22 National News

posted May 30, 2018, 9:40 AM by Neil D'Souza   [ updated May 30, 2018, 9:40 AM ]

Enrich Youth Ministry in India: CCBI

Fr Chetan Machado, the national Executive Secretary of Conference of Catholic Bishops of India (CCBI) has urged youth and chaplains/animators to enrich Youth Ministry in the country.

He was speaking at the concluding day of the second Animators and Chaplains Training programme (ACT-II) organised by the National Youth Commission, under the aegis of CCBI, supported by Indian Catholic Youth Movement (ICYM) and Young Catholic Students/Young Students' Movement on May 26.

The May 18-26 programme included a two-day consultation meeting with the ICYM National Executive, followed by the training programme, which started on May 18, with the inaugural Mass celebrated by Fr Stephen Alathara, Deputy Secretary General, CCBI. During his homily, he explained the importance of training youth. Fr Alathara delivered the keynote address in which he said that "we are not here to participate, but to contribute. We have been moving from confusion to clarity. Today, we have reached some clarity, but have miles to go."


Church body questions police claim

In the wake of the desecration of a Holy Cross in a South Goa village, a Goa Church body questioned police claims of solving cases of earlier desecrations. The Council for Social Justice and Peace, a social arm of the Goa Church, said on May 24 that these desecrations followed a definite pattern so as to instill fear and provoke negative feelings among "certain communities".

"Civil society groups prepared a fact-finding report that suggested such desecrations appeared to be the handiwork of a highly organised gang... Now that desecrations have resurfaced, the CSJP demands proper and thorough independent investigation by the state government in all such cases in Goa," the Council's Executive Secretary, Fr Savio Fernandes said in a statement.


Youngest Indian girl to scale Mt Everest has message for women

Sixteen-year-old Shivangi Pathak, who has become the youngest Indian girl to climb Mount Everest, has a message for women.

She says that women can achieve anything they want, if they have the desire.

The teen climber from Haryana's Hisar district reached the top of the mountain on May 24, completing her over one-month trekking, which she began from the Nepal side on April 6.

After completing her successful expedition, Pathak is now back in Nepal's capital Kathmandu with the message for women.

"They (women) can achieve anything if they desire. If I can make it, if Arunima Sinha (the first Indian amputee to climb Mt Everest) can summit the Mount Everest, then they can do anything," she told ANI.


Indian Catholics condemn police brutality

Thousands of Catholics marched in solidarity with those protesting a multi-million-dollar copper-processing unit in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu on May 27, after an earlier showdown with police left 13 dead.

The demonstrators' clashes with security officials on May 22 resulted in police opening fire. At least four Catholics were killed, according to media reports. One Catholic priest was also injured.

Some five days later, all of the parishes belonging to Madras-Mylapore Archdiocese, which covers the state capital of Chennai, conducted meetings and marches in their areas, condemning the police brutality in the port town of Tuticorin, a Christian centre in coastal Tamil Nadu.


'Constitution's focus on secularism a uniting factor'

Supreme Court Judge Kurian Joseph said on May 27 that the Indian Constitution, with its emphasis on secularism, has played a crucial role in uniting India which had inherited amazing diversities.

"The Indian Constitution is an extremely inclusive and comprehensive document. It guarantees the freedom to profess, practise and propagate any religion. The fundamental rights to equality as well as to life and liberty are guaranteed by the Constitution even to those visiting India," Justice Joseph said.

He made these observations while inaugurating an eight-day lecture series organised as part of the 80th birthday celebrations of George Menachery, who has made important contributions as an anthropologist, Indologist, as well as historian of the Syro-Malabar Church and of Kerala.