Pope acknowledges corruption within the Church


Philippine Church leaders have some ‘soul-searching’ to do, say bishops.

Pope Francis addresses journalists on the papal plane to Rome

Rome:There are corrupt people and institutions within the Catholic Church, Pope Francis has acknowledged.

Talking to reporters on board the papal flight from Manila to Rome on Monday, the pontiff citied a 1994 experience when he was auxiliary bishop of Buenos Aires.

He said he was approached by two government officials who had a compelling offer.

“‘You have so much need here with so many poor,’” the pope recalled them saying. He said they offered him the equivalent of US$400,000.

“I listened because when the offer is so big, the offer challenges even a saint. But they went on: ‘To do this, we make the deposit and then you give us half for ourselves.’”

The offer shocked the future pope.

“In that moment I thought about what I would do: either I insult them and give them a kick where the sun doesn’t shine, or I play the fool,” he said. “I played the fool.”

Pope Francis said he politely declined the offer, suggesting the government officials donate the money — with a receipt.

“We must ask for forgiveness for these Catholics, those Christians who cause a scandal because of their corruption,” he said.

The pontiff made the comments at the end of his five-day visit to the Philippines, where he urged Filipinos to “reject every form of corruption which diverts resources from the poor”.

A 2008 World Bank study suggested corruption in the Philippines was among the worst in East Asia’s leading economies.

However, the country has sought to try and tackle corruption in recent years following some high-profile scandals such as the congressional “pork barrel” scheme.

The Philippines ranked 85 out of 175 countries on Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) last year, up from 105 in 2012.

According to local media, the country’s Catholic bishops this week met in private in Manila to discuss the messages Pope Francis delivered during his trip — including the issue of corruption.

Archbishop Ramon Arguelles of Lipa told reporters after the meeting that the bishops have to do “some soul-searching because corruption has entered the Church,” according to a report in Manila Standard Today.

Source: ucanews.com

Bishops ask Modi to urgently intervene to save secular India


Christians in India Voted Narendra Modi to power for Corruption Free Good Governance. Was it the mistake, to take his assurances at Face Value?  …..His Silence over current happenings in the country, make us Believe so……..GREG

The Christians of this country need assurance from the Government that we are protected and secure and safe in our motherland.

CBCI center in New Delhi.

New Delhi: 

Officials of the Indian bishops in a special consultation have asked Indian Prime Minister Narendara Modi to urgently intervene and stop activities that challenge nation’s secular nature.

They urged Modi “to urgently intervene and take appropriate action to stop incidents that pose big threat to the unity of this secular nation,” said a press release from Indian Catholic Bishops’ Conference.

Cardinal Baselios Cleemis Catholicos, president of the conference, presided over the special consultation on Monday in New Delhi.

Cardinals Oswald Gracias, Telesphore Toppo and George Alencherry also attended it along with CBCI Office-Bearers, representatives of Conference of Religious, laity youth and women.

The unfortunate incidents that happened in the past few months in various parts of our country have hurt the sentiments of the Christian community, said the press release referring to several cases of attacks against Christians and churches in India.

Such events have “shaken the faith in the secular fabric of our nation. The shocking incidents that have taken place against Churches, clergy and laity in Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh and Delhi have caused great concern for the Christian community,” it said.

The recent controversies in the name of religious reconversions portray a negative image about India. Communal polarization and the bid to homogenize India are posing threat to all minorities – women, dalits, and all linguistic, cultural and religious minorities, it said.

The reconversion programs of Hindu hardline organizations called Ghar Wapsi programmes, the saffranisation of education and culture, and the demands for a Hindu Rashtra are challenging to the secular ethos of our beloved country.

“The Christians of this country need assurance from the Government that we are protected and secure and safe in our motherland. We express our strong concern on the aforementioned issues,” said the press release signed by Conference’s Deputy Secretary General Fr. Joseph Chinnayyan.

“Putting an end to such dangerous tendencies is inevitable for the growth and progress of our great nation,” said asserting Christian recommitment “for the progress and development of our nation.”

Source: Press Release

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