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Iraq: fearing famine, patriarch calls for return of confiscated fields to Christians CWN - 2 hours ago

In a letter to Herman Van Rompuy, the president of the European Council, Chaldean Catholic Patriarch Louis Raphaël I Sako expressed concern that the Christian-owned agricultural fields of the...

Papal praise for interreligious charity soccer match CWN - 2 hours ago

Fifty soccer stars took part in an interreligious soccer game in Rome to raise funds for poor children in Buenos Aires. “Tonight's match will certainly be an occasion to collect funds and...

Ukrainian Orthodox leader blasts Moscow patriarch, defends Eastern Catholics CWN - 1 hours ago

The head of the largest of the three rival Ukrainian Orthodox bodies has come to the defense of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, which has been the object of strong criticism by leaders of the...

Christians reported safe as Tripoli falls to Islamist militias CWN - 3 hours ago

Three years after NATO intervention helped bring about the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi, Libya’s capital has fallen under the control of Islamist militias. “So far, as a Christian community, we...

Pope resumes daily Mass at Santa Marta CWN - 2 hours ago

Following a two-month hiatus, Pope Francis has resumed his practice of preaching at weekday Masses for different invited groups at Domus Sanctae Marthae. On September 1, he preached on the word...

Vatican conference on sports and the culture of encounter CWN - 2 hours ago

The Pontifical Council for Culture is hosting a three-day conference entitled “Sports at the Service of Humanity: From the ‘Results-Oriented Culture’ to a ‘Culture of Encounter.’” Speakers and...

Caritas appeal for Indian flood victims CWN - 3 hours ago

Caritas Internationalis, the Church’s confederation of relief and development agencies, has issued an appeal for $1 million to assist victims of flooding in the eastern Indian state of Odisha...

Catholic paper protests as South African broadcaster drops coverage for Pope's Christmas Mass CWN - 16 hours ago

The Southern Cross, the newspaper operated the bishops’ conferences of southern Africa, has denounced the decision of South Africa’s broadcasting network to stop airing the Pope’s midnight Mass on...

Anti-Mafia Italian priest undeterred by threat from 'boss of bosses' CWN - 16 hours ago

An Italian priest says that he is not concerned about reports that a powerful Mafia figure wanted to have him killed. Father Luigi Ciotti admitted that it was “very significant” that the...

Maltese couple begin rescue service for migrants in Mediterranean CWN - 16 hours ago

Inspired by Pope Francis, a wealthy couple from Malta has bought and equipped a ship to rescue migrants from drowning in the Mediterranean Sea. Cristofer and Regina Catrambone invested about €4...

West must respond to ISIS persecution: Italian bishops' leader CWN - 16 hours ago

"We cannot remain silent in the face of the project to cancel Christians from the Holy Land and other places," the president of the Italian Catholic bishops’ conference said in an August 27...

Pope's prayer intentions for September 2014 CWN - 18 hours ago

The Vatican has released the prayer intentions of Pope Francis for September 2014. The Pope's general intention is: "That the mentally disabled may receive the love and help they need for a...

Israeli Church leaders fear government takeover of Catholic schools CWN - 19 hours ago

Catholic Church leaders in Israel are concerned about the threat of a government takeover of Catholic schools, the Fides news service reports. Faced with declining educational subsidies, and...

Benedict XVI invites visiting Cuban bishops to pray Rosary with him CWN - 19 hours ago

Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI surprised a group of Cuban bishops on August 28 by inviting them to join him in praying the Rosary in the Vatican gardens. The bishops of Cuba were at the Vatican for...

Cardinal Müller confirms Vatican commitment to reform of LCWR CWN - 19 hours ago

The prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) has reaffirmed the Vatican’s intent to reform the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), saying that the goal is to...

Scotland’s archbishops urge participation in independence referendum CWN - September 1

Scotland’s two archbishops have urged Catholics to take part in the Scottish independence referendum, which will take place on September 18. The archbishops did not take a position for or against...

Thousands of Nigerians flee as Boko Haram advances CWN - September 1

Thousands of residents of northeastern Nigeria have fled for neighboring Cameroon in wake of the advance of the Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram. “The spokesman for the Roman Catholic Diocese...

