Religion is less a code of doctrines and teachings than a sensitivity to the "dimensions of transcendence" that underlie the human experience, the head of the Jesuit order said.
Bishop Joseph Fan Zhongliang of Shanghai, a prominent leader of China's underground Catholic Community, died after a brief illness Sunday at his home. He was 96.
Fan, like many other Catholic leaders, served in prison after he and other priests were arrested in 1955 during a government crackdown. From 1958 to 1978, Fan was imprisoned in Qinghai province, where his job was to carry corpses in a cemetery, reported the Asian church news portal ucanews.com.
Recently inducted to the College of Cardinals, Orlando Quevedo is likened to Pope Francis in the way he leads by example and keeps close to the people. He also has a long history of fighting oppression and abuses during periods of conflict in the Philippines.
Catholics in the United States and Australia have ringing similarities, the most evident being that their churches are undergoing a major transition.
Argentines have embraced the election of Pope Francis in a country where the economy is teetering and politics are polarized.
Catholic bishops of Syria called for a cease-fire in Syria and for the pursuit of the Geneva peace talks to end the crisis in the war-torn country.
The bishops encouraged the faithful during Lent to "fast and show solidarity, charity and collaboration in alleviating the sufferings of internally and externally displaced persons."
A Ukrainian Catholic priest in Crimea said church members are alarmed and frightened by the Russian military occupation and fear their communities might be outlawed again if Russian rule becomes permanent.
Fr. Mykhailo Milchakovskyi, a pastor in Kerch, Ukraine, described the atmosphere as tense because many residents of the town located in the eastern part of Crimea were unsure of their future.
"No one knows what will happen. Many people are trying to sell their homes and move to other parts of Ukraine," Milchakovskyi told Catholic News Service on Wednesday.
The role of the Catholic church is invaluable in keeping refugees safe, said the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres, but his agency and others working with migrants need much, much more.
Speaking to a meeting of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Migration and staff members of church agencies that deal with migrants, Guterres said the church is vital to helping victims of situations such as the volatile upheaval in the Central African Republic.
Today’s letter, written on March 4, comes from Lasallian Br. Bill Firman, executive director of Solidarity with South Sudan. Furman writes from Juba, South Sudan’s largest city, where BBC Africa reports violence has broken out among the military in the last week.
A champion for the disadvantaged and for fair government practices, Benedictine Sr. Mary John Mananzan adds helping abused overseas workers to her work for social justice in the Philippines.