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ISHVANI KENDRA Institute of Missiology and Communications
Pune – India
May  – 2010

I. REPORT AND DOCUMENTATION

Vatican: All Christians are called to be "Angels"

All Christians have the mission to be "angels", heralds of the message of love, brought by Jesus through the sacraments of baptism and confirmation and, in particular, that through that of order. This was Benedict XVI’s message this Easter Monday to two thousand people present for the Regina Caeli in the courtyard of the Apostolic Palace of Castel Gandolfo, where the Pope arrived for a short period of rest. "As you know,” said Benedict XVI, “the Monday after Easter Sunday is traditionally called 'Angels’ Monday'. It is very interesting to deepen this reference to the Angel. Naturally, our thoughts turn immediately to the Gospel accounts of Jesus' resurrection, which refers to the figure of a messenger of the Lord, who announced the resurrection to the women who came to the tomb" (asianews.it).

India: Tens of Millions to benefit from India ’s Right to Education Act

Three United Nations agencies are hailing what they described as a "ground-breaking" new act that legalizes the right to free and compulsory education for all children between the ages of 6 and 14 in India . The UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) estimates there are eight million children in this age group, mostly girls, who are out-of-school in India . "Tens of millions of children will benefit from this initiative ensuring quality education with equity," said UNICEF Representative in India Karin Hulshof. The Right to Education Act will "propel India to even greater heights of prosperity and productivity for all guaranteeing children their right to a quality education and a brighter future," she added (un.org).

Malaysia: Bridge the Religious Divide

The Malaysian Cabinet on April 6, agreed to form an interfaith committee to promote greater understanding between Muslims and non-Muslims, a move hailed by many. “The formation of this committee is a good start,” said Rev. Thomas Philips, president of the Malaysian Consultative Council for Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST). “Here we can address issues and overcome our differences. Through this process we can move forward.” Relations between Muslims and non-Muslims have taken a dive since late December, when a High Court ruled that the national Catholic daily Herald could use the word “Allah” for God in its Malay-language section. The decision resulted in demonstrations and attacks on places of worship that made international headlines (ucanews.com).

Philippines: Island 's Marine Protection Area

Lubang Island under the pastoral care of Divine Word priests has gained international support in its effort to protect its marine environment. Some 100 environmental activists, government officials and scientists celebrated with residents April 7 the launch of the Philippines First Climate-SMART Marine Protected Area (MPA) in the coastal Binacas village. Officials of Looc and Lubang towns on the island passed the ordinance declaring an MPA of more than 14,000 hectares. The biggest area in Verde Island Passage (VIP) is recognized by experts as a major site of marine biodiversity. Mayor Juan Sanchez of Lubang is grateful for San Jose vicariate’s help to local officials in educating islanders on the need of an MPA. Lubang, off the coast of Occidental Mindoro in the San Jose vicariate, is under the pastoral care of the Society of the Divine Word (SVD) led by Bishop Antonio Palang and SVD and diocesan priests (ucanews.com).

India: ‘Gandhian’ Punishment for Perjury Welcomed

On March 29, the Delhi High Court ordered Kanhaiya Lal to pray for two hours daily at the mausoleum of Mahatma Gandhi and clean the surroundings for a month. This is to seek “atonement for committing the sin of being untruthful to the court of law.” Lal he had sought the court’s help to regain his job as a guard at the Gandhi memorial in New Delhi . He said he was dismissed illegally in 1999. However, in his petition, Lal had falsely claimed that he started work here in 1990, but records later revealed he started only in 1997. Lal admitted that he had lied and pleaded for leniency. The court said Lal committed not only perjury that incurs a maximum three-year jail term but also “a greater sin” of lying despite being a guard at the Gandhi memorial. The judge regretted Lal could not imbibe the ideals of truthfulness that Mahatma Gandhi upheld throughout his life. Fr. Nithiya Sagayam, secretary of the Indian bishops´ justice and peace commission, welcomed the judge’s “human way” of dealing with the case and hailed the verdict as “a creative and model punishment” that will help transform people (ucanews.com).

