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
Indian diocese to rescue debt-ridden farmers
Sustainable income plan needed in Amravati to reverse spike in suicidesBishop Lourdes Daniel of Amravati lights a lamp at a gathering in the city on Jan. 25
- Saji Thomas, Amravati
- January 25, 2011
‚ÄúThe Church needs to do more on creating sustainable sources of income for poverty-struck farmers rather than working on short-term programs,‚ÄĚ Father Jolly Puthenpura, director of Amravati Diocesan Social Development Society, told ucanews.com yesterday.
The priest was speaking after a gathering marking the society‚Äôs 10 years of work in Amravati, Maharashtra state.
Over 300 people, including government officials, Church workers and beneficiaries attended the program.
Father Puthenpura said the past eight years have seen self-inflicted ‚Äúgenocide‚ÄĚ in the diocese due to successive crop failures.
Official figures say 4,427 debt-ridden farmers in the region have committed suicide in the past 10 years. However, social activists say the actual figure is three times more.
The society says it has in the past decade helped over 400,000 farmers in Amravati, Akola, Buldana, Washim and Yavatmal districts.
Bishop Lourdes Daniel of Amravati, apostolic administrator of the diocese, said, the society strives hard to fight against poverty and other social evils.
Father Puthenpura said the diocese has also helped some 11,000 victims of natural calamities, 3,000 debt-ridden farmers and 1,500 HIV/Aids patients.
The priest said that the diocese has only 7,000 Catholics out of a population of 11 million. More than 98 percent of Church work is among people of other religions.
Opposition grows to GM eggplant in India
Church People Welcome Budget Proposal To Relieve Farmers¬ī Debts
Church Tries To Empower Farmers Facing Threats To Their Livelihood