Religion news 7 April 2022

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Bucha, Ukraine. Image credit: manhhai CCLicense2.0

Pope criticises useless international organisations, powerless to stop the war in Ukraine

Pope Francis has criticised international organisations, such as the United Nations, which have proved useless in stopping violence and atrocities in the war in Ukraine. In his Wednesday general audience, he spoke of the new atrocity of the massacre of civilians in Bucha, and denounced increasingly horrific cruelties. Kissing a Ukrainian flag brought from the city of Bucha, he appealed again: “Put an end to this war, silence the weapons, stop sowing death.”

Prominent European Jewish leader sanctioned due to links with Putin

The Jewish Chronicle reports that Moshe Kantor, president of the European Jewish Council and vice-president of the Jewish Leadership Council, has been included in the latest list of Russians sanctioned because of ties to Vladimir Putin. The Chronicle says he had an estimated net worth of $7.6bn last year.

Ukraine refugee condemns Russians as barbarians

Religion Unplugged has a report on some of the four million refugees who have fled Ukraine. Reporter Michael Ray Smith interviewed a Ukrainian religious book publisher who brought his family to safety in Austria. He said: “Most of the Russian people are real fascists. They are ungodly sinful barbarians.” Report here

Sikhs across Europe and America join to help Ukraine refugees

SikhNet carries a story about Sikhs from different parts of Europe and America who have combined to provide emergency relief for Ukraine refugees, driving long distances with trucks full of supplies, then offering travel and help relaying people from the border to destinations across Europe. They regard their action as service — sewa — and say it is highly rewarding.

Former Anglican bishop now a Monsignor

Dr Michael Nazir Ali, formerly the Anglican bishop of Rochester who joined the Roman Catholic church, has been given the title Monsignor. Dr Nazir Ali, known for his conservative views, joined the Catholic church last September and was ordained to the “ordinariate”. His new title reflects his work on promoting Christian unity and contribution to Christian thinking.

Football matches accommodate breaking of the fast during Ramadan

Some premiership footballers who are Muslim may have to interrupt evening games to break their fast at sunset, BBC Sport explains. Last year, there was an informal agreement between captains to allow a break at a goal kick or throw-in so players could break the fast. This season, captains can request a break with referees before matches start. The report lists all the games where this may feature.

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