Bangladesh: Cultural Competition for Ecumenical Harmony

A recent inter-Church cultural competition in Khulna diocese has strengthened harmony and solidarity between Christian denominations, their leaders say. Some 60 grade six to university level students from the Catholic Church and seven Protestant churches competed in three groups to win prizes in music, dance, recitation and acting. The Ecumenical Committee of Khulna led by Fr. James Romen Boiragee, Vicar General of Khulna diocese organized the event. Fr. Boiragee said, “We already have good relationships with other churches and hope we can work more closely to pave the way for further social development.”
Protestant leaders applauded the initiative. “This kind of program has been arranged for the first time. This is a good sign of inter-church harmony and I hope it will get better in the future,” said Thomas Joy Sarker, pastor of the Bangladesh Baptist Church Fellowship (ucanews.com).

Nepal: Health Care for Nepalese

Korean sisters have set up a health and day care centre in a remote village in Nepal to serve the needs of poor people there. Divine Word Sisters Agatha Park Young Ok and Raphaella Seo Jin Hwa opened their St. Mary's Day Care Centre and Health Centre on April 5 at Nalang village, a five-hour drive west of the capital Kathmandu. With the help of a seven-member volunteer medical team from South Korea , they conducted a health camp for villages on April 5-6. These sisters have been living in Nepal for the past four years and were visiting villages in Dhading district from Kathmandu since 2007. Megraj Naharki, who heads a local NGO, and who has been supporting the sisters in their work, said that it was wonderful to see Buddhists, Catholics, Protestant and agnostics working together in the Korean medical team (ucanews.com).

India: Making Tihar Jail into Tihar Temple

Fr. Nithiya in his Holy Week message to the Prisoners in Tihar Jail said, “Let this Tihar Jail be a place of passing from our unwanted past to a meaningful present and brighter future. Let’s not forget that this Tihar Jail is a place of Transformation and not a place of punishment. It is all a matter of how we view this place. Many great people had received their wisdom in the Prison. The Father of the Nation, Gandhi spent several times in jail. He called Yerwada Prison as Yerwada Mandir. He considered Jail as a holy place. Some of his excellent letters were written from this Yerwada Mandir. It is a transforming place. Consider this place a source of your transformation and source of your inner strength. Your stay here must lead you to a better life, with deeper values and for this lets all pray today. I am happy to be here again to wash your feet and to celebrate the mass. Today four priests will be washing the feet of 12 persons who will represent the apostles. I consider this a privilege and a symbol of genuine service. Jesus in his manifesto spoke on the freedom to the Captives. Let’s join out hands and storm heaven that all the innocent ones be freed from the prisons” (nithiyas@gmail.com).

Nepal: Special Global Prayer for Nepal

Christian leaders in Nepal have called for a special period of prayers as the country gears itself to promulgate a new constitution. Several Protestant pastors recently announced 40 days of global prayer for Nepal to be held from April 14-May 23. The project is to pray for the country's national constitution to be drafted by late May. Fr. Silas Bogati, director of Caritas Nepal, the local Catholic Church’s social service agency said that he had attended a “high-level meeting” of Christian pastors. “There is now a strong feeling that we should try to have Christian representatives in the new national parliament and there should be a well represented Christian forum to put forward to the government problems facing Christians,” he said. About 80 percent of Nepal´s 28.5 million people are Hindus, and Buddhists form the next largest religious community. According to the Nepal Catholic Directory 2008-09, there are a total of 1.5 million Christians, 7,500 of them Catholics. Muslims form about 4% of the population (ucannews.com).

Sri Lanka: Religious Leaders Come Together with Hopes for New Year

Christians celebrated the Sinhalese and Tamil New Year with Buddhists and Hindus by organizing activities focusing on peace and reconciliation after years of civil war. “We have organized cultural games with Buddhist and Hindus to promote religious harmony in Ratnapura diocese,” said Bishop Cletus C. Perera of Ratnapura. “We had New Year Masses in some parishes today,” said the bishop, who is also chairman of the National Commission for Ecumenism and Inter-religious Dialogue. The Sinhalese and Tamil New Year is an important national holiday for both Sinhalese Buddhists and Tamil Hindus. This year’s celebrations carry added meaning as all Sri Lankans can now celebrate the occasion in peace. “This is an opportunity to renew bonds and work together to change hearts and heal the wounds of suffering people. New Year festivities should further unite the hearts and minds of Sri Lankans in the search for permanent peace and reconciliation,” Bishop Perera said (ucannew.com).

