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Catholic World News

Stories for December 2010

Released Thursday, Dec. 2

Cardinal Ratzinger pushed for swifter dismissal of abusive priests CWN - December 2, 2010

In 1988, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger unsuccessfully sought changes to the Code of Canon Law in order to secure swifter dismissal of priests “guilty of serious and scandalous behavior,” according to...

Code of Canon Law’s penal provisions to be revised CWN - December 2, 2010

In 2007, Pope Benedict XVI, out of concern for the “integrity and consistent application of discipline in the Church,” gave the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts the mandate to revise the...

Scottish cardinal calls for binding international pact on climate change CWN - December 2, 2010

Cardinal Keith O’Brien has joined with Scottish Presbyterian, Anglican, and Muslim leaders in calling upon the British government to do “everything it can” to work for a “fair, ambitious and...

Kazak priest optimistic about increased religious freedom CWN - December 2, 2010

A Franciscan missionary priest serving in Kazakhstan has told the Fides news agency that he is optimistic that Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone’s visit to the nation will help...

Bishop Soto on women’s ordination, contraception, homosexuality CWN - December 2, 2010

In a lengthy interview with the Sacramento News & Review, Bishop Jaime Soto of Sacramento discusses women’s ordination, contraception, homoesexuality, the abuse scandal, and other issues. Asked...

Hong Kong diocese seeks action against commercial surrogate motherhood CWN - December 2, 2010

Father Michael Yeung, the vicar general of the Hong Kong diocese, has called for enforcement of a legal ban on paid surrogate motherhood. The commercial practice of surrogacy, which is illegal in...

Iowa bishop rallies opposition to late-term abortion clinic CWN - December 2, 2010

Bishop Richard Pates of Des Moines, Iowa, has exhorted the faithful to oppose the establishment of a late-term abortion clinic. Bishop Pates reacted energetically to the news that the notorious...

Turkish court rules bishop's killer insane, blocking further investigation CWN - December 2, 2010

A Turkish court has ruled that the man who murdered Bishop Luigi Padovese is insane, rejecting the evidence that the killer was guided by Islamic nationalist ideology. Murat Altun was found to be...

Delaware court orders $30 million payment to abuse victim CWN - December 2, 2010

A Delaware jury has awarded a stunning $30 million in compensatory damages to a man who said he was abused by a Catholic priest. The abuse victim, John Vai, persuaded the jury that St....

Journalists missed significance of USCCB president vote, says Weigel CWN - December 2, 2010

When the US bishops elected Archbishop Timothy Dolan to head their episcopal conference, most secular journalists rushed to see the surprise result as a matter of liberal vs. conservative bishops,...

Canadian Orthodox archbishop suspended; panel will investigate abuse charge CWN - December 2, 2010

The Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America has suspended Archbishop Seraphim (Storheim) of Ottawa, and set up a commission to investigate charges of sexual abuse that have been lodged...

Pope offers Mass for household member killed in accident CWN - December 2, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI celebrated a Mass on December 2 for Manuela Camagni, the member of the papal household who was killed in a traffic accident last week. In his homily, the Holy Father offered...

Changing understanding of marriage will alter Europe's identity, Pope tells Hungarian envoy CWN - December 2, 2010

Meeting on December 2 with a new ambassador from Hungary to the Holy See, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the importance of preserving marriage and family life. In his remarks to the new...

Another Iraqi Christian murdered in Mosul CWN - December 2, 2010

The targeted murder of another Christian in Mosul has drawn a new protest from Church leaders, who are demanding effective government action to ensure their security. Fadi Walid Gabriel, a Syrian...

South Africa: Catholic AIDS workers offer condoms, cite Pope CWN - December 2, 2010

Catholic Church officials working against AIDS in South Africa are using the words of Pope Benedict XVI to justify the distribution of condoms, according to an AP report. The AP story quotes a...

Illinois bishop raps Catholic governor's stand on civil unions CWN - December 2, 2010

The Catholic bishop of Springfield, Illinois has chastised Governor Pat Quinn for saying that his religious faith inspired him to support a legislative proposal for legal recognition of same-sex...

Released Friday, Dec. 3

Papal preacher opens Advent sermon series CWN - December 3, 2010

Father Raniero Cantalamessa, the preacher of the pontifical household, delivered the first in a weekly series of Advent meditations on Friday, December 3. He preached on a text from St. John’s...

Protect dignity of life, Pope urges Costa Rica CWN - December 3, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI stressed “the inviolable dignity of the person, beginning with the unswerving protection of human life,” when he met on December 3 with a new ambassador from Costa Rica to the Holy...

Democracy is rooted in Christian thought, Pope reminds theologians CWN - December 3, 2010

The freedom of modern democratic societies would be impossible without the contribution of Christian thought, Pope Benedict XVI argued in a December 3 address to the International Theological...

Italian Cardinal Giordano dead at 80 CWN - December 3, 2010

Cardinal Michele Giordano, the retired Archbishop of Naples, died in that city on December 2 at the age of 80 after a short illness. Ordained to the priesthood in 1953, the Italian cleric had...

TAC leader sees over 150 Anglican clerics entering ordinariates CWN - December 3, 2010

The leader of the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC) has disclosed that over 150 clerics in his group, including 17 bishops, hope to enter ordinariates within the Catholic Church in the coming...

Nova Scotia bishop's child-porn trial set for May 2011 CWN - December 3, 2010

Bishop Raymond Lahey, who resigned last year after he was detained in a child-pornography investigation, will face a criminal trial in May 2011. At a December 3 hearing—which the bishop himself...

Pakistan: Imam offers reward for death of Christian woman CWN - December 3, 2010

A radical Islamic leader in Pakistan has offered a financial reward for anyone who kills a Christian woman who now faces the death sentence on blasphemy charges. Maulana Yousef Qureshi, the imam...

Pakistani leader may seek revision of blasphemy law, Vatican official says CWN - December 3, 2010

Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari may call for changes in the country’s controversial law against blasphemy, according to the president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious...

Little tracking for priests removed on abuse charges CWN - December 3, 2010

The Washington Post, reporting on the status of clerics who were removed from ministry because of sex-abuse charges, finds that many of the former priests are now living on the margins of society,...

