Friday, 18 August 2017

Catholic Community Maintains Faith Without A Priest For More Than 50 Years

Catholics in a remote mountain are of South Western China continue to keep their God Given Faith Alive, even though no Catholic Priest has been stationed there for more than 50 Years.

About 5,000 Catholics mainly Drung, Lisu, Nu, and Tibetan Ethnic Minorities in Gongshan Drungzu Nuzu Autonomous County in North Western Yunnan Province pray together daily.

Gongshan County is more than 2,000 Kilometers from Beijing.

Here, Local Catholics have not only maintained their faith but they have also evangelized. When It is Winter, and it is impossible to till the land -- Catholics go in groups of 2 or 3 to visit and to preach to Non - Catholic Villagers at their Homes.

Because of the many different ethnic minority groups in the county it is hard to use the Holy Bible to evangelize because the Holy Bible is available only in Chinese, Tibetan, and Lisu.

This is why Catholics use Hymns to spread the Good News instead.

Father Paul Chen Kaihua of Kunming Diocese in the same province said that after learning about this Catholic Community from the faithful in his diocese he has started visiting them twice a year.

Father Chen said He was impressed by their Catholic Faith.

Despite, The absence of a Catholic Priest He said the number of Catholic Churches has grown to 15 from the 3 established in 1949. The number of Catholics also grew from just 1,000 to more than 5,000 thanks to the Evangelization by Lay People.

French Catholic Missionaries served this area before 1949.

The Priest recounted that the blessing of 2 New Catholic Churches has encouraged the Catholics to continue to expand their community much as they have been doing in recent years.

Father John Fang Ping from Urumqi Diocese visited Gongshan County after a Parishioner working in Yunnan Province told him about these Catholics. Father Fang says it is one of China's Poorest Counties.

The Villagers seldom see a Catholic Priest. Occasionally, Priests from other Dioceses pay short visits but usually it is the Catholics who gather by themselves to pray.

The Villagers had built by themselves two churches and carried every piece of Brick, Wood, and Rock Uphill where the Churches are currently situated.

At the Blessing Ceremony of these Catholic Churches Father Fang recalled that the Catholic Villagers dressed in their ethnic costumes and offered their Farm Produce as well as Chickens, Lambs, and Cows as Gifts to God.

Finally, in Gongshan County Father Fang learned to say the Hail Mary among the Catholic Villagers in Tibetan. This is an important cultural  heritage of the Catholic Church in Yunnan Province.

Credits : Asianews


Thursday, 17 August 2017

A Unique Catholic Parish in Croatia

A Catholic Parish in Croatia in Eastern Europe has opened a "Prayer Cafe" for Young People where Food and Drink can be bought with Hail Mary's and Our Fathers.

In the Acts of the Apostles, It says that the Disciples used to come together for a Meal after the Holy Eucharist so in the case of this Catholic Parish in Croatia they are following a Biblical Tradition.

This Cafe opened recently in a Parish Hall adjoining Holy Spirit Church in Zagreb and attracts a lot of Youth who attend Sunday Mass on a regular basis.

Salesian Father Damir Stojic says that Young Catholics had thought up the idea of "Paying With Prayers". There are Plans to keep this cafe open indefinitely.

The Priest said that Parish Leaders had encouraged Parents to donate Food and Drink for the cafe and that Church Authorities had supported this idea.

Father Stojic said that this cafe could be seen as continuing a tradition since a large number of Salesian Parishes all over the world ran cafes at their churches.

Prices at the cafe vary from three Our Fathers for a Standard Cup of Coffee to a more expensive Coca Cola which costs Five Hail Marys and a Glory Be.

A cup of Cappuccino costs 4 Our Fathers.

Other Items on the Menu include Fruit Juices, various kinds of Tea, and a Range of Cakes and Cookies.

Alcohol is strictly not allowed.

Father Stojic says that when you get something for free it is hard to appreciate it, but when you have a Price List such as this cafe has it is appreciated a lot.

