WORLD: JESUSCARITASEST.ORG CHRISTMAS BLESSINGS TO ALLJESUSCARITASEST.ORG REPORT:We at www.jesuscaritasest.org wish you and your families a blessed and peaceful Christmas. You, the readers of JCE news, will be remembered at the Sacrifice of the Mass and in the prayers offered in this Holy Season. Please keep us in your prayers. It is hoped that you and your families make a renewed effort to spread the peace of Christ throughout the world. Make this year a Holy one; remember to keep Holy the Sabbath by regular Mass attendance (daily if possible), increase your family prayer time (ex. daily rosary, adoration), and be charitable and forgiving to your neighbors. The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph should be our example. Charity begins at home. Keep your governmental leaders, church leaders and enemies in prayer. It is through the spiritual and corporal works of mercy that we participate in the sanctification of the world. This news service is provided to remind you of the spiritual and corporal needs of the Body of Christ. We must remember that our lives can end at any moment but the afterlife lasts forever. Therefore, we need to prepare for our permanent relationship with Jesus Christ, our true husband. God bless you always. Pax Christi+
WORLD: JESUSCARITASEST.ORG CHRISTMAS BLESSINGS TO ALL
CNA REPORT - Archbishop Jose Antonio Eguren of Piura, Peru reminded the faithful that the true meaning of Christmas is found in Christ, not in presents.
The archbishop noted during Mass on Dec. 19 that gifts are merely an expression of the joy over the coming of the Savior. He encouraged Catholics to open their hearts and homes to “the Child to be born.”
“That is the true meaning of Christmas,” he said.
He also urged the faithful to follow “the example of Mary and Joseph, who were always attentive to the Lord’s will and ready to follow it. And what God wants of us is that we embrace the Baby Jesus, our Reconciler, and believe in Him.”
Archbishop Eguren recalled that Scripture refers to St. Joseph as “a just man because he always embraces the will of God, and adjusts his life to what God asks of him, not to what he wants.”
Likewise, St. Joseph lived the virtue of obedience, “and for this reason he will always be seen as caring for the Baby Jesus and as the chaste and faithful husband of Blessed Mother.”
“We all face many problems each day,” the archbishop continued. “But we must not let our daily problems overcome us during these days of celebration. May the joy of Christmas reign in our hearts, because we know well in whom we have put our trust: in Jesus,” he said.
“True happiness consists in doing God’s will. And in this time of Advent, God asks us that we believe in the one he sent, his Son Jesus,” he concluded.
'German Mother Theresa' saves lives in Pakistan
It is the beginning of another long day for the 81-year-old nun known locally as Pakistan's Mother Teresa, who has spent half a century caring for some of the country's poorest and most ostracised people.
Pakistan is one of the most dangerous countries in the world, where Washington says Al-Qaeda is based. Its northwest mountains border Afghanistan and are subject to US drone strikes and Pakistani military operations.
Bombings have killed 4,000 people in three years, kidnappings are common, Islamist groups violently opposed to all but their extremist interpretation of Islam control significant territory.
Sister Pfau, who needs a stick to walk, admits some disquiet over security, but says nothing would stop her serving people in distress. "I find no difficulties even in the northwestern tribal areas, where most people know me because of my work and never create any hurdle when I go there to serve them," she said, adjusting her white scarf on her silver-hair.
It was after the horrors of World War II in her native Germany that she decided to dedicate her life to serving humanity, become a doctor and join the Daughters of the Heart of Mary order, founded during the French Revolution.
Not required to take the veil or live in seclusion, she ended up in Pakistan by chance. En route to work in India, visa complications forced her to break the journey in Karachi, where she visited a lepers' colony.
That was 1960 and the rest is history. The sub-human misery of what she saw persuaded her to stay in Pakistan to help the cause of leprosy. The living conditions were appalling. The gutters were overflowing and sewer rats feasted on limbs of patients unable to feel the rat bites.
"I felt saddened when I saw people living in caves, crawling like animals. They had compromised with their fate, but it was not their fate, they deserved a much better and happier life," she said.
Sister Pfau's makeshift clinic soon became a two-storey hospital, then the Marie Adelaide Leprosy Centre with branches across Pakistan. She trained doctors and treated thousands of victims. Her dedication inspired an otherwise hesitant government to establish in 1968 a national programme to bring leprosy under control.
Half a century ago, there were leper colonies across the country but now the programme puts the incidence of the disease at 0.27 people out of 10,000, meeting benchmarks from the World Health Organisation.
At times of natural disaster Sister Pfau was there: Drought in Baluchistan in the southwest in 2000, the 2005 earthquake in Kashmir and this year's floods, the country's worst natural disaster that affected 21 million people.
In Sindh, where more than a million people were affected by the floods, she targets areas mainly populated by Hindus, one of Pakistan's clutch of religious minorities largely neglected by the government and Islamic charities.
She is a frequent visitor to flood-affected areas, largely bone-crunching drives from Karachi, which seem to tire her team more than her. "She still has amazing stamina. She is an amazing person," said Venu Gopal, coordinator of Sister Pfau's charity.
Born in Leipzig, she was just 17 years old when she headed for the border to cross from East into West Germany, braving Soviet soldiers who were ordered to shoot on sight.