WCC leader plans frank talk with Pope on ecumenical difficulties CWN - December 3, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI will meet on December 4 with Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit, the secretary-general of the World Council of Churches (WCC). The Norwegian Lutheran will be meeting with the Pontiff for...

Pope Benedict surprises some conservative Catholics, Allen observes CWN - December 3, 2010

Just as only President Richard Nixon could open US ties with China, argues John Allen: "Because of who Benedict is and what he represents, every once in a while he can do things a more 'liberal'...

Pope met with Baghdad church massacre survivors CWN - December 3, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI met with a group of 27 Iraqi Catholics who had survived the October 31 massacre in Baghdad’s church of Our Lady of Salvation. The Iraqi Christians had traveled to Rome for...

Released Monday, Dec. 6

Pakistan: terrorists issue fatwa against Catholic cabinet minister CWN - December 6, 2010

Terrorist organizations associated with the Taliban have issued a fatwa against Shabhaz Bhatti, a Catholic layman who serves as Pakistan’s minister for religious minorities. Bhatti is leading a...

US bishops urge passage of DREAM Act CWN - December 6, 2010

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is urging Congress to pass the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act. “Under the DREAM Act, deserving immigrant...

Latin American bishops discuss evangelization, denounce violence, corruption CWN - December 6, 2010

Making clear that all of their dioceses are “in a permanent state of mission,” the presidents of the episcopal conferences of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela, met recently in Caracas to discuss...

Vatican spokesman echoes Pope’s call to protect unborn CWN - December 6, 2010

Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See Press Office, has echoed Pope Benedict’s call, made at the recent worldwide vigil for nascent human life, to protect the lives of unborn...

Vatican turning to solar energy CWN - December 6, 2010

The hall in which Pope Benedict frequently offers his weekly audiences is now powered by solar energy, Cardinal Giovanni Lajolo, president of the Governatorate of Vatican City State, announced at a...

Jerusalem patriarch urges prayer, penance to obtain rain CWN - December 6, 2010

Amid a severe drought and five years of below-average rainfall, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem has called upon the faithful to pray and do penance to obtain the gift of rain. “Rain has not come...

Hear the Word 'crying out in the wilderness' through Scripture, Pope urges CWN - December 6, 2010

At his midday public audience on December 5, the second Sunday of Advent, Pope Benedict XVI said that all Christians are “called to listen to the voice of God crying out in the wilderness of the...

Vatican did not protect Italian cardinal from legal charges, Allen notes CWN - December 6, 2010

Reflecting on the death of Cardinal Michele Giordano, the former Archbishop of Naples, John Allen recalls the Italian prelate's years of trouble with the law. (He was accused of financial...

New York's old St. Patrick's named a basilica CWN - December 6, 2010

New York's old cathedral of St. Patrick has been designated a basilica in recognition of its historical role in shaping the city's Catholic community. The old St. Patrick's-- not to be confused...

Pope alerts world to hostages being held, mistreated in Sinai desert CWN - December 6, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has called international attention to the brutal treatment of hostages being held in the Sinai desert. At his Angelus audience on Sunday, December 5, the Pope asked for prayers...

Brief papal meeting with head of World Council of Churches CWN - December 6, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI met on December 4 with Rev. Olav Fykse Tveit, the general secretary of the World Council of Churches (WCC), for a discussion of ecumenical affairs. Although the meeting lasted...

Scottish prelate welcomes vote against assisted suicide CWN - December 6, 2010

Archbishop Mario Conti of Glasgow says that he is “very satisfied” with a vote in the Scottish parliament to reject legislation that would have allowed for assisted suicide. The bill was...

Maryland pro-lifers protest as late-term abortion specialist opens clinic CWN - December 6, 2010

Pro-life activists in Maryland have begun prayerful pickets outside a new clinic in Germantown run by the notorious late-term abortionist LeRoy Carhart. Carhart relocated his practice from...

Italy: The debate on Vatican II interpretation flares up again CWN - December 6, 2010

In a book review headlined “De Mattei and the Council, a critical methodology which devaluates its texts,” Catholic author and sociologist Massimo Introvigne has debunked a recent book promoting the...

Two more Iraqi Christians murdered CWN - December 6, 2010

Two more Christians have been murdered in Baghdad, as the campaign of violence against Iraq’s religious minority continues unabated. The latest murders—of an elderly couple, who were stabbed by...

Church leaders plead for calm as two rivals claim electoral victory in Ivory Coast CWN - December 6, 2010

The Independent Electoral Commission certified challenge Alassane Ouattara as the winner of the November 28 election, and Ouattara was dutifully sworn in on December 4. But the commission then...

Belgian court approves 'wrongful life' claim CWN - December 6, 2010

A Belgian appeals court has ruled that doctors can be held responsible for the “wrongful birth” of a child with disabilities. The court found that while the doctors did not cause the child’s...

Hungarian premier, Pope discuss EU leadership CWN - December 6, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI met on December 6 with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. Their conversation, the Vatican reported, centered on “the Christian tradition in the life of the nation.” The...

Vatican Christmas tree is up CWN - December 6, 2010

On December 3, Vatican workers erected a giant Christmas tree in St. Peter’s Square. The 110-foot fir tree, donated by Italy’s Trentino-Alto Adige region in the Dolomite mountains, is decorated...

Archbishop Myers charged with protecting abusive priests CWN - December 6, 2010

A report in the Newark Star-Ledger charges that Archbishop John Myers has failed to take action against priests credibly accused of sexual abuse, despite the requirements of the "Dallas policy."...

Released Tuesday, Dec. 7

China tightens grip on Church, forces bishops to attend meeting CWN - December 7, 2010

China’s Communist regime is forcing dozens of bishops to attend a meeting in Beijing to elect a new president of the state-controlled Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association, according to AsiaNews....

26 US religious leaders affirm: Marriage is union of one man, one woman CWN - December 7, 2010

Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, joined 25 other religious leaders in affirming that “marriage is the permanent and faithful union...

Pakistan: court orders government not to change blasphemy law CWN - December 7, 2010

The Lahore High Court has ordered the Pakistani government not to change the nation’s blasphemy law before the court hears the appeal of Asia Bibi, the Christian mother who was sentenced to death...

