International Tidings, Feb. 12, 2019

Pope Acknowledges History of Sexual Abuse Within the Church

For the first time, the Pope publicly acknowledged the persistent problem of sexual abuse within the Roman Catholic Church, highlighting the pervasive nature of sexual violence even among religious leaders. In recent year, countless nuns in various European countries have accused clerics of sexual abuse, citing unwanted offspring of priests and even forced abortions. The allegations have gained traction due to the #MeToo movement which has gained widespread support from people around the globe. According to the New York Times, “the International Union of Superiors General, publicly denounced the “culture of silence and secrecy” that contributed to abuse, and urged nuns to report abuse to law enforcement.” The Pope acknowledged that more needs to be done to address the issue.

British Schools Focus on Mental Health

According to a survey conducted by the National Health Service in November 2018, one in eight children in England between the ages of 5 and 19 suffered from at least one mental disorder, highlighting mental health as a major issue in Britain. Last Monday, the British Government released intentions to institute “mindfulness” as new school subject that will accompany students’ education in traditional subjects. The programs, which will promote relaxation techniques, breathing exercises and other methods to aid students with regulating their emotions will be closely monitored until 2021, making it the largest study of its kind. In the midst of rising percentages of mental disorders among youth, the program hopes to improve and address the issue of mental wellness in the country.

Boat Off the Bahamas sinks with Haitian Immigrants

A boat smuggling Haitian migrants capsized off the coast of the Bahamas, resulting in at least least 28 deaths and the seizure of 17 others into police custody. According to the New York Times, the American Embassy described the occurrence as “another tragic loss of life” aboard a vessel had been “trafficking people out of Haiti.” The issue of illegal immigration has increased in recent years, posing a greater threat to migrants who attempt to come to the United States, Bahamas, or other location by dangerous water route.

Maduro Blockades Highway

Last Wednesday, Nicolás Maduro utilized the Venezuelan military to blockade a major highway responsible for bringing food, medicine and supplies to citizens. Positioning large shipping containers in the middle of the highway, Maduro cut off the main supply line in an effort to block opponents of the government from reaching the people, worsening life-threatening shortages and deepening the political crisis. According to the New York Times, the United States announced plans to deliver tens of millions of dollars of aid from, from Colombia and from Venezuelans abroad, undermining the rule of Mr. Maduro.

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