22/05/2015 4:00 pm

Statement: Rohingya Crisis

The escalating humanitarian crisis facing the Rohingya people cannot be ignored by the international community. It is more important than ever that Burma's authorities take decisive action to end the persecution, destitution and intercommunal tensions that are forcing thousands of people into perilous journeys on the Andaman Sea.

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20/05/2015 8:59 am

Bishop Philip Egan Celebrates Mass in the presence of Blessed Louis and Zelie Martin

The relics of the parents of St Thérèse of Lisieux, Blessed Louis and Blessed Zelie Martin continue their journey through the South of England. Today, Thursaday 21 May, they are in St John's Cathedral, Portsmouth, for a Day of veneration. Bishop Philip Egan presided over mass and his full homily can be found below.

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21/05/2015 5:00 pm

Statement on ‘Contemporary Christian Martyrs’

The Presidents of Churches Together in England have expressed their deep sorrow at the alarming increase in violence and murder against Christians in many parts of the world. Receiving reports, in some cases eye-witness reports, of martyrdom in Iraq, Iran, Egypt, India, Pakistan and Indonesia, among other places, the Presidents call upon all people of goodwill to uphold respect for the sanctity of life and the flourishing of every human being. 

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20/05/2015 8:59 am

Marriage and family life celebrated in the presence of the relics of Blessed Louis and Zelie Martin

The relics of the parents of St Thérèse of Lisieux, Blessed Louis and Blessed Zelie Martin have been touring the Diocese of Plymouth. Mass for married couples and families was celebrated in the Cathedral in Plymouth on 16 May and in Holy Trinity Church, Dorchester, on 19 May.

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18/05/2015 11:26 am

Two Palestinian nuns made saints by Pope Francis

Pope Francis has canonised two 19th century nuns from Palestine - Sister Marie-Alphonsine Danil Ghattas, founder of the Sisters of the Most Holy Rosary of Jerusalem, and the discalced Carmelite Maryam Baouardy - Mary of Jesus Crucified. The women are the first Palestinian saints in modern times.

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14/05/2015 11:00 am

Monsignor Patrick McKinney is New Bishop of Nottingham

Pope Francis has appointed Monsignor Patrick McKinney, a priest of the Archdiocese of Birmingham, as tenth Bishop of Nottingham. "As I prepare prayerfully to give of my best in the service of the Diocese of Nottingham, I ask for the prayers of everyone there. I look forward to getting to know all the priests, the deacons, religious, and lay men and women of the Diocese, and also working alongside other Christians and those involved in interreligious work and dialogue in service of the wider community."

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08/05/2015 4:08 pm

Cardinal Nichols congratulates Prime Minister David Cameron

“I send my congratulations to Prime Minister David Cameron on the result of yesterday’s General Election. His new government faces many challenges, not least encouraging and sustaining economic growth and, at the same time, giving particular attention to the needs of the poorest people in our society today. The Catholic Church in England and Wales looks forward to working with the newly elected Parliament for the common good of all.” 

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07/05/2015 12:00 pm

Archbishop Peter Smith blesses new Sheerness seafarers’ centre

Archbishop of Southwark, The Most Reverend Peter Smith has launched and blessed a newly-refurbished centre for seafarers at the port of Sheerness in Kent. The facility, operated by Catholic seafarers’ charity Apostleship of the Sea (AoS), is a sanctuary where visiting seafarers can spend quiet time in prayer, use the WiFi service to contact their families back home or relax with a game of pool.

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05/05/2015 4:00 pm

Archbishop of Birmingham presents Pope Francis with an icon of St Thomas of Canterbury – a witness to persecuted Christians

At a meeting between Pope Francis and members of the Anglican-Roman Catholic International Commission (ARCIC III) on Thursday, the Catholic Co-Chair of ARCIC III, Archbishop Bernard Longley, presented the Holy Father with an icon of St Thomas of Canterbury. The Saint’s “self-sacrificing love of Christ is honoured and commemorated in both our traditions,” the Archbishop said. “His witness reminds us of all those, from many different Christian traditions, who continue to suffer for Christ today. May their "ecumenism of blood" bear fruit for the peace of the world.” 

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05/05/2015 12:45 pm

Archbishop: Migrants are often "the exploited, the rejected and the vulnerable"

Archbishop Peter Smith, Vice President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, has defended the human dignity of migrants and their right to migrate "so that they are enabled to find peace, security and hope for a better life and the opportunity to realise their God-given potential."

