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Current Issue
Spring, 2015
Volume 41, Number 1
  
9 February 2015
Michael J.L. La Civita




Syro-Malankara Catholic catechumens process toward a community event in a remote area of central India. To learn more about the growth of the Syro-Malabar and Syro-Malankara Catholic churches in India, check out “Reaching the Unreached in India” in the recent edition
of ONE magazine. (photo: John E. Kozar)




9 February 2015
J.D. Conor Mauro




Ethiopian Orthodox clergy chant the psalms in the ancient rock-cut churches of Lalibela, Ethiopia.
(photo: Carl Hétu)


Egypt uses church to bolster ties with Ethiopia (Al-Monitor) At a time when the Egyptian government officially acknowledged that obstacles re-emerged in the negotiations with Ethiopia over the Renaissance Dam — which is threatening the Egyptian share of the Nile’s waters — Egypt is seeking to take advantage of the rapprochement between the Egyptian and Ethiopian Coptic churches. This was shown during the last visit of the Ethiopian patriarch to Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria at Christmas. Egypt is trying to benefit from these ties to improve bilateral ties, drawing on historical relations that have linked both churches since the 14th century until their separation in 1959...

400 rabbis urge Netanyahu to end Palestinian house demolitions (Christian Today) More than 400 rabbis and cantors from Israel and around the world have signed a petition addressed to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, urging him to stop the practice of demolishing Palestinian homes...

Synod of Chaldean Bishops: join forces to liberate the lands occupied by jihadists (Fides) The Iraqi national government and the regional Kurdistan government must “allocate the necessary funds to support families that Daesh expelled from their homes and deprived their property”. In addition, all “national and international forces” must “unite their intent to liberate the occupied territories as soon as possible and put in place the necessary measures to protect Christians and other Iraqis, so they all return to their homes and live in safety and with dignity”. These are the appeals launched by the Extraordinary Synod of the Chaldean Bishops, summoned by Patriarch Louis Raphael I at the patriarchal seat of Baghdad on Saturday, 7 February...

Catholicos Baselios Paulose II welcomes dialogue with the Syriac Orthodox Church (The Orthodox Church) Baselios Paulose II Patriarch — Catholicos on the Apostolic Throne of St Thomas and Malankara Metropolitan — has welcomed dialogue with the Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch and All East. The Catholics stated that he is pleased to wholeheartedly cooperate with the peace initiatives of Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II...

ISIS pulls some forces and hardware from Aleppo (The Daily Star) ISIS has withdrawn some of its insurgents and equipment from areas northeast of the Syrian city of Aleppo, rebels and residents say, adding to signs of strain in the Syrian provinces of its self-declared caliphate...



6 February 2015
Michael J.L. La Civita




In 1996, the tenth-century Haghpat Monastery in northern Armenia was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. (photo: Michael J.L. La Civita)

The world of the Eastern churches is a labyrinth. Rich in history and culture, the development of these distinct churches dates to the age of the apostles, and mirrors the evolution of humanity these last two millennia.

From 2005 to 2012, CNEWA’s magazine, ONE, offered its readers a profile of each Eastern church, Catholic and non-Catholic. These 47 features offered the reader an objective account on the course of each church’s development and utilized lavish images to illustrate their vitality.

Now, a new portal gathers together these profiles and groups each church under its appropriate tradition. This organizational strategy adheres largely to the ancient concept of the pentarchy, the five principal episcopal sees of the church in the Roman world as defined by the Council of Chalcedon in 451: Rome, representing the church of the West, and the four Eastern patriarchal sees of Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem.

The church in Armenia — the first nation to adopt Christianity in 301 — is listed separately. While the Armenian church developed independently, it did not evolve in isolation, rather it absorbed and imparted traditions, rites and elements from the entire Christian tradition, East and West.

We hope you enjoy this compilation!



