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Posts Tagged ‘church’

Seven Christians killed in Iraq church hostage drama

In Uncategorized on November 1, 2010 at 4:12 am

Christian Fellowship Church becomes official

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2010 at 8:52 am

Christian Fellowship Church becomes official

QĐND – Wednesday, July 14, 2010, 20:56 (GMT+7)


The Christian Fellowship Church of Vietnam received a decision from the Government recognising the church as an official religious organisation in HCM City on July 14.

The church also began its annual congress the same day.

When addressing the opening ceremony, the Deputy Head of the Government Committee for Religious Affairs, Pham Huy Tho said that this was an important milestone in the church’s history as now the church can practice its religion in line with the Ordinance on Beliefs and Religions.

He said he hoped that the church would help to build the country into a modern and prosperous nation with a happy and wealthy people.

Formed in 1989, the Christian Fellowship Church of Vietnam is the seventh Protestant organisation to receive a certificate to practice its religion.

In September 2009, the church held its first congress, adopted its charter and elected its nine-member executive board, led by Pastor Dinh Thien Tu.

Source: VNA

Source: QDND

Pope says Church ‘persecution’ comes from within

In Uncategorized on May 11, 2010 at 4:52 pm

LISBON (AFP) – A penitent Pope Benedict XVI referred to the paedophile priest scandal rocking the Catholic Church as he began a four-day trip to Portugal Tuesday, saying the Church’s “greatest persecution” came from its own “sin”.

“Today the greatest persecution of the Church does not come from outside, but from the sin inside the Church itself,” the pope told journalists aboard his plane before his arrival in Lisbon.

The 83-year-old pontiff, who met alleged victims of priestly sex abuse during a visit to Malta last month, said the Church’s forgiveness could not replace the need for justice.

Pope Benedict XVI reviews the honour guard upon his arrival at Lisbon airport. AFP photo

He said the Church had a “profound need” to “learn forgiveness and also the necessity of justice,” underlining that “forgiveness does not replace justice.”

The comments were the strongest yet on the issue from Benedict, whose five-year-old papacy has been rocked by allegations that the Vatican for years protected paedophile priests from prosecution in several European countries and in the United States.

The months-long scandal, which has seen bishops offer their resignation in Ireland and Germany, has overshadowed preparations for his four-day visit to overwhelmingly Catholic Portugal.

Wearing an ivory robe with a golden crucifix around his neck, a tired-looking Benedict walked gingerly down the gangway steps to be met by Portugal’s President Anibal Cavaco Silva and his wife Maria.

The president welcomed the pope to a “free and plural Portugal” whose people, he said, have “a calling to recognise the value of diversity”.

The centre-right president is due to decide next week whether to sign into law a bill passed by parliament which would make Portugal the sixth country to allow same-sex marriage.

Church authorities in Portugal said Benedict was likely to call on Portugal to uphold Christian values and urge solidarity across Europe’s struggling economies.

“I come as a pilgrim to Our Lady of Fatima,” the pope said in his speech on the airport tarmac.

Tens of thousands of festive Portuguese lined the leafy suburbs of Lisbon as Benedict took an eight-kilometre (five mile) ride aboard his white bullet-proof popemobile to the papal nunciature.

Pilgrims waved yellow and white Vatican flags and the red and green colours of Portugal as the pope passed by, raising his hands in acknowledgement.

“Viva o Papa,” the crowd chanted as he arrived at the nunciature and cautiously climbed down from the vehicle, before raising his arms in greeting.

Later Tuesday, Benedict is to pray in the chapel at the 16th century Jeronimos monastery in Lisbon, the burial site of the great Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama renowned for its religious carvings which have made it a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

He was also to pay a brief courtesy visit to the presidential Belem palace.

In the evening, the Portuguese Church expects up to 160,000 pilgrims to attend an open-air mass with Benedict in the historic Terreiro do Paco square on the banks of the Tagus.

“The pope will encourage institutions to lend a hand and show solidarity during difficult times,” said Carlos Azevedo, the auxiliary bishop of Lisbon and the visit’s chief organiser.

“Europe needs to be awoken, there is a lack of strong values. If there was greater ethical conscience, we would not have arrived at the current economic disaster.”

Tuesday evening’s mass is one of three giant gatherings scheduled for the visit, the “heart” of which, according to the Vatican, will be his stop in Fatima, the site where three shepherd children reported seeing visions of the Virgin Mary in 1917.

The pope’s visit to the sanctuary town comes exactly 10 years after his predecessor John Paul II beatified two of the children at the site, bringing them one step from sainthood.

A third open-air mass is to be held in the northern city of Oporto on Friday, shortly before the pope returns to Rome.

Source: SGGP

Pope says he leads a ‘wounded and sinner’ church

In Uncategorized on April 20, 2010 at 3:44 am

VATICAN CITY (AFP) – Pope Benedict XVI admitted to world cardinals Monday that he led a “wounded and sinner” Church, as he marked five tumultuous years in charge, most recently mired in paedophile priest scandals.

The pontiff “evoked the sins of the Church”, describing it as “wounded and sinner” to some 50 cardinals gathered for his anniversary, the Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano said.

