New Zealand

Only 14% take up Ukraine special NZ war visas

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Escaping Ukraine to New Zealand is next to impossible because of the requirements and cost involved. The war in Ukraine has forced nearly six million to flee the country and has displaced more than seven million internally. New Zealand hung out the welcome mat in March, when the Government provided 4,000 special visas for family Read more

Elder abuse on the rise in New Zealand

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Elder abuse is becoming “increasingly common” according to two organisations working with older people. Data is piling up. Minister for Seniors Ayesha Verrall says one in 10 older people experience elder abuse in New Zealand. Age Concern says it received around 825 referrals to cases of elder abuse in the 12 months to June 2022, Read more

Analysis and Comment

Synodality and electing the Bishop of Rome

electing the pope

“Over new plan to elect pope, 3 cardinals threaten to quit.” That headline appeared in the October 6, 1972 issue of the National Catholic Reporter. “If insiders’ reports are accurate, Pope Paul is faced with a threatened palace revolt over proposed changes in the procedures used to elect a pope,” wrote Desmond O’Grady, the now-deceased Read more

Respect te reo; use it with integrity

te reo

Newly promoted minister Kiritapu Allan has said what a lot of people think but feel unable to say. She lashed out in a tweet against “tokenistic” use of te reo by employees of DOC “as an attempt to show govt depts are culturally competent”. She told Stuff she encouraged the use of the Maori language, Read more

Social media is changing how weddings look

On Instagram, Angela Pan’s wedding looks perfect. At her hen’s party in Auckland, she sports a train of balloons in millennial pink. In a short video, gentle music accompanies an unboxing of her gift boxes for bridesmaids, featuring customised wallet pouches and fluffy slippers. In a crisp white dress, she kisses her new husband Joseph Read more

Covid isn’t over, it’s just getting started

A century ago, one in five people who died in New Zealand were killed by an infectious disease. Infectious diseases, as a group, took more lives in 1922 than heart disease. Twice as many people were killed by communicable viruses or bacteria as died of all forms of cancer combined. These days, heart disease and Read more

Retired Belgian bishop says no to Pope’s offer of a red hat

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Retired Belgian Bishop Lucas van Looy of Ghent has asked Pope Francis to withdraw his nomination for appointment as a cardinal. Francis has agreed. The Belgian bishops’ conference issued a statement last week announcing the decision and thanking van Looy for making the request. The statement said the 80-year old van Looy’s appointment “provoked many Read more

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  • Building bridges with remarried divorcees

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    Pope Francis wants the Catholic Church to build bridges with remarried divorcees who are Catholic. In the preface of a new Vatican document on preparing couples for the Sacrament of Matrimony, he called for new “concrete” guidelines to be drafted. These would help those offering pastoral care to divorced and remarried Catholics, he said. The Read more

  • Interreligious cooperation to tackle threats to planet

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    Interreligious cooperation and dialogue are needed more than ever while people and the planet are facing multiple threats, Pope Francis says. Speaking to a delegation of Buddhists from Thailand, he said “Sadly, on all sides, we hear the cry of a wounded humanity and a broken earth”. Inviting Buddhists to continue to work together with Read more

  • Criminal collared at Vatican

    vatican

    Italian police, Sunday, opened fire at a car after it ploughed through a Vatican checkpoint. Reports say a BMW driver, identified as Erojol Nako, a 39-year Albanian male, initially drew attention to himself when asked to stop in the Pantheon, a pedestrian area. Fleeing at high speed through the streets of Rome Nako broke a Read more

  • Pope Francis: No Christian is exempt from aiding the poor

    No Christian is exempt

    In his message for the 6th World Day of the Poor, Pope Francis said no Christian is exempt from aiding those who are poor. Francis called for members of civil society to uphold the values of freedom, responsibility, fraternity and solidarity, and for Christians always to make charity the basis of their lives and actions. Read more

  • Ukrainian archbishop pushes back on Francis’ war-cause comments

    NATO provoked Russia into Ukraine

    The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church has pushed back on Pope Francis’ comments that Russia was possibly provoked by NATO into invading Ukraine. “The gift of reason from the Holy Spirit is so necessary in today’s world so that the devil’s wiles do not deceive the human person,” said Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk, head Read more