Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Photo Meditation of the Month (September, 2012): WOMEN

A woman weeding her own garden at Piprashoir Village of Kaliganj District, Bangladesh
Photo (January 11, 2012) © Jerome D'Costa

Women consist of about 50% of the population. They are created by God to be with men and share the resources of the earth. They are placed to be together in joys and hardships of life on earth. They are there to contribute toward the progress and prosperity of mankind.

Yet, in the present world we see, in spite of all the advancement of education, science, theology, social science and others, women are being exploited, mostly by men, for their own ends. In many societies, women are second-class members in their own families, they are second-class citizens in their own countries. They don’t have any or enough rights to be themselves, to fulfill their dreams and aspirations.

Human trafficking is taking a toll of many a woman, they are being bought and sold like consumer goods. They are sexually abused, labourly abused and also abused educationally and financially. These societies, in particular, remain backward, tribal, brute and short. In materially and intellectually advanced countries, too, women still need to gain their proper place.

Equitable opportunities, nurture, and respect for women’s rights can take the world to a higher plane. The world can then be a much more humane, peaceful and fruitful place.

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The Quotation of the Week (September 30 - October 6, 2012)

A quotation on "Being Better" by Ken Venturi, compiled by Jerome D'Costa

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Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Quotation of the Week (September 23-29, 2012)

A quotation of Benjamin Franklin on "writing,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (An outdoor light in Toronto: Oct. 15, 2011) © Jerome D'Costa

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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Australian Catholic Church Confirms Hundreds of New Cases of Clergy Sex Abuse of Children

Map courtesy:

The Catholic Church in the state of Victoria in Australia confirmed hundreds of clergy sex abuse cases in its four dioceses. It confirmed that several dozen priests, Religious and church workers sexually abused more than 600 children in the period of 1930s to early 1990s, reports the Sky Valley Chronicle.  

Archbishop Denis Hart of Melbourne described the number of cases as “shocking and shameful” and extended the Church’s full cooperation to the State parliamentary committee that has started an inquiry. This inquiry began after 40 sex abuse victims had committed suicide.

The clergy sexual abuse scandal in Australia is not new. Like other countries, especially in the West, there have been such cases in most of the dioceses in Australia.

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Sunday, September 16, 2012

The Quotation of the Week (September 16-22, 2012)

A quotation of Martin Luther King Jr. on 'hatred and love,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (A rain-drenched car window in Dhaka: Feb. 12, 2012) © Jerome D'Costa

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Friday, September 14, 2012

Anti-Islam US Video Film Generates Violent Protests in Muslim World

Cartoon courtesy: The Toronto Sun (Sept. 14, 2012)

The Muslim world is violently protesting the release of the amateurish video film, Innocence of Muslims, on the Internet. The video denigrates both Islam and its founder Prophet Muhammad.

Some Coptic Christians in California, USA, released the film on the Internet in last July, but it had failed to draw any attention until recently when it was telecast in Libya. On September 11, some extremist Muslims attacked the US consulate in Bengazi, breached the security barriers and set fire to the buildings. US Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans who had barricaded themselves in a secure room lost their lives suffocating by the thick smoke.

The US government condemned the film as well as the violent reaction to it and vowed to bring about justice on the people who killed the Americans. The US also considers the Bengazi attack to be pre-planned by some terrorists who took advantage of the publicity about and people’s protest against the notorious video film.

The anti-film protests spread like wild fire from Libya to Yemen, Egypt, Tunisia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sudan, Lebanon, Nigeria, Sri Lanka, and the Maldives.

Some of the actors in the film said that they did not know the film was about Prophet Muhammad and Islam because the original script they followed portrayed life in Arabia two thousand years ago. The makers finished the film by dubbing new dialogue.   

Some observers believe that the film was made in retaliation of violent Muslim attacks on Coptic Christians and their churches in Egypt. In these attacks, some Christians had lost their lives and properties.

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Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Poem of the Month (September, 2012): ARCHBISHOP T. A. GANGULY, CSC

Archbishop Theotonius Amal Ganguly, C.S.C. (1920-1977) of Dhaka, Bangladesh

Photo courtesy: The Pratibeshi (weekly), Dhaka

Today, September 2, is the 35th anniversary of the death of Archbishop Theotonius Amal Ganguly, C.S.C. of the Archdiocese of Dhaka, Bangladesh.  On this occasion, I composed the following poem.
Archbishop T. A. Ganguly, C.S.C.

You were like a comet
Appearing in the firmament,
Blazing in the sky and brightening other celestial bodies
With your qualities of humility, thoughtfulness, piety, cheering spirit, and love.

You didn’t seek anything for yourself
But were always ready to give to others,
May you be more giving through your intercession
By being a proclaimed shasshoto shadhu – saint always.

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The Quotation of the Week (September 2-8, 2012)

A quotation on 'destiny,' compiled by Jerome D'Costa
Photo (Pumpkins grown in a family garden) (Toronto: Oct. 4, 2011) © Jerome D'Costa

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