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02/05/2015 10:06 pm

Bishops congratulate Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on the birth of their daughter

On behalf of the Bishops of England and Wales, Cardinal Vincent Nichols has written to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to congratulate them on the birth of their daughter, Charlotte Elizabeth Diana. "The birth of the new Princess will be a source of joy not only for the Royal Family but for the peoples of the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth and beyond," the Cardinal wrote. " I assure Your Royal Highnesses of the prayers and best wishes of the Catholic Church in England and Wales for your new family member."

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02/05/2015 9:43 pm

Cardinal condemns the murder of 'peace-loving' Yazidis by ISIS militants

As many as 300 Yazidis held captive by Daesh - ISIS - in Iraq have been murdered by the militant group in a region west of Mosul according to Yazidi and Iraqi officials. Cardinal Vincent Nichols, President of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales, has condemned the killings.

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01/05/2015 9:00 am

Cardinal invites every parish to join new national network of prayer for evangelisation

Cardinal Vincent Nichols has made a video appeal to Catholic parishes across England and Wales to join, on 11 July this year, a new national network of prayer for the work of evangelisation. The July date is significant because it is the same day that representatives from across England and Wales will gather in Birmingham for the Proclaim ’15: National Catholic Evangelisation Conference, which is the first event of its kind in a generation.

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30/04/2015 8:30 am

Bishops' Plenary Meeting April 2015

Last week the Bishops of England and Wales met in Rome for a week of reflection and discussion. In addition to the Bishops’ own reflections, there were a number of talks and news items to communicate. 

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23/04/2015 12:01 am

Nuns on the Rise

The number of women entering convents in England and Wales has hit a 25-year high. From a low point of just seven in 2004, the numbers have steadily increased to a high point of 45 in 2014. Religious life is an attractive choice for an increasing number of educated and dynamic young and older women. 

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21/04/2015 9:00 am

Bishop Campbell establishes two Personal Parishes for the Syro-Malabar Church in the Diocese of Lancaster

Bishop Michael Campbell has, after consultation with the Diocesan Council of Priests, responded to the request (made in January 2015) of the Major-Archbishop of the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, Cardinal George Alencherry and has, by canonical decree, established two Personal Parishes for the Syro-Malabar Church, effective from 23 March 2015, with Fr Mathew Jacob as Parish Priest.

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20/04/2015 7:06 pm

Bishop Declan Lang on the atrocity committed against Ethiopian Christians in Libya

Bishop Declan Lang, Chair of the Bishops' International Affairs department, has prayed for the 30 Ethiopian Christians apparently murdered by Daesh in Libya and said, in a statement, that the Christian faith "encourages us to stand in solidarity with all those vulnerable peoples and communities across the MENA region that spurn merciless and ungodly ideologies." 

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20/04/2015 4:45 pm

Statement on the Mediterranean Migrant Deaths

Responding to the loss of several hundred lives after a vessel carrying 700 migrants capsized in Libyan waters south of Lampedusa on 19 April, Bishop Patrick Lynch, Bishop for Migrants, called on European Union member states to 'work collaboratively' to find a solution to these humanitarian disasters. 

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17/04/2015 4:45 pm

Bishop asks, “is God calling fewer people" as he invites diocese to 'storm heaven' for vocations

In a Pastoral Letter to be read in all the churches of the Diocese on the weekend of 25/26 April, the Rt Rev Mark O’Toole, Bishop of Plymouth, challenges all in the Diocese to promote priestly vocations. Bishop Mark notes: “Is God calling fewer people? I think not. God is still calling; but many are not able to discern His call. When a vocation goes unanswered it is not only a sadness for the one who does not respond, but also a sadness for the entire Church which has just lost another priest. God, in His loving Providence, gives to the Church all the gifts she needs. The challenge today is not a lack of vocations, but rather a lack of responses.”

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13/04/2015 3:00 pm

Cardinal Nichols: Erbil's displaced refugees 'need our help'

The Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, has travelled to Erbil, the capital of Iraq's autonomous Kurdistan region, to meet displaced Christians living in makeshift camps who have sought refuge from ISIS violence. They were driven out of their homes with little more than three hours notice. Then, at check points, they were robbed of anything of value. A fifty mile trek brought them to the relative safety of Erbil.

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