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Quotes and news

Let us remember our baptism

In his Angelus address last Sunday, Pope Francis said: “The feast of Jesus’s baptism invites every Christian to remember his or her own baptism. To forget our baptism means to expose ourselves to the risk of losing our memory of what the Lord has done in us. We risk ending up considering it only as something that happened in the past, and not the sacrament in which we became new creatures and were clothed with Christ, made part of the relationship of Jesus with God the Father.

“Thanks to baptism, we are also able to forgive and love those who offend us and do us harm; we are able to recognise in the last and in the poor the face of the Lord who visits us and is close to us. In short, more than a sociological moment that in­scribes our name in the parish register, the day of our baptism constitutes a commitment and the identity card of the believer.”

Cardinal calls for transparent elections

In his message for the new year, Archbishop of Caracas, Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, said: “In order to resolve this situation [in Venezuela], which has its roots in the political problem, it is necessary to hold the presidential elections for which the constitution calls. But for that, it is necessary to guarantee fair and reasonable conditions for elections with transparency and whose results the people can trust.”

The cardinal, and his auxiliary bishops who supported the message, called for the release of “prisoners held for actions related to political activities”. The bishops stated that “we are pleased that some positive steps have already been taken in that regard”.

“The year 2017 was very tragic for Venezuela, marked by political violence with a terrible toll of more than 120 persons killed in attacks on demonstrations held by the people,” read the message.

Fanatics attack a Catholic college

Bishop Theodore Mascarenhas, secretary general of Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India, told the Catholic news agency Fides News that on January 4, more than 900 Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Pari­shad, one of the Hindu right-wing student groups, threatened to at­tack and forcibly enter St Mary’s Post Graduate College in Vidisha, Sagar diocese, in Madhya Pradesh, central India, to perform Hindu rituals in the college. The bishop said the police gave the college full protection but the priests who manage it are living in great tension.

(Compiled by Fr Joe Borg)

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