Irish priest is the latest Catholic ecological voice

National Catholic Reporter

By Arthur Jones

NAVAN, IRELAND — There was a priest in America that Columban Fr. Seán McDonagh needed to see. McDonagh, recalled to the monastery in Navan, County Meath, Ireland, after several years in the Philippines, had himself routed through New York. It was 1980. Sent as a missionary to Mindanao in 1972, McDonagh had developed reforestation and land-use projects with the T’boli people. Standing up to the money interests was risky; a Passionist priest colleague, Carl Schmitt, had already been murdered “up in the mountains.” Continue reading Irish priest is the latest Catholic ecological voice

Rich London, poor London – a tale of two cities

What would Charles Dickens, born 200 years ago this month, make of Britain’s inequality in the 21st century? wonders David Hewitt.

As Britain celebrates the bicentenary of Charles Dickens, born 7 February 1812, his works have arguably never been more popular. Book sales are soaring, big-budget TV adaptations are drawing in millions of viewers, and specially themed exhibitions are being held in museums up and down the country. At the same time, it could also be argued, the central themes of his works have never seemed more relevant. Continue reading Rich London, poor London – a tale of two cities

Africa’s hidden hunger

New Internationalist

 Chronic malnutrition fails to capture headlines, but is no less devastating for that, says Stefan Simanowitz.

When you arrive in a village, everything may seem normal at first but then you start to notice things,’ explains Assumpta Ndumi. ‘It is lunchtime but there is no food on the fire. There are children in the village but no laughter or play. These are some of the signs of chronic malnutrition.’ For Assumpta, Save the Children’s nutrition adviser for East Africa, chronic malnutrition is a problem every bit as serious as acute malnutrition, even if it seldom captures the headlines. ‘In Kenya last year, the acute malnutrition that followed the drought was widely reported, but even before the rains failed there was a hidden hunger and children were dying because of it,’ she explains. Continue reading Africa’s hidden hunger