Thailand: Bishops and Monks urge Talks in the Wake of Violence

A Catholic bishop and a leading Buddhist monk have called on the government and “red-shirt” demonstrators to renew talks after violent clashes. “In today’s Thailand , anger and hatred are spreading across the country,” said Bishop Bunluen Mansap, former head of the Catholic Commission for Justice and Peace. “What endangers the country is not civil war, it is anger and hatred, and there seem to be lots of people with hatred today,” said the retired bishop of Ubon Ratchathani. He urged all Thais to accept different opinions and beliefs. “All humans have the potential to love each other but are divided by politics and ideology,” he said. The so-called “red shirts,” a loose coalition of political activists and supporters of ousted premier Thaksin Shinawatra, have been encamped in Thailand ’s capital for nearly a month. According to Thai media reports on 12th April, 21 people were killed and 858 others injured during the clashes. Venerable Paisan Visalo, a Buddhist monk who heads the Non-violence Network said, “We are sad about the deaths and injured, both soldiers and protesters. “Violence helps to settle a problem temporarily, but creates new problems in the long run, or even exacerbates old problems,” he said (ucanews.com).

II. FILM REVIEW

“Reaping the Harvest of Hate” by Prof. Ram Puniyani

Kandhmal violence has been the most ghastly communal violence in the Adivasi areas in India . Close to two years after the violence the tragedy of the area continues, the victims of violence, the rehabilitation, the justice to victims, most of these are no where close to what they should be.

Debaranjan Sarangi, a social activist and writer, has effectively caught the Kandhamal carnage in his short but comprehensive film “From Hindu to Hindutva,” with great amount of sensitivity and objectivity. He presents the whole event with the help of field interviews, the shots of burning of houses and churches and the pathetic condition of the refugee camps. His subtitling and comments not only make the theme more understandable to non-Oriya audience but also connect up different aspects of the material presented by him. The commentary in the form of text is very coherent making the film a powerful analysis of the events of Orissa. The director weaves the picture with great precision without intruding into the flow of events as told by the perpetrators of the crime and the victims of the same.

The film begins with the event of murder of Swami Laxmandnand, Maoists state it has been done by them as he was spreading Hate in the area. Praveen Togadia of VHP takes out the procession of his body through sensitive areas of Kandhmal. The rumour is spread that Christians are behind the murder of Swami, as it is at their behest that Maoists have murdered him. One striking parallel which emerges from this account is that even in Gujarat Modi permitted the procession of the victims of Godhra train burning through Ahmedabad, accompanied by rumour that Muslims have burnt the train and this in turn incited the feelings of the people leading to carnage. VHP’s Praveen Togadia does the same. The methods of RSS combine have so much of a parallel.

The victims of ‘RSS combine’ violence come through the film with their pain and anguish. Director has taken care to edit the interviews to the most relevant parts. From amongst victims many say that those who have killed the Swami should be punished, why are we and our children being punished. The attacker’s were shouting the slogans of Jai Bajarang Bali.

The state, since Biju Janata Dal had BJP as an ally, soft peddled towards the criminals indulging in communal riots. This is the same story in most of the carnages, be it the anti-Sikh programme, Mumbai violence or Gujarat carnage, state devices kid gloves to deal with the perpetrators of the crime. Also on the ‘expected’ pattern state gave no protection to victims. The VHP supporters worsened the situation by asserting that Christianity is a foreign religion, Christians should leave or they will be killed unless they convert into Hinduism. The hysterical pitch of the mob has been caught well in the camera.