250th anniversary of founding of St. Louis CWN - September 1

Pope Francis named Cardinal Justin Rigali as his special envoy to a recent Mass marking the 250th anniversary of the Missouri city’s founding. Cardinal Rigali served as the city’s archbishop from...

Cardinal Parolin urges Catholic lawmakers to protect family life, alleviate poverty CWN - September 1

Addressing an international conference of Catholic legislators, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, called upon lawmakers “not only to live ‘in the midst of the world’ but...

In response to anguished letter, Pope calls Iraqi priest CWN - September 1

Pope Francis has telephoned an Iraqi priest who is ministering in a refugee camp, according to a Vatican Radio report. “The situation of your sheep is miserable,” Father Behnam Benoka, until...

Ecumenical Patriarch issues encyclical on the environment CWN - September 1

The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, who holds a primacy of honor among the Eastern Orthodox churches, has issued an encyclical on the environment. “In its prayerful memory, the Church...

Pope Francis: don’t be a worldly Christian CWN - September 1

Christians should transform the world and not be transformed by it, Pope Francis said during his August 31 Sunday Angelus address. “We Christians live in the world, fully integrated into the...

Nigerian archbishop shuns suggestions for security guards, despite terror threat CWN - August 29

Archbishop Ignatius Kaigama of Jos, Nigeria, has said that despite the dangers posed by Boko Haram terrorism, he does not have, or want, a personal security detail. Acknowledging that he...

Breakthrough close in treating heart disease with adult stem cells? CWN - August 29

An Australian scientist whose work has drawn kudos from the Vatican may be close to a breakthrough in the treatment of congenital heart failure, using stem cells derived from adult tissues. Dr....

Legionary priest apologizes for comparing Maciel with St. Mary Magdalene CWN - August 29

A spokesman for the Legionaries of Christ has apologized for a promotional brochure in which he compared the disgraced founder of the religious order, the late Father Marcial Maciel, to St. Mary...

Patriarchs challenge Islamic officials, world leaders to take action against terrorists CWN - August 29

Describing the violence against Christians in Iraq and Syria as “attempted genocide,” a group of Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs has challenged Islamic officials and international leaders to take...

Outgoing Vatican prefect says he asked for appointment to Spanish archdiocese CWN - August 29

Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, who has been named Archbishop of Valencia, Spain, after almost six years as prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, has said that he sought the...

Pope meets missionary pastor of Gaza's Catholics CWN - August 29

Pope Francis met on August 29 with an Argentine missionary priest who serves the tiny Catholic community in the Gaza Strip. Father Jorge Hernandez Zanni, an Incarnate Word missionary, told...

Australian Catholic paper declines ads for McAleese speaking appearance CWN - August 29

An Australian Catholic newspaper refused to carry advertisements for a speaking appearance by former Irish President Mary McAleese, citing her dissent from Church teaching on homosexuality and...

SSPX priest celebrates Mass in Vatican basilica CWN - August 29

A priest of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) celebrated Mass in St. Peter’s basilica, with the approval of the “highest authority” of the Vatican basilica, the traditionalist group has...

Protestant church forced out of East Jerusalem building CWN - August 29

Following repeated incidents of vandalism, harassment, and break-ins, an evangelical church in a Muslim neighborhood of East Jerusalem has been forced from its building, according to Morning Star...

New abortion-suicide controversy in Ireland CWN - August 29

In 2013, Ireland passed a law permitting abortion when the mother’s life is in danger from physical illness or suicide. A panel of doctors must first approve the abortion. In recent months, after...

28% of US parishes have more than $1M in revenue CWN - August 29

Because of parish mergers in the Northeast and Midwest and larger parishes in the South and Southwest, 28% of parishes in the United States now have $1 million or more in revenue, according to a...

Bishop distinguishes Syria’s Muslims from Saudi-backed militias CWN - August 29

At a press conference in Italy, the apostolic vicar of Aleppo, Syria’s largest city, said that 60% of Christians have left the city. Bishop George Abou Khazen, who ministers to Roman-rite...

Cuba’s patroness given place of honor in Vatican Gardens CWN - August 29

Cuba’s bishops have given a replica of the image of Our Lady of Charity, the nation’s patroness, to Pope Francis, and the image has been accorded a place of honor in the Vatican Gardens, according...