Swiss bishops defend presence of crucifix in public places CWN - December 7, 2010

Criticizing “a strong hostility recently manifested against religious signs in public places” and the “tendency that pretends to confine people’s belief to the private sphere,” the bishops of...

Evangelicals join US bishops in calling for approval of nuclear weapons treaty CWN - December 7, 2010

The National Association of Evangelicals is joining with the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) in calling for “immediate and bipartisan action” to ratify the new Strategic Arms...

Caritas leader: EU farm subsidies contribute to 3rd World poverty CWN - December 7, 2010

A “neglect of small-scale farming” and “the impact of EU agricultural subsidies” have helped contribute to poverty in the developing world, Lesley-Anne Knight, the secretary general of Caritas...

Pentagon vs. common soldiers? CWN - December 7, 2010

Robert Reilly argues that by recommending repeal of the "don't ask, don't tell" policy that bars avowed homosexuals from military duty, the US Defense Department has sacrificed combat readiness for...

US nuns need not fear probe, says Vatican official CWN - December 7, 2010

In an interview with the National Catholic Reporter, the secretary of the Congregation for Religious signals that American women religious have little reason to fear the results of a Vatican...

Chinese regime treating bishops like criminals CWN - December 7, 2010

Father Bernardo Cervellera, the director of the AsiaNews service, decries the Chinese government’s heavy-handed treatment of Catholic bishops and priests. Clerics are being hunted down like...

Greek Orthodox parish sues for right to build near Ground Zero site CWN - December 7, 2010

A Greek Orthodox parish in New York, claiming that local officials are illegally blocking plans to rebuild a church that was destroy in the terrorist attack of 9/11, is filing suit. Officials of...

Irish archbishop apologizes as 'predatory pedophile' ex-priest is sentenced CWN - December 7, 2010

As a notorious former priest was sentenced to a 12-year prison term on sex-abuse charges, Dublin’s Archbishop Diarmuid Martin apologized to victims and acknowledged that “the Archdiocese of Dublin...

Congo's new cardinal pleads for peace CWN - December 7, 2010

Returning to the Democratic Republic of Congo after his formal elevation to the College of Cardinals, Cardinal Laurent Monsengwo issued an appeal for peace in the embattled African nation. In a...

Ted Turner and the tilt toward coercive population-control plans CWN - December 7, 2010

Media mogul Ted Turner has encouraged world leaders to adopt an international norm restricting families to just one child. He claims this step is necessary to global survival. Steven Mosher of...

Released Wednesday, Dec. 8

CWN closed for feast of the Immaculate Conception CWN - December 8, 2010

Catholic World News is closed today, as our staff celebrates the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Barring unexpected developments, there will be no news stories posted today. Regular daily...

Released Thursday, Dec. 9

US bishop approves Marian apparitions CWN - December 9, 2010

Bishop David Ricken of Green Bay has officially approved the Marian apparitions at the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help in Champion, Wisconsin. “I declare with moral certainty and in accord with...

Prelate not recognized by Pope elected leader of Chinese bishops CWN - December 9, 2010

Forced by Communist authorities to gather in Beijing, China’s state-recognized bishops-- some in communion with the Holy See, and others not-- elected Bishop Ma Yinglin, a prelate not recognized by...

Bishop wins ‘alternative Nobel’ for defense of Guarani CWN - December 9, 2010

The Swedish parliament has awarded its Right Livelihood Award-- sometimes called the ‘alternative Nobel Prize’-- to a Brazilian bishop who has labored for the rights of indigenous peoples since his...

Nicaraguan bishops oppose Ortega’s reelection bid CWN - December 9, 2010

The bishops of Nicaragua are opposing President Daniel Ortega’s bid to seek a third term in office. The nation’s constitution limits presidents to two terms, but last year the Nicaraguan Supreme...

US bishops: Continue child tax credit, unemployment relief CWN - December 9, 2010

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is urging Congress to maintain the earned income tax credit and child tax credit and continue relief to the unemployed. “The Catholic bishops have...

Times columnist sees ‘changing culture war’ CWN - December 9, 2010

Writing for The New York Times, Ross Douthat sees a shift in America’s cultural divide. “For a long time, the contours of America’s culture war seemed relatively straightforward,” he writes. “On...

St. Louis archdiocese sought to remove gay judge from case of dissident parish CWN - December 9, 2010

Lawyers from the St. Louis archdiocese asked an openly homosexual judge to recuse himself from an appeals-court case involving the dispute between the archdiocese and the rebellious parish of St....

Dutch probe finds almost 2,000 abuse claims against Church CWN - December 9, 2010

Dutch investigators report that nearly 2,000 people have filed abuse complaints against the Catholic Church. The Church in the Netherlands is the latest to be rocked by widespread abuse...

Immaculate Conception inspires confidence, hope, Pope says CWN - December 9, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI traveled across Rome to place a bouquet at the foot of a statue of the Virgin Mary, fulfilling an annual tradition, on December 8: the feast of the Immaculate Conception. “Mary...

Vatican in talks with PLO to establish juridical accord CWN - December 9, 2010

The Vatican has resumed diplomatic talks with the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), aimed at securing the legal status of Church institutions on Palestinian territory. The talks follow...

Why many Protestant love St. Thomas Aquinas CWN - December 9, 2010

Francis Beckwith, who was a leading Evangelical figure before his recent embrace of Catholicism, explains why many Protestants hold St. Thomas Aquinas in special high regard. A fascinating analysis...

DC archdiocese did not approve pro-gay event CWN - December 9, 2010

Contrary to public statements by dissident groups, the Washington, DC archdiocese did not endorse an event held by a pro-homosexual group on the Georgetown University campus. The Rainbow Sash...

Delaware court adds $30 million to record sex-abuse award CWN - December 9, 2010

A Delaware jury that had already awarded $30 million in compensatory damage to a sex-abuse victim has tacked on another $30 million in punitive damages. Francis DeLuca, the laicized priest who...

Critics begin giving Pope Benedict his due for handling sex-abuse cases CWN - December 9, 2010

Writing for Macleans magazine in Canada, Brian Bethune observes that while Pope Benedict XVI was the target of savage criticism earlier this year for his alleged complicity in sex-abuse problems,...