Krishna Majhi, leader of Kui Samaj, Adivasis, points out that Adivasis are not Hindus and the ‘Home coming’ campaign, conversion of Adivasis into Hinduism, is a forcible one. This home coming was conducted by Laxmandnand, at big scale. The Christians were tonsured and given a Hanuman locket. Hanuman has a central role in Hinduising the Adivasis. Most of the interviewees point out that Christian missionaries were involved mainly in health and education work. The VHP propaganda that dalits have grabbed Adivsai land is false as no such complaints were ever filed, nor do dalits have substantial land holdings. The interesting point is if it was a land issue, why the campaign for and rights was not taken, and why Hate was chosen as weapon. Clearly land issue was made a pretext for dividing the communities.

The violence is done by VHP for its political goals. Laxmananand indulged in lot of unchecked ‘hate speech’ against Christians. As a matter of fact his and RSS combines ‘Hate other’ speech against Christians laid the foundation of the violence.

Kandhmal was no flash in the pan. It was systematically built up from 1970 since the Swami began his activities there. He had opened Sanskrit schools and Bhajan Mandali (group singing devotional songs), through which hate campaign was conducted. After the violence the major sectors of state were apathetic to the plight of Christians. Currently even their children are looked down in schools. The anti-Christian atmosphere prevails till the day.

Film ends on a sad note, the reality of minorities in Orissa today is well depicted. Probably the efforts to get justice and relief done by civil society groups could have been highlighted by Sarangi. The film is a very good contribution by Pedestrian Pictures to draw our attention to the phenomenon of Kandhamal. It gives enough hints about the method of working of VHP, Vanvasi Kalyan Ashram and RSS combine in the Adivasi areas. Bringing out these linkages with RSS combine’s methods in unleashing violence in other areas would have enriched the quality of the film. The title does not much convey the theme of the film. It is a must watch for all social activists and citizens at large (ram.puniyani@gmail.com).

III. REFLECTION

“God Loves You, Simply” by Dominic Emmanuel SVD

Many years ago a French sister artist organized an exhibition in Indore Town Hall which was titled, Ishwar Manav ki Talash mei, (‘God in search of man-woman’). That was 40 years ago. The exhibition left a profound impression on me and I never tire of speaking about its theme. The artist through her paintings was trying to exhibit the fundamental Christian Biblical truth that it is God who has loved us first and that we need not struggle hard to search for God. Or better still we need not toil to get God’s attention through various ritual offerings and sacrifices, for it is God who comes down in search of us. And He does that because He loves us. Some Biblical scholars believe that the whole Bible can be summed up in just one word, ‘Love’. The rest is just commentary.

According to the book of Jeremiah the Lord says, “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness”. Rick Warren in his famous book, “Purpose Driven Life”, writes, “The Bible says that God is Love. It doesn’t say God has love. It says God is love. Love is the essence of His character. God created you as an object of His love. You were made to be loved by God – that’s your number one purpose”. One finds many references in the Bible where God articulates His ‘Unconditional love’, as it were, towards his creatures. In the Book of Isaiah we find some reassuring verses to this effect. “Fear not for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are Mine”. Again, speaking on behalf of God he says, “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb. Even if she forgets, yet I will not forget you. See I have carved you on the palms of my hands”.

Similarly in the New Testament we find St. Paul in his Epistle to the Romans writing, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). And, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword... Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom 8:35-39).

One of the major agendas of Jesus as he preached to the masses was precisely to tell them about developing an intimate relationship with God. He addressed God as Abba (daddy) which was not only totally unheard of but became one of the charges levelled against Him and led to His crucifixion. The charge was that He dared to address God in such intimate terms making Himself equal to God. That was blasphemy for them. But Jesus said, "As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in my love" (John 15:9). Again John in his first letter writes, “And we have known and believed the Love that God has for us. God is love and he who abides in love abides in God and God in him... We love Him because He loves us first" (1 John 4: 16 & 19).

Priests and teachers of the time had made God an unreachable reality for ordinary mortals. Jesus turned that practice upside down by making God and His love accessible to everyone. That there would not remain even an iota of doubt about God’s unconditional love Jesus demonstrated that in action by shedding the last drop of His blood. John Powell convinced that the only way God knows to love is with unconditional love, in his famous book, “Fully Human, Fully Alive”, writes, “Real love is a gift. Real love is unconditional. The God I know would say to the person striving to earn or be worthy of His love, ‘You have it backwards. You are trying to change so that you can win my love. It just doesn’t and cannot work that way. I have given you My Love so that you can change. If you accept my love as a gift, it will enable you to grow”.

