December 2017

First public Christmas festivities in Myanmar after 50 years

For the first time in 50 years, Catholics and Protestants celebrated Christmas publicly in the streets of Myanmar’s capital city of Yangon.

By C Coutinho 29 December 2017, 13:04

The 400-year history of Portuguese Catholics in Sagaing

MANY OF THE residents of a handful of villages on the vast plain in Sagaing Region between the Chindwin and Mu rivers have a special reason to celebrate the upcoming visit of Pope Francis, head of the Roman Catholic Church.

By MRATT KYAW THU | FRONTIER Wednesday, December 06, 2017

November 2017

Pope Francis celebrates first public Mass in Myanmar

According to the Vatican, 150,000 people attended the Mass at the Kyaikkasan sports ground. Thousands of them had traveled hundreds of miles to be at the Mass, and many of them camped out on the sports field the night before the liturgy.

Cindy Wooden / Catholic News Service 11.29.2017

Burmese Cardinal Eagerly Awaits Pope Francis’ Visit

During the Pope’s trip, the Vatican said Wednesday, the Holy Father will meet the head of the Burmese army, and in Bangladesh, he will meet a small group of Rohingya refugees — both late additions to his itinerary.

by Edward Pentin VATICAN | NOV. 22, 2017

Portland community welcomes Myanmar bishop

Bishop Felix Lian Khen Thang, Bishop of Kalay Diocese in Myanmar and the current president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of Myanmar, visited the Zomi Catholic community in Portland in September.

by Catholic Sentinel Friday, November 03, 2017 9:00 AM

October 2017


When Pope Francis visits Myanmar in late November, church leaders will be listening nervously to his every word, specifically hoping he does not speak about the Rohingya. Any mention of the Muslim group, widely hated in the predominantly Buddhist country, will have widespread implications.

by Catholic News Service 25 October 2017

Myanmar cardinal: ‘The pope will come to heal the wounds of the country’

Pope Francis’s trip to Myanmar, also known as Burma, will help heal the wounds of his country, especially for minorities under attack, the nation’s sole cardinal maintains.

Andrea Gagliarducci, CATHOLIC NEWS AGENCY Friday October 20th 2017

Myanmar Bishops express gratitude to Pope Francis for his three gifts

YANGON: The Catholic Church of Myanmar has thanked Pope Francis for his three gifts to the country, namely the establishment of full diplomatic relations between the Vatican and the Republic of the Union of Myanmar and the subsequent creation of the apostolic nunciature,...

by Herald Malaysia Online Friday October 20th 2017

Cardinal Bo criticizes slave labor in Thai fishing industry

The Thai fishing industry's use of slave labor was highlighted by Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Yangon during the 24th World Congress of the Apostleship of the Sea recently held in Taiwan. The Myanmar prelate was speaking at the 'Caught in the Net' congress that was held from Oct. 1-7 in Kaohsiung, a harbor city in southern Taiwan.. reporter, Hong Kong October 16, 2017

Thousands rally behind NLD at interfaith prayer for peace

YANGON – About 20,000 people on Tuesday attended an interfaith prayer for peace at Yangon’s Aung San Stadium organised by the National League for Democracy. Held in response to the crisis in Rakhine State, the event saw participants pray for all people across Myanmar to be prosperous and peaceful.

By SU MYAT MON | FRONTIER Wednesday, October 11, 2017

September 2017

Young Karenni Catholics, once refugees, hit the road for a retreat

They are traveling in two passenger vans for more than 1,000 miles to Rogers, Arkansas, for their fourth annual retreat, held Sept. 2-3. The program, organized by the Karenni-American Catholic Association , includes spiritual talks, Mass, prayers, music and dancing.

by Peter Tran September 28, 2017

Myanmar bishop brings support to US Karenni Catholics

Bishop Stephen Tjephe of Loikaw, Myanmar, is modest about his visit to the Karenni communities in the United States. He stresses that he could not do much, except be with them, giving them support and encouraging them to live a life of faith.

by Peter Tran September 25, 2017

Cardinal Bo urges prayers for Pope’s Myanmar visit

Myanmar’s prominent Catholic Church leader is encouraging the nation’s faithful to prepare themselves spiritually for the visit of Pope Francis to the country this November.