6 February 2015
J.D. Conor Mauro




An Indian Christian woman holds a rosary during a protest outside the Sacred Heart Cathedral following recent attacks on churches in New Delhi on 5 February 2015. (photo: Sajjad Hussain/AFP/Getty Images)

Police drag protesting priests, nuns, children into buses (NDTV) A large number of policemen swooped down on a protest in Delhi against church attacks, and dragged activists, including priests and nuns into buses. Some alleged that they were attacked with batons. Christian groups were protesting outside the Sacred Heart cathedral in central Delhi when the police arrived. Scores of protesters were manhandled and bundled into buses, their bags, shoes and other belongings left scattered on the road. Father Dominic Emanuel, the spokesperson of the Delhi Catholic Archdiocese, was also forced into a bus and taken away. An elderly woman, who lay on the road, was picked up by four policewomen and thrown into a bus…

India government official promises security to churches (Fides) Rajnath Singh, India’s minister of Home Affairs, has ordered an inquiry into the recent attacks on Catholic churches in the last two months, starting from the desecration of St. Alphonsa church. The minister communicated the decision to a delegation of Christian leaders who met him after the demonstrated organized by Christians on 5 February in Delhi to protest against the inaction of the government. During the protest, police forced demonstrators onto buses…

Moscow concerned over tension on Armenia-Azerbaijan contact line (Azernews) Russia has called on the parties to the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict to avoid actions leading to escalation on the contact line. Armenia and Azerbaijan should take effective measures aimed at reducing tension, said Alexander Lukashevich, Spokesperson for Russian Foreign Ministry, reported Tass, a Russian media outlet. He said the very difficult situation on the frontline has resulted in an intensification of a large number of ceasefire violations, clashes and actions of sabotage groups. The data provided by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe’s monitoring commission revealed that 12 people were killed and 18 others wounded in wake of the skirmishes in January, noted Lukashevich. Armenia has held Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent territories under occupation for over two decades…

ISIS threatens Assyrians in Syria, women and children evacuated (AINA) Two days ago ISIS ordered Assyrians in the region of Hassake to remove the crosses from their churches and to pay a jizya (a tax on non-Muslims), warning residents that if they failed to pay they would have to leave or else be killed. On Sunday ISIS entered the village of Tel Hormizd and forced residents to remove the cross from the church. After ISIS left the town, the women and children were evacuated to the town of Um Gargen, directly north across the river, while the Assyrian men, who are armed, stayed to defend their town. Kurdish fighters from the YPG have also entered the town to protect it…

‘4,000-strong’ Christian militia formed to fight ISIS (Newsweek) Iraqi Christians have established their own militia and are training to fight the Islamic State (ISIS) in the Nineveh Plains of northern Iraq. Many Christian towns were captured by ISIS when they marched across the country last summer and approximately 30,000 Christians have since fled the Nineveh Plains for fear of falling into the hands of the radical Islamists. According to British newspaper the Catholic Herald, the Nineveh Plains Protection Units (NPU) have 3,000 Christian men registered to be trained, while another 500 are already training for combat and 500 volunteers from the group are already situated in Assyrian villages in northern Iraq. Newsweek was not able to independently verify these claims…

New apostolic nuncio to Egypt appointed (Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has nominated 66-year-old Italian Archbishop Bruno Musarò to be the new Apostolic Nuncio to Egypt and Delegate to the League of Arab States. Archbishop Musarò was formerly the Apostolic Nuncio to Cuba from August 2011 to 5 February 2015…



Tags: India Iraq Armenia Indian Christians Azerbaijan

5 February 2015
Greg Kandra




A monk studies scripture at Debra Damo Monastery in Ethiopia. To learn more about the enduring monastic traditions in that corner of Africa, read “Relevant or Relic?” in the November 2010 edition of ONE. (photo: Sean Sprague)



5 February 2015
Greg Kandra




Jordanians line the streets between Amman and Queen Alia airport waiting to greet King Abdullah II upon his arrival at the airport near Amman on 4 February, in Amman, Jordan.
(photo by Jordan Pix/Getty Images)


Jordan king vows “relentless” war against ISIS (Voice of America) Jordan’s King Abdullah has vowed to take tough action against Islamic State militants following the group’s gruesome killing of a Jordanian pilot captured after his plane went down during a mission targeting the militants in Syria. The murder of pilot Muath al-Kaseasbeh triggered international condemnation and prompted Jordanian authorities to execute two Iraqi prisoners, failed suicide bomber Sajida al-Rishawi and al-Qaida operative Ziad al-Karbouly. King Abdullah stressed that Jordan would be “relentless” in the war against Islamic State...

