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Catholic World News

Stories for April 2010

Released Friday, Apr. 2

Pope Benedict's homily at Holy Thursday evening Mass (full text) CWN - April 2, 2010

Dear Brothers and Sisters, In his Gospel, Saint John, more fully than the other three evangelists, reports in his own distinctive way the farewell discourses of Jesus; they appear as his testament...

The Way of the Cross at the Colosseum: Cardinal Ruini's meditations (full text) CWN - April 2, 2010

When the Apostle Philip asked Jesus, “Lord, show us the Father,” he replied, “Have I been with you all this time, and you still do not know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father” (Jn 14:8-9)....

Cardinal Brady backs national abuse inquiry, considers resignation CWN - April 2, 2010

Cardinal Seán Brady, Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of All Ireland, told abuse victims on March 31 that he supported a national inquiry into abuse by Irish priests and religious and that he would...

Cardinal George again defends Pope Benedict CWN - April 2, 2010

Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, has again defended Pope Benedict’s leadership in dealing with the clerical abuse crisis. “It was...

Archbishop Martin laments ‘hopelessly inadequate’ response to abuse, urges all to ‘turn to Jesus’ CWN - April 2, 2010

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin, Primate of Ireland, told priests and laity at his April 1 Chrism Mass homily that the Church in Ireland cannot “proclaim closure and move on.” “This has been...

Texas diocese settles 3rd abuse suit involving prominent Philippine priest-musician, canonist CWN - April 2, 2010

The Diocese of El Paso has settled its third lawsuit involving alleged abuse by Father Manuel Perez Maramba, OSB, a Philippine priest who ministered at a New Mexico parish from 1976 to 1977. A...

Released Saturday, Apr. 3

Pope Benedict: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - April 3, 2010

Dear Brothers and Sisters, An ancient Jewish legend from the apocryphal book “The life of Adam and Eve” recounts that, in his final illness, Adam sent his son Seth together with Eve into the region...

Released Sunday, Apr. 4

Pope Benedict: Easter Message Urbi et Orbi (To the City and to the World) CWN - April 4, 2010

Dear Brothers and Sisters, I bring you the Easter proclamation in these words of the Liturgy, which echo the ancient hymn of praise sung by the Israelites after crossing the Red Sea. It is recounted...

Released Monday, Apr. 5

At Vatican’s Easter Mass, Cardinal Sodano defends Pope against ‘petty gossip’ CWN - April 5, 2010

Cardinal Angelo Sodano, dean of the College of Cardinals, delivered a remarkable defense of Pope Benedict towards the beginning of Easter Sunday Mass in St. Peter’s Square. “We are deeply...

Jewish groups outraged at papal preacher’s Good Friday homily; Holy See distances itself CWN - April 5, 2010

Father Raniero Cantalamessa, preacher of the Pontifical Household, provoked international controversy for his April 2 remarks comparing recent criticism of the Church to the “collective violence”...

Man attacks German bishop during Easter Sunday Mass CWN - April 5, 2010

A mentally disturbed man attacked Bishop Felix Genn of Münster during Easter Sunday Mass. Running towards the altar with a broomstick in hand, the man knocked over a candle before turning on the...

Deposition: Cardinal Levada thought it unnecessary to tell laity of abusive priest’s past CWN - April 5, 2010

Angered by Cardinal William Levada’s recent criticism of The New York Times’ coverage of the clerical abuse scandal, an attorney released the transcript of a 2006 deposition in which the cardinal...

Vatican responds to media distortions on Tucson abuse cases CWN - April 5, 2010

In an extraordinary display of media bias, the Associated Press has reported that “the abuse cases of two priests in Arizona have cast further doubt on the Catholic church's insistence that Pope...

Archbishop of Canterbury apologizes for saying Church in Ireland ‘has lost all credibility’ CWN - April 5, 2010

The head of the Anglican Communion has called Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin to apologize for saying that the Church in Ireland “has lost all credibility.” “I was speaking to an Irish...

Be witnesses of Christ's victory, Pope tells faithful on Easter Monday CWN - April 5, 2010

The Catholic faithful must be "messengers of Christ's resurrection and victory over evil and death," Pope Benedict XVI said during a midday audience on Easter Monday, April 5. Priests especially...

Angry at criticism of Pontiff, archbishop cancels newspaper subscription CWN - April 5, 2010

Archbishop John Vlazny of Portland, Oregon, has cancelled his subscription to the local newspaper, The Oregonian, and recommended that pastors do the same, to protest an editorial cartoon mocking...

Released Tuesday, Apr. 6

Archbishop Weakland halted ecclesial trial of notorious priest CWN - April 6, 2010

The Milwaukee priest who strongly criticized The New York Times for its reporting on the scandal surrounding the late Father Lawrence Murphy has apologized for failing to recall that Archbishop...

Accused of abuse in Minnesota, priest still active in India CWN - April 6, 2010

An Indian priest who ministered in Minnesota in 2004 and 2005 will not fight extradition to the United States to face charges that he assaulted a teenage girl. Father Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul may...

John Jay researcher: No link between homosexual abuse, homosexuality CWN - April 6, 2010

It is an “unwarranted conclusion” to assert that the majority of priests who abused children are homosexuals, according to a data analyst for a study on clerical abuse conducted on behalf of the...

New Zealand archbishop issues apology for abuse scandal CWN - April 6, 2010

In a pastoral letter read at all Holy Thursday Masses and Good Friday services, New Zealand’s leading prelate apologized for the abuse scandal. “Some of those called to be shepherds have been...

Wall Street Journal column criticizes Times coverage of Pope CWN - April 6, 2010

The Wall Street Journal has published a column by William McGurn criticizing The New York Times for its coverage of Pope Benedict and Father Lawrence Murphy’s abuse case. “[H]is bishops had...

Deposed French bishop apologizes for accepting abusive priest into diocese CWN - April 6, 2010

Bishop Jacques Gaillot, who was removed from his French diocese in 1995 after blessing a homosexual union and criticizing the discipline of clerical celibacy, has apologized for accepting an abusive...

Archbishop Gómez to succeed Cardinal Mahony in Los Angeles CWN - April 6, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has named Archbishop José Gómez of San Antonio as the Coadjutor Archbishop of Los Angeles. Born in Mexico in 1951 and ordained a priest of Opus Dei in 1978, Archbishop Gómez was...

Salvadoran party leader gave order for Archbishop Romero's murder CWN - April 6, 2010

Roberto D'Aubuisson, the founder of a conservative political party in El Salvador, gave the order for the assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero, according to a retired army officer who admits...

Hong Kong welcomed 3,000 new Catholics at Easter CWN - April 6, 2010

The Hong Kong diocese, with about 350,000 members, welcomed 3,000 new Catholics into the Church at Easter vigil services. This year's number was unusually high, but the Church in Hong Kong is...

German journal proclaims pontificate of Benedict XVI 'failed' CWN - April 6, 2010

In a spectacular display of slanted journalism, Der Spiegel announces that Pope Benedict XVI has failed as Pontiff. One cause of this alleged failure, the article says, is the Pontiff's "reluctance...

Vatican prelates see 'hatred for Church' behind attacks on Pope Benedict CWN - April 6, 2010

Leading Vatican officials are rallying to the defense of Pope Benedict XVI and charging that a worldwide storm of criticism is motivated by hostility to the Catholic Church. Cardinal Giovanni...

Released Wednesday, Apr. 7

Norway: Bishop admits abusing boy CWN - April 7, 2010

Bishop Georg Müller of Trondheim has admitted abusing a boy two decades ago, according to European press reports. The prelate resigned last year at the age of 58. In a statement released on...

Peaceful Easter for Iraqi Christians CWN - April 7, 2010

A newly installed Chaldean Catholic bishop says that peaceful Easter celebrations has given Iraqi Christians “new hope” following a campaign of anti-Christian violence. “The Easter celebrations...

US fertility rate drops below replacement level CWN - April 7, 2010

The birthrate in the United States fell 2% in 2008 and is now below the population replacement level of 2.1 children per woman, according to a report released April 6 by the National Center for...

Wisconsin DA urges schools not to teach sex education CWN - April 7, 2010

A district attorney in Wisconsin has sent a letter to local school districts urging them not to implement the state’s new sex education curriculum. The curriculum, which districts are not required...

Condescending editorial, mean-spirited column greet Archbishop Gomez in Los Angeles CWN - April 7, 2010

In its editorial on Archbishop José Gomez’s appointment as Coadjutor Archbishop of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Times says it would be “comforting” if the archbishop does not call upon pro-abortion...

Legionaries used donations to amass influence at Vatican CWN - April 7, 2010

An eye-opening report by Jason Berry details how the Legion of Christ under Father Marcial Maciel accumulated power and influence at the Vatican, currying favor with lavish donations to key...

Be transformed by the joy of the Resurrection, Pope tells faithful CWN - April 7, 2010

Christians should always testify to the reality of Christ's Resurrection, Pope Benedict XVI said at his regular weekly public audience on April 7. The faithful are effective witnesses, he said, when...

