Monday, August 28, 2017

Vatican Announces Papal Visit to Myanmar and Bangladesh

The coming papal visit logos for Myanmar (left) and Bangladesh (right)
Image courtesy: Radio Vaticana

The Vatican on August 28 announced Pope Francis' official apostolic visit to Myanmar (Burma) and Bangladesh from November 27 to December 2, reports the Catholic News Agency (CNA).

The Vatican spokesman, Greg Burke, read out a statement that the pope will make the visit to the cities of Yangoon (former Rangoon) and Nay Pyi Taw of Myanmar on November 27 - 30. The pope then will be in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on November 30 - December 2.

In Myanmar, according to the 2014 census, there are roughly 5.1 million people, of whom 88% are Buddhists, 6.2% Christians (among whom 700,000 are Roman Catholics), and 4.3% Muslims and .5% Hindus.

In last May, the Vatican and Myanmar officially established diplomatic relations with the provision of having each other's ambassadors. In 2015, Charles Maung Bo, the archbishop of Yangoon, was elevated to the cardinalate.

The neighbouring Bangladesh, on the other hand, has a population of about 163 million and, according to the 2011 census, 90.39% are Muslims, 8.54% Hindus, 0.60% Buddhists, 0.37% Christians (of whom, about 300,000 are Catholics) and 0.14% others (Sikhs, animists, and atheists) . Patrick D'Rozario, the archbishop of Dhaka, became a cardinal in the papal consistory in the Vatican on November 19, 2016. 

It is noteworthy that Pope Francis' visit to Bangladesh will be the third visit of a pope. On November 27, 1970, Pope Paul VI, on his way to Manila, the Philippines, made a short stopover in Dhaka (then in East Pakistan, which later became Bangladesh), and expressed his love and sympathy for the victims of the deadly November 12 cyclone that had devastated a large portion of the coastal areas and killed more than 300,000 people.   Pope John Paul II, made an apostolic visit to Dhaka, Bangladesh, on November 19 - 20, 1986.   

To know more on the coming papal visit, plead read the following:

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Sunday, August 27, 2017

The Quotation of the Week (August 27 - September 2, 2017)

A quotation of John Wooden on 'character and reputation,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo by Jerome D'Costa

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Sunday, August 20, 2017

The Quotation of the Week (August 20 - 26, 2017)

A quotation on 'taking charge of one's own life,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Design: Jerome D'Costa

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Sunday, August 13, 2017

The Quotation of the Week (August 13 - 19, 2017)

A quotation of Confucius on 'doing the right thing,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (Clouds over Toronto sky: August 15, 2012) © Jerome D'Costa

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Saturday, August 12, 2017

Stolen Babies of Spain

Spanish Catholic Church Colluded With Conservative Politicians In This Sinful Act

This 1971 photo shows Catholic nuns with a lady who purchased a baby in a Malaga hospital, Spain 
Photo courtesy: BBC

A BBC documentary, called This World: Spain’s Stolen Babies and aired in October of 2011, shows that a secret network of Catholic doctors, nurses, priests, and nuns were complicit with the right-wing Catholic fascist dictator General Franco of Spain (1939 – 1975) in stealing new-born babies and then trafficking them in the name of good and holy cause. Even after the death of the dictator in 1975, this illegal, unjust, and unchristian act continued up to the early 1990's.

General Franco was a rabid right-winger who ruled authoritatively, without giving any legitimate right to the citizens of Spain, and he considered his opponents, especially leftists and communists, as enemies of the state.

To curtail the influence of communism in the country, he pursued a secret policy of stealing babies born to leftist and communist parents (who were thought to be a threat to the government and the Catholic Church and religion) and giving them to government-approved “Catholic” parents for adoption at an exorbitant price. Later, babies born to single mothers, irreligious mothers, and poor mothers, too, were taken and sold similarly. In the name of keeping people Catholic, priests and nuns also cooperated in this vicious venture by providing false birth certificates to these stolen babies and telling birth-mothers that their babies died immediately after birth. The Spanish Church thought that it got a contract from God to keep the country Catholic by any means – lawful or unlawful. It was also a financially profitable business for the Spanish government and the Catholic Church. 

Where was God in all this? Why does God flee away when members of the Catholic hierarchy commit mortal sins and give scandals, but comes on the mortal-sinning lay persons with all the vengeance? The Catholic priests are supposed to be alter Christus --  another Christ -- according to the teaching of the Catholic Church. In certain countries, some Catholic bishops and priests are after lay Catholic politicians who are pro-abortion and pro-euthanasia as well as lay men and women who are divorced and remarried -- telling them not to receive holy communion in the Mass because these persons are living in mortal sins. But in Spain, at that time, the priests and nuns, who committed mortal sins serially by stealing these babies, kept on receiving holy communion in the Mass. Nobody was there to bar them from saying Mass or receiving holy communion. This is called scandal of the first rate. 

Pope Francis, nowadays is telling us Catholics to abandon this very judgmental, condemning, and greedy attitude and be merciful and self-sacrificing instead.

To know more on this shameful and sinful episode of the Spanish history, you may read the following:

(Updated on August 31, 2017)  
(Updated on April 13, 2018)  

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Sunday, August 6, 2017

The Quotation of the Week (August 6 - 12, 2017)

A quotation of E. M. Kelly on 'boss and leader,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Design: Jerome D'Costa

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