In my limited experience of spiritual counselling, I find that one of the most difficult propositions for us to accept is that God’s love is gratuitous and that He loves us unconditionally. If only we could accept in our lives that God loves us with an everlasting love, we would soon be making good progress on the ladder of spiritual life (cibdelhi@gmail.com).

IV. NEWS

Laos: Thousands attend Bishop’s rare Ordination

More than 4,000 Catholics descended on a quiet provincial town on the bank of the Mekong River in Laos to witness the extremely rare event of a bishop’s ordination here. Bishop Jean Marie Prida Inthirath was ordained and installed as apostolic vicar of Savannakhet apostolic vicariate in the compound of St. Louis Cathedral in Thakhek on 10th April 2010. The central Laotian town has about 800 Catholics in a population of tens of thousands, most of whom are ethnic Vietnamese (ucanews.com).

Vietnam: Cathedral in the New Diocese

Leading churchmen in Vietnam consecrated a new cathedral in a four-year-old diocese on 10th April.
Bishop Pierre Nguyen Van Nho of Da Lat, head of the Vietnam Bishops’ Conference, Cardinal Jean Baptiste Pham Minh Man of Ho Chi Minh City and Bishop Thomas Nguyen Van Tram of Ba Ria led the ceremony at Mary, Mother of God Cathedral in Ba Ria. Some 30 bishops and 190 priests concelebrated the Mass attended by 8,000 Religious and Catholics. The event marks a major step forward in the development of the diocese (ucanews.com).

India: Church Plan to train Youth in Media

The Church in India needs to promote trained and skilled youths in the media to combat anti-Christian campaigns, says the prelate who heads the Indian bishops’ social communication commission.
“We often read and see allegations levelled against us in the media but don’t react. For this, we need trained and skilled people,” said Bishop Chacko Thottumarickal SVD of Indore . The Divine Word prelate, who took over as the commission chairperson recently, regretted the lack of trained people in the Church to utilize the media at diocesan, regional and national levels. At present, not even half of India ’s 164 dioceses have their own websites, the Church official pointed out. The Church also plans to reorganize the bishops’ conference’s website to make it “more effective and informative,” the bishop said (ucanews.com).

India: Workshops for Formators on Communications to be held

The CBCI Commission for Social Communications is organising nine workshops for the formation personnel in different parts of the country this year. These workshops are aimed at formation personnel in seminaries and formation centres to enable them introduce social communications in formation. The Commission has brought out three books entitled Communications for Pastoral Leadership (CPL) and a set of resource materials, started a website (www.communicationformation.com) and has formed a national resource team to assist formation centres and seminaries in India (jmurickan@gmail.com).

Philippines: Native Priests to Mission Areas

The archdiocese of Caceres in northern Philippines is preparing to send three native priests to mission areas in May. Frs. Maysar Herrera and Emmanuel Mojica will leave for the Caribbean Grenadine Islands in late May. A third priest, Fr. Edmundo Siguenza, will leave later for his mission in the Solomon Islands when his visa is approved. Caceres Mission Aid Program (CMAP) prides itself on sending out screened and trained missioners and not overseas Filipino worker priests, “who go out of the country to earn money. As we don’t want to send anybody who will be a liability to the receiving Church, so we prepare them,” Fr. Recepcion said (ucannews.com).

Thailand: Sends Sisters Abroad

It is well known that Thailand , being a “mission country,” has many foreign missioners. Less well known is the fact that the Thai Church itself sends missioners abroad. One example is two Thai sisters, who were working in a hospital caring for people with AIDS in Haiti when a powerful earthquake struck earlier this year. The two Camillian sisters, who had been in the Caribbean country since 2001, remained to care for survivors. Besides Haiti , the Thai sisters from the Order of the Ministers of the Sick, popularly known as Camillians, have also sent missioners to Albania and India (ucanews.com).