Catholics make up 88 % of Croatia's 5 Million Population.

Credits and References :

Newsbits
Page 26
Don Bosco's Madonna, Mumbai
May 2008
Volume 10, N0-1

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Catholicism in Myanmar -- One Province says it all

Catholicism arrived in Myanmar also known as Burma in the 15th Century along with Portuguese Missionaries and Explorers.

But, It was not till the 20th Century that it really got an impetus in the form of conversions and growth.

In Loikaw Province in Myanmar, Catholics are 25 per cent of the population, this in a country where Catholics are not even 1 per cent.

Read all about it here : 
 
Loikaw Church, the legacy of martyrdom, of  Fr Mario Vergara and Isidore Ngei Ko Lat

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Loikaw-Church,-the-legacy-of-martyrdom,-that-Fr-Mario-Vergara-and-Isidore-Ngei-Ko-Lat-31137.html

Raised to the altars, Isidoro Ngei Ko Lat, first Burmese Blessed, and Mario Vergara, 19th PIME martyr

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Raised-to-the-altars,-Isidoro-Ngei-Ko-Lat,-first-Burmese-Blessed,-and-Mario-Vergara,-19th-PIME-martyr-30915.html





 

Tuesday, 15 August 2017

The Sacred Heart of Jesus in my Life

The Heart of Jesus has always had a special place in my "Spiritual Life".

From the age of 10, I have been amazed at the love shown to us "Unworthy Sinners" by the Pierced Heart of Jesus.

The Pierced Heart of Jesus is the Heart of the God - Man who was subject to so many indignities simply because he loved us tremendously.

The Sacred Heart of Jesus is not turned away at the sight of our sins. Rather, It loves us more and more all the time. In this regard, The Cleansing Blood of the Heart of Jesus is of "Infinite Value".

The Sacred Heart of Jesus beats for us all the time even when we are distant from God and His Church.

The Heart of Jesus is a Heart of "Divine Love" waiting to light up our tepid Heart and Soul and bring us back to God's Teachings which we need most in our day to day life.

The Sacred Heart of Jesus worked a massive miracle in my life which needs to be narrated here.

In 1998, when I was living in Philadelphia in the United States I was diagnosed with an "Inner Ear Infection" which caused me to get dizzy spells specially spells of vertigo.

I prayed to every saint to heal me of this terrible ailment but nothing seemed to help. I finally turned to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and instantly I fell in love with the Crown of Thorns around his "Divine Heart".

I prayed earnestly to the Sacred Heart to heal me completely and in a matter of a few months I was as good as new.

The Prayer that helped me was a short prayer that I prayed every day 10 times a day.

"Sacred Heart of Jesus, I put all my trust in Thee". I placed my trust in the Merciful Heart of Jesus when nothing else seemed to work in my life.

Try It -- It Works.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Divine Mercy Devotion in Goa

The Divine Mercy Devotion in Goa is actively promoted by the Discalced Carmelite Friars of the Karnataka - Goa Province.

A Name synonmous with the Propagation of the Divine Mercy Devotion in Goa throughout his Life was Father Anastasio Gomes O.C.D. He was truly an Apostle of Divine Mercy in Goa.

He saw to it that Divine Mercy Literature both in Konkani -- The State Language of Goa as well as in English was printed and disseminated among the faithful.

My Family specially my Father Dr. Joe D'sa M.D. and my late Mother Mrs Lena D'sa as well as myself helped Father Anastasio Gomes to raise money for the building of an Altar dedicated to the Divine Mercy.

We did this by visiting Catholic Families in various parts of Mumbai and asking for Donations towards the building of this Divine Mercy Altar and Divine Mercy Chapel as it exists now.

A Certain Discalced Carmelite Friar by the name of Father Michael Morris Shenoy was a good friend of my Parents when He was stationed at Carmelite Seminary, Peddem -- Mapusa -Goa. 

