctifying the people of God", he continued. Exercising such a task requires a permanent configuration to Jesus Good Shepherd. You have to feel, act and love like Him! Love your Church, work not for yourself, but for the good of the Church and the faithful entrusted to you". The Bishop, as the Father of the Diocese, "is one who listens and then decides; it means one who loves and has a farsighted gaze. This love and this responsibility must help others grow". In particular, he told the Bishops to be attentive to the formation of priests and to the care of new vocations.<br />The Bishop's paternity extends to the entire people of God: Today, the pastoral care of families has a crucial role, and this is why well-prepared parish leaders are needed. "In each parish, it is good to propose various social and spiritual initiatives, also using the collaboration of the movements that have developed in recent times, always under the leadership and responsibility of priests who work on the spot", he said. Thus, the parish becomes a place of growth, culture, and human development, capable of responding to the different needs of our faithful. And, more importantly, the parish must be the place of deep Christian life, encounter and evangelical proclamation".<br />"I thank you for everything you do; I urge you not to be tired of spreading the message of salvation that has been entrusted to us", concluded the Cardinal, recalling that Pope Francis "teaches us and gives us the example of coming out of the vision of a comfortable Church and pushes us to go towards the real and existential suburbs".<br />In the homily Cardinal Filoni went back to the importance of communion - "the Bishop must be a man of communion close to everyone, capable of sharing the life of the flock, including the poorest and most distant, the excluded and marginalized" - and on the missionary task of the Bishop. "Even though there are no persecutions against Christians in Equatorial Guinea today, as in many countries in the Middle East, Asia, and in some areas of Africa", said the Cardinal, "there are, however, several problems that threaten the Christian faith, in particular the aggressive activity of the sects, sorcery, envy, materialism, isolation and individualism, and the degradation of morality. In the face of such problems you must not be afraid. You must move forward with courage and confidence".<br />The book of the Acts of the Apostles teaches us that the work of evangelization is inspired and guided by the Holy Spirit, and "this must encourage you to put your Church in a permanent state of mission without fear", concluded Cardinal Filoni, reiterating that "missionary impulse is a sign of vitality and growth of a Church". <br /><br/><strong>Link correlati</strong> :<a href="">The full text of Cardinal Filoni's speech (in Spanish) The full text of Cardinal Filoni's homily (in Spanish)</a>Mon, 22 May 2017 13:16:09 +0200AMERICA/COLOMBIA - "Buenaventura needs structural solutions": Bishop Epalza for dialogue with the government - "Buenaventura can no longer handle the events of the moment, it needs structural solutions to structural problems. No cotton to buffer the wound, we need to intervene", said Mgr. Héctor Epalza Quintero, P.S.S., Bishop of Buenaventura in an interview with "El Tiempo" newspaper after another interruption of dialogue between protesters and government regarding the general strike of port workers. On Friday, May 19, there were violent demonstrations, and the city and the port of Buenaventura were paralyzed.<br />The blockade of all the city's institutions to protest for lack of services by the central government began on Monday, May 15 in a peaceful but determined manner. The closed hospital and the insecurity of the population were the main points of the demonstrations that every day brought workers and citizens to the streets of the city until Friday 19, when unprecedented vandalism broke out. Police and army intervention were needed to restore calm after a large number of shops had been devastated and plundered. The mayor and the prefecture imposed curfew and the calm came back only the next day.<br />"The Bishops of the Pacific and the Archbishop of Cali, in a statement, reiterated their support and solidarity with the population of the entire Pacific coast of Quibdo and Buenaventura", said Mgr. Epalza in the same interview. When asked if he feels that dialogue can be continued, Archbishop Epalza replied: "It depends, if this time the government sends officials who are capable of deciding in the talks, then they will be able to continue".