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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs                     30  September 2011

Church calls for prayer in RH bill struggle

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Belief that prayer is their best weapon against the reproductive health (RH) bill, the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) on Thursday urged all dioceses to pray the rosary for the whole month of October so that lawmakers "will be guided" in their decision when they vote to approve or reject the controversial measure.

"Let us remain united in prayer and action for human life and the family," CBCP President Nereo Odchimar said.

"Heaven must be stormed with prayers in hope for some divine intervention, so that the minds of the legislators will be enlightened. [And] that the other legislators, the undecided especially, realize the social and moral evils of the RH bill and object [to] its passage," he added.

His made the appeal a week after the CBCP Permanent Council met with Sen. Vicente Sotto 3rd, a strong critic of the RH bill.

The CBCP also requested that the "Prayer of the Defense of Human Life" continue to be recited in all Sunday Masses until November 20, the Solemnity of Christ the King.

Bishops have been calling for more prayers in their campaign to block the passage of the bill, which the Church believes could open the door to artificial contraception and even abortion.



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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More


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