Read all about the Propagation of the Divine Mercy Message and Devotion in Goa here.

http://www.carmelgoa.com/DivineMercyDevotion.html

Saturday, 12 August 2017

I would like to be a Catholic Evangelist in China

I strongly believe that God sent me on earth to be an Evangelist among the Chinese People of Mainland China.

I would like to convert thousands and thousands of Chinese to the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus Christ -- the Source of all Grace and Mercy.

The Eucharistic Heart of Jesus means everything to me and I would like to make his Divine Love known to the Han Chinese from Beijing to Shanghai and from Shanghai to Chengdu.

The Han Chinese seem to be very receptive to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

I would like to promote Eucharistic Adoration in China as if there was no tomorrow.

My Biggest Objective in evangelizing the Chinese is to see that they develop a strong affection for the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity for Jesus Christ in the Holy Eucharist.

I would like to see Eucharistic Adoration Chapels in every diocese in China but specially in North - West China specially in the Diocese of Zhouzhi.

Blessed Sacrament Processions are the need of the Hour in various provinces in China specially in Sichuan, Yunnan, Hebei, and Gansu to name a few.

The Person of Jesus Christ needs to be promoted in China among those who live in Cities as well as in the countryside.

I would like to make the Chinese "Living Tabernacles" for Jesus Christ.


Friday, 11 August 2017

Father Bukowiński A Witness to the Catholic Faith

Father Bukowiński was a Unique Catholic Priest who suffered much for the Faith in the Soviet Gulag in Central Asia. 

He was an Outstanding Apostle of the Holy Eucharist to souls under his care in what is now Kazakhstan. 

Read all about it here : 

Father Bukowiński, witness of faith despite persecution in concentration camp





Thursday, 10 August 2017

Catholicism in Mongolia -- A Young Church that is Dynamic in more ways than one

Catholicism in Mongolia is a Young Religion.

It was introduced only in 1992, making it only 25 years old.

The Catholic Community in Mongolia numbers a little over 1,000 members now and there are 6 Parishes now in Mongolia when there were none in 1992. 

Recently, the First Native Mongolian Priest was ordained to the Priesthood.

Here are some interesting links on Catholicism in Mongolia.

1) Easter in Ulaanbaatar, dozens of baptisms for a "vibrant and dynamic" community

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Easter-in-Ulaanbaatar,-dozens-of-baptisms-for-a-vibrant-and-dynamic-community--27584.html

2) First Mongolian priest "to help believers strengthen their faith"

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/First-Mongolian-priest-to-help-believers-strengthen-their-faith-37664.html

3)  My art is at the service of God, convert says

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/My-art-is-at-the-service-of-God,-convert-says-2000.html



Mission Among The Montagnards of the Highlands of Vietnam

Ethnic Tribal Montagnards are the dominant group that live in the Highlands of Central Vietnam.

They are Animists by Religion.

They have a constant hunger for Jesus Christ in His Holy Sacrament and in His Holy Word.

They see Jesus Christ as their "Divine Physician" of their souls and of their bodies.

To them, Jesus Christ is the Universal Saviour that sets them free from Sin and Bondage.

Evangelization Work among Tribal Montagnards has been highly and hugely successful since 2003.

There has been a wave of conversions to the Catholic Faith among Tribal Montagnards since 2008.

In 2008, 30,000 Montagnards embraced the Catholic Faith and in 2009 20,000 Montagnards embraced the Catholic Faith.

The Catholic Church is growing rapidly in the highlands of Central Vietnam and in North Vietnam too to a considerable extent.

Praised be Jesus Christ in the Blessed Sacrament for the miracles he is working among the Montagnard People.

Here are 3 interesting links on Catholicism in Vietnam.

