22nd February 2020

Querida Amazonia: Antonio Spadaro SJ’s Commentary on Pope Francis’ Apostolic Exhoration

Let me say straightaway that Querida Amazonia is a unique text. I will try to highlight why. This is the first time that a document of such magisterial importance explicitly presents itself as a text that “accompanies” another one, namely, the synod’s Final Document, The Amazon: New Paths for the Church and for an Integral Ecology. The pope immediately wishes to affirm a posture, that of listening and discernment. He writes … Read more

How to Spot Fake News?

False allegations and rumours about the coronavirus outbreak have been running riot on social media and in some mainstream media. Misinformation is rampant and conspiracy theories have added to the confusion. Examples include reports that the virus can kill a person in seconds, that Ghana has developed a successful vaccine and that HIV drugs have been used as a cure. There has even been a photo showing dozens of coronavirus victims lying dead … Read more

World Day of the Sick: Message of Pope Francis

The Pope tells the ill how Jesus looks at a “wounded humanity” with eyes “that gaze into the heart of each person.” His Gaze Embraces Everyone in Their Entirety That gaze, he underscored, is not one of indifference, but rather one which embraces “people in their entirety, each person in his or her health condition, discarding no one, but rather inviting everyone to share in … Read more

Cambodia: Ecological Farming

Today while I was walking on by the riverside, I saw Mr. Dang spraying in his farm. A simple smile led us into conversation. He drew my attention. Out of curiosity, I asked him what kind of pesticides he was using to protect plants? He replied, he doesn’t use any pesticides to kill insects. He said, he uses water from a septic tank and cows’ … Read more

Austen Ivereigh’s ‘Wounded Sherpherd’ – A Review

Wounded Shepherd is the follow-up to Austen Ivereigh’s 2013 biography of Pope Francis, The Great Reformer. The new book covers Francis’s tumultuous first six years, and begins with the story of Francis telling Ivereigh, in June 2018, that he had only one criticism of what Ivereigh had written about him so far. “I braced myself,” writes Ivereigh. “After a pause, [the pope] said, smiling, ‘You’re too kind … Read more

Pope Video February: Hear the Cry of Migrants

Migrants are often victims of criminal human smuggling and human trafficking. Among other causes, this happens because of corruption on the part of people willing to do anything for financial gain. The money from their dirty, underhanded business is blood money. I’m not exaggerating: it’s blood money. We pray that the cries of our migrant brothers and sisters, victims of criminal human smuggling and human … Read more

Israel-Palestine: A Singaporean Surgeon’s Witness of Working with the Palestinians

Gaza has been blockaded for 12 years and bombarded by land, air and sea with several thousand killed and many more made homeless. Among the dead were more than a thousand children. Electricity is scarce and safe drinking water non-existent. Since March 2018, more than three hundred unarmed demonstrators asking for the right to return home were shot dead by snipers, with 36,000 wounded, a … Read more

Battambang, Cambodia: Bon Phoum – A Village Blessing

We witnessed another unique Khmer-Christian Festival today (Feb. 5) in Chomnaom (ចំណោម). The Bon Phoum which literally means Village feast or Village blessing in Chomnaom started when Fr. Totet SJ was the parish priest of the place in 2002-2005. The idea actually originates from the Cambodian tradition of thanksgiving after the harvest season. The Christianised tradition was warmly accepted by the villagers making it a … Read more

World Interfaith Harmony Week: Message of Pope Francis to Arab Media Convention on Human Fraternity

I greet all of you present, and I greet especially all the people in humanity who help their poor, sick, persecuted, and weak brothers and sisters, regardless of religion, color, or race. A year ago, my brother, the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar, Dr. Aḥmad al-Tayyib, and I signed a document on human fraternity in the capital of the United Arab Emirates, Abu Dhabi. Today we … Read more

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