Asia: First Woman Elected to Head Asian Church Grouping

The first woman elected as general secretary of the Christian Conference of Asia has vowed to help heal wounds "not only in our societies, but also within our churches" in the world's most populous continent. "As brothers and sisters in such a time as this, we are 'called to prophesy, reconcile and heal'," said Rev. Henriette Tabita Hutabarat-Lebang, referring to the theme of the church grouping's 13th general assembly, meeting from 14 to 21 April in Kuala Lumpur . A pastor's daughter, Hutabarat-Lebang hails from Sulawesi, one of the four larger islands of Indonesia . She was ordained to the Christian ministry in 1992 and has served in senior positions in Asia and internationally (www.eni.ch).

India: Priest Honoured for Healing Work

A unit of Rotary International in New Delhi has honoured Fr. Aji Sebastian for his efforts to heal people through a system using herbs and prayers. He heads Darsanalaya Ashram at Faridabad in Haryana State , and introduced the system of Sheethali Chikitsa, a heat reduction therapy, to heal chronic diseases. Rotary president Gurpreet Singh said the club considers the priest’s work in the villages of India and in other Asian countries as an expression of humanitarian concern (newsletter@religiousindia.org).

Vietnam: People flock to Priest’s Tomb

People from various faiths in search of a miracle are flocking to the tomb of a local priest who died to save others 64 years ago. Marie Ta Thi Phot is one such pilgrim to the tomb of Fr. Francis Xavier Truong Buu Diep, which is located in the compound of Tac Say church in the southern province of Bac Lieu . Phot said she believes Fr. Diep is the answer to her prayers after she was cured from a disease after having visited the tomb five times. Fr. John Baptist Nguyen Thanh Binh, pastor of the church, said 100-200 pilgrims from various faiths visit the tomb to pray and give offerings every day. Fr. Binh said the church has been rebuilt to hold 700 people and new facilities added for pilgrims in the past five years because of the popularity of the tomb. The tomb itself was restored in early March, he added (ucanews.com).

India – Bangladesh: Tropical Storm

Rescue teams continue searching for survivors, after a tropical storm struck North-eastern India and Bangladesh . The death toll now stands at 130 people but is expected to go higher. Many areas are still isolated and telephone communications are down. Winds reaching up to160 kilometres per hour swept entire towns and villages, damaging 70,000 to 100,000 homes, according to preliminary estimates. In India , the State of Bihar was the hardest hit with at least 76 known deaths. Emergency teams are struggling to provide medicines and basic necessities. Official sources said that 42 people died in the North-eastern State of West Bengal, and five more in Assam (asianews.it).

China: Qinghai Quake

Thousands of survivors braved freezing temperatures overnight with little shelter after a major earthquake flattened much of Yushu County in Qinghai province. As rescue teams pour into the area, local residents continue to dig out from the rubble anyone who might still be alive. In many locations, entire buildings, mostly wood, brick or even mud, have collapsed. The death toll rose to 617, but 313 people are still missing. More than 9,000 people have been injured, almost a thousand very seriously. About 900 people have been pulled out alive from under the rubble (asianews.it).

India: Women’s Self-sufficiency Promoter wins Peace Prize

The Niwano Peace Foundation has announced that it will award its 2010 peace prize to Ela Ramesh Bhatt, who is a follower of the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi, and who applies them to enable women to become self-sufficient. The statement announcing the winner states, “Bhatt is known as the ‘gentle revolutionary’. She has dedicated her life to improving the lives of India ’s poorest and most oppressed women workers” (eni.ch).

China - First Bishop Ordained in Two Years

The diocese of Hohhot in Northern China welcomed a new bishop on April 18 after five years without one.

Bishop Paul Meng Qinglu was ordained the 7th bishop of Hohhot, based in the capital of the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region. He was the first bishop ordained in mainland China since December 2007. Some 80 priests from Hohhot and four other dioceses in Inner Mongolia concelebrated at the Mass. Local Catholics said all the 500 tickets for seats in the church and 2,000 tickets for places in the courtyard were taken up. Many laypeople could not enter the church compound to attend the ordination Mass.