Secretary of State Kerry says peace in Ukraine is up to Russia (CNN) U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry put the ball squarely in Russia’s court Thursday for finding a peaceful end to the devastating conflict in eastern Ukraine, saying the biggest threat Ukraine faces is “Russia’s continued aggression” there. Speaking alongside Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in Kiev, Kerry called on Russia to take three steps he said would enable a diplomatic solution “that is staring everyone in the face.” Those are pulling back heavy weapons beyond the range of civilian populations, removing foreign troops and heavy equipment from Ukraine, and closing the Russia-Ukraine border...

Patriarch Kirill praises Vatican’s balanced view on Ukraine crisis (Interfax) Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia has criticized the policies pursued by the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and has thanked the Vatican for its balanced approach toward the Ukrainian crisis. “Today, fresh conflicts in Ukraine in light of the latest political events in the country are causing concern in our relations with the Roman Catholic Church,” the patriarch said in Moscow. “At the same time, I would like to note with satisfaction that the Holy See itself has always pursued a balanced stance toward the situation in Ukraine and has avoided any lop-sided assessments, but has called for peace talks and an end to armed clashes,” he said...

Vatican officials reportedly denied visas for India visit (Vatican Radio) The Conference of Catholic Bishops of India (CCBI) alleged that two key Vatican officials who were to address the 27th National Assembly of the Conference of Catholic Bishops of India (CCBI) in Bengaluru which began on 3 February had been denied visas. Archbishop Arthur Roche, Secretary of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, and Archbishop Protase Rugambwa, President of Pontifical Mission Societies and Adjunct Secretary to the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, were key resource persons for the week-long conference...



Tags: India Ukraine Jordan Russian Orthodox

4 February 2015
Greg Kandra




An elderly Ukrainian woman reacts as her acquaintances board a bus to flee due to a military conflict in Debaltseve on 4 February. The pope spoke of the conflict in today’s General Audience. He called for prayers that “this horrible fratricidal violence” would end and added that dialogue was “the only way possible to bring peace and harmony to that martyred land.”
(photo: CNS/Sergey Polezhaka, Reuters)




4 February 2015
Greg Kandra




Saif al-Kasasbeh, second from left, father of First Lt. Muath al-Kasasbeh, Jordanian pilot, prays in Jordan on February 4 with other mourners during an event commemorating the Islamic State murder of the pilot. (photo: CNS/Jasmal Nasrallah, EPA)

Jordan’s Christian churches condemn pilot’s murder (CNS) Christian churches in Jordan condemned the Islamic State militants’ killing of First Lt. Muath al-Kasasbeh, a Jordanian pilot who had been held in captivity by the jihadist group. Special Masses and prayers were planned as churches sent condolences conveying their “deep sorrow” to his Muslim family and tribe, the Catholic Center for Studies and Media in Amman reported on 4 February. “Christian churches in the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan convey their deep sorrow and sadness over the martyrdom of pilot Muath Kasasbeh,” read a statement issued by Father Rifat Bader, the center’s director...

Jordan executes Al Qaeda prisoners (Vatican Radio) Jordan executed two Al Qaeda prisoners before dawn Wednesday, after the so-called Islamic State released a video of militants burning captured Jordanian pilot Lt. Muath Al-Kaseasbeh to death in a cage...

Iraq’s Christians take up arms to fight ISIS (Wall Street Journal) Hundreds of Christian men are picking up rifles for the first time at a former U.S. military facility in the hills of northeast Iraq and training to reclaim their towns from Islamic State militants who stormed the country last year. Fresh recruits to a new Iraqi Christian militia said their families were abandoned to militants by government forces last summer and they seek to create a force that will keep their towns and villages safe even after Islamic State is defeated. “I want to defend our own lands, with our own force,” said Nasser Abdullah, 26 years old, who is helping lead younger recruits in training...