Cardinal Bertone: questions on Murphy case have been answered CWN - April 7, 2010

Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone has expressed frustration with continued questions about the Vatican's role in the case of Father Lawrence Murphy, the Milwaukee priest who was charged with abusing deaf...

New York Times story based on gross translating error CWN - April 7, 2010

An Italian journalist has revealed that a front-page story in the New York Times, attempting to link Pope Benedict XVI to the case of a Milwaukee priest charged with sexual abuse, was based on a...

Pope's critics attack him on his strongest points, journalist says CWN - April 7, 2010

Vatican-watcher Sandro Magister of L'Espresso makes the observation that critics of Pope Benedict XVI have launched furious salvos of criticism on precisely those points on which the Pontiff has...

Released Thursday, Apr. 8

Prelate warns of African scandals, says abusive priests are ‘destroying the Church of God’ CWN - April 8, 2010

One of Africa’s most prominent prelates warned in his Chrism Mass homily that “the misbehavior of priests in Africa has not been exposed to the same glare of the media as in other parts of the...

Norwegian bishop who abused boy continued to ‘lead services’ following resignation CWN - April 8, 2010

Bishop Georg Müller, who admitted abusing a boy in the early 1990s, has “led at least ten worship services” at a German Catholic hospital chapel since December, according to a press report. Bishop...

Malta’s bishops: Scandal ‘a source of humiliation for the Church’ CWN - April 8, 2010

The bishops of Malta have released a statement decrying the clerical abuse of children. “Much to the shame of the Church, these crimes are more horrifying when they are perpetrated by members of...

Canadian bishop resigns at 63 CWN - April 8, 2010

A Canadian bishop described in the local press as a “staunch public defender of Catholic orthodoxy” has resigned at the age of 63. “My decision to offer my resignation was the result of a long...

Newspaper: Bishop Steib allowed accused priest to minister in Mexico CWN - April 8, 2010

Following the unsealing of court documents from a clerical abuse lawsuit, The Memphis Commercial Appeal has published a series of nearly a dozen articles on the history of clerical abuse-- most of...

Montana bishop cancels gay organization's open house at parish CWN - April 8, 2010

Bishop Michael Warfel of Great Falls-Billings has canceled the monthly meeting of a gay support group, Always Our Children, at a Catholic parish in Billings. At Always Our Children’s April 6 open...

News services rehash failed charges against Pope CWN - April 8, 2010

Wire services continue to rehash charges that Pope Benedict XVI bears responsibility for sexual abuse by clerics, although the evidence supporting those charges has been thoroughly rebutted. An...

Italian prosecutor pursues murder charges in death of key figure in Vatican bank scandal CWN - April 8, 2010

An Italian prosecutor is asking for life sentences against three Mafia figures for the death of Roberto Calvi, a key figure in the Italian banking scandal that touched the Vatican in the...

Catholic college in Georgia abruptly closed CWN - April 8, 2010

Southern Catholic College, a Georgia institution that was taken over last year by the Legionaries of Christ, has announced that it will close before the end of the current spring semester. Citing...

Italian president stages concert to honor Pope Benedict CWN - April 8, 2010

Italian President Giorgio Napolitano has announced plans for a concert honoring Pope Benedict XVI on the 5th anniversary of his pontificate. The concert, to be held in the Vatican's Paul VI...

Chinese bishop under house arrest for refusing to concelebrate with government-appointed bishop CWN - April 8, 2010

A Chinese bishop is under house arrest because he objected to concelebrating Mass with an excommunicated prelate. Bishop Matthias Du Jiang of Bameng, in Mongolia, has been serving the underground...

New abuse charges for Norwegian Church CWN - April 8, 2010

Bishop Bernt Eidsvig of Oslo reports that he has received a number of complaints alleging sexual abuse by Catholic priests in the wake of revelations that a Norwegian bishop resigned after facing...

Canadian bishop facing child-porn charge accused of abuse, too CWN - April 8, 2010

A Canadian bishop who already faces criminal charges for child pornography is now accused of sexual abusing a young man as well. Bishop Raymond Lahey-- who resigned as head of the Antigonish diocese...

Released Friday, Apr. 9

Cardinal prefect, Canadian hierarchy knew of Vatican official’s abuse CWN - April 9, 2010

Seven Ontario bishops and Cardinal José Sanchez, the prefect for the Congregation for the Clergy, were aware by 1993 that the secretary-general of the Pontifical Society for the Propagation of the...

Priest arrested for child porn in scandal-plagued Brazilian diocese CWN - April 9, 2010

A month after a Brazilian bishop suspended three priests, one of them 82 years old, for alleged homosexual activity with teens and young men, a fourth priest of the diocese has been charged with...

Texas: Priest accused of raping teenage boy at gunpoint CWN - April 9, 2010

A lawsuit filed against the Archdiocese of San Antonio alleges that a priest of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity repeatedly assaulted a teenage boy during 2008 and once raped him at...

Judge dismisses Nevada priest’s lawsuit against bishop CWN - April 9, 2010

Citing First Amendment religious freedom concerns, a Nevada district court judge has dismissed a lawsuit by a Reno priest against his bishop. Father Richard DeMolen had filed a temporary...

US Catholics donate $59M to Haitian relief CWN - April 9, 2010

Catholics in the United States donated $58.7 million to a special Sunday collection for Haitian relief following the devastating January 12 earthquake, according to an April 8 press release from the...

Settlement for priest’s 2004 assault of Florida woman CWN - April 9, 2010

Six years after a Polish priest broke into the house of Florida woman and assaulted her, the Archdiocese of Newark and Diocese of Orlando have reached a settlement with the woman. Father Wladyslaw...

Public confidence in Pope falling, poll shows CWN - April 9, 2010

Media reports about sexual abuse in the Catholic Church have taken heavy toll on public confidence in Pope Benedict XVI, a Pew Forum survey finds. The number of Americans saying that the Pontiff has...

Exposition of Shroud begins in Turin CWN - April 9, 2010

A public exposition of the Shroud of Turin will begin on Saturday, April 10, in that city's cathedral. The exposition will continue until 23. The Shroud, believed to be the burial cloth of Jesus...

Vatican ridicules charge that Pope blocked probe of Maciel CWN - April 9, 2010

The Vatican press office has rejected as "for informed people, ridiculous," a German magazine's claim that Pope Benedict XVI helped to conceal the misdeeds of the late Father Marcial Maciel, the...

Irish bishops seen unready to handle abuse crisis CWN - April 9, 2010

In a Vatican Radio interview, the editor of the Irish Catholic says that the Irish bishops have lacked a plan for dealing with the sex-abuse crisis in that country, and have taken their guidance...

Vatican spokesman defends handling of abuse crisis CWN - April 9, 2010

The director of the Vatian press office has released a lengthy prepared statement defending Church handling of sex-abuse problems and insisting that Pope Benedict XVI has been "a coherent guide...

Costa Rican president calls for end to clerical celibacy CWN - April 9, 2010

Costa Rica's President Oscar Arias has called for an end to mandatory celibacy in the Catholic clergy. Arias, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1987, says that the Church should "correct the error"...

Schedule set for papal trip to Malta: April 17- 18 CWN - April 9, 2010

The Vatican has announced final schedule details for the trip by Pope Benedict XVI to Malta on April 17-18. The papal trip-- timed for observances of the 1,950th anniversary of St. Paul's shipwreck...

Pope to attend movie on Hitler's plot to kidnap Pius XII CWN - April 9, 2010

On Friday evening, April 9, Pope Benedict XVI will attend the screening of a film on the plot to kidnap Pope Pius XII. The film, Under the Roman Sky, stars James Cromwell in the recounting of a Nazi...

AP obtains document signed by Pope, postponing decision on defrocking abusive priest CWN - April 9, 2010

The Associated Press has unearthed a 1985 document in which then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger explains his reluctance to grant a quick laicization to a California priest who was accused of molesting...

UN judicial official suggests trial of Pope for 'crimes against humanity' CWN - April 9, 2010

A UN judge has suggested that Pope Benedict XVI should be tried before the International Criminal Court for "crimes against humanity." Geoffrey Robinson, who served on a UN judicial panel,...

Congo: archbishop describes Easter rebel attacks CWN - April 9, 2010

Archbishop Joseph Kumuondala Mbimba of Mbandaka, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, has provided a vivid account of a rebel attack on local parishes. "The rebels came while the parishes of the...

Released Monday, Apr. 12

US bishops, Vatican newspaper welcome nuclear reduction treaty CWN - April 12, 2010

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has welcomed the April 8 signing of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). According to the US State Department, the treaty “reduce[es]...

Holy See attorney rebuts AP claims on Oakland case CWN - April 12, 2010

Jeffrey Lena, an attorney who represents the Holy See in US courts, has refuted the assertion in an Associated Press wire story that “the future Pope Benedict XVI resisted pleas to defrock a...

Connecticut bishops urge Catholics to oppose bill lifting statute of limitations CWN - April 12, 2010

In a letter read at all Masses in Connecticut on April 10 and 11, the state’s bishops urged Catholics to oppose legislation that would lift the statute of limitations in child sexual abuse...