Vatican Radio September 11, 2017

August 2017

The Pope’s Myanmar Visit — What’s In Play?

VATICAN CITY — The Vatican announced Monday that Pope Francis will be making the first-ever papal trip to Myanmar (Burma), visiting the cities of Yangon and Nay Pyi Taw Nov. 27-30.

Edward Pentin [National Catholic Register] VATICAN | AUG. 29, 2017

Bring Focus Back to Amending Constitution, Say Ethnic Advocates

The army chief made the comments at his first ever meeting with Cardinal Charles Bo, the Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Myanmar, on Monday. The pair discussed efforts made for peace, the country’s political transition, and the Tatmadaw’s position on the protection of citizens, including ethnic minorities.

By Nyein Nyein [The Irrawaddy] 22 August 2017

July 2017

Francis could visit Myanmar and Bangladesh in late November

Pope Francis could visit Myanmar and Bangladesh in November, deciding to add the Muslim majority country after his original plan of visiting India and Bangladesh, as he’d told reporters last year, fell through.

Inés San Martín [VATICAN CORRESPONDENT] July 28, 2017

Church stands ready to respond to Myanmar flooding

The Catholic Church in Myanmar is assessing damage done by widespread flooding in the country and are collaborating with local authorities in formulating an emergency response.

By Catholic News Service • Posted July 26, 2017

1,000 Burmese-American Catholics gather in Coal Valley and Rock Island

The event drew 1,000 people, including three Burmese bishops and 30 priests, to The Rock in Coal Valley for Masses, praise and worship, and leadership training, and included soccer and volleyball matches at the Campbell Sports Complex in Rock Island. With just a few months to prepare, one person said it was a miracle that everything came together so well.

Jennifer Willems [The Catholic Post] July 14, 2017

Church officials upset that Myanmar won’t allow U.N. fact-finders

YANGON, Myanmar (CNS) — Church officials have expressed disappointment over the refusal of Myanmar’s government to grant visas to three members of a U.N. fact-finding mission to investigate alleged human rights abuses by security forces against the Rohingya minority.

By July 6, 2017

June 2017

Nearly half a million Myanmar refugees, church voices concern

Father Thomas Htang Shan Mong, director of Myanmar Catholic bishops' office for peace building and justice, blames a range of political and economic factors for the rise in refugees, as reported by the UN.

Rock Ronald Rozario, Dhaka (Bangladesh) and John Zaw, Mandalay Myanmar 06/24/2017

Myanmar Catholics plan to help rebuild nation

Catholic leaders from across Myanmar recently came together to discuss plans and strategies in rebuilding the nation laid waste by nearly 50 years of brutal military rule.

(Source: UCAN) 06/14/2017

May 2017

When will gun violence stop shattering innocent lives?

The lives of Ester and the three boys will be forever changed. There will always be this void, and the ripple effect extends to the church and school communities, even to the fabric of our civic wholeness.

Richard E. Pates May 14, 2017

A New Chapter in Myanmar-Vatican Relations

On May 4, Myanmar and the Vatican announced the establishment of formal diplomatic relations following a meeting between State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi and Pope Francis.
By Jonathan T. Chow
May 09, 2017

Hundreds gather from around the world to celebrate Stephen Kim's life

Hundreds from across the globe gathered in the vast sanctuary of St. Pius X Catholic Church in Urbandale on Saturday to remember Stephen Kim, who was shot to death in front of his three children last month.
Molly Longman , Des Moines Register
Published 5:21 p.m. CT May 6, 2017

April 2017

Myanmar Pastors Languishing in Prison Without Trial on False Charges of Ties With Rebels

Pastors Dom Dawng Nawng Latt, 65, and La Jaw Gam Hseng, 35, were arrested on Dec. 24 after helping local journalists cover military conflict in northern Shan state, eastern Myanmar, the Morning Star News reported. Last November, Myanmar warplanes bombed the Catholic church in the state for allegedly harboring rebels.