1) Mission among the Montagnards living in remote areas

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Mission-among-the-Montagnards-living-in-remote-areas-20713.html

2)  The Church grows in Lang Son and Bui Chu

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/The-Church-grows-in-Lang-Son-and-Bui-Chu-10054.html

 3)  Fr Nguyễn Văn Mạnh, new bishop coadjutor in the diocese of Dalat

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Fr-Nguy%E1%BB%85n-V%C4%83n-M%E1%BA%A1nh,-new-bishop-coadjutor-in-the-diocese-of-Dalat-40627.html




Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Catholicism in Cambodia

The Cambodian Catholic Church is a small community with a great history.

The history of Catholic missionary work began in 1554 with a visit by a Jesuit Missionary Priest.

The first Catholic Parishes were founded in the 17th century by Jesuits, Dominicans and Franciscans.

In the 1700's  the Catechism was translated into Khmer by the priests of the Paris Foreign Missions and in 1850 the Apostolic Prefecture of Cambodia was created.

The first Cambodian born priest was ordained in 1957.

Only in 1990 were Christians allowed to practice their faith. 

Here is an interesting link on Catholicism in Cambodia.

Cambodian Church celebrated Easter with 300 new baptisms

http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Cambodian-Church-celebrating-Easter-with-300-new-baptisms-40469.html



Tuesday, 8 August 2017

Martyrs honoured in Central Vietnam

Catholics from a Central Vietnam Diocese celebrated 400 years of the Faith and remembered Martyrs who were killed for the Faith.

Three Jesuit Missionaries established the first mission station in the 1600's in Central Vietnam.

From that Mission Station, the Missionaries promoted Catholicism to all the surrounding places.

The Missionaries were responsible for the romanisation of the Vietnamese Language.

This Anniversary Event of 400 years of the Faith was aimed at remembering ancestors of present day Vietnamese Catholics who sacrificed their own lives willingly for the spread of the Catholic Faith in Central Vietnam.

More than 20,000 Catholics were martyred in Vietnam in the 18th and 19th Centuries.

Andrew Yen was the first Vietnamese who was killed for following the Catholic Faith on July 26, 1644. He was beatified by Saint Pope John Paul 2 in March 2000.

He is known as the Patron of Catholic Catechists in Vietnam.

It seems to me that the Catholic Faith is spreading rapidly in Vietnam as it is in China. 

Credits and References :

Martyrs honoured as Diocese celebrates 400 years
International Catholic News 
Page 21
The Examiner, Mumbai
August 5-11, 2017
Vol 168, N0-31

Monday, 7 August 2017

Edmund Bojanowski -- A Noble Soul

Introduction :

Edmund Bojanowski was born on the 14th of November 1814 into the noble family of Grobonog of the principality of Poznan.

From a young age, Edmund nurtured a great love for Jesus Christ, Mother Mary, and the Church.

Edmund was a sickly child when he was young. He was so sick once, that his mother took him to the Marian Shrine of Our Lady of Sorrows at Gostyn to pray for his recovery that took place miraculously.

Proof of His Cure is evident in that Marian Shrine.

Since, He was a sickly child, He was taught at home. He often meditated on the Gospels where he got an insight into the Personality and Spirituality of Jesus. His attendance at Daily Mass was 100 %.

Later, when he was older he helped country folks to live their spiritual lives intensely for Jesus and Mary.

Founder of a Religious Order of Women :

In 1850, He founded an Institute to instruct and educate children in the faith and in life.

With this purpose in mind, he asked for the help of simple polish catholic girls who were not very literate but rich in the faith.

He saw to it that they were adequately trained for the project in hand.

He taught these peasant girls about daily prayer, meditation, spiritual reading, and making a weekly confession.

In order, to spread education in the countryside, care, and helping the sick Edmund used up a large amount of his Inheritance.

He was indeed to the nth degree a Genuine Catholic giving everything to Jesus and to others.

Edmund's Life ended on August 17, 1871 near the Marian Shrine of Gorka Duchowna.

The Congregation He founded numbered 22 Houses in the Poznan District and almost a 100 Sisters.