President Obama appoints Franciscan friar to bioethics panel CWN - April 12, 2010

President Barack Obama has appointed a Franciscan friar who teaches at the University of Chicago as a member of his Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. An opponent of embryonic stem cell...

Archbishop Wuerl again defends Pope Benedict CWN - April 12, 2010

Archbishop Donald Wuerl of Washington has again defended Pope Benedict against charges that he covered up the clerical abuse of children. In an April 10 interview with Vatican Radio, Archbishop...

Vatican newspaper commemorates 40th anniversary of Beatles’ break-up CWN - April 12, 2010

The April 10 edition of L’Osservatore Romano included a column commemorating the 40th anniversary of the break-up of the Beatles. Paying tribute to the Beatles’ “magical creative alchemy,” Giuseppe...

Vatican releases summary of sex-abuse procedures CWN - April 12, 2010

The Vatican has issued a short set of guidelines explaining how the Church responds to sex-abuse complaints involving Catholic priests. The guidelines are a simplified summary of the policies...

Tell the world of the Divine Mercy, Pope urges Sunday audience CWN - April 12, 2010

When the risen Christ visited the apostles and encouraged St. Thomas to explore his wounds, He illustrated the depth of his mercy, Pope Benedict XVI told his Sunday Angelus audience on April 11, the...

Vatican Information Service launches blog CWN - April 12, 2010

The Vatican Information Service (VIS) has launched a blog that will provide updates on news items from the Vatican press office. The blog-- made public in Italian, Spanish, and French as well as...

Papal praise for film on Hitler's plot against Pius XII CWN - April 12, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI offered words of praise for Pope Pius XII on Friday evening, April 10, after watching a film on the life of the World War II-era Pontiff. Pope Benedict attended a screening of...

Vietnamese archbishop's return fires new rumors about his replacement CWN - April 12, 2010

Archbishop Joseph Ngo Quang Kiet of Hanoi has returned earlier than expected from a trip to Rome for medical treatment. Noting the widespread rumors that the archbishop would be transferred out of...

Pope's schedule for June visit to Cyprus CWN - April 12, 2010

The Vatican has released the full schedule for the visit by Pope Benedict XVI to Cyprus, taking place June 4 to 6. Leaving Rome on Friday morning, June 4, the Holy Father will arrive in Paphos...

Atheist activist announces bid to have Pope Benedict arrested CWN - April 12, 2010

Richard Dawkins, the flamboyant British atheist campaigner, has announced that he will seek the arrest of Pope Benedict XVI when the Pontiff visits the United Kingdom in September. Dawkins and...

Pope voices sympathies to Poland after president dies in airplane crash CWN - April 12, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI conveyed his sympathies to the people of Poland during his regular Angelus audience on April 11, expressing his sorrow at the plane crash that killed President Lech Kaczynski, his...

Benedict XVI tougher on abusers than John Paul II: New York Times columnist CWN - April 12, 2010

The world wants to see a Pope who will take aggressive action against priests who molest young people, says Ross Douthat. And Pope Benedict XVI did exactly that, the New York Times columnist notes,...

USA Today offers contrasting views on Pope Benedict's handling of abuse CWN - April 12, 2010

In contrasting op-ed columns, USA Today gives two very different views on Pope Benedict's treatment of the sex-abuse crisis. Stephen Prothero of Boston University says that the Pope has repeated the...

Schools, not Church, seen most likely site for abuse CWN - April 12, 2010

While all media attention is riveted on the Catholic Church, those who are interested in protecting children may be interested to know that sexual abuse is roughly 100 times more likely to occur in...

Bosnia-Herzegovina, Holy See reach accord on military chaplains CWN - April 12, 2010

The Vatican has announced the conclusion of an accord with Bosnia-Herzegovina, governing the pastoral care to be provided for Catholics serving in that country's armed forces. Archbishop Alessandro...

The Kiesle case: 'defrocking' is not a matter of protecting children CWN - April 12, 2010

Father Joseph Fessio, SJ, the founder of Ignatius Press and former student of then-Professor Joseph Ratzinger, explains that the case of an Oakland priest who sought laicization, currently being...

Released Tuesday, Apr. 13

Cardinal Bertone: Homosexuality is the problem, not celibacy CWN - April 13, 2010

Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone said at a news conference in Chile that homosexuality, and not the discipline of clerical celibacy, has been linked to the clerical abuse...

100 allege abuse at Bavarian Benedictine abbey CWN - April 13, 2010

One hundred former students of a Benedictine abbey school in Bavaria have alleged that they were physically or sexually abused by 15 monks. “My investigations quite clearly show that for decades...

Pope’s secretary: Bishops have responsibility for dealing with abuse CWN - April 13, 2010

Msgr. Georg Gänswein, the Pope’s private secretary, has reminded a German newspaper that bishops have the responsibility of dealing with clerical abuse in their dioceses. “No one has condemned...

Strong defense of Pope Benedict from Archbishop Gregory CWN - April 13, 2010

Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Atlanta, who was president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops when the Dallas charter was adopted in 2002, offered a strong defense of Pope Benedict in...

Thai prelate warns: protestors could plunge nation into chaos CWN - April 13, 2010

Amid deepening civil unrest, Thailand’s leading prelate has warned that there are “dark forces who want to plunge the situation into chaos.” “The situation is very delicate. There is a clear...

Iraqi-born priest appointed US bishop CWN - April 13, 2010

Pope Benedict has appointed Chorbishop Yousif Habash, a Syrian Catholic priest in Los Angeles, as bishop of the Eparchy of Our Lady of Deliverance of Newark for Syrian Catholics. In an interview...

Pope will meet again with abuse victims CWN - April 13, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI will meet privately with victims of sexual abuse during his visit to Malta this coming weekend. The meeting will be private, emphasized Father Federico Lombardi, the Vatican...

Vatican commission on Medjugorje now at work; members listed CWN - April 13, 2010

A special commission assembled to study the reported Marian apparitions at Medjugorje met late in March, the Vatican has disclosed. The meeting took place in Rome shortly after the original Vatican...

Vatican brushes off story of move to arrest Pope in Britain CWN - April 13, 2010

The Vatican has no plan to reconsider a September visit by Pope Benedict XVI to Great Britain, despite the highly publicized call for the Pope's arrest there. The noted atheist campaigner Richard...

Investigation of Father Maciel highlights ties to former Vatican Secretary of State CWN - April 13, 2010

An investigative report on the influence wielded by the late Father Marcial Maciel, the founder of the Legion of Christ, shows that the disgraced Mexican priest had built up close ties to Cardinal...

L'Osservatore editor sees a 'media campaign' against the Pope CWN - April 13, 2010

In an exchange with reporters at the Foreign Press Club in Rome, Gian Maria Vian, the editor of L'Osservatore Romano, defended the Vatican response to the sex-abuse crisis. “Honestly, the Holy See...

Vandals deface Pope's boyhood home CWN - April 13, 2010

Vandals had painted obscene slogans on the outer walls of the house where Pope Benedict XVI lived as a child. A police spokesman said that it was fair to assume that the damage to the home in Marktl...

Cardinal Brady, Irish primate, hospitalized CWN - April 13, 2010

Cardinal Sean Brady of Armagh was hospitalized on April 13 after he fell ill during a confirmation ceremony. The Primate of All Ireland was admitted to Craigavon Area Hospital, where he was reported...

Bombing hits Catholic church in Philippines CWN - April 13, 2010

A Catholic church and a government building were hit by bombs on April 13 on the island of Basilan in the Philippines. Two people were killed. Authorities suspected that Islamic separatist groups...

Rhode Island bishop raps CHA stand on health care, withdraws hospital membership CWN - April 13, 2010

Bishop Tomas Tobin of Providence, Rhode Island, has asked that a local Catholic hospital be dropped from membership in the Catholic Health Association (CHA) because of the CHA's public endorsement...

'Commissioner' to assume leadership for Legionaries? CWN - April 13, 2010

Vatican-watcher John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter writes that many informed sources expect the appointment of a "commissioner" to supervise the activities of the Legion of Christ....

Planned Parenthood counselor taped giving inaccurate information to 'client' CWN - April 13, 2010

A videotape recording, made secretly by the pro-life group Live Action, shows a counselor at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Milwaukee telling a young woman that her unborn child, at 6-8 weeks of...

Released Wednesday, Apr. 14

Brazilian rancher convicted in American nun’s murder CWN - April 14, 2010

Following 15 hours of jury deliberations, a Brazilian court has convicted rancher Vitalmiro Moura for ordering the murder of Sister Dorothy Stang, an American-born nun who protected the property...

Sweden's bishop asks forgiveness, urges abuse victims to come forward CWN - April 14, 2010

The day he received two allegations of abuse committed by priests in the 1940s and 1960s, Sweden’s sole bishop asked for forgiveness. “It is with deep sadness and grief that I receive these...