By Jay Gotera , Christian Post Contributor April 13, 2017

Kachin Catholics pray China dam project 'bursts'

Local Catholic leaders in Kachin State are cautiously optimistic over the prospect of a deal between the Myanmar government and Beijing over controversial China-built Myitsone Dam.

John Zaw and Michael Sainsbury, Myitkyina Myanmar April 10, 2017

St. Bernard to welcome Karenni converts at Easter

I am so happy for that,” said Nge Meh, amid a dozen of her Karenni neighbors at the Arkwright Apartments in St. Paul. “And, also I am a child of God, so now I am happy for baptism.”

The Catholic Spirit | Melenie Soucheray April 6, 2017

March 2017

Myanmar Christian leaders meet Suu Kyi in war-torn state

Myanmar's State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi made a rare visit to conflict-stricken Kachin State on Tuesday, where she met civil society groups and Catholic and Baptist church officials to promote her national peace initiatives.

Vatican Radio March 31, 2017

Church social workers in Myanmar support nation building

Representatives from Karuna Myanmar Mission Solidarity (the national branch of Caritas) offices in 16 dioceses attended the Karuna Myanmar general assembly held at Christ the King Cathedral in Loikaw, Kayah State March 22-24.

John Zaw, Mandalay Myanmar March 24, 2017

Myanmar Approves Diplomatic Ties With Vatican

Archbishop Tsang officially submitted the Vatican’s proposal to Suu Kyi during the meeting held in Naypyidaw, the country’s capital.

BY UCAN MARCH 15, 2017

Asia-Oceania Meeting of Religious inspires eco-citizens

As the Asia-Oceania Meeting of Religious XVII wrapped up March 3 in Yangon, Myanmar, participants said they would carry with them a renewed commitment to their responsibility as eco-citizens, the message of environmental care to their congregations and beyond, and an affirmation of the meeting's importance in strengthening the work of religious in the region

by Gail DeGeorge March 9, 2017

Cardinal Bo warns of 'environmental holocaust'

Cardinal Charles Maung Bo of Yangon warned that greed is fueling the world's ecological crisis while equating the destructive powers of climate change to that of nuclear weapons.

John Zaw, Mandalay Myanmar March 3, 2017

February 2017

Myanmar's Cardinal Bo calls for 'green theology of liberation'

Yangon, Myanmar. Warning of the dangers of ecological crisis, especially its impact on the poor, Cardinal Charles Bo of Yangon addressed participants Monday (Feb. 27) on the opening day of the 17th Asia-Oceania Meeting of Religious, saying, "Today, we face an environmental holocaust — it is a scary moment."

Gail DeGeorge Feb. 27, 2017

Catholics to hold peace conference in Myanmar

"The church will participate in the peace process not only with prayers but with a peace conference as the Aung San Suu Kyi-led government prioritizes peace and she is pushing for it," Father Maurice Nyunt Wai, executive secretary of the Myanmar bishop's conference, told

UCAN News Feb. 14, 2017

Myanmar’s drama isn’t a Vatican soap opera, but a suffering church

"One perennially frustrating dynamic of Western attention spans is that we tend to focus on other people and places only when they intersect with our concerns, not theirs. Myanmar, also known as Burma, is currently a good example of the point.

John L. Allen Jr.EDITOR [CRUX] Feb. 1, 2017

January 2017

Fears Mount For Two Priests Kidnapped In Myanmar

The two Catholics had helped journalists from the former capital Yangon to report on the bombing of a church in early December. They were said to have enraged military officials by taking reporters to visit a damaged school in Mong Ko as well as the bombed church building destroyed in heavy fighting between the army and the coalition of ethnic armed groups.

Harry Farley Journalist 10 January 2017 | 12:58 PM