In Brief

In Brief Cardinal George Alencherry
Two bishops ordained in China after agreement

The ordination of Bishop Anthony Yao Shun of Jining in China’s Inner Mongolia autonomous region was the first episcopal ordination in the country following the provisional agreement signed in 2018 between China and the Vatican.

The ordination was “the first to take place in the framework of the provisional agreement” on the appointment of bishops, Matteo Bruni, director of the Vatican press office, said in a written statement.

Bruni confirmed that Bishop Yao “received the papal mandate, as was also stated by the ordaining bishop during the ceremony” in China.

Two days later, a second bishop was ordained; Fr Stephen Xu Hongwei, 44, was ordained as coadjutor bishop of Hanzhong in the northern state of Shaanxi.


Indian court rules Cardinal must stand trial

An Indian court has ruled that Cardinal George Alencherry will stand trial in a case related to controversial land deals in the Syro-Malabar Archdiocese of Ernakulam-Angamaly.

The Ernakulam Principal Sessions Court ruled last week that Alencherry, along with the former financial officer of the archdiocese and a real estate agent will face charges that the cardinal sold archdiocesan land at undervalued prices, for a loss of $10 million (€11m).

A court in the Indian state of Kerala initially registered a criminal case against Alencherry in April. The cardinal and his co-defendants filed a plea to dismiss the case, but last week’s ruling means the case will continue unless a higher court intervenes.


Questions as man receives blessing before suicide

The Archdiocese of Seattle is facing questions after a local man received a formal Catholic blessing at Mass shortly before committing medically-assisted suicide. Robert Fuller, an HIV and cancer patient, committed suicide on May 10.

An AP profile of Fuller’s final days included a photograph and account of the blessing he received at St Therese Parish in the Seattle archdiocese, five days before he ended his own life.

“The Associated Press story about Mr Fuller is of great concern to the archbishops because it may cause confusion among Catholics and others who share our reverence for human life,” the Archdiocese of Seattle said in a statement.


Religious gather to celebrate Mother Teresa’s birthday

Hundreds of Missionaries of Charity gathered at their headquarters on last Monday to commemorate the birthday of the order’s founder, Mother Teresa.

Archbishop Thomas D’Souza of Calcutta, whose birthday falls on the same day, celebrated Mass on August 26 to recognise what would be the 109th birthday of St Mother Teresa.

“It was a splendid celebration. The 109th anniversary of the birth of our beloved St Mother Teresa was a moment of thanksgiving through prayer and joy,” said Fr Dominic Gomes, vicar general of the archdiocese.


Mexican bishops offer prayers after priest murdered

The bishops of Mexico offered prayers and called for justice after the murder of Fr José Martín Guzmán Vega, a priest in Matamoros, along the country’s northern border.

Fr Guzmán Vega was stabbed to death last month at his parish, Cristo Rey de la Paz in Matamoros, a border city near Brownsville, Texas.

“We express our solidarity and offer an embrace of faith to his relatives, friends and the lay faithful of the beloved Diocese of Matamoros,” read a statement from the Mexican Bishops’ Conference.

“By our Faith we know that death is not the end, and that love destroys death, because hope is the victory in face of despair.”