Propaganda Fide opens 'Missionary Museum' CWN - December 9, 2010

The Vatican’s Congregation for Evangelization, also known as Propaganda Fide, is opening a new Missionary Museum, The museum, based in the same building that has been Propaganda Fide...

Australian Catholics launch petition to protect marriage CWN - December 9, 2010

Australian Catholic lay groups have joined with the Sydney archdiocese in calling upon parliament members to support traditional marriage. Lay leaders have launched a petition—with the vocal...

Pakistan's blasphemy law in focus on World Day for Human Rights CWN - December 9, 2010

On the eve of the World Day for Human Rights—observed by the UN on December 10—a Catholic priest in Pakistan is suggesting an international campaign to abolish that country’s blasphemy laws. “The...

Released Friday, Dec. 10

Iran to execute Christian pastor for renouncing Islam CWN - December 10, 2010

Youcef Nadarkhani, a 32-year-old Protestant pastor who became a Christian at the age of 19, has been sentenced to death for renouncing Islam. Nadarkhani maintains that he did not practice any faith...

Indonesia: 3 attacks on Christian churches in a week CWN - December 10, 2010

Three Christian places of worship were attacked during the first week in December, according to AsiaNews. On December 1, a child discovered four homemade grenades at a Marian shrine before they...

Turkey: government harassment of Orthodox monastery CWN - December 10, 2010

The existence of the world’s oldest Syrian Orthodox monastery, located in Turkey, is threatened by the actions of government officials and Muslim Kurds, The Economist reports. Built in 397, Mor...

Chilean bishops renew call for prison reform CWN - December 10, 2010

In July, the bishops had requested that the nation’s president consider showing clemency to women prisoners with children, elderly prisoners, and terminally ill prisoners, including Pinochet-era...

Obama suffers defeat on ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ CWN - December 10, 2010

Following a breakdown in negotiations between Democratic leadership and some Republicans, supporters of President Barack Obama’s push to repeal the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy fell three votes...

Catholic senators strongly favor abortion CWN - December 10, 2010

The nation’s current Catholic senators are three times more likely to cast pro-abortion votes than pro-life votes, according to an analysis of voting records published by The National Catholic...

Lithuanian president visits Pontiff CWN - December 10, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI met on December 10 with Lithuania’s President Dalia Grybauskaite, for a discussion that centered on Church-state relations in that country. The Lithuanian leader also spoke with...

Vatican confirms miracles, martyrdoms CWN - December 10, 2010

The Vatican Congregation for the Causes of Saints has approved the authenticity of a miracle through the intercession of Blessed Guido Maria Conforti (1865- 1931), clearing the way for the...

Vatican, Israeli negotiators meet again; still no accord CWN - December 10, 2010

Vatican and Israeli negotiators met in Jerusalem on December 9 to continue discussions aimed at resolving a decades-long impasse on the establishment of a juridical accord assuring the legal status...

Rhode Island bishop explains Pope's remarks CWN - December 10, 2010

Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence, Rhode Island, told a television interviewer that the much-discussed statement on condom use by Pope Benedict XVI does not represent any change in Church...

Papal delegate names commission to revise charter of Legionaries CWN - December 10, 2010

The prelate appointed by Pope Benedict XVI to supervise reforms within the troubled Legionaries of Christ has named a commission to revise the constitution of the congregation. Cardinal Velasio...

Vatican project to restore, preserve historic photo archive CWN - December 10, 2010

The Vatican has announced plans to restore more than 8 million photos in its archives and preserve them in digital format. The Vatican’s photo archives, primarily composed of news photos from the...

New Krakow church to be built for beatification of John Paul II? CWN - December 10, 2010

Krakow’s Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, the longtime personal secretary to the late Pope John Paul II, hopes to open a new church in that city in time for the beatification of the late Polish Pope,...

New lighting heightens beauty of Milan's Duomo CWN - December 10, 2010

Church officials in Milan have installed new lights in the city’s famous cathedral, the Duomo, so that the stained-glass windows are illumined from within, providing a spectacular view from the...

Papal preacher: think about eternity CWN - December 10, 2010

In the 2nd weekly sermon of his Advent series, Father Raniero Cantalamessa, the preacher to the pontifical household, argued that the world needs “a renewed faith in eternity.” The papal...

Wikileaks threatens us, too CWN - December 10, 2010

On Mercatornet, Michael Cook points out that the Wikileaks phenomenon raises questions about privacy that go beyond the government's need for secrecy. Cook finds it troubling that journalists are...

Religious donors contribute more to secular causes, too CWN - December 10, 2010

A Wall Street Journal report finds that Americans who are religious are more likely to give money to charities-- and not just to religious charities: Of the most secular fifth of Americans,...

Released Monday, Dec. 13

Vatican spokesman lauds report on anti-Christian discrimination CWN - December 13, 2010

Father Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See Press Office, offered praise for a new report that documents cases of intolerance and discrimination against Christians in Europe since...

Dublin archbishop calls on Church to become more like John the Baptist CWN - December 13, 2010

‘Archbishop slams Catholic Church’ screamed the headline of a wire story by the Press Association, a leading news service in Great Britain and Ireland. In reality, Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of...

Marriage in decline among ‘moderately educated’ CWN - December 13, 2010

Marriage is on the decline and divorce is on the rise among the “moderately educated”-- that is, those with a high school diploma but without a college degree-- according to the latest edition of...

US bishops praise House passage of DREAM Act CWN - December 13, 2010

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has praised the House of Representatives for passing the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act. The measure, which passed...

US missionary spreads hope in violent area of Mexico CWN - December 13, 2010

Newsday has profiled Father David Beaumont, a Capuchin Franciscan missionary who grew up on Long Island and now ministers in a violent area of northern Mexico. The priest, who speaks four...

Milwaukee priest says women’s ordination would make ‘better sense’ CWN - December 13, 2010

Sixteen years after Venerable John Paul II declared that “the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the...

Vatican caution on Wikileaks accuracy CWN - December 13, 2010

The Vatican press office has cautioned against relying on the accuracy of reports made public by Wikileaks regarding the policies of the Holy See. The Vatican statement, released December 11,...