IV. BOOKS

D. Vincent, Twomey SVD: Moral Theology after Humanae Vitae. Fundamental Issues in Moral Theory and Sexual Ethics, Dublin : Four Courts Press, 2010. (€35)

In this book, the author discusses some of the major developments in fundamental moral theology sparked off by the publication of the hugely controversial encyclical, Humanae Vitae (1968), as well as the impact of its rejection by many leading moral theologians. Within the broader cultural background of modernity, Professor Twomey analyses the theological arguments given to justify this dissent and sets out to sketch an alternative moral theology based on the recover of virtue as the context for moral reflections and on a new appreciation of the nature of sexuality.

O’Collins, Gerald: Jesus our Redeemer. A Christian Approach to Salvation, New York : Oxford University Press, 2007, pp. 280. ISBN 978-0-19-920313-0 (pbk) 978-0-19-920312-3 (hbk), Available with St. Pauls (Rs.1125/-).

The book opens with three basic questions. How can redemptive events in the past bring about effects in the present? Why do human beings need redemption, both collectively and individually? What images of God are implied by the saving action of Christ and by human need? After clarifying ‘redemption’ and some terms frequently used for it, the author sets the context in Chapters 2-4 by reflecting on creation, the human situation and sin. Chapter 5 argues that the redeeming activity of Christ cannot be confined to his death. He also deals with four models of how redemption through Christ has been thought to ‘work’ in chapters 6-9. The closing three chaptersaddress the outworking of salvation in the life of the Church.

Sundararajan, K.R., and Bithika Mukerji: Hindu Spirituality: Postclassical and Modern, Delhi : Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Private Limited, 2003, pp. 584. ISBN 81-208-1937-3 (pbk) (Code: 19373) (Vol. I, 190/- & Vol. II, Rs. 450/-).

In this 2 volumes work the term ‘Hindu’ is referred to the religious life of the people of India , and ‘Spirituality’ understood as wisdom about the “way back into the ground” of pluralism of religious forms. Vol. I brings together the complex profiles of thought, belief and practice beginning with their development from the archaic period of the Vedas and their early crystallization as Vedanta. Volume II explores the richness of this great tradition in its postclassical and modern periods. It is an altogether enlightening account of Hindu spirituality.

Yoshinori, Takeuchi, (Ed.): Buddhist Spirituality: Later China , Korea , Japan and the Modern World, Delhi : Motilal Banarsidass Publishers Private Limited, 2003, pp. 550. ISBN 81-208-1944-6 (pbk) (Code: 19446)
(Vol. I, Rs. 190/- & Vol. II, Rs. 450/-).

Of all the great religions, it is Buddhism that has focused most intensively on that aspect of religion that we call spirituality. Vol. I covers the earlier career of Buddhism as it unfolds in India , Southeast Asia , Tibet and China . Volume II takes up further developments in China , Korea , and Japan , including Ch’an (zen) and new Buddhist movements and is pervaded by the Chinese realization of enlightenment here and now, and by the practical, down-to-earth, this-worldly terms in which the enlightened vision was expressed and enacted.

Veliath, Dominic: Theological Approach and Understanding of Religions. Bangalore: Kristu Jyoti College, 1988, pp. 407 (pbk), (Rs. 100/-).

This book, which originated as a doctoral dissertation tries to highlight the fact that a person has to be understood not only on the basis of his conclusions in any field. The author has tried to situate Raimundo Panikkar and Cardinal Jean Danielou to correlate theological approach and evaluation of religions in each case, and finally, to institute a dialogue on the themes treated, the questions asked and the answers given.

VI. NEXT COURSES AT ISHVANI KENDRA

  1. OVERSEAS MISSION ORIENTATION (June 14-03 July)
  2. ART AND TECHNIQUES OF DIGITAL FILM MAKING (12-31 July)
  3. LEADERSHIP FOR RECTORS AND SUPERIORS (09-28 August)

Dr. Joy Thomas, SVD (Director)

ISHVANI KENDRA P.B. 3003, Off Nagar Road, Sainikwadi Pune – 411014 – INDIA Ph : (0091) - 020 – 27033820; 27033507

E-mail: ishvani@dataone.in Website: www.ishvanikendra.org

Please forward this Mission Scan to any of your friends and acquaintances.