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Vatican

Vatican comments on situation of missing Chinese Bishop Shao Zhumin

June 26, 2017. Bishop Peter Shao Zhumin, from Wenzhou in Continental China, was taken into custody by Chinese police on Easter weekend 2017. While recognized as a bishop in the Catholic Church, he is an unofficial bishop or "underground” in China, since the Chinese government does not recognize him as religious.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis' complete schedule for Colombia trip

June 23, 2017. He will go to Colombia September 6-11.
Vatican

Bruno Marie Duffé, new secretary of the Department for Integral Development

June 16, 2017. Thepope has named French priest Bruno Marie Duffé, from Lyon, number two of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. He will be in charge of one of the key offices in the Vatican Curia.
Pope Francis

Angela Merkel to meet with pope on June 17

June 9, 2017. The Vatican has confirmed that on Saturday, June 17, German Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet with Pope Francis. Both have previously met in Rome in May 2016, February 2015 and May 2013, two months after Pope Francis was elected pontiff.
Pope Francis

Pope Francis to meet with Venezuelan bishops on June 8

June 5, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Venezuelan bishops next Thursday to discuss the situation their country is facing.
Vatican

New secretary of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life

May 31, 2017. The Brazilian priest Alexandre Awi Mello, the National Director of Brazil's Schönstatt Movement, will serve as the new secretary. He was born Rio de Janeiro in 1971, and ordained a priest in 2001.

Syrian priest: We do not trust human powers. Only God is with us

2015-05-23

For the last four years, this is what the world has seen coming from Syria. 

Suffering, war, and division. But there is another side to the conflict, and one Syrian priest shared it with us. The pastor of Saint Francis of  Assisi in Aleppo described neighbors who lived together and helped each other: Christians and Muslims  together in peace.

FR. IBRAHIM ALSABAGH
Pastor, St. Francis of Assisi (Aleppo)
"We in the government-controlled section, we continue to live together. On the holidays, Christmas and Easter, Muslim civil and religious authorities come to congratulate us.”

The Syrians who remain in the country try to live their lives normally, despite the constant risk of death. They yearn deeply for their old lives, where harmony reigned. But now it is hard to have hope.

FR. IBRAHIM ALSABAGH
Pastor, St. Francis of Assisi (Aleppo)
"We lived a beautiful life together. I grew up in a building with people of various religions. There were Sunnis, Shiites and Christians. Our neighborhood was mixed. Mothers prepared the food and ate together. We all talked for hours. However, religious fundamentalism began to sow hatred and discord.”

Bombs continue to fall from the sky, and reality remains inescapable. Syria is being destroyed minute by minute, and one of the world's oldest Christian communities is disappearing. Father Ibrahim said that he stopped trusting human powers to end the war a long time ago.

FR. IBRAHIM ALSABAGH
Pastor, St. Francis of Assisi (Aleppo)
"We expect nothing from men because we have been waiting four years already. Today, our hope is in the Lord, whom we trust to act and give us the solution.”

He spoke with jarring serenity about the possibility of dying at any time, or even becoming a martyr. He said violence will continue in Aleppo, one of the most dangerous cities in Syria.

FR. IBRAHIM ALSABAGH
Pastor, St. Francis of Assisi (Aleppo)
"We will be the last to leave. We will stay until there is just one sheep left in the flock, to serve and to show that we are with our people.”

He called on Christians worldwide to pray and to continue providing material aid to them. But he said they must act on their anger and protest against the suffering. After four years of war, his country has lost more than 210,000 lives.


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