In visit to Rome parish, Pope speaks on evangelizing new arrivals CWN - December 13, 2010

Visiting a parish on the outskirts of Rome on December 13, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the joyful message of the Incarnation, which brings “light amidst so much darkness and so much daily...

Advent calls for patient perseverance, Pope tells Sunday audience CWN - December 13, 2010

At his midday audience on Sunday, December 13—the 3rd Sunday of Advent—Pope Benedict XVI said that the season of Advent calls the faithful to exercise patience and perseverance in faith, awaiting...

Korean activist priests demand cardinal's resignation CWN - December 13, 2010

An activist group of Korean Catholic priests has criticized Cardinal Nicholas Cheong Jin-suk of Seoul for his failure to join the public opposition to a major development project. The Catholic...

Priest at focus of child-abuse documentary is re-arrested on child-porn charges CWN - December 13, 2010

Oliver O’Grady, the former priest whose serial molesting of children became the subject of a prize-winning documentary film, has been arrested in Dublin on child-pornography charges. The...

Religious leaders ask prayers for peace in volatile Ivory Coast CWN - December 13, 2010

Religious leaders In Ivory Coast have called for prayer and fasting, and begged their people not to “give in to provocations and violence from whatever side,” as a dispute over election result...

Wikileaks document wrong on Iraqi prelate's murder, archbishop reports CWN - December 13, 2010

An American account of the kidnapping and murder of an Iraqi bishop, as described in documents made pubic by Wikileaks, is seriously inaccurate according to Archbishop Louis Sako of Kirkuk. The...

New money-laundering complaints for Vatican bank CWN - December 13, 2010

The Vatican Bank is under new scrutiny in a case involving money-laundering allegations that led police to seize €23m (£19.25m) in September. Italian officials charge that the Vatican bank, the...

Wikileaks: British ambassador worried by Pope's outreach to Anglicans CWN - December 13, 2010

American diplomats believed that Pope Benedict XVI was thinking of Anglicans in the US and Australia as well as Great Britain when he extended an invitation to Anglicans in Anglicanorum Coetibus,...

Egypt: Copts press government for action after violence near Pyramids CWN - December 13, 2010

Coptic Christians in Egypt are pressing the government of President Hosni Mubarak for disciplinary action against officials who authorized the use of deadly force against Coptic demonstrators at a...

Algeria: Christians face jail for opening church without permit CWN - December 13, 2010

Four Algerian Christians face jail terms after being convicted of establishing a church without a permit. Under a 2006 law, establishing any house of worship in Algeria requires a permit from the...

European Court decision due on Irish abortion law CWN - December 13, 2010

The European Court of Human Rights is expected to issue a ruling this week in a pivotal case involving Irish law against abortion. Three women have brought a challenge to the Irish law, charging...

Released Tuesday, Dec. 14

Legionaries will no longer refer to Maciel as ‘our father’ CWN - December 14, 2010

Members of the Legion of Christ and its associated lay movement, Regnum Christi, will refer to Father Marcial Maciel as their “founder” or as “Father Maciel,” and not as “our father,” according to a...

Missionary: 200,000 could die of cholera in Haiti CWN - December 14, 2010

Father Antonio Menegon, head of the Camillian missionaries in Haiti, told the Fides news agency that the situation there is increasingly desperate. Some 2,100 have died of cholera, he says, and “we...

Orthodox deacons murdered in Sinai desert CWN - December 14, 2010

Bedouin human traffickers in the Sinai desert have assaulted and murdered two Orthodox deacons being held hostage, according to Christian Solidarity Worldwide. The organization called upon Egypt to...

Iraqi government builds massive concrete walls around churches CWN - December 14, 2010

The Iraqi government is building concrete walls around churches in Baghdad and Mosul to provide security for worshippers. While the walls and other security measures-- including police presence at...

Polish missionary murdered in Ecuador CWN - December 14, 2010

Thieves murdered a missionary priest in his parish rectory in northwestern Ecuador on December 6. Born in 1965, Conventual Franciscan Father Miroslaw Karczewski was ordained in 1993 and arrived in...

Caritas welcomes Cancun climate deal CWN - December 14, 2010

Caritas Internationalis, the consortium of Catholic relief and development agencies, welcomed the results of the recent Cancun summit on climate change. Negotiators there agreed to a “Green Climate...

Ohio bishop: Pope didn’t change Catholic teaching on condoms CWN - December 14, 2010

Bishop George Murry, the Jesuit bishop of Youngstown, emphasized in a recent diocesan newspaper column that “Pope Benedict neither proposed any change to the teaching of the Church on the immorality...

Vatican newspaper lauds ‘In a Better World’ CWN - December 14, 2010

The December 13-14 issue of L’Osservatore Romano includes a laudatory review of In a Better World, a 2010 Danish film that has been nominated for an Academy Award. Sony Classics, which will...

Pope adds two events to Christmas-season schedule CWN - December 14, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has added two events to his schedule for the Christmas season: a lunch on December 26 for people under the care of the Missionaries of Charity; and a visit to the Gemelli hospital...

Angry Cardinal Zen decries new loss for Church freedom in China CWN - December 14, 2010

The Chinese government has lost face by preventing Liu Xiaobo from accepting his Nobel Prize, and by using force to bring about the Patriotic Assembly of Catholic Representatives, writes Cardinal...

AIDS cure from adult stem-cell treatment? CWN - December 14, 2010

German researchers are convinced that a stem-cell transplant has cured a man of AIDS. The experimental treatment, given in 2007, used stem cells taken from the bone marrow of an adult donor....

Russian officials hand over old Catholic, Lutheran churches to Russian Orthodox CWN - December 14, 2010

Catholic and Lutheran officials in the Russian city of Kaliningrad have been frustrated for years in their efforts to regain the use of church buildings that had been confiscated by the Soviet...

The new pontifical council: a bureaucratic solution? CWN - December 14, 2010

In a typically perceptive column, John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter notes that Pope Benedict XVI has, on a number of occasions, voiced his skepticism about the effectiveness of...

Vatican, WCC plan annual meetings CWN - December 14, 2010

The Vatican and the World Council of Churches (WCC) have agreed to begin annual meetings to discuss means of ecumenical cooperation. The new meetings, which will bring WCC leaders together with...

