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Asian bishop bans Neocatechumenal Way activities

Catholic World News - August 08, 2011

Bishop Anthony Sharma, the apostolic vicar of Nepal, has suspended the activities of the Neocatechumenal Way.

“We have about two dozen regular members who were involved in only two regular weekly activities--the celebration of the Word and the Eucharist,” said Terence Lee, a member of the lay movement. “We will obey our bishop’s decision, but continue to pray that he reconsiders.”

Tensions between the movement and local priests have increased recently after young people associated with the movement made plans to attend World Youth Day despite the prelate’s decision not to send youths to the event.

The Neocatechumenal Way has sometimes encountered opposition from diocesan bishops, who have complained that the movement undermines the unity of the Catholic community. Last December, the Vatican Secretariat of State intervened after the Japanese bishops ordered the Neocatechumenal Way out of their country for a period of 5 years. Instead the Vatican set up new talks between the bishops and representatives of the movement, with a Vatican delegate as mediator. A few Japanese bishops still banned the movement from their own dioceses, pending a resolution of their conflicts.

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