Italian bishop reportedly says that Jews are behind attacks on Church CWN - April 14, 2010

“The perennial enemies of the Church, the Masons and the Jews” are behind recent attacks on the Church, an Italian Catholic news blog has quoted a retired Italian bishop as saying. Denouncing...

Vatican newspaper responds to Ringo Starr’s dismissal of Beatles coverage CWN - April 14, 2010

In an interview with CNN, Beatles drummer Ringo Starr has dismissed the latest L’Osservatore Romano column praising the band. Paying tribute to the Beatles’ “magical creative alchemy,” Giuseppe...

Notre Dame issues pro-life ‘institutional statement’ CWN - April 14, 2010

Nearly a year after the University of Notre Dame awarded an honorary degree to President Barack Obama, the university has adopted an institutional pro-life statement. “Consistent with the...

Archbishop Chaput removes priest from ministry following allegation CWN - April 14, 2010

Archbishop Charles Chaput has swiftly removed a 74-year-old priest from ministry after he was accused of abusing a child in the early 1970s. “Father [Mel] Thompson has no previous allegation of...

Outrage, clarification follow Cardinal Bertone's linking homosexuality to abuse CWN - April 14, 2010

Amid worldwide cries of protest that greeted Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone's statement that the Church's sex-abuse problem is linked to homosexuality, the Vatican has issued a clarification of that...

Priests represents Christ, not himself, Pope tells audience CWN - April 14, 2010

A Catholic priests "is always a teacher," Pope Benedict XVI remarked at his weekly public audience on April 14. Speaking to a crowd of about 16,000 people in St. Peter's Square, the Holy Father...

Irish primate released from hospital CWN - April 14, 2010

Cardinal Sean Brady, the Primate of All Ireland, has returned home after being hospitalized briefly on April 13. The Irish prelate was admitted to Craigavon Area Hospital on Monday when he fell ill...

Italian court rejects bid for same-sex marriage CWN - April 14, 2010

An Italian court has dismissed lawsuits by homosexual activists seeking to overturn the law restricting marriage to heterosexual couples. The constitutional court ruled that any change in the...

Seven beatifications scheduled for April- June CWN - April 14, 2010

The Vatican has announced plans for the beatification of 7 people in the next several weeks. With the formal approval of Pope Benedict XVI, ceremonies were announced for: Bernardo Francisco de...

Mexican cardinal: Church must speak out against drug cartels CWN - April 14, 2010

A Mexican cardinal has underlined the determination of Church leaders to fight against drug traffickers. Cardinal Francisco Robles Berlanga of Monterrey said that while civil officials have the...

Bishop Williamson will not attend German trial for Holocaust denial CWN - April 14, 2010

The traditionalist bishop whose skepticism about the Holocaust prompted an international furor last year will not be present in a German court to answer criminal charges on Friday, his lawyer has...

Pope prays for Chinese earthquake victims CWN - April 14, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI prayed for the victims of a recent earthquake in China, and for their relatives, during his regular public audience on April 14. "I implore God that they may find relief from their...

Released Thursday, Apr. 15

Philippines: Bishop fears for life as Muslim separatists attack city CWN - April 15, 2010

Following an April 13 Islamist terrorist attack that destroyed 70% of his cathedral, a Philippine bishop says that he and the other Christians of the city fear for their lives. “It is the first...

Vatican diplomat: Plunging birthrates are part of economic crisis CWN - April 15, 2010

Archbishop Celestino Migliore, apostolic nuncio and permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, told a UN commission on April 12 that the world’s nations need to confront the problem...

Governor raises funds for pro-gay marriage group after diocese cuts funding CWN - April 15, 2010

Three weeks after the Diocese of Portland withdrew it support of Preble Street’s Homeless Voices for Justice because of the group’s support for same-sex marriage, Governor John Baldacci-- a Catholic...

AP implies that Catholics weren’t taught to obey civil law until 1965 CWN - April 15, 2010

In a remarkable display of journalistic ignorance of Catholic teaching, the Associated Press has reported that the “implicit understanding of the need to follow just civil laws dates to a 1965...

Retired Wisconsin priest suspended following accusation CWN - April 15, 2010

A retired priest of the Diocese of Superior has been suspended following an allegation of inappropriate sexual contact with a 19-year-old man. Father Robert Urban, a former editor of the diocesan...

Retired Tennessee priest accused of abuse CWN - April 15, 2010

Bishop Richard Stika of Knoxville has suspended a retired priest who was accused of abusing a boy for five years beginning in 1975. Warren Tucker, 44, alleges that Father William Casey began to...

Pope speaks of attacks on Church, need to do penance CWN - April 15, 2010

Now, under the attacks of the world, which speak to us of our sins, we see that to be able to do penance is a grace – and we see how necessary it is to do penance, that is, to recognize what is...

Focus on Eucharist, take care of liturgy, Pope exhorts Brazilian bishops CWN - April 15, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI concentrated on the Eucharist, "the heart of Christian life, source and summit of the Church's mission of evangelization," as he met on April 15 with a group of Brazilian bishops...

New Vatican accord with German state CWN - April 15, 2010

The Vatican has announced a new accord with the German state of Lower Saxony, amending a previous accord that dates back to 1965. A brief Vatican announcement explained that the new agreement...

Mass at Vatican for Polish victims of air crash CWN - April 15, 2010

Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the dean of the College of Cardinals, will presided at a Mass in the Vatican basilica on April 15 for the victims of the airplane crash that killed Poland's President Lech...

British bishops' spokesman reject Cardinal Bertone's argument on homosexuality CWN - April 15, 2010

The secretary-general of the Bishops' Conference of England and Wales has directly contradicted a public statement by the Vatican Secretary of State on the connection between homosexuality and...

Top British prelate may sue newspaper over abuse claim CWN - April 15, 2010

Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster may file a defamation suit against the London Times, responding to the newspaper's claim that he had protected a pedophile priest. A spokesman for the...

English Catholic groups explain: campaign to arrest Pope is nonsense CWN - April 15, 2010

Two English Catholic organizations have joined in an effort to clear up public confusion following a highly publicized campaign calling for the arrest of Pope Benedict XVI during his visit to Great...

SSPX ordered Williamson not to defend Holocaust views in German trial CWN - April 15, 2010

The Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) ordered Bishop Richard Wiliamson not to appear in a German court to defend his controversial statements on the Holocaust, the traditionalist bishop's lawyer has...

Vatican spokesman reports to Secretariat of State, not to Pope CWN - April 15, 2010

The director of the Vatican press office-- often identified in the media as a spokesman for the Pope-- actually takes his directions from the Secretariat of State, a BBC story reveals. In an...

New Brazilian archbishop strikes equivocal tone on controversial abortion case CWN - April 15, 2010

The new Archbishop of Olinda and Recife, Brazil, has taken a public stand quite different from that of his predecessor in a highly controversial case involving a pregnant 9-year-old girl....

Christopher West suspends lectures to reflect on criticism CWN - April 15, 2010

Christopher West, whose popular lectures on the "theology of the body" have drawn criticism in recent months, has announced plans to withdraw from the lecture circuit temporarily. During a planned...

New York Times profiles Archbishop Dolan CWN - April 15, 2010

The New York Times has published a generally favorable profile of Archbishop Timothy Dolan, highlighting the gregarious nature of the city's new Catholic leader. The Times does acknowledge that the...

Released Friday, Apr. 16

Vatican cardinal praised French bishop for not reporting abuse to police CWN - April 16, 2010

The Holy See Press Office has confirmed the authenticity of a 2001 letter in which the then- prefect of the Congregation for Clergy praised a French bishop for not reporting a priest who had...

Removed by Vatican decision, African bishop resigns CWN - April 16, 2010

The Holy See announced on April 15 that Pope Benedict has accepted the resignation of 52-year-old Bishop Jacob Koda of Same. Bishop Koda, who was appointed bishop of the northeastern Tanzanian...

Cardinal Hummes: ‘Above all we are on the side of the victims’ CWN - April 16, 2010

Cardinal Cláudio Hummes, prefect of the Congregation for Clergy, unequivocally condemned clerical sexual abuse in an April 12 letter marking the impending conclusion of the Year for Priests. “It...

Sudan: Bishop questions fairness of election CWN - April 16, 2010

A Sudanese bishop is questioning the fairness of the recently concluded presidential election. “The reports of irregularities make one wonder whether in the end these elections will qualify to be...

Obama orders hospital visitation privileges for non-family members CWN - April 16, 2010

In what is being hailed as a victory for gay-advocacy groups, President Barack Obama directed the Secretary of Health and Human Services on April 15 to draw up regulations ensuring that “designated...

New Vatican web site offers resources on sex-abuse issue CWN - April 16, 2010

The Vatican has created a new web site offering resources to explain the Church's handling of sex-abuse problems. The site provides links to the Pope's pastoral letter to the Irish Church about...

German court confirms Bishop Williamson's conviction for Holocaust denial CWN - April 16, 2010

A German court has confirmed the conviction of Bishop Richard Wiliamson for his public statements questioning the severity of the Holocaust. But the court reduced the fine imposed on the...