Central Africa braces against new 'Christmas massacre' CWN - December 14, 2010

In parts of central Africa, particularly the north of the Democratic Republic of Congo and the south of Sudan, the Christmas season is a time of fear, because of the “Christmas massacres”...

Prayerful silence helps build proper perspective, archbishop tells media executives CWN - December 14, 2010

In a message to media workers in Latin America, the president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications has recommended a quiet, watchful silence during the season of Advent. “Only in...

Art donors outraged after Smithsonian removes video that offended Catholics CWN - December 14, 2010

The Andy Warhol Foundation has threatened to withdraw support from the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC, after the National Portrait Gallery removed a video that had outraged...

Irish government lagging in service to sex-abuse victims, doctor says CWN - December 14, 2010

An Irish doctor has complained that public services for children who are victims of sexual abuse are inadequate, citing inadequate funding for 24-hour counseling services. This complaint is...

Wall Street Journal discovers Iraq's Christians CWN - December 14, 2010

An editorial in the Wall Street Journal calls attention to the suffering of Iraq's Christian minority. While the alert is welcome, the Journal piece shows a startling ignorance about the...

Church protests force postponement of Easter day exam in India CWN - December 14, 2010

Following protests by Church-based groups, the federal government in India has rescheduled the national entrance exam for engineering college admission that was to be held on April 24: Easter...

Released Wednesday, Dec. 15

Bishop rips hospital chain, threatens to revoke Catholic status of hospital CWN - December 15, 2010

On December 17, Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix will declare that St. Joseph’s Hospital is no longer a Catholic institution unless its parent company recognizes that the abortion that took place...

Poland sees rise in secularism CWN - December 15, 2010

Poland is seeing a rise in secularism, The New York Times reports, and the Sunday Mass attendance rate has fallen to 41% nationwide and 20% in Warsaw and Krakow. The Times adds: Antichurch...

Gaza priest describes horror of bombing, blasts Israel CWN - December 15, 2010

Speaking recently to the joint committee on foreign affairs of the Oireachtas-- Ireland’s parliament-- Msgr. Manuel Musallam, who recently retired from his ministry as parish priest in Gaza,...

Bishop: Children should know gifts don’t come from Santa CWN - December 15, 2010

Criticizing plans for a Santa Claus house in the city square, an Argentine prelate said that Christmas should not be confused with a “fat man dressed in red.” “Surely, in the coming days there...

Bishops confirm: Pope to visit Germany in 2011 CWN - December 15, 2010

The German bishops’ conference has confirmed that Pope Benedict will make a four-daystate visit to Germany in September 2011. The Pontiff is scheduled to visit Berlin, Freiburg, and...

Mexican prelate calls for Christmas truce in drug wars CWN - December 15, 2010

Cardinal Juan Sandoval Iniguez of Guadalajara, Mexico has called upon drug traffickers to cease their violence, especially during the Christmas season. Reacting to a shocking episode in which 10...

Time continues misrepresentation on Pope Benedict CWN - December 15, 2010

In an issue that names Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook as the “Person of the Year,” Time magazine lists Pope Benedict among other important newsmakers, with a short piece that contains...

Irish court allows publication of one missing chapter from report on abuse in Dublin CWN - December 15, 2010

An Irish court has allowed publication of a previously censored chapter from the "Murphy Report" on abuse in the Dublin archdiocese. The High Court said that Chapter 19 of the report, which had...

Critic questions Legionaries' new attitude toward disgraced founder CWN - December 15, 2010

William Oddie of the Catholic Herald questions the logic of the recent announcement from the Legionaries of Christ that the order’s founder, the late Father Marcial Maciel, will no longer be...

Japanese bishops tell Pope their concerns about Neocatechumenal Way CWN - December 15, 2010

A group of Japanese bishops met with Pope Benedict XVI on December 13 to discuss their concerns about the Neocatechumenal Way. Archbishop Leo Jun Ikenaga of Osaka, the president of the Japanese...

Mystic's joyful suffering shows total response to God's love, Pope tells audience CWN - December 15, 2010

At his weekly public audience on December 15, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about St. Veronica Giuliani (1660- 1727), saying that the profound mystical experiences of the Italian Poor Clare nun made her a...

Australian government may move to bar discrimination against homosexuals CWN - December 15, 2010

Australia’s attorney general is proposing that the nation’s new government should advance legislation that will bar discrimination on the basis of sexual preference. The proposal—contained in a...

Pakistani president may favor change in blasphemy law CWN - December 15, 2010

Pakistan’s President Asif Ali Zardari would favor a change in the nation’s notorious blasphemy law, according to a local legislator who pressed Zardari on the issue. At a press conference...

New wave of harassment against Redemptorists in Vietnam CWN - December 15, 2010

Local authorities in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) have summoned a Redemptorist provincial superior after repeated raids on a monastery church. The preparation for Christmas at the Church of Our...

US embassy official rapped Vatican PR strategy in Wikileaks memo CWN - December 15, 2010

An official at the US embassy to the Holy See wrote that the Vatican has no “comprehensive communication strategy,” in one of the confidential diplomatic messages made public by Wikileaks. The...

Released Thursday, Dec. 16

Arizona Catholic hospital defends killing of unborn child CWN - December 16, 2010

Despite the threat of the imminent revocation of its status as a Catholic institution, St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix issued a brief statement on December 15 defending an...

Pakistani bishops demand prosecution of imam CWN - December 16, 2010

Joined by other non-Muslim religious leaders, Pakistani bishops are urging Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani to prosecute the imam who offered to pay 500,000 rupees ($5,900) to anyone who kills Asia...

Church spokesman: Islamic fundamentalists want all Christians out of Mideast CWN - December 16, 2010

Father Rafic Greische, spokesman of the Catholic Church in Egypt, spoke with Vatican Radio about recent difficulties faced by Egyptian Christians, including the imprisonment of Christians who...

Cardinal Burke: ‘Every aspect’ of a Catholic university’s life must be Catholic CWN - December 16, 2010

In a recent address at Thomas More College of Liberal Arts, Cardinal Raymond Burke discussed the teaching of Venerable John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI on the vocation and mission of the Catholic...