<br />The port of Buenaventura is crucial for the country's economy, only in five days of strike, the delivery of 11 million tons of goods across the country stopped. Not to mention the goods that have yet to be unloaded from the ships because there is no place in the harbor anymore. Entrepreneurs and shipping companies are also beginning to worry about the situation. <br />Mon, 22 May 2017 12:32:26 +0200ASIA/THAILAND - Teachers and pupils in the south of the country targeted by rebels - Every day, army jeeps escort Buddhist teachers to schools in the south of the Country, whose area is guarded by paramilitary groups and armed volunteers while children study and play. This tension has worsened since September 2016, when 700 pupils who were in their respective classes heard a major explosion killing a 4-year-old girl and her father in addition to several people who were injured in a territory where Muslim insurgents target schools and teachers. Since then, 185 teachers have died because of attacks by Muslim armed groups claiming the independence of the provinces of Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat, in the south of Thailand.<br />Data was released by Human Rights Watch , the organization has also stated that rebels believe that the educational system promoted by the Government is a symbol as well as a prime battle front of Thai State's occupation in the region. Violence, however, also affects teachers and Islamic schools, on the one hand, Muslim teachers who work with the State and on the other, security forces raid 'madrasses' in search of rebels.<br />Because of the conflict in the south of the Country, at least 6,700 people have died, mainly civilians since 2004. The Islamic state in what was Patani's old sultanate, composed of Pattani, Yala and Narathiwat, is the main recrimination of insurgents, denouncing oppression and discrimination by the Buddhist administration, the country's major religion. <br />Mon, 22 May 2017 12:17:23 +0200AMERICA/VENEZUELA - "Day for Peace" celebrated, Cardinal Urosa asks: "Enough violence!" - On May 21, after having celebrated the Day of Peace for Venezuela, promoted by the Venezuelan Bishops' Conference , in Chiquinquirá church, Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, Archbishop of Caracas, confirmed the rejection of the Bishops towards the Constituent National Assembly convened by President Nicolás Maduro.<br />"Mgr. Diego Padrón, President of CEV, expressed the feelings and opinion of the Venezuelan Bishops, we disagree with ANC, the government has to solve the real problems we have, and not create another problem with a constituent no one knows how it will be but that has all the characteristics of being something negative for the country", the Cardinal told reporters.<br />The note sent to Fides by UnionRadio reports that the Cardinal asked for the immediate cessation of violence by State security organs. "They must not launch tear gas against people and, of course, not even shoot or allow certain groups to shoot, because there are paramilitary groups, everyone has seen in the videos, all this should cease immediately". Even Fides, through social media, has seen videos that clearly show tear gas being launched against the population who demonstrate peacefully. <br />Mon, 22 May 2017 12:05:35 +0200AFRICA/MADAGASCAR - Bishops’s message: "Produce good fruits as evidence of your repentance" - Faced with the worsening of the Country's conditions in various areas, the Bishops' Conference of Madagascar has recently published a message to all the baptized and people of good will, recalling the verse of the Gospel of Luke: "Produce good fruits as evidence of your repentance" . The letter, sent to Fides, begins with the firm condemnation of the atrocities that took place in various places in Madagascar such as Antsakabary, Antsirabe, Antsohihy. The Bishops demand true repentance, so that a real change is effective. They therefore invoke repentance in order to be a model of patriotism like Ramose Lucien Botovasoa, a Franciscan tertiary layman who was killed in Vihipeno in hatred for the faith on April 17, 1947, for whom Pope Francis last May 4 promulgated the decree on martyrdom. Defined as a martyr of faith and charity, he was a converted, incorruptible man who witnessed truth and reconciliation, who gave his life for the nation, saying, "may the blood I shed serve for the protection of my country".<br />In their message, the Bishops call upon ecclesiastical authorities to question themselves to combat the weaknesses that are the subject of scandal, interrogate those responsible for public life in particular in the following areas: health, education and teaching, public security and national defense. The Bishops also recall the duties of each for a real change. Finally, they invite all to pray, announcing a novena starting from Ascension until Saturday before Pentecost. <br />Mon, 22 May 2017 11:29:37 +0200VATICAN - Cardinal Filoni in Evinayong: "Be good builders of this new Church" - The Prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, Cardinal Fernando Filoni, spent the day, Sunday 21 May in the new diocese of Evinayong, created on 1 April . In the morning, he presided over the Holy Mass in the Cathedral, with the first Bishop, ordained the previous day in Mongomo, His Exc. Mgr. Callixto-Paulino, and in the afternoon he met with the clergy, religious men and women in the new diocese.