Christians condemn closing down of Mother Teresa Chair

 

The Mother Teresa Chair is being closed down for want of funds.

New Delhi:

Christians have condemned the Indira Gandhi National Open University’s (IGNOU) decision to discontinue the Mother Teresa Chair in health, education and social work started in the Christ Jubilee Year 2000.

“We condemn the reprehensible and in-comprehensive decision of Indian Government-sponsored IGNOU to discontinue the Mother Teresa Chair,” said John Dayal, secretary general of the All India Christian Council, in a press statement.

“We call upon the Board of Management of IGNOU not to close down the Mother Teresa Chair, but to add to its endowment to further the cause of social work and research,” he added.

The Mother Teresa Chair is ostensibly being closed down for want of funds, together with a Chair sponsored by the Indian Space organisation and some others.

The University’s Board of Management “decided to continue with chairs that are sponsored by an outside agency and did not utilize the funds of the university,” M Aslam, vice-chancellor of IGNOU, had said in the media.

There was opposition to it with some of the academic staff calling it unilateral. Professors say the guidelines for establishment of a chair sets rule for setting up a new chair, it does not say anything about discontinuing an existing chair.

The discontinuance of the Mother Teresa Chair comes at a time when there is a global Catholic campaign urging Pope Francis to fast track the canonization of the Albanian-born Indian-national Nobel Laureate.

The Chair was established in a Memorandum of understanding between the Catholics Bishops’ Conference of India and the university on February 29, 2000.

It facilitates the initiatives of IGNOU for launching several socially relevant programs of study. The revised MoU was signed on April 22, 2009 at St. John’s Medical College, Bangalore.

Its objectives remain to address the needs of disadvantaged sections of the society through educational programs, extension activities and research and to develop and launch socially-relevant courses and programs of study such as social work, HIV/AIDS, family life education, substance abuse, and philosophy. It offers various diplomas and degrees in these subjects.

Source: Press statement

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Pope’s Mass: Some Christians overdramatize while others are suffering persecution

 

During his daily morning Mass, Pope Francis talked about suffering. He said that the plight of   persecuted Christians should make everybody think twice before complaining.
POPE FRANCIS
“Our life is too easy, our complaints are overdramatized. Faced with the complaints of so many people, of so many brothers and sisters who are in the dark, who have almost lost all memory, almost lost all hope – who are experiencing this exile from themselves, who are exiled, even from themselves – nothing!
Pope Francis compared persecuted Christians to Job, who stayed loyal to God despite the difficulties.
He also explained that every Christian faces moments of darkness, and that they should pray for those who are going through hard times.
SUMMARY OF THE POPE’S HOMILY
(Source: Vatican Radio)
“Is it blasphemy when Jesus complains – ‘Father, why have You forsaken me’? This is the mystery. I have often listened to people who are experiencing difficult and painful situations, who have lost a great deal or feel lonely and abandoned and they come to complain and ask these questions: Why? Why? They rebel against God. And I say, ‘Continue to pray just like this, because this is a prayer’. It was a prayer when Jesus said to his father: ‘Why  have You forsaken me!'”.
“And so many people, so many today, are in the same situation as Job. So many good people, just like Job, do not understand what has happened to them, or why. Many brothers and sisters who have no hope. Just think of the tragedies, the great tragedies, for example, of these brothers and sisters of ours who because they are Christians were driven out of their homes and left with nothing: ‘But, Lord, I have believed in you. Why? Is believing in you a curse, Lord? ‘”.
“We all go through this situation, we experience this situation. There are so many people who think it all ends in nothing.  Yet Saint Teresa, prayed and asked for strength to persevere in the dark. This is called entering into patience. Our life is too easy, our complaints are overdramatized. Faced with the complaints of so many people, of so many brothers and sisters who are in the dark, who have almost lost all memory, almost lost all hope – who are experiencing this exile from themselves, who are exiled, even from themselves – nothing! Jesus walked this path: from sunset on the Mount of Olives to the last word from the Cross: ‘Father, why have you forsaken me!”

 

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