Italian Jesuit honored as ‘Righteous Among Nations’ CWN - December 16, 2010

Yad Vashem, the State of Israel’s Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority, has honored Italian Jesuit Father Raffaele de Ghantuz Cubbe (1904-83) as one of the “Righteous Among the...

Day of prayer for peace in Holy Land CWN - December 16, 2010

The Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace has released a message for the Third International Day of Intercession for Peace in the Holy Land, an initiative begun by Catholic youth associations...

Christians must cherish the ideal of fraternity, Pope tells new ambassadors CWN - December 16, 2010

In a December 16 address to five new ambassadors accredited to the Holy See, Pope Benedict XVI observed with regret that the ideal of fraternity “has become become a dead letter in contemporary...

Pope hails ecumenical steps with Lutherans, seeks further progress CWN - December 16, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI paid homage to the “many significant fruits” of Catholic-Lutheran dialogue, during a December 16 meeting with the new leaders of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). "With God's...

Secularism and fundamentalist intolerance are equal threats to religious freedom, Pope says CWN - December 16, 2010

In his annual message for the World Day of Peace, Pope Benedict XVI concentrates on the crucial importance of religious freedom, and argues that militant secularism can be as dangerous to religious...

Australian Anglicans prepare traditional liturgy for Catholic ordinariate CWN - December 16, 2010

Australian Anglicans who are entering the Catholic Church under the provisions of Anglicanorum Coetibus plan to celebrate the Mass in several different cities once a new Anglican-Catholic...

Major leadership changes coming for Legionaries, says top Vatican-watcher CWN - December 16, 2010

Despite the disgrace suffered by the Legionaries of Christ when their founder’s double life was exposed, many of the Legionary leaders who surrounded the late Father Marcial Maciel remain in...

Why are the 'flash-mob' performances of the Hallelujah Chorus so popular? CWN - December 16, 2010

By now more than 30 million people have watched videos of the “flash mob” performances of Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus” in Philadelphia and in Welland, Ontario. Why are these performances so...

Another attack on Iraqi Christians CWN - December 16, 2010

A young Iraqi Christian woman was seized by armed men who burst into her home in Mosul on December 15 in the latest targeted attack on a Christian home. The victim, a student at a local technical...

Stockton diocese pays $2 million in latest O'Grady lawsuits CWN - December 16, 2010

The Diocese of Stockton, California, has settled 2 more lawsuits involving sexual abuse by the notorious former priest Oliver O’Grady. The diocese agreed to pay out $2 million to settle the...

Four foreign trips on Pope's schedule for 2011 CWN - December 16, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has 4 foreign trips currently on his schedule for 2011: visits to Croatia, Spain, Germany, and Benin. The Pope will travel to Croatia in June, to Spain in August for World Youth...

European court: Ireland's laws against abortion violate human rights CWN - December 16, 2010

The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that Ireland’s laws against abortion violate the human rights of women. Although the Strasbourg court has no authority to enforce its ruling, the...

Anglican nuns to leave English priory, enter ordinariate CWN - December 16, 2010

Three Anglican nuns have left the priory of Our Lady of Walsingham to prepare for entry into a new ordinariate of the Catholic Church. The three nuns are the youngest members of the small...

Released Friday, Dec. 17

Lutheran leader acknowledges Reformation’s ‘damaging aspects’ CWN - December 17, 2010

Addressing Pope Benedict during a December 16 audience, Lutheran Bishop Munib Younan of Palestine and Jordan, the new president of the Lutheran World Federation, paid tribute to the ecumenical...

Bishops want Neocatechumenal Way to leave Japan for 5 years CWN - December 17, 2010

The Japanese bishops have asked the Neocatechumenal Way to leave Japan for five years, Archbishop Joseph Mitsuaki Takami of Nagasaki said on December 15. A group of Japanese prelates met with Pope...

Pakistan: radical Muslims plan mass protest in defense of blasphemy law CWN - December 17, 2010

Radical Islamic groups in Pakistan are planning a mass protest on December 24 to urge the nation’s government not to release Asia Bibi from prison or to change the nation’s anti-blasphemy law. Bibi,...

Archdiocese to freeze 10,000 employees’ pensions CWN - December 17, 2010

Following the example of other large dioceses, including New York and Detroit, the Archdiocese of Boston has announced that it will freeze the pension benefits of 10,000 non-retired lay employees....

Presbyterians face lawsuit for abuse in mission field CWN - December 17, 2010

The Presbyterian Church (USA) is facing a lawsuit by a man who alleges that he was abused as a teen in a denominational boarding house in the Congo. At the time, his parents were serving as...

Harvard law journal article defends marriage CWN - December 17, 2010

Princeton University politics professor Robert George and two doctoral candidates have coauthored an article in the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy defending marriage as the union of one...

The Incarnation provides hope and perspective, Pope tells Rome's students CWN - December 17, 2010

During a December 16 meeting with Rome’s university students—an annual pre-Christmas tradition for the Pontiff— Benedict XVI said that the Advent journey toward Bethlehem is “a journey of inner...

Pope exhorts Catholics of Naples: rise to the challenge of 'deviant' secularism CWN - December 17, 2010

In a message to the Archdiocese of Naples, which is celebrating a Jubilee Year, Pope Benedict XVI said that the “rich religious heritage” of Naples should counteract the “negative and deviant...

Italy is permanently marked by Catholic heritage, Pope tells new ambassador CWN - December 17, 2010

Meeting on December 17 with a new ambassador from Italy to the Holy See, Pope Benedict XVI said that a proper appreciation of religious freedom and of Italy’s Christian heritage are essential to the...

Christmas-tree lighting ceremony in St. Peter's Square CWN - December 17, 2010

The Christmas tree in St. Peter’s Square was illuminated on Friday, December 17, in a short ceremony at which Cardinal Giovanni Lajolo, the president of the Vatican City governorate,...

Vatican denounces Chinese interference CWN - December 17, 2010

The Vatican has released a sharply worded statement denouncing the Assembly of Chinese Catholic Representatives, which took place earlier this month. The Assembly, which saw the election of new...

Venezuelan archbishop fearful of Chavez request for emergency powers CWN - December 17, 2010

A Venezuelan prelate has expressed concern that the new extraordinary powers sought by President Hugo Chavez could aggravate the severe divisions within the country. Archbishop Baltazar Porras,...