<br />In his homily, the Prefect recalled the Church's duty of evangelizing: "Preaching Christ is the mission of the Church, from which no one is excluded, because preaching Jesus is a compulsory commitment for all the baptized". He then recalled that in 1645 the Cappuccini arrived in today’s Equatorial Guinea, followed by other missionaries, the diocesan Priests of Toledo, the Jesuits, and especially the Claretians: all "preached Christ here, and were his faithful witnesses ... laying the foundations of the Church among you". Today, a new chapter of the Church in Equatorial Guinea opens with this new diocese. "The Catholic Church in Equatorial Guinea, like every family, expects a generous development and spiritual enrichment, and a new evangelizing momentum from the new Diocese in Evinayong", he emphasized, assuring that "the new Diocese will not be left alone because the Lord Jesus, guarantees us his constant presence".<br />Addressing all the members of the new diocese, Cardinal Filoni said: "It is entrusted to your care, it depends on you as a newborn depends on his mother and father's care. As a small seed, your new Diocese is entrusted to you since you are competent farmers ... In the past others sowed and planted the word of God, now it is up to you to water the field, allowing the good to sprout and grow. So, as members of this Church, you will contribute to the growth of this plant that is your Diocese in Evinayong. Do not sow discord in this field of the Lord, do not sow confusion, hatred or jealousy; do not gossip".<br />The Prefect also recommended: "You are called to be good builders of this new Church. Therefore build on Christ, the unshakable foundation. Bring to the construction of this Church the preciousness of fraternal charity, communion and unity; use such precious stones as forgiveness, solidarity, truth, and justice. Do not generate discord, or personal interest, and the sin of lies. In this work of building your Diocese, you must all be God's collaborators".<br />Commenting on the evangelical passage of the day, in which the words of Jesus resound "If you love me, you will observe my commandments", the Cardinal pointed out that "the secret of all things is the love for Christ. Our Christian and ecclesial mission comes from a profound act of love, otherwise it is reduced to just social activity. Every apostolic commitment, every missionary activity, every service in the Church has its origin in the love for Christ".<br />In the afternoon Cardinal Filoni met the clergy, religious men and women, to whom he recalled: "the great challenge to start the new Diocese, to put in place the structures necessary for the pastoral and administrative organization, as well as the development of missionary activity is up to you". Therefore he encouraged them how to face the new challenges: the involvement of all, as the first collaborators of the bishop, to start and bring forth the diocese; the call to "faithfully and joyfully" live priestly and religious identity; the announcement and the good testimony of life at a spiritual, moral and pastoral level; the need to have the heart of Jesus, "that is to say to love as Jesus loves, to think as Jesus thinks, to act as Jesus acts, to serve as Jesus serves in all moments of life".<br />"In order to always be alive in the priestly and religious life, it is important to always care for your permanent formation", said the Cardinal, who concluded by thanking priests and religious "for the zeal and for the tireless commitment that they bring to evangelization", and exhorted them with these words: "Let's go ahead, animated by the common love for the Lord and the Holy Mother Church. Let us remain united in prayer. Remember: It will depend on you if you want to build a church in Evinayong according to Christ's Heart". <br /><br/><strong>Link correlati</strong> :<a href="">The full text of Cardinal Filoni's homily (in Spanish) The full text of Cardinal Filoni's speech (in Spanish)</a>Mon, 22 May 2017 10:47:04 +0200VATICAN - Consistory for 5 New Cardinals, "be joyous announcers of the Gospel throughout the world" City - At the end of the Regina Coeli Marian prayer on Sunday 21 May, the Holy Father Francis announced a Consistory on 28 June for the creation of 5 new Cardinals. Two of them, Archbishop of Bamako, Mali, and Apostolic Vicar of Paksé, Laos, are ordinaries of dependent territories on the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples. Here are the words of the Pope:<br />"I wish to announce that on Wednesday, 28 June, there will be a Consistory for the naming of five new cardinals. Their hailing from different parts of the world manifests the Catholicity of the Church spread across the whole World and the assignment of a titular or diaconal church in the City expresses the attachment of the cardinals to the diocese of Rome that, as the well-noted expression of St Ignatius says, presides in charity over all the Churches. On Thursday, 29 June, the solemnity of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul, I will concelebrate Mass with the new cardinals, the College, with the new metropolitan archbishops, bishops and some priests. Here are the names of the new Cardinals: Mgr. Jean Zerbo, Archbishop of Bamako, Mali; Mgr. Juan José Omella, Archbishop of Barcelona, Spain; Mgr. Anders Arborelius, Bishop of Stockholm, Sweden; Mgr. Louis-Marie Ling Mangkhanekhoun, vicar-apostolic of Paksé, Laos; Mgr. Gregorio Rosa Chavez, Auxiliary of San Salvador, El Savador.