AP finds abuse by Catholic priests in missionary work CWN - April 16, 2010

An Associated Press story had broken new ground in exposing sexual abuse by Catholic priests, pointing to the clerical abusers who have worked in missionary territories, exploiting their freedom...

Pennsylvania bishop bars dissident nuns from diocesan media CWN - April 16, 2010

Bishop Lawrence Brandt of Greensburg, has barred the Sisters of St. Joseph of Baden, Pennsylvania, from advertising in the local diocesan media. The bishop explained that he was taking this action...

US donors salute Pope Benedict on 83rd birthday CWN - April 16, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI met with members of the Papal Foundation-- an American group founded to help finance the charitable work of the Holy See-- in a private audience on April 16. "I thank you for your...

US judge finds National Day of Prayer unconstitutional CWN - April 16, 2010

A US federal district court judge has ruled that the National Day of Prayer is unconstitutional. Affirming a complaint brought by the Freedom from Religion Foundation, Judge Barbara Crabb said that...

Maternal deaths shown lower than UN groups claimed in calls for legal abortion CWN - April 16, 2010

A new study published by the British medical journal Lancet shows a decline in maternal mortality. The study shows that UN officials seriously overestimated maternal deaths in documents pressing for...

Brazilian prelate corrects record, opposes abortion in controversial case CWN - April 16, 2010

A Brazilian archbishop has said that he was the victim of slanted reporting in newspaper stories that portrayed him as defending an abortion performed on a 9-year-old girl. Archbishop Fernando...

Vatican PR gaffes hamper Pope's teaching: John Allen CWN - April 16, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has shown that he is not sensitive to media criticism. But John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter argues that the mishandling of public-relations issues at the Vatican, in a...

Released Monday, Apr. 19

Scottish bishop: Cardinal Bertone’s remarks on homosexuality ‘stupid’ CWN - April 19, 2010

A Scottish bishop has offered strong public criticism of the Vatican secretary of state’s recent remarks linking the clerical abuse scandal to homosexuality. “If the Church says something that is...

Christians now outnumber Muslims in sub-Saharan Africa by 2 to 1 CWN - April 19, 2010

A study published on April 15 by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life has found that the number of Christians in sub-Saharan Africa grew from seven million in 1900 to 470 million today. During...

US ordination class of 2010: 31% foreign-born; 10% are converts CWN - April 19, 2010

A survey of US seminarians who will be ordained this year has found that 31% were born outside the United States, with most coming from Mexico, Colombia, the Philippines, Poland and...

Philippine bishop did not know of US-born priest’s past of homosexual abuse CWN - April 19, 2010

Bishop Leopoldo Tumulak says that he would not have ordained US-born Joseph Skelton as a priest of the Diocese of Tagbilaran in 2001 if he had known of Skelton’s conviction for the abuse of a...

Mexican bishop links pornography, sex education to scandal CWN - April 19, 2010

A Mexican bishop said on April 15 that pornography and sex education have contributed to a climate in which clerical abuse can take place. “If on television and on the Internet and in so many...

Bishop Williamson to appeal fine for Holocaust denial CWN - April 19, 2010

The attorney for Bishop Richard Williamson has announced that his client will appeal his fine for Holocaust denial. A German court last week confirmed the Society of St. Pius X prelate’s conviction...

Pope holds quiet, emotional meeting with abuse victims in Malta CWN - April 19, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI held an emotional meeting with victims of clerical abuse on April 18 during his pastoral visit to the island nation of Malta. Participants reported that the Pontiff had tears...

Christian identity, immigration are themes for Pope's weekend trip to Malta CWN - April 19, 2010

During a weekend trip to Malta, Pope Benedict XVI emphasized the deep Christian roots of the island nation and the role that Malta plays as "a place where waves of refugees arrive from Africa and...

Vatican cardinal invites priests to Rome, addresses morale crisis CWN - April 19, 2010

Cardinal Claudio Hummes, the prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, has issued an invitation to all the world's priests to gather in Rome for the conclusion of the Year for Priests. In an...

Irish government seeks €680 million from religious orders for abuse victims CWN - April 19, 2010

The Irish government is pressing the country's religious order to add €200 million ($268 million) to the €477 million they have already contributed to a fund for victims of abuse in Church-run...

Pope Benedict working on his final book? CWN - April 19, 2010

After completing the second volume of his work on Jesus of Nazareth, which is now in progress, Pope Benedict XVI will not write any more books, according to a report in the Italian daily Corriere...

Cardinal Spidlik, Czech scholar, dead at 90 CWN - April 19, 2010

Cardinal Tomas Spidlik, a Czech Jesuit scholar, died in Rome on April 16 at the age of 90. A theologian who specialized in the study of the Eastern Christian traditions, Cardinal Spidlik...

Cardinal Castrillon defends silence on abuse, invokes confessional seal CWN - April 19, 2010

The former prefect of the Congregation for Clergy has defended a letter in which he praised a French bishop for withholding evidence of sexual abuse from police. The letter from Cardinal Dario...

Profile of Jeffrey Anderson, aggressive legal advocate for abuse victims CWN - April 19, 2010

The Washington Post profiles Jeffrey Anderson, the unconventional lawyer whose lawsuits against the Catholic Church had brought in $60 million in settlements for sex-abuse victims by 2002. Anderson,...

Unbowed by criticism, Benedict XVI celebrates 5th anniversary of papal election CWN - April 19, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI marked the 5th anniversary of his election as Roman Pontiff on April 19. At a luncheon celebrating the occasion, hosted by the cardinals in Rome, the Pope acknowledged the...

Released Tuesday, Apr. 20

China: Bishop ordained with papal mandate CWN - April 20, 2010

A 47-year-old priest has become the first bishop ordained in China since 2007. Bishop Paul Meng Qinglu, who is active in the government-approved Catholic Patriotic Association, has received a papal...

Brazil: Notorious priest arrested; legislative probe led by evangelical pastor CWN - April 20, 2010

A Brazilian parliamentary investigation into clerical abuse in the scandal-plagued Diocese of Penedo has led to the arrest of 83-year-old Msgr. Luiz Marques Barbosa. The priest gained notoriety...

Cardinal Mahony compares Arizona immigration bill to Nazism, Communism CWN - April 20, 2010

Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles has offered strong criticism of a measure passed by the Arizona legislature that would require police to arrest suspected illegal immigrants who are unable to...

St. John Vianney’s relics to tour Ireland next week CWN - April 20, 2010

In an apparent response to Pope Bendict’s March 19 pastoral letter on the Irish clerical abuse scandal, the Irish bishops have arranged to have the relics of St. John Mary Vianney travel to four...

Tennessee priest admits abuse, urges prayer for victim CWN - April 20, 2010

A retired Tennessee priest who was suspended last week following an abuse allegation has admitted to the abuse. Father William Casey, who was jailed on April 19, faces a charge of a crime against...

Indiana priest accused of abuse CWN - April 20, 2010

A priest of the Diocese of Gary, Indiana, has been placed on leave because of an alleged incident of abuse that took place in 1991. Police are unable to open an investigation because the person...

Irish doctor under fire for limiting fertility practice to married couples CWN - April 20, 2010

An Irish doctor is facing possible disciplinary action because he declined to provide fertility treatment for an unmarried couple. Dr. Phil Boyle, who practices in a Catholic hospital, was...

Irish poll shows heavy support for abortion ban CWN - April 20, 2010

A new opinion poll shows that 70% of Ireland's population supports the existing law that prohibits abortion. Only 13% of those questioned called for a change in the law. The poll, commissioned...

US Supreme Court weighs rights of Christian group on California campus CWN - April 20, 2010

On April 19 the US Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a case that pits a campus Christian group against the University of California's Hastings law school. The student organization, which...

Pope lauds courage, humor of deceased Czech cardinal CWN - April 20, 2010

At the April 20 funeral of Cardinal Tomas Spidlik, Pope Benedict XVI praised the Czech Jesuit theologian for his courageous witness to the faith, his buoyant sense of humor despite adversity, and...

Schedule set for papal visit to Turin CWN - April 20, 2010

The Vatican has released the official schedule for a visit by Pope Benedict XVI to Turin on May 2. The Pope is making the trip to venerate the Shroud of Turin during the public exposition that will...

Released Wednesday, Apr. 21

British bishop: Catholic schools at risk in general election CWN - April 21, 2010

Bishop Malcolm McMahon of Nottingham is warning Catholics that a victory by the Liberal Democrats in the May 6 general election could threaten the existence of Catholic schools. The party has...

Chilean hierarchy apologizes for abuse CWN - April 21, 2010

The bishops of Chile issued an apology to victims of clerical sexual abuse on April 20. “There is no place in the priesthood for those who abuse minors, and there is nothing that can justify this...

Accused of physical abuse, German bishop apologizes CWN - April 21, 2010

Three weeks after five former residents of a Catholic children’s home accused Bishop Walter Mixa of Augsburg of physically abusing them in the 1970s and 1980s, the prelate offered an apology....