Pope Benedict XVI addreses a gathering of cardinals as he marks the fifth anniversary of his pontification at the Vatican. AFP photo

He “feels very strongly that he is not alone”, the paper reported the pontiff as saying, he “has at his sides the whole college of cardinals who are sharing with him vicissitudes and reassurance”.

Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi defended the embattled pope, telling Radio Vatican the priorities Benedict had defined after his election were being “pursued with coherence and courage” despite “tensions” and “obstacles”.

Waves of allegations sweeping the Church in Europe and the Americas had also been the backdrop to a tearful meeting between the pope and abuse victims on Sunday in Malta, one of the latest countries to be hit by sex abuse scandals.

In his third meeting with victims of child-molesting priests — the other two were during trips to Australia and the United States in 2008 — Benedict had expressed his “shame and sorrow” over the scourge.

Lawrence Grech, one of eight Maltese abuse victims who met the pope, told AFP: “He listened to us individually, and prayed and cried with us.”

Little fanfare accompanied the pope’s five-year milestone.

At a gathering of religious officials in Jerusalem, the head of the Pontifical Institute of Notre-Dame, Juan Solana, said “this year the Holy Father is attacked and his Church too”.

But while the Vatican and senior bishops have rallied around the pope, he has come under increasing pressure over allegations that the Vatican hierarchy, himself included, helped protect predator priests.

The paedophilia crisis has also shifted the focus away from other flashpoints that have marked Benedict’s papacy so far.

The pope found himself in his first full-blown crisis in September 2006 when he unleashed fury in the Muslim world with a speech in which he appeared to endorse the view of an obscure 14th-century Byzantine emperor that Islam is inherently violent.

It is with Judaism, however, that Benedict has had the most frequent brushes, notably when he lifted the excommunication of traditionalist bishop Richard Williamson, who has insisted that there were no Nazi gas chambers.

In 2008, Benedict allowed the revival of a Good Friday prayer “for the conversion of the Jews”, which had been thrown out by Vatican II in the 1960s.

Catholic-Jewish relations improved with a series of fence-mending statements and gestures by the Vatican and the pontiff, notably Benedict’s trip to Israel in May last year during which he prayed at Jerusalem’s Wailing Wall.

But in December, Jews were up in arms once again when the pope moved his World War II-era predecessor pope Pius XII a step closer to sainthood with a decree bestowing the title “venerable”.

Ill-advised remarks dealing with the paedophilia priest scandals by officials close to the German pontiff have inflicted collateral damage on relations both with Jews and with gays.

Early this month the pope’s personal preacher evoked a parallel between anti-Semitism and the drumbeat of criticism against the Church for its handling of the paedophilia crisis.

And Benedict’s right-hand man, Cardinal Tercisio Bertone, sparked worldwide condemnation by linking paedophilia and homosexuality.

Vatican watcher John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter told AFP: “In terms of business management, this pontificate goes from one crisis to the other.”

Source: SGGP

Baptist church recognised as religious organisation

In Uncategorized on October 14, 2008 at 12:24 pm

Hanoi (VNA) – The Government Committee for Religious Affairs presented the Baptist Churches in Vietnam (Southern) with a certificate recognising its legal status as a religious organisation on October 13 .

This is the third Protestant church to have been recognised as a religious organisation in Vietnam since the Ordinance on Belief and Religion took effect in 2004.

The committee’s Director Nguyen The Doanh said the Baptist church is expected to coordinate with other churches and people of all walks of life across the nation in order to contribute more towards national construction and development.

Pastor Nguyen Thong said it was a great joy for his church to be recognised and pledged on behalf of all Protestant followers to do good for both his religion and his nation.

On the same day, a church delegation visited the Party Central Committee’s Commission for Mass Mobilisation and the Vietnam Fatherland Front Central Committee.

The Baptist Churches in Vietnam has more than 18,000 followers and 500 dignitaries, including over 5,000 from ethnic minorities, practising in 409 congregations across 42 cities and provinces throughout the country.-

Baptist church opens first general conference

In Uncategorized on August 9, 2008 at 1:39 pm

– The Baptist Church in Vietnam (Southern) opened its first general conference in Ho Chi Minh City on August 8 as part of its roadmap towards the government’s recognition of its legal status as a religious organisation.

The Baptist Church in Vietnam received a certificate for religious practice on October 2 last year.

During the three-day event, which is attended by more than 500 dignitaries and including those from abroad, the church will pass its charter and elect an executive board for the 2008-2012 term.

The Provisionary President of the Baptist Church in Vietnam (southern), Pastor Nguyen Thong, described the general conference as an event of great significance that will open up a new page in the history of the denomination.

The general conference is being held openly and democratically with assistance from the Government and local authorities, he said.

Pastor David Nelson, one of the 15 Baptist Protestant pastors from the US and the Republic of Korea to attend the event, said Vietnam ’s current religious policy reflects the Government’s goodwill and practical assistance to religious organisations.

Deputy Director of the Government’s Committee for Religious Affairs Nguyen Thanh Xuan said he hoped that Baptist Protestants continue to promote unity and make contributions to the country’s stability and prosperity.

The Baptist Churches in Vietnam has more than 18,000 followers and 500 dignitaries, including over 5,000 ethnic ones, practising in 409 congregations in 42 cities and provinces throughout the country.-