Pope decries “fratricide” in Ukraine (Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has decried the ‘fratricide’ conflict in Ukraine and issued an urgent appeal for dialogue, “the only possible path to peace”. Speaking at the end of the weekly General Audience, the Pope said his thoughts go to the beloved Ukrainian people. “Unfortunately the situation is worsening” as is the clash between the parties he said...

UN condemns rising civilian deaths in Ukraine (Vatican Radio) The United Nations says a fresh surge in violence in east Ukraine is proving “catastrophic” as at least 5,358 people have been killed since last April, including 224 civilians killed in three-week period leading up to 1 February...

Coming to mourn Tahir Square’s dead, and joining them instead (The New York Times) Her friends wanted to lay a wreath in Tahrir Square as a memorial, but Shaimaa el-Sabbagh urged them to reconsider. She feared that the police might attack, mistaking them for supporters of the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood, said her cousin, Sami Mohamed Ibrahim. But how, her friends asked, could the police attack civilians who were armed only with flowers?...



Tags: Egypt Ukraine Jordan Muslim

3 February 2015
Greg Kandra




In this image from 2013, children in India gather to pray. To learn more about the enduring faith of the Thomas Christians, read “2,000 Years and Counting” from the
Winter 2013 edition of ONE. (photo: John E. Kozar)




3 February 2015
Greg Kandra




In this image from December, a Yazidi couple, who were forced to flee their home because of Islamic State’s advance, pose for a photograph in their temporary home at a refugee camp near Zakho in Duhok, Iraq. This week, Kurdish forces uncovered a mass grave of Yazidis slaughtered by ISIS. (photo: Matt Cardy/Getty)

Catholics fear wave of attacks in India (The New York Times) A series of episodes at churches over the last two months has prompted Roman Catholics here to worry about a deliberate campaign of violence, and to call on Prime Minister Narendra Modi to speak out against religious intimidation. At least five Catholic churches in and around Delhi have reported various attacks, including suspected arson, burglary, vandalism and stone-throwing. The latest was discovered on Monday morning at St. Alphonsa’s Church in New Delhi, where a parish employee found the church’s front door broken open, ceremonial vessels missing, and communion wafers strewn about...

Mass grave of Yazidis uncovered in Iraq (Al-Arabiya) Iraqi Kurdish forces have uncovered a mass grave containing the remains of about 25 members of the Yazidi minority believed to have been killed by the militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), local officials have said. “Peshmerga forces discovered a mass grave yesterday (Sunday) containing the remains of about 25 people — men, children and women — from the Yazidi (sect) who were killed by” ISIS, Myaser Haji Saleh, a local official responsible for the Sinjar area, told AFP...

Civilians die as battles rage in Ukraine (BBC) Up to 16 civilians have been killed and dozens more injured in the space of 24 hours in fighting in eastern Ukraine. Government officials and representatives of the rebels reported deaths in locations across the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Ukraine’s army also said five soldiers had died during fierce clashes with the pro-Russian rebels near the strategic town of Debaltseve in eastern Donetsk. Civilian casualties have risen sharply in recent weeks amid a rebel offensive...

Pope Francis, Eritrean priest among nominees for Nobel Prize (Reuters) A Russian newspaper critical of President Vladimir Putin is among the nominations for the 2015 Nobel Peace Prize, along with Edward Snowden, Pope Francis and a priest helping African migrants. Although the committee has marked the last four 10-year anniversaries of the 1945 bombing of Hiroshima by honoring the fight against nuclear proliferation, there was little speculation among Nobel watchers that the trend would continue. Thousands of people, including all members of parliaments, can make nominations, which must be postmarked no later than Feb. 1. The $1.2 million award will be announced in October...



Tags: India Iraq Pope Francis Ukraine Eritrea





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