Credits and References :

Nobility in a Simple Soul
Edmund Bojanowski
1814-1871
By Paolo Risso
Pages 12-14
Don Bosco's Madonna, Mumbai
September 2007, Vol - 9, N0-5 






Sunday, 6 August 2017

Istevan Sandor -- A Unique Martyr

Introduction : 

Istevan Sandor's Family was from the Hungarian Nobility and were deeply catholic in more ways than one.

Stephen -- Istevan in Hungarian had a pleasant and generous nature.

The Priests of His Parish noticed his good qualities and advised him to join the Salesians.

As, He grew older he wanted to dedicate himself completely to educating the youth teaching them to love Jesus Christ.

The Young Salesian :

He worked in the Railways in Hungary but he soon began to understand that he wanted to follow Christ in the footsteps of Don Bosco. He joined the Aspirantate of the Salesians where he excelled and was soon accepted into the Novitiate.

When Istevan was 20 years old, he was called up by the Army during the Second World War.

All through his Military Service, He was an Exemplary Salesian. The Barracks and the Trenches became his Oratory.

Soon after the Second World War, Hungary was suppressed by Stalin and became a Communist State.

The Property of the Catholic Church was confiscated and the Catholic Schools were taken over by the Communist Authorities.

Istevan who was working at a Salesian Printing Press at that time saved a number of Printing Machines and Furniture at a great cost to himself.

Martyr for Jesus Christ :

Istevan had to leave not only the printing press but the Salesian Community where He was an Integral Member.

His Desire was to remain faithful to Jesus Christ even unto death.

On a certain day, in July 1952 the Hungarian Police arrested him. He was in prison for about a year.

After this, at a farce of a trial He was condemned to death for subversive activity.

The reality was that He was faithful to Christ, to Don Bosco, and to his Catholic Identity.

In 1953, Istevan Sandor was hanged. He suffered under Stalin for love to Jesus Christ.

A Salesian and Martyr only for Him.

Credits and References :

Suffered under Stalin
Istevan Sandor
By Paolo Risso
Pages 12-14
Don Bosco's Madonna, Mumbai
January 2008, Vol - 9, N0 - 9 




Friday, 4 August 2017

Catholicism in Eastern India

Catholicism was introduced in Eastern India in the late 19th Century in the State of Jharkhand as it is called now by Pioneer Belgian and Dutch Jesuit Missionaries.

The most prominent of them was Father Constant Lievens S.J. -- The Apostle of Chotanagpur.

He arrived in Ranchi -- The Headquarters of the Chotanagpur Plateau in 1885. He did not know at that time what the future held for him in terms of evangelization and as a Missionary Pastor too.

With strong faith in God, he started educating and evangelizing Animist Oraon Tribals in Ranchi and in the surrounding areas too.

From 1885-1892, He Evangelized more than 7,000 Tribals to Catholicism. To be one with them, He mastered a number of local languages like Sadri and Khadri.

They are dialects of "Tribal Hindi" spoken by the Aboriginals of the Chotanagpur Plateau.

Today, in 2017 Ranchi is an Archdiocese with many independent Dioceses under it like Gumla, Simdega, Khunti, and Daltonganj to name a few.

The Oraon Tribals from Ranchi to Daltonganj seem very receptive to the Gospel Message. They see Jesus Christ as their Liberator and Saviour from Physical and Spiritual Bondage.

In a number of districts in West Bengal like Burdwan, Bankura, and Purulia to mention a few-- Santal Aboriginals seem very receptive to the liberating message of Jesus Christ.

There have been many conversions to Catholicism among Santal Tribals for the past 50 years or more.

This is mostly due to Pioneering Missionary Work by Salesian Fathers and Brothers specially from Spain.

Catholic Community Maintains Faith Without A Priest For More Than 50 Years

Catholics in a remote mountain are of South Western China continue to keep their God Given Faith Alive, even though no Catholic Priest has ...