<br />Let us entrust the new cardinals to the protection of Saints Peter and Paul, that with the intercession of the Prince of the Apostles, they might be authentic servants of ecclesial communion and, with that of the Apostle of the Gentiles, they might be joyful messengers of the Gospel for the whole world, and, with their witness and advice, they might sustain me more intensely in my own service as Bishop of Rome and universal Pastor of the Church". <br />Mon, 22 May 2017 09:17:12 +0200AFRICA/MALI - Sister Glory, kidnapped one hundred days ago, no news yet - "Life continues timidly in the Diocese of Sikasso, on the one hand the community of the Franciscan Sisters of Maria Immacolata of Karangasso who had to stop working commitments, on the other no news yet of Sister Glory.<br />The diocese of Sikasso has been in disarray since then. However, Mgr. Jean Baptiste Tiama, Bishop of Sikasso, asks us to continue hoping. We continue to pray and trust in the Master of our lives. We must not give up praying. We must try to find out what God wants to say to us in this adventure ... "<br />This is what the Mali Bishops' Conference communiqué sent to Fides, says on the abduction of Sister Gloria .<br />"It is in this sense that we have organized to celebrate in all the dioceses of Mali a mass after 100 days since the kidnapping and to remember Sister Glory and all the people who are kidnapped by armed groups", concludes the statement.<br />Let us remember that on February 8, a Colombian nun, Sister Gloria Cecilia Narváez Argoti, was kidnapped by armed men in southern Mali, in a Catholic church in Sikasso. <br />Sat, 20 May 2017 13:11:11 +0200AMERICA/NICARAGUA - The Church of Nicaragua prays for Venezuela - "In communion with our brother Bishops of Venezuela and in solidarity with the beloved people of that nation who lives such a dramatic and painful situation, the Bishops of Nicaragua invite you to participate in the Eucharist on Sunday, May 21 where together we go and pray for Venezuela", are the words of Mgr. Silvio José Báez, auxiliary bishop of Managua sent to Fides.<br />The invitation to the Nicaraguan national community informs about the time and who presides these celebrations: Cathedral of Managua, 11 am, presided by Mgr. Silvio José Báez; Cathedral of Matagalpa, 10am, presided by Mgr. Rolando José Álvarez; Cathedral of Jinotega, 10am, presided by Mgr. Carlos Enrique Herrera; Cathedral of Estelí, 6 pm, presided by Mgr. Juan Abelardo Mata; Cathedral of Granada, 11am, presided by Msg. Jorge Solórzano; Cathedral of Juigalpa, 6pm, presided by Mgr. Sócrates René Sándigo; Cathedral of León, 10.30 am, presided by Mgr. Bosco Vivas. <br />Sat, 20 May 2017 12:30:07 +0200AMERICA/TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO - Young activists rally to climate cause in Trinidad and Tobago of Spain - Two environmental activist groups in Trinidad and Tobago, powered by young volunteers, prepare to ramp up their climate change and sustainability activism. IAMovement and New Fire Festival both began their environmental activism in earnest, less than three years ago. IAMovement captured the Trinidadian public’s imagination with its climate change march in 2014 and the iconic heart shape formed by 150 marchers who joined them, an emblem reprised by the 450, who joined IAMovement, in 2015, in the country’s capital city of Port-of-Spain for the march that coincided with COP21 in Paris. New Fire Festival, run by the NGO T&T Bridge Initiative, began its engagement with climate change activism, in 2016, with the launch of an ecologically sustainable music festival that emphasises reducing, reusing, and sustaining. New Fire Festival and IAMovement want to move their organisations to another level, as they make ever more ambitious plans to engage with climate change activism and environmental sustainability issues. The organization behind New Fire Festival is preparing to launch a for-profit enterprise using discarded shipping pallets to make fine furniture. The organisers of New Fire Festival are also interested in launching a business that would green events for event organisers. New Fire Festival concluded the second edition of its annual festival, during which workshops were held on various themes related to eco-sustainability. Meanwhile, IAMovement is in the process of hosting a series of 40 climate talks at schools and other venues, where their low-budget film on climate change, entitled “Small Change”, will be shown. <br />Sat, 20 May 2017 12:20:13 +0200