She walked two days and nights before she was spotted by a Russian and a German soldier. "The German soldier told the Russian he would deposit me at the detention camp and walked with me a few paces ahead. Then, pointing in one direction, he whispered: 'There lies the West'."
Now, in places like the remote village of Begna in flood-hit Sindh's Thatta district, people look upon the elderly German nun as a mother. "We've lost everything, but Amma (mother) is helping us and we hope to be on our feet soon," said snake-charmer Sanwal Jogi.
"Thanks to her, I managed to replant some oilseeds and mustard, nobody else apart from her and her team comes down here," said farmer Kaser Hero.
She has provided them with shelter, helped them rebuild their houses, gives them seeds and money to help them cultivate the land again.
"It is not just leprosy. We're doing our share in healing partial blindness and tuberculosis and helping people stricken by disasters. Dr. Pfau commands respect in the West and gets funds for all this," Gopal said.
"One should not compare one great legend with another, but we rightly call her Mother Teresa as she is serving people with the same empathy, dedication and love as Mother Teresa did in India," said Sindh health minister Saghir Ahmed.
"It's also a time to pray for and support those people less fortunate than us, particularly those suffering from violence and persecution as well as those fleeing their countries at great risk to them and their families."
Writing in the Advertiser, Archbishop Wilson said God came as a helpless little child in Bethlehem, rather than in a demonstration of power and authority becaue he wants us to love him, not to be overpowered by him.
"So in the midst of this world where there is so much to frighten us and so much to worry about, Christmas reassures us that Jesus is present and that his love for us is sufficient to give us the strength to be agents of love as we live in the world.
"This Christmas is also a time for us to pray that Christians everywhere around the world can celebrate in peace, especially the Christians in Iraq who have suffered horrendously through the attack on the Syriac Catholic Cathedral of Our Lady of Salvation in Baghdad and subsequent bombings.
"The feast of Christmas is an opportunity to not only wish people well but to do everything we can to support one another in peace, especially the members of our community who are hurting or who are marginalised," he adds, expressing condolence to the families of those who recently perished in the sea off Christmas Island.
"I urge you to keep in mind this Christmas that the way we treat asylum seekers, both as a society and as individuals, strikes at the essence of our humanity," Archbishop Wilson wrote.
|Father Savio Hon Tai-fai|
Salesian Father Savio Hon Tai-fai, 60, tolducanews.com he received notification today, just a few hours before the Holy See Press Office made the official announcement. He said his “first thing to do now is to pray for God’s grace to become a suitable tool.”
The Hong Kong-born priest believed his appointment showed “the pope’s fervent love for China.” The pope also elevates him to archbishop of the titular diocese of Sila.
Father Hon has known the theologian-pope for many years, since the then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger was president of the International Theological Commission. The pope often showed his concern for the China Church when they met, he said.
Father Hon anticipates that in his new role the Roman Curia may consult him on China Church affairs, thanks to his years of experiences as visiting professor to various seminaries in China.
Anthony Lam Sui-ki, senior researcher at the Hong Kong diocese’s Holy Spirit Study Centre, believes Father Hon is a very suitable candidate due to his solid theological foundations.
“As the second man of the congregation, his knowledge would help him handle a lot issues related to evangelization of faith,” Lam told ucanews.com.
Father Hon has also demonstrated good interpersonal skills in his previous positions as provincial superior and being member of pontifical commissions, he added.
Many mainland Chinese Catholics receive the news with great joy and feel it is a glory for the Chinese.
Profile of Father Hon:
- Born in Hong Kong in 1950
- Belongs to the Salesian Province of China (China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan). He made his first religious profession in 1969, the final profession in 1975 and was ordained a priest in 1982
- Obtained a doctorate in theology at the Pontifical Salesian University in Rome
- Held various positions in the Society of Don Bosco, including head of the China Province, provincial delegate in General Chapters and moderator of the 2002 General Chapter
- Works as professor of Holy Spirit Seminary College of Hong Kong diocese
- Works as a visiting professor at mainland Chinese seminaries
- Published a number of books on theology and was responsible for the Chinese translation of the Catechism of the Catholic Church
- Became a member of the Pontifical Academy of Theology in 1999 and the International Theological Commission since 2004
ALL AFRICA REPORT-
Lumen Christi International High School, Edo state has won the West African Examinations Council's, WAEC, Gold cup for 2009. The Council adjudged the Catholic owned College the overall best in the 2009 West African Senior Certificate Examination, WASSCE.
The school has joined the league of two other well known secondary schools, which had won the trophy in the past. Queen College, Yaba, Lagos won the trophy six times while another Catholic Secondary school, the Loyola Jesuit College, Abuja, won it between 2002 and 2005.
However, Lumen Christi which was funded 22 years ago has in the past won several laurels both in Edo State and the country as well. In 1997, it won the WAEC School Certificate Exams trophy as the best school in Esanland. The Uromi Youth Movement of Nigeria sponsored the award.
Also in 2007, the school clinched the first position in the NNPC Science competition in the South South geo-political zone and 5th at the national level. It will be recalled that he WAEC Gold cup is an endowment sponsored by Dr A. Oyediran in memoy of his father, Augustus Bamidele Oyediran. It was inaugurated in 1985
Birth of Our Lord Jesus Christ
Feast: December 25