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Monthly Archives: June 2015

Kenya – Maasai. The place where the grass is tied …

The ritual of tying grass means a close union with God and with other people. In the life of the Maasai people it plays a significant role in various rituals and blessings Grass is of prime importance in the life of the pastoral Maasai. The extent of their reverence for grass may be measured by…

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Iraq. In the Monastery of Sulaymaniyah

Many families fleeing the villages of Qaraqosh and Bartalla, find refuge in the Monastery of the Virgin Mary in Sulaymaniyah, in Iraqi Kurdistan. They do not lose hope. After ISIS attacks in Syria and in Mosul (Iraq), grenade explosions woke up the residents of Qaraqosh a few weeks ago. Qaraqosh is located 30 kilometers from…

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The Love That Can Change The World

Hundreds of thousands of true Christians around the world suffer persecution, torture and death these days because they are disciples of Jesus of Nazareth and put into practice his spiritual values that give meaning to life itself. Why is there such opposition to a message, a way of life that espouses; love of the outcast,…

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The legacy of the past

At present, Russia’s role in Africa is in some ways comparable – definitely not in size, but certainly in its characteristics – to that of other emerging economies. Unlike many of them (a partial exception is China), however, Russia can play a card that they can’t: history. The expansion of pre-Soviet Russia, for geographical reasons,…

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Russia and Africa: a Growing Relationship

Should the world be worried because of Russia setting its eye on Africa? Until not many years ago, the question was of little or no importance to geo-political and economic analysts. “Russia is interested in developing economic relations with Africa, but does not have much to offer”, University of KwaZulu-Natal professor Irina Filatova said, for…

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Iran. Christian communities in danger of extinction

Chaldeans, Armenians, Catholics: the small group of Christians in Iran continues to follow their own traditions. While the law protects them, at the same time it imposes severe restrictions. An uncertain future. The road sign saying ‘Impasse Katolikha’ makes one think that someone was in the mood for jokes at the administration office of Isfahan,…

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Between Peace and War

Many things have changed in the Russian presence in Africa since the Soviet times. Moscow is no longer sending its ‘military advisors’ (a euphemism for soldiers and officers) throughout the continent, but Russian arms and troops – in a different way – still have a role in local geo-politics. An element worth mentioning is the…

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South Africa’s Freedom Charter after 60 years

Almost sixty years ago, in June 1955, a few thousand South Africans gathered in a public square in Kliptown, 40 kilometres south of Johannesburg. A document was drawn up and presented to the gathering for adoption, known as the Freedom Charter. Today, Kliptown is part of the huge Soweto township of more than a million…

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Africa – To solve rising crime and radicalisation, start with the youth

A recent report by the Mo Ibrahim Foundation concluded that in the next three generations, 41% of the world’s youth will be African. The continued exclusion of young people in key decision-making structures, however, spells a bleak future for the continent. In Africa, youth participation in social, cultural, political and economic spheres is sorely lacking.…

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Music – Asa, the little Nigerian hawk

Who said that African artists are only to be taken into account when dealing with genres such as afrobeat, rap, hip-hop, ‘world music’ and so forth? The continental musical scene, in fact, also features singers capable of competing with the big names of European and American pop. The Nigerian (but Paris-born) Asa – whose real…

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Energy matters

One of the reasons for Africa’s current geo-strategic relevance, is beyond any doubt energy: to mention just one factor, a great number of unexploited or barely exploited hydrocarbon deposits, both onshore and offshore, are located in the continent. Russia, at first sight, should have little or no interest in these resources, being self-sufficient from that…

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Child Soldiers. Little Warriors

According to Amnesty International the number of child soldiers is rising. They are estimated to be more than 300 thousand. He speaks in a low voice: “I was ten when some gunmen arrived and took me away from school and forced me to follow them. I fought with them for four years. It ‘s true,…

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Advocacy

Justice, Peace And Liberty.

On May 4th 1976 Paul VI named as auxiliary bishop of Newark (New Jersey - US) Joseph A. Francis. He was the forth black catholic…

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Baobab

The Crocodile And The Cockerel.

Once upon a time, the crocodile was king of the animals. He was holding court one day. He sat majestically on his throne as he received…

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Youth & Mission

African Young People As Peacebuilders.

Violent conflicts are prevalent in African countries with large youth populations such as Mali, Central African Republic and Somalia. In some instances, young people contribute to…

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