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
Vatican holds major conference on faith in Asia
Inhuman and scandalous forms of poverty and exclusion exist, says cardinal
- Alessandro Speciale, Vatican City
- Vatican City
- April 19, 2013
Asia’s rapid growth and increasing inequality as a result are weakening spiritual life and posing a challenge which Asia’s many faiths could and should face together, Cardinal Fernando Filoni said at the end of a major Vatican conference this week.
Held at the Pontifical Urbaniana University which trains priests from mission areas, the conference on the Asian Church and its future ended on Wednesday with a call for all religions to face these challenges together with a common sense of “authenticity” and “purpose.”
Cardinal Filoni said while economic growth had “increased the material means available” to Asians, this progress has not been followed with an equal distribution of goods.
“Inhuman and scandalous forms of poverty and exclusion [still exist],” he said.
Affluence has also meant problems for spirituality including immorality, lack of attention to human life and suicides, added the cardinal.
In a strong statement on interfaith collaboration, Cardinal Filoni said that dialogue between different religions in Asia had a “social and political color since it is aimed to develop policies and strategies for the common good… promoting a culture of empathy and compassion.”
The conference was aimed at drawing up a blueprint for Catholic missionary action in Asia and included representatives of faiths including Hinduism, Islam and Buddhism as well as experts from Italy, the Vatican and 10 different countries in the Asian region.