Armed robbers attack Vatican embassy in Angola CWN - April 21, 2010

Three armed men attacked the apostolic nunciature in the Angolan capital of Luanda on April 19. “Thanks to our faith, we were able to keep calm and we managed to convince the bandits that the...

Suit claims Cardinal Mahony, Mexican cardinal conspired to hide priest’s abuse CWN - April 21, 2010

A man who alleges he was abused in 1997 has filed suit against Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles and Cardinal Norberto Rivera Carrera of Mexico, claiming that the prelates conspired to hide abuse...

German priest removed from ministry in DC following allegation CWN - April 21, 2010

A German priest who has ministered in the Archdiocese of Washington since 2004 has been removed from ministry after allegations of sexual abuse of teenage girls came to light. Father Michael...

Pope accepts resignation of another Irish bishop CWN - April 21, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has accepted the resignation of Bishop James Moriarty of Kildare and Leighlin, Ireland-- one of three bishops who offered to resign after the publication of a report criticizing...

Pope recaps trip to Malta, meeting with abuse victims CWN - April 21, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI recalled his emotional meeting with victims of sexual abuse in Malta during his regular weekly audience on April 21. "I shared their suffering and, greatly moved, prayed with them,...

Former Munich vicar general denies he was pressured to cover for Pope CWN - April 21, 2010

The former vicar general of the Munich archdiocese has denied published reports that he was pressured to assume sole responsibility for giving a parish assignment to an accused pedophile priest...

Cuban cardinal sees his nation anxious for political change CWN - April 21, 2010

Cardinal Jaime Ortega y Alamino of Havana has said that his country is facing a political crisis because of the open pressure for rapid change after years of Communist rule. Writing in Palabra...

Weigel rips Küng for attack on Pope Benedict CWN - April 21, 2010

George Weigel takes Hans Küng to task for his vituperative personal attack on Pope Benedict XVI, calling it "mean-spirited condemnation of an old friend." Weigel notes that Küng "single-handedly...

Facing protests, former Vatican prefect to be replaced as celebrant for traditional liturgy in DC CWN - April 21, 2010

Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, the former prefect of the Congregation for Clergy, has backed away from plans to preside at a Pontifical Mass at the National Shrine in Washington, DC. Sex-abuse...

Another Chinese bishop ordained with Vatican approval CWN - April 21, 2010

For the second time in less that a week, a Catholic bishop has been consecrated in China with the approval of the Holy See. Bishop Shen Bin was ordained for the Haimen diocese on April 21. Just...

Pope, at audience, thanks priests for faithful service CWN - April 21, 2010

During his general audience on Wednesday, April 21, Pope Benedict XVI offered a special welcome to a group of priests of the Rome diocese who had just completed a pilgrimage to Ars, France. He...

Released Thursday, Apr. 22

German bishop offers resignation for physical abuse CWN - April 22, 2010

Amid allegations that he physically abused children decades ago at a Catholic children’s home, Bishop Walter Mixa of Augsburg, who also serves as the bishop of the nation’s military diocese, has...

Berlusconi accused of sacrilege after receiving Communion CWN - April 22, 2010

A priest in Genoa has accused Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi of sacrilege after he received Holy Communion during a televised funeral. The prime minister divorced his first wife in 1985,...

Ontario: Catholic schools will not implement government-mandated sex-ed curriculum CWN - April 22, 2010

Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa and an Ottawa Catholic school official said that they will not implement portions of Ontario’s mandatory sex education curriculum. Ontario Premier Dalton...

Rights groups disappointed as Indonesia upholds blasphemy law CWN - April 22, 2010

In an 8-1 decision, Indonesia’s Constitutional Court upheld the nation’s anti-blasphemy law on April 19. Such laws have been used to persecute Christians alleged to have blasphemed...

Would-be assassin Agca requests Fatima meeting with Pope Benedict CWN - April 22, 2010

Mehmet Ali Agca, who wounded Pope John Paul II in a 1981 assassination attempt, has requested a meeting with Pope Benedict when he travels to Fatima next month. Agca’s assassination attempt took...

Profile of gay ex-deacon who sued the Vatican CWN - April 22, 2010

An alternative weekly newspaper has published a profile of Daniel Shea, an attorney and Louvain-educated former deacon who believes that the conclave of 2005 elected Cardinal Ratzinger pope so that...

Outgoing Irish bishop accepts responsibility for role in abuse cover-up CWN - April 22, 2010

In a statement confirming that Pope Benedict XVI has accepted his resignation, Bishop James Moriarty of Kildare and Leighlin repeated his acknowledgment that he bore some responsibility for the...

Milwaukee abuse victims file lawsuit against Pope CWN - April 22, 2010

A Minnesota lawyer has filed a federal lawsuit against Pope Benedict XVI and the Vatican on behalf of the victims of abuse by a notorious Milwaukee priest. Attorney Jeffrey Anderson argues that...

Bishops of England and Wales issue apology for sexual abuse CWN - April 22, 2010

The Catholic bishops of England and Wales have issued an apology for the sex-abuse scandal, saying that there are "no excuses" for the abuses that have been revealed and acknowledging that the...

Coadjutor archbishop named for Hanoi CWN - April 22, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has named a coadjutor to the Archbishop of Hanoi. Bishop Pierre Nguyen Van Nhon, who now heads the Da Lat diocese, will be coadjutor to Archbishop Joseph Ngo Quang Kiet....

Tradition of faith should resist moral relativism, Pope tells Macedonian envoy CWN - April 22, 2010

As he met with a new ambassador from Macedonia to the Holy See on April 22, Pope Benedict XVI said that he hoped the country's rich Christian heritage would counteract the "general context of moral...

Melbourne: police want change in Church abuse investigations CWN - April 22, 2010

Australian police are pressing for a change in the way Church authorities in Melbourne investigate sex-abuse complaints. The Church uses an independent investigator to respond to such complaints....

Register publisher apologizes for defense of Maciel CWN - April 22, 2010

Father Owen Kearns, the publisher of the National Catholic Register, has issued an apology for his energetic defense of the late Father Marcial Maciel. Father Kearns, who has regularly acted as...

English Catholic organization hires ex-MP; voting record on life scrutinized CWN - April 22, 2010

England's Catholic Education Service has hired a former lawmaker as its deputy director, despite concerns about his voting record. Greg Pope, who represented Hyndburn in Parliament, was outspoken in...

Released Friday, Apr. 23

Belgian bishop resigns because of sexual abuse CWN - April 23, 2010

Bishop Roger Vangheluwe of Brugges has resigned because of sexual abuse in which he was personally involved. The 73-year-old prelate was appointed Bishop of Brugges-- one of the nation’s eight...

Vatican contemplates legal action following failure of ‘climate forest’ CWN - April 23, 2010

Three years after it was announced that the planting of a forest in Hungary would allow the Vatican would become the world’s first carbon-neutral state, the Vatican is contemplating legal action...

Niger: Majority of people running out of food, warns Caritas CWN - April 23, 2010

Caritas, the international consortium of Catholic relief agencies, is warning that the West African nation of Niger is running out of food. Seeking to provide food to 250,000 people there, Caritas...

Bishop Slattery replaces former Vatican prefect as celebrant for DC traditional liturgy CWN - April 23, 2010

Bishop Edward Slattery has replaced Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, the former prefect of the Congregation for Clergy, as the celebrant of an April 24 Mass in the extraordinary form at the Basilica...

San Francisco archdiocese files suit over $21.7M property tax bill CWN - April 23, 2010

Following unsuccessful municipal appeals, the Archdiocese of San Francisco has filed suit in San Francisco Superior Court over the city's efforts to impose property taxes for the transfers of 232...

Prominent Chilean priest accused of abuse CWN - April 23, 2010

A Chilean prosecutor launched an investigation on April 22 into whether Father Fernando Karadima Fariña, a revered 80-year-old priest, sexually abused five men. A leader in the Catholic Action...

Vatican dismisses Wisconsin lawsuit as 'completely without merit' CWN - April 23, 2010

The Vatican has dismissed as "completely without merit" a federal lawsuit brought in US court by sex-abuse victims in Wisconsin. "While legitimate lawsuits have been filed by abuse victims, this...

Cardinal Castrillon steps up defense of silence on abuse as new evidence emerges CWN - April 23, 2010

Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos, the former prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, has escalated his defense of a policy that protected priests from prosecution for sexual abuse. Meanwhile the...

Hanoi archbishop: coadjutor's appointment shows Vatican backing CWN - April 23, 2010

Countering rumors that the Vatican was acceding to pressure from the Vietnamese government for his removal, Archbishop Jospeh Ngo Quang Kiet of Hanoi said that the appointment of a coadjutor--...

Abuse victim in Malta sees Pope Benedict as a saint CWN - April 23, 2010

In an emotional interview with Vatican journalist Andrea Tornielli of Il Giornale, an abuse victim who met with Pope Benedict XVI during the Pontiff's visit to Malta said that the session had...