Vatican prelate: world must act to defend, help Iraq’s Christians CWN - August 29

Cardinal Antonio Maria Vegliò, the president of the Pontifical Council for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Itinerant People, has told Vatican Radio that the world must act to defend Christians and...

Hindu fundamentalists 'reconvert' Christians in Indian village CWN - August 28

Hindu militants in India’s state of Uttar Pradesh have announced the “reconversion” of about 70 people who had embraced Christianity, the AsiaNews service reports. The Hindu militants denied that...

Poland interested in extraditing former papal nucnio CWN - August 28

The Polish ambassador to the Holy See has said that his government may renew its effort to seek extradition for Jozef Wesolowski, the former apostolic nuncio who has been charged with molesting boys...

Veteran US congressman enters Catholic Church CWN - August 28

Congressman James Sensenbrenner, a Republican member of the US Congress who has served since 1979, has quietly entered the Catholic Church. Sensenbrenner, who had been Episcopalian, was received...

Australian PM says school chaplains should be religious, not social workers CWN - August 28

The government of Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott plans to continue restricting a school-chaplaincy program to religious ministers, rather than expanding the program to include social...

Brazilian bishops to host televised presidential debate CWN - August 28

The Catholics bishops of Brazil have announced plans to host a debate among the country's presidential candidates. Seven presidential contenders, including incumbent Dilma Rousseff, are expected...

Federal court decision decriminalizes polygamy in Utah CWN - August 28

For the 2nd time in less than a year, a federal judge in Utah has struck down a key portion of the state’s law banning polygamy. Judge Clark Waddoups ruled that a portion of the marriage law that...

Iraqi prelate holds US responsible for plight of Christians CWN - August 28

The United States created the conditions that led to the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, according to Iraq’s leading Catholic prelate. “The US is indirectly responsible for what is...

Pope Francis transfers Vatican cardinal to Spanish archdiocese CWN - August 28

Pope Francis has appointed Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, the prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments since 2008, as the new Archbishop of Valencia,...

German bishops on Middle East: nations must act to prevent genocide CWN - August 28

In a statement on the Middle East, the German Bishops’ Conference said that nations are obligated to act to prevent genocide. Deploring the persecution of Christians, the bishops said in their...

Pope meets with family of slain Catholic Pakistani official CWN - August 28

Pope Francis met on August 27 with the mother and brother of Shahbaz Bhatti, who served as Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Minorities Affairs from 2008 until his assassination in 2011. Bhatti was...

Caritas Turkey financially ‘powerless’ in face of influx of Christian refugees CWN - August 28

In a letter to Pope Francis, leaders of Caritas Turkey said that they are financially “powerless” to assist all of the refugees from neighboring Syria and Iraq. Although “we do not make a...

Russian patriarch offers condolences to Pope Francis CWN - August 28

The head of the Russian Orthodox Church has sent condolences to Pope Francis following the death of his nephew’s family in an automobile crash. “Please accept my profound condolences over the...

Islamic State’s control of Syrian territory marked by crucifixions, amputations CWN - August 28

A United Nations commission has documented human rights violations perpetrated in Syria by the Islamic State of Syria and the Levant . The Sunni jihadist group, also known as ISIS, now controls...

Franciscan leader: ‘the Middle East is in flames’ CWN - August 28

The priest who serves as Franciscan superior in the Holy Land and several Middle Eastern nations told an Italian audience that the Arab Spring has brought radical change to the region. “The...

Italian bishops' leader says Church should welcome 'unconventional couples' to sacraments CWN - August 27

The secretary-general of the Italian bishops’ conference has said that the Church must make efforts to welcome “unconventional couples.” "Couples in irregular matrimonial situations are also...

Indian state discusses ban on sacramental wine CWN - August 27

In India’s Kerela state, a proposal to ban alcoholic beverages has spawned a debate about the use of wine in the Catholic Mass. Vellappally Natesan, the general secretary of the Sree Narayana...

Bahrain's king offers shelter to Christian refugees from Iraq CWN - August 27

King Hamad Bin Isa al Khalifa of Bahrain has offered refuge to 200 Christian refugee families from Mosul, Iraq, the Zenit news agency reports. "This shows his generosity toward Christians,"...

