Easter blessings from UCAN
There is no more important week in the year for Christians than this Holy Week. We call it Holy because of the mystery we celebrate - God's gift of His son who loves us to his death on Calvary and beyond.
Because of that love, we wish each other Happy Easter even when we know there is a lot of tragedy about it - Good Friday. As Christians, we know that what we see happening with and in Jesus goes to the heart of what we know from our own experience of life.
At the Second Vatican Council, the Christian lives we all lead were described as being shares in the Paschal Mystery. We have our share in the death and resurrection of Jesus every day. Our lives are part of the Paschal Mystery.
At UCAN, we work to describe that mystery in the unfolding tragedies and astonishing blessings of the people we seek out and report, feature and comment on.
While at times deeply distressing work, this effort of ours gets its coherence in the same way the death of Jesus did - because of the astonishing grace of a God who never gives up on life and love.
Because of that, we can wish you Happy Easter.
Fr. Michael Kelly SJ
Expert warns of South China Sea conflict
ASEAN needs to be better prepared for flare-ups
- ucanews.com reporter, Manila
- October 3, 2012
"Increased naval activity does carry the risk of an unfortunate incident which could lead to shooting, loss of life, or the sinking of a ship," said Dr. Samuel Bateman, fellow of the Australian National Centre for Ocean Resources and Security.
He was speaking to officials and maritime experts from Japan, China and ASEAN countries in Manila today at a three-day forum to discuss the region's maritime security.
Problems include territorial disputes involving China and several ASEAN members over island groups in the South China Sea, such as the Paracel and Spratly islands.
"Unfortunately, at present, we don't have processes in place to manage these incidents and I think that is an important requirement we need to think about," said Bateman.
He also voiced concern at what he said was the ineffective implementation by ASEAN of international agreements on piracy, transnational crime and disasters.
"The problem is that we have lots of talk, lots of agreements in place. It's implementing them and taking them forward which is difficult, he said.
Increasing tension in the South China Sea makes it necessary for ASEAN and dialogue partners to institutionalize a process to resolve disputes in a peaceful manner, he added.
ASEAN, which comprises the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Singapore, Brunei and Vietnam, is currently moving towards agreeing a draft code of conduct on the South China Sea with regard to disputes with China.
South China becomes West Philippine Sea
Hanoi in sovereignty spat with Beijing