Boston archdiocese drops suit on taxes for idle church property CWN - April 23, 2010

The Boston archdiocese has quietly withdrawn a lawsuit seeking a judgment against the town of Scituate for imposing $200,000 in property taxes for a parish that is not currently in use. The town has...

Irish journalist: Pope is the left's favorite target CWN - April 23, 2010

Irish journalist David Quinn writes that Pope Benedict XVI has replaced former US President George W. Bush as the man most loathed in the world's liberal circles: Those circles include...

Evangelical journal sees US bishops still lagging in credibility on abuse CWN - April 23, 2010

World magzine, a weekly published by Evangelical Christians, brings an unusual perspective to the sex-abuse scandal in the Catholic Church: In Europe, both the church and the state have responded...

Released Monday, Apr. 26

British government apologizes for Foreign Office memo that insulted Pope CWN - April 26, 2010

The United Kingdom’s Foreign Office has apologized for a memorandum drafted by a junior official that suggested that Pope Benedict should launch “Benedict condoms,” “open an abortion ward,” “bless a...

Swedish bishop ‘ready to resign’ over handling of abuse allegation CWN - April 26, 2010

Less than two weeks after he urged victims of clerical abuse to come forward so that “the guilty priests-- if they are still alive-- can receive just punishment for the crimes they have committed,”...

Cardinal Danneels denies cover-up of Bishop Vangheluwe’s abuse CWN - April 26, 2010

Cardinal Godfried Danneels, who retired as Archbishop of Malines-Brussels earlier this year, has denied claims by two priests that they had spoken with him several times about Bishop Roger...

Abuse victims plan Reformation Day meeting in St. Peter’s Square CWN - April 26, 2010

Two abuse victims who met with Pope Benedict XVI in 2008 said that they hope that 50,000 abuse victims will travel to St. Peter’s Square on October 31 (Reformation Day). “The victims of these...

South African bishop defends support of condom use CWN - April 26, 2010

Preaching at a Protestant church in a small town near Albany, Bishop Kevin Dowling of Rustenburg, South Africa, spoke about the devastation wrought by AIDS and defended his support of condom use in...

Florida priest who stole parish funds released from prison, receives warm welcome CWN - April 26, 2010

A year after he pled guilty to grand theft, Father John Skehan, an 83-year-old priest of the Diocese of Palm Beach, has been released and welcomed home by a supportive group of his one-time...

Pope to establish new Council for New Evangelization? CWN - April 26, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI will soon establish a new Vatican office, the Pontifical Council for New Evangelization, according to the respected Vatican journalist Andrea Tornielli. The Italian reporter writes...

Papal apology for abuse during priests' gathering? CWN - April 26, 2010

During a worldwide gathering of clerics at the conclusion of the Year for Priests, Pope Benedict XVI will issue an apology for the sexual abuse of young people, according to The Independent. The...

Give the internet a soul, Pope urges Christians CWN - April 26, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI encouraged Christian bloggers to "give a soul to the internet's incessant flow of communications," during an April 24 address to a conference on the latest developments in...

Hanoi's Catholics shaken by appointment of coadjutor CWN - April 26, 2010

Although Archbishop Joseph Ngo Quang Kiet of Hanoi has said that the appointment of a coadjutor archbishop is "great news," and insisted that the Vatican fully supports his pastoral ministry, many...

Don't exclude Church from public discussion, Pope tells Belgian envoy CWN - April 26, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI insisted that the Church must retain a public voice, as he greeted a new ambassador from Belgium to the Holy See. The Holy Father told the new ambassador, Charles Ghislain, that...

Legion of Christ waits for Vatican action CWN - April 26, 2010

As the Legion of Christ waits to hear how the Vatican will respond to a report by the five bishops who led an apostolic visitation of the troubled order, an unusually balanced AP story explained how...

Worldwide surge in priests' interest in June gathering with Pope CWN - April 26, 2010

The Vatican organizers of a worldwide gathering of priests in June have been forced the extend a registration deadline because of an overwhelming response to the Pope's invitation. The 3-day...

Pope names officials for Synod on Middle East CWN - April 26, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has named the officials for a special meeting of the Synod of Bishops devoted to the Middle East, which will take place in Rome in October. Three Eastern Catholic patriarchs...

Cardinal Castrillon Hoyos seen in contrast to Pope on sex-abuse policy CWN - April 26, 2010

Commenting on the increasingly uncomfortable position that Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos occupies since the revelations that he encouraged bishops not to report priestly abuse, John Allen of the...

Anti-Catholic animus analyzed CWN - April 26, 2010

In a perceptive essay for the Weekly Standard, Joseph Bottum writes that many different actors have betrayed an inordinate interest in exploring the sex-abuse scandal within the Catholic Church....

Pope to priests: renew devotion, practice asceticism CWN - April 26, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI called all priests to "interior renewal for the sake of a stronger and more incisive witness to the Gospel in today's world" during his Sunday audience on April 25. The Pope...

A Church of sinners, not a sinful Church CWN - April 26, 2010

When Pope Benedict XVI met with cardinals in Rome on the 5th anniversary of his election, many newspapers-- including the Vatican's own L'Osservatore Romano reported that the Pontiff had spoken...

Released Tuesday, Apr. 27

New York Times highlights Pope Benedict’s support of investigation of Cardinal Groër CWN - April 27, 2010

Pope Benedict, while prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, intervened to have Father Hans Hermann Groër appointed Archbishop of Vienna in 1986 but also pushed for the...

Australian bishop calls for ‘total systemic reform,’ says celibacy discipline should end CWN - April 27, 2010

Saying that “the current crisis facing the Catholic Church arising out of sexual abuse is arguably the most serious challenge the Church has faced since the Reformation,” an Australian bishop says...

Vatican backs adult stem-cell initiative CWN - April 27, 2010

Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See Press Office, voiced support for an new adult stem-cell research consortium but added that secular media outlets had inaccurately reported that the...

Citing just-war theory, Archbishop O’Brien urges pursuit of nuclear disarmament CWN - April 27, 2010

In a brief April 26 talk at the Catholic University of America, Archbishop Edwin O’Brien of Baltimore, former Archbishop for the Military Services, cited traditional just-war theory as well as...

Pastor of rebellious St. Louis parish may found own church CWN - April 27, 2010

The excommunicated and laicized pastor of a rebellious St. Louis parish has announced that he may found his own church. Marek Bozek said that his new independent Catholic parish “will be Catholic in...

Rochester schism claims 1,500 members CWN - April 27, 2010

In a manifestly supportive profile of a local schismatic Catholic community, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reports that Spiritus Christi Church “has about 1,500 members on the books, about...

Africa's Catholic population soaring since 2000 CWN - April 27, 2010

The world's Catholic population grew from 1.045 billion in 2000 to 1.166 billion in 2008, according to the latest edition of the Vatican's statistical yearbook, which made its appearance on April...

October Synod will concentrate on ties with Islam, Israel-Palestine tensions CWN - April 27, 2010

Relations with Islam, and the Israel-Palestine conflict, will be high on the agenda for a special meeting of the Synod of Bishops for the Middle East, to be held in Rome in October. The...

US aid programs faulted for obsession with condoms CWN - April 27, 2010

An African journalist, writing from Kinshasa, says that the intense focus of US foreign aid on expanding family-planning programs in the Democratic Republic of Congo is "certifiably insane." The...

Released Wednesday, Apr. 28

Cardinal Levada decries media bias, defends Pope in PBS interview CWN - April 28, 2010

In an interview that appeared on the PBS television show NewsHour, Cardinal William Levada, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, criticized media coverage of the clerical abuse...

US bishops condemn Arizona immigration law CWN - April 28, 2010

Four days after Governor Jan Brewer signed Arizona Senate Bill 1070 into law, the chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration issued a statement condemning...

Mexican archbishop suspends priest accused in US CWN - April 28, 2010

Following a Washington Post story, Archbishop Emilio Carlos Berlie Belaunzarán of Yucatán has suspended a 70-year-old priest amid allegations that he abused a teenage girl in San Francisco in the...

New York municipalities, school officials oppose lifting statute of limitations CWN - April 28, 2010

The New York State School Boards Association and the State Association of Counties are opposing a measure that would temporarily lift the statute of limitations on child sexual abuse cases, allowing...

Notorious abuser Gauthe lives as transient CWN - April 28, 2010

The notorious Louisiana priest whose abuse of dozens of children led to the first major American clerical abuse scandal is living as a transient, thus enabling him to avoid publicizing his address....

Washington Post: Archbishop Burke ‘kicked upstairs’ because of handling of abuse allegations CWN - April 28, 2010

The web site of The Washington Post has published the astounding-- and completely unsupported-- claim that Archbishop Raymond Burke, former Archbishop of St. Louis and current Prefect of the...

Vatican approves new English translation of Mass texts CWN - April 28, 2010

The Vatican has given its approval to a new English-language translation of the Roman Missal, which will probably be introduced for parish use sometime next year. "I welcome the news that the...

New York Times acknowledges: lawyer steered coverage of abuse story CWN - April 28, 2010

In a profile of Jeffrey Anderson, the New York Times reveals that the lawyer who is attempting to bring suit against the Vatican was successful in steering the Times news coverage toward his case....