Russia, Moscow patriarchate spreading 'misinformation' about Ukraine, Catholic prelate charges CWN - August 27

A Ukrainian Catholic bishop in England has charged that the Russian Orthodox Church is spreading misinformation about the role of the Eastern Catholic Church in Ukraine. Bishop Hlib Lonchyna, who...

German cardinal sees 'Francis effect' as passing trend CWN - August 27

German Cardinal Walter Brandmüller has told a German magazine that the "Pope Francis effect" is a popular phenomenon rather than a spiritual revival. "Were this a religious movement, the churches...

Dominican prosecutors interested in pursuing extradition of former nuncio CWN - August 27

Following a Vatican announcement that Josef Wesolowski has lost his diplomatic immunity, prosecutors in the Dominican Republic have expressed interest in having the former papal nuncio extradited to...

Eastern Church leaders in summit, hoping to save Christian presence in Iraq, Syria CWN - August 27

Eastern patriarchs are meeting in Lebanon to draft an appeal to the world on behalf of suffering Christians in Iraq and Syria. The meeting of the patriarchs is taking place in Bkerke, at the...

Pope Francis emphasizes: parishes should not be places of gossip and division CWN - August 27

Pope Francis devoted his August 27 general audience to two of the marks of the Church: her holiness and unity. The Church, he said, is “one because she has her origin in the Triune God, mystery...

California diocese begins project to spread solar energy CWN - August 27

The Diocese of Stockton has begun a project that encourages local Catholics to install solar panels. The diocese is encouraging Catholics to purchase panels from Sungevity, an Oakland-based...

Prelate: in establishing ordinariates, Pope Benedict did something concrete to restore Christian unity CWN - August 27

In a recent article, the head of the Personal Ordinariate of Our Lady of Walsingham said that Pope Benedict’s decision to establish ordinariates for Anglicans who wish to enter into full communion...

Egypt: a year after attacks, Coptic Christians worship atop church ruins CWN - August 27

A year after dozens of churches in Egypt were destroyed in a wave of anti-Christian violence, some Coptic Christians are still gathering to worship on top of church ruins. Despite the Egyptian...

Historic visit of 5 patriarchs to Iraq’s persecuted Christians: full text of remarks CWN - August 27

The heads of the Chaldean Catholic Church, the Maronite Catholic Church, the Melkite Greek Catholic Church, the Syriac Catholic Church, and the Syriac Orthodox Church met in Iraq’s Kurdistan region...

Drowned immigrants in Mediterranean outnumber some war casualties, says Vatican paper CWN - August 26

L’Osservatore Romano has compared the deaths of immigrants drowned in the Mediterranean sea to the carnage of war. The Vatican newspaper responded forcefully to news of “the latest massacre”---...

Pope's special Iraq envoy heads next for Washington CWN - August 26

Cardinal Fernando Filoni, who visited Iraq earlier this month as the Pope’s special envoy to persecuted Christians there, will next travel to Washington, DC, to confer with the patriarchs of the...

School texts in India promote Hindu extremism, Jesuit charges CWN - August 26

The Jesuit director of a human-rights center in India has charged that the state of Gujarat promotes anti-Christian ideologies in its schools, the Fides news service reports. Father Cedric...

Minnesota archbishop appoints judge to supervise sex-abuse response CWN - August 26

Archbishop John Nienstedt of St. Paul-Minneapolis has appointed a veteran jurist to supervise handling of sex-abuse complaints within the archdiocese. Judge Timothy O’Malley, who will become the...

Vatican official, Syrian prelate call for international force to block Islamic State CWN - August 26

The Vatican’s chief representative at UN headquarters in Geneva has repeated the call of Pope Francis for international leaders to stop the persecution of Christians and Yezidis in Iraq, “though the...

St. Louis archbishop: ‘dismantle systemic racism’ CWN - August 26

In the wake of violence in Ferguson, Missouri, that followed the shooting of Michael Brown, Archbishop Robert Carlson of St. Louis called for the dismantling of “systemic racism.” “I pledge an...

US priest has visited North Korea 51 times CWN - August 26

An 81-year-old US missionary priest has visited North Korea 51 times since 1995, according a Catholic Herald report. Father Gerard Hammond, who serves as Maryknoll superior in South Korea, brings...

