India: A river runs through it

By |3 November 2008|

By Stalin. S, Caritas India and Caritas staff “It was almost 11 pm when water rushed into our village,” said Susil Kumar. His village was one of the hundreds to be washed away when floods devastated Bihar in India this year. “Within no time the water level reached more than four feet. All our belongings and our small house were washed away by the raging waters.” He was lucky to escape with his wife Kadi Devi and their one year old child to the roof of the local school as the water rushed through his village with tremendous force. They stayed on the roof for six days until rescued by boat. Caritas Internationalis is appealing for US$5,600,000 to help survivors with food, temporary shelter, hygiene kits and medical supplies and healthcare through 300 clinics. Caritas members are supporting Caritas India’s operations to provide food, temporary shelter and household items to 270,000 people forced from [...]

Imagine globalisation based on solidarity: World Youth Day

By |16 August 2008|

The golden lion of the Sri Lankan flag fluttered in the icy breeze at a bus stop crowded with pilgrims attending Sydney’s World Youth Day in Australia. Beside the Sri Lankan colours, pilgrims waved a pennant displaying the Indian tricolour. Toward the back of the group, Pakistan’s green and white flag billowed. This small vignette from Sydney’s 2008 World Youth Day in which a group of sixty or so pilgrims from the restless Indian sub-continent came together in peace and harmony, was a clear indication of the power of such festivities. They joined 500,000 other young pilgrims from all around the world who had come to take part in a series of events in July with Pope Benedict XVI. Caritas Internationalis President Cardinal Óscar Rodríguez Maradiaga also travelled to Sydney. For WYD 2008, Caritas Australia hosted a broad programme under the banner: ‘Witness, Aspire, Act’. Calling on people to engage with issues [...]

Church in India leads campaign on AIDS

By |15 August 2008|

“[Stigma] is the single most important obstacle in the treatment and care of HIV/AIDS patients, since the very beginning … Seeing us touch, clean and treat the patient takes away fear from the family members … “ - Fr. Tomy of Bel Air Sanatorium and Hospital in Panchagani, India Working to shatter the myths and discrimination surrounding HIV/AIDS is just one of the ways in which the Catholic Church in India is playing a leadership role in the fight against the disease, according to a recent report. Discrimination against people affected by HIV/AIDS is a widespread problem in India, where between 2 to 3.1 million people out of a population of 1.1 billion are thought to be living with HIV (1). Edited by Rev. Msgr. Robert J. Vitillo, the “Best Practice Report on a Concerted Faith-Based Initiative – Scaling up Toward Universal Access to HIV Prevention, Care, Support and Treatment” illustrates how bishops [...]

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