Pope invokes Italian saints as models for priestly ministry CWN - April 28, 2010

At his weekly public audience on April 28, Pope Benedict XVI called attention to the example set by two Italian priests, Sts. Leonardo Murialdo (1828-1900) and Giuseppe Benito Cottolengo...

Report on Legionaries due April 30; no immediate papal action expected CWN - April 28, 2010

The five bishops who conducted an apostolic visitation of the Legion of Christ will present their report on Friday, April 30. Pope Benedict will weigh that report before taking any action, according...

Conflicting claims of responsibility in Italian priest's abuse trial CWN - April 28, 2010

"I am not a monster. I am innocent," a prominent Italian priest told a court in Rome, where he is on trial for allegedly molesting several boys. Father Ruggero Conti, once an adviser to the mayor...

Pope points to feast of St. Joseph the Worker CWN - April 28, 2010

At the conclusion of his regular weekly public audience on April 28, Pope Benedict XVI called attention to the feast of St. Joseph the Worker, which will be celebrated on Saturday, May 1. He said:...

Pope encourages pastoral work with migrants CWN - April 28, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has sent a message of support to the 8th European Congress on Migration, being held this week in Malaga, Spain. In his message-- which was addressed to Archbishop Antonio Maria...

Married chancellor's plea helped shape Bishop Gregory's thoughts on sex-abuse crisis in 2002 CWN - April 28, 2010

A long, impassioned letter from the married chancellor of his diocese helped shift the thinking of Bishop Wilton Gregory on the sex-abuse scandal in 2002, the St. Louis Beacon reports. The Beacon...

Viet officials pleased with coadjutor's appointment in Hanoi CWN - April 28, 2010

Although Hanoi's Archbishop Joseph Ngo Quang Kiet has assured his flock that the Vatican's appointment of a coadjutor archbishop is not a sign of dwindling support, Vietnamese government officials...

Retired Australian bishop calls for ecumenical council to change teachings on sexuality CWN - April 28, 2010

A retired Australian bishop has said that the sex-abuse scandal cannot be reolved unless the Church holds an ecumenical council and amends traditional Christian moral teaching. Bishop Geoffrey...

Released Thursday, Apr. 29

Cardinal Levada did not report abusive priest in 1995 San Francisco case CWN - April 29, 2010

During his tenure as Archbishop of San Francisco, Cardinal William Levada chose not to inform police about a priest who admitted molesting an adolescent boy, an AP story reports. Cardinal Levada is...

English judge rejects 'divisive' protection for Christian beliefs CWN - April 29, 2010

An English court has dismissed the appeal of a Christian counselor who was fired because he declined to provide relationship therapy for same-sex couples. Lord Justice Laws summarily shut off a...

Priest murdered in India; motive unclear CWN - April 29, 2010

A Catholic priest was murdered in Mumbai, India, on Wednesday night, April 28. Police are unclear as to the motive for the killing. Father Peter Bombaci, who had founded a home to work with...

Pope calls for reconciliation in Congo CWN - April 29, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI urged authorities in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to "do everything in their power to end the state of war which, unfortunately, still persists in certain areas of the...

Celibacy, abuse are not linked: Cardinal Bertone CWN - April 29, 2010

The discipline of priestly celibacy is a "positive and fruitful tradition," Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone told a Spanish television interviewer. The Vatican Secretary of State added: "There is no direct...

UK Foreign Office suspends official for memo ridiculing Pope CWN - April 29, 2010

The British Foreign Office has suspended an official who authorized the distribution of a memorandum that ridiculed Pope Benedict XVI. The satirical memo, suggesting that the Pope might want to...

Legionary official says founder's misdeeds were evident by 2006 CWN - April 29, 2010

The second-ranking official of the Legion of Christ has said that he realized in 2006 that charges against the group's founder, Father Marcial Maciel, were true. Father Luis Garza Medina told...

Ontario: debate continues over implementation of sex-ed curriculum in Catholic schools CWN - April 29, 2010

Catholic leaders and government officials in Ontario remain at odds over the implementation of a sex-education curriculum in the province's Catholic schools. The Catholic bishops of Ontario have...

Pope's top priority for African bishops: promote the Christian family CWN - April 29, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI concentrated on the importance of promoting healthy family life during a talk to bishops from Gambia, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, who were completing their ad limina visits. "In...

Bishop Tobin's withdrawal of hospital from CHA draws reactions CWN - April 29, 2010

Secular reporters in Rhode Island are reporting the decision by Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence to withdraw a local Catholic hospital from membership in the Catholic Health Association (CHA). The...

Church response to abuse scandal seen lacking a clear plan CWN - April 29, 2010

The Wall Street Journal reports what observant Catholics had long known: that the Church does not have a coordinated strategy for responding to public-relations problems. In the case of the...

Prayerful Peruvian Catholics defend Church against criticism CWN - April 29, 2010

Faithful Catholics gathered outside the office of the apostolic nuncio in Lima, Peru, to pray the Rosary on April 28. The prayerful vigil was designed to support the Church-- and particularly...

Noted Irish bookie funds new confessional CWN - April 29, 2010

Paddy Power, an Irish bookie who has earned international fame-- by, among other things, offering online betting on the identity of the next Pope-- has donated the funds to construct a new...

Abuse scandal may speed global realignment of Catholicism CWN - April 29, 2010

Writing in the New Republic, Philip Jenkins suggests that the fallout of the sex-abuse scandal could accelerate a trend that is already evident in Catholicism: the shift of Catholic influence to the...

Religion journalist sees New York Times advancing its own doctrine CWN - April 29, 2010

The enthusiasm of the New York Times for criticism of the Catholic Church is understandable, veteran religion journalist Kenneth Woodward writes in Commonweal, because the Times " is not just the...

Released Friday, Apr. 30

Swedish government rejects bishop’s informal request for abuse probe CWN - April 30, 2010

The Swedish government has rejected a call from the nation’s sole bishop to conduct an independent investigation of clerical abuse claims. “We need to shed light on this matter by someone who...

Nuns’ chapel bombed in Chile CWN - April 30, 2010

A bomb exploded on April 27 at the chapel of the Good Shepherd Sisters in the south-central Chilean Diocese of Temuco. The explosion caused a fire that damaged nearby homes; a local anarchist group...

Bishop: Increase funding of Afghan war CWN - April 30, 2010

Speaking at the funeral of Welsh soldier Jonathan Burgess, Bishop Tom Burns of Menevia-- who served as Great Britain’s military bishop from 2002 to 2008-- called for increased funding of the Afghan...

Catholic high schools’ graduation rate much higher than that of public schools CWN - April 30, 2010

A report released by the National Catholic Education Association has found that Catholic high schools in the United States have a 99.1% graduation rate, compared to a 73.1% graduation rate at public...

European bishops discuss immigration CWN - April 30, 2010

Some 100 bishops and other delegates from 36 nations are attending the Bishops’ Conferences of Europe’s eighth Congress on Migration. The conference, which began on April 27 and will conclude on May...

Priests for Life announces pro-life ‘freedom rides’ CWN - April 30, 2010

Joined by Dr. Alveda King-- the niece of the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.-- Father Frank Pavone has announced that Priests for Life will be conducting Pro-Life Freedom Rides this summer, evoking the...

Judge economic success by the common good, Pope says CWN - April 30, 2010

The worldwide economic crisis illustrates "the urgency of strengthening the governance procedures for the global economy," Pope Benedict XVI said on April 30. The Pontiff quickly added, however,...

Bishop fears new outbreak of Sudan's civil war CWN - April 30, 2010

A Sudanese bishop has warned that renewed violence in the African country is "a likely scenario" in the wake of elections there. Bishop Eduardo Hiiboro Kussala of Tombura-Yambio said that a...

Oldest member of College of Cardinals dies at 98 CWN - April 30, 2010

Cardinal Paul Augustin Mayer, who had been the oldest living member of the College of Cardinals, died in Rome on April 28, a few weeks short of his 99th birthday. Born in Bavaria in 1911, Paul...

Pope's prayer intentions for May 2010 CWN - April 30, 2010

The Vatican has released the prayer intentions of Pope Benedict XVI for May 2010. The Pope's general intention is: "That the shameful and monstrous commerce in human beings, which sadly involves...

Music can turn minds and hearts toward heaven, Pope says after concert CWN - April 30, 2010

The study of music "can open minds and hearts to the spiritual dimension and lead people to raise their eyes to heaven, to open themselves to absolute Goodness and Beauty which have their ultimate...

Pope meets with bishops who investigated Legionaries CWN - April 30, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI met on April 30 with the five bishops who had conducted an apostolic visitation of the Legion of Christ. The Pope is expected to spend some time weighing the report from the...

Kenyan constitutional talks stall on abortion issue CWN - April 30, 2010

Christian leaders in Kenya have pulled out of negotiations with the government over the text of a proposed new constitution for the African country, after a stalemate on the abortion issue. Catholic...

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