Stolen consecrated Host returned to Oklahoma archdiocese CWN - August 26

Following a legal decision, the organizers of a satanic ritual have returned a consecrated Host to the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City. “I am relieved that we have been able to secure the return of...

Report: Christian refugees seek mass exodus from Iraq CWN - August 26

Iraqi Christians refugees who have left their homes in the wake of the Islamic State’s advance are “are pressuring religious and political leaders to find a way for a rapid mass exodus out of Iraq,”...

Prelate ponders changes since Civil Rights movement CWN - August 26

Reflecting on his own life and changes in American society since the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Atlanta said that “as a bishop in the South today, I marvel at the...

$13,000 fine for NY farm owners who said no to lesbian wedding CWN - August 26

A New York judge has imposed a $13,000 fine upon the owners of an Albany-area farm because they declined to rent their facilities to a lesbian couple who wished to get married there. LifeSiteNews...

Ukraine: leading prelate honors ‘Heavenly Hundred’ protestors CWN - August 26

Praying for “peace in our country, a victory over our enemies, and the strength of a fraternal union,” the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church has blessed a monument to the “Heavenly...

Nigerian officials worry terrorists might disguise themselves as nuns CWN - August 25

Government officials in Nigeria have raised an alarm about the possibility that terrorist bombers might disguise themselves as Catholic nuns. Following the theft of a number of nuns’ habits from...

Cardinal George testing new anti-cancer drug CWN - August 25

Cardinal Francis George is participating in the clinical trial of a new anti-cancer drug, the Chicago archdiocese has disclosed. Cardinal George disclosed earlier this year that he is...

Pope-emeritus Benedict celebrates Mass with former students CWN - August 25

Pope-emeritus Benedict XVI celebrated Mass with some of his former students on August 24, as the Ratzinger Schuelerkreis concluded its annual meeting. The Schuelerkreis is an informal seminar, in...

California government tells Catholic universities they must offer employees abortion coverage CWN - August 25

In California, the administration of Governor Jerry Brown has informed officials at two Catholic universities that they are required to provide coverage for abortion in employees’ health-care...

Violence in Iraq is not simply Islam vs. Christianity, says Vatican Secretary of State CWN - August 25

It is an “oversimplification” to characterize the persecution of Iraqi Christians and Yezidis as a matter of Islam against Christianity, according to Cardinal Pietro Parolin. In an interview with...

Could laicized archbishop, former papal nuncio, be extradited to face abuse charges? CWN - August 25

The case of a former Vatican envoy in the Dominican Republic, who has been laicized for molesting young boys, could test the Vatican’s determination to prosecute abusive clerics, a New York Times...

Letter from Pope Francis read at slain journalist’s funeral Mass CWN - August 25

James Foley, the American journalist who was kidnapped in Syria in 2012 and beheaded by forces of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant in August 2014, was buried from a New Hampshire parish on...

Pope calls for prayers for Ukraine CWN - August 25

At the conclusion of his August 24 Angelus address, Pope Francis called for prayers for Ukraine. “My thoughts go in a particular way to the beloved land of Ukraine … to all its sons and...

Pope Francis: Jesus is more than a ‘teacher of wisdom’ or ‘model of justice’ CWN - August 25

During his August 24 Sunday Angelus, Pope Francis reflected upon St. Peter’s confession of faith, recounted in the Gospel of the day at Mass (Mt. 16:13-20). “The Lord has in mind the image of...

Papal message for Communion and Liberation gathering CWN - August 25

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, has signed a papal message to those attending the Communion and Liberation movement’s 35th Meeting for Friendship among Peoples. The...

Iraq: patriarch appeals to ‘conscience of the world,’ says US actions, Muslim leaders’ words not sufficient CWN - August 25

Iraq’s leading prelate has issued a new statement on the plight of the nation’s Christians. “It has become obvious that Iraqi Christians along with other minorities have received a fatal blow at...

Archbishop: new HHS mandate ‘accommodation’ will reduce religious freedom CWN - August 25

Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, the president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, has offered an initial response to the Obama administration’s new interim final rules implementing the HHS...

USCCB committee reaffirms commitment to dialogue with Muslims CWN - August 25

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs has strongly reaffirmed its commitment to engage in dialogue with Muslims. After citing texts...

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