What the European court said on Irish abortion law (Analysis) CWN - December 17, 2010

Reacting to a European court decision that held that the Irish laws violated the human rights of a woman seeking abortion, some Irish politicians have called for new legislation broadening access to...

Indonesia: Christian communities decline Muslim protection CWN - December 17, 2010

In an odd reversal of roles, Islamic leaders in Indonesia have offered to protect Christian churches from violence during the Christmas season. Catholic and Protestant leaders have declined the...

Chief Vatican ecumenical official sees good prospects in Catholic-Orthodox talks CWN - December 17, 2010

In an interview with the AsiaNews service, the newly installed president of the Pontifical Council for Christian Unity said that the Catholic and Orthodox churches must resolve disagreements about...

Phoenix bishop extends deadline for hospital in abortion dispute CWN - December 17, 2010

Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix, Arizona, who has threatened to revoke the Catholic status of a local hospital, has extended the deadline for resolution of the dispute until December 21. Bishop...

Obama team at UN pushing for gay-rights measure CWN - December 17, 2010

The US delegation at the UN has announced plans to push for a condemnation of discrimination on the basis of “sexual orientation”—just a few weeks after the General Assembly rejected a similar...

Catholic scholars explain Pope's statement on condoms CWN - December 17, 2010

In a thorough, balanced, and understandable analysis of the moral arguments surrounding the Pope's statement on condom use, written for Our Sunday Visitor, theologian Janet Smith agrees with Father...

Irish report exposes 'most notorious' sex-abuse case CWN - December 17, 2010

A priest who was “probably the most notorious child sexual abuser” in the Irish Catholic community remained active for years after Church leaders were aware of his misconduct, an official report...

Released Monday, Dec. 20

Pope recalls dogma of Assumption, urges scholars to follow ‘way of beauty’ CWN - December 20, 2010

In a message to Rome’s pontifical academies, Pope Benedict recalled the 60th anniversary of the promulgation of the dogma of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. “In the difficult and...

Costa Rica faces international pressure to legalize IVF CWN - December 20, 2010

Invoking UN treaties, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, whose members are selected by the Organization of American States, is threatening sanctions against Costa Rica unless the nation...

Uganda: prelate decries ritual child sacrifice CWN - December 20, 2010

Speaking at the installation of a bishop on December 18, a Ugandan prelate denounced the practice of ritual child sacrifice, which the nation's leading newspaper described as “rampant.” “Why...

Pakistan: bishop denounces rape of 9-year-old Catholic girl CWN - December 20, 2010

Bishop Joseph Coutts of Faisalabad has condemned the rape of a 9-year-old Catholic girl by a Muslim man. “The incident is terrifying,” he said. “I met the victims and I expressed my regret to...

Religious practice on the rise in England CWN - December 20, 2010

Weekly Mass attendance, as well as attendance at Baptist and Pentecostal services, has increased in the United Kingdom in recent years, according to a new study published by Christian Research....

Open homosexuals to serve in US military CWN - December 20, 2010

By a 65-31 vote, the US Senate has repealed the 1993 “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, thus paving the way for open homosexuals to serve in the military. Military Services Archbishop Timothy Broglio...

Papal message reflects on mystery of suffering and sickness CWN - December 20, 2010

In his annual message for the World Day of the Sick, Pope Benedict XVI acknowledges that “suffering remains charged with mystery, and is difficult for us to accept and to bear." The Holy Father...

Pope visits remodeled Apostolic Library CWN - December 20, 2010

On Saturday, December 18, Pope Benedict XVI visited the Apostolic Library, which reopened in September after an extensive 3-year remodeling. The Pope blessed the new facilities, and toured the...

Italian court upholds seizure of Vatican bank funds CWN - December 20, 2010

An Italian court has rejected a motion to release €23 million in funds that were seized in September from the Vatican bank. The funds were frozen by Italian authorities in connection with a...

Thousands of Catholics leaving German Church CWN - December 20, 2010

German dioceses have seen a mass exodus of registered Catholics during the past years, apparently in response to the sex-abuse scandal there. Germans who are officially enrolled in congregation...

Duke of Kent raises eyebrows with call to abolish abortion CWN - December 20, 2010

The son of the Duke of Kent—who forfeited his place in the line of succession to the British crown when he entered the Catholic Church—has captured attention with an article in First Things magazine...

New nuncio's appointment brings new hope for British Catholics CWN - December 20, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has appointed a new apostolic nuncio to Great Britain, prompting hopes among orthodox Catholics that the Vatican may eventually begin appointing new bishops from outside a tight...

See St. Joseph as model of 'new man,' Pope urges audience CWN - December 20, 2010

At his Angelus audience on the Fourth Sunday of Advent, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the example set by St. Joseph, who “announced the prodigies of the Lord, bearing witness to Mary's virginity and...

Protests of 'gay Mass' motivated by prejudice, says British archbishop CWN - December 20, 2010

Archbishop Bernard Longley of Birmingham, England, has criticized Catholics who have protested the scheduling of special Masses in London for homosexuals. Archbishop Longley was instrumental in...

'Catholics Come Home' draws 200,000 back to faith CWN - December 20, 2010

The “Catholics Come Home” program has brought as many as 200,000 American Catholics back to the active practice of their faith, organizers believe. Tom Peterson, who has worked with various...

1,000 Australian Anglicans to enter Catholic Church? CWN - December 20, 2010

The head of the Traditional Anglican Communion (TAC) believes that approximately 1,000 Anglicans will enter the Catholic Church next year under the terms of Anglicanorum Coetibus. Anglican...

Pope is unsparing in analysis of sex-abuse scandal CWN - December 20, 2010

In a powerful address to the Roman Curia, looking back across the year 2010, Pope Benedict XVI said that the explosion of the sex-abuse scandal across Europe had gravely damaged and humbled the...

Dutch bishops charged with destroying abuse evidence CWN - December 20, 2010

A Dutch historian has charged that Catholic bishops destroyed documents that would have provided evidence of sexual abuse. Eric Theloosen says that he reported the missing files to a commission...

Sweden rejects asylum claims by Iraqi Christians CWN - December 20, 2010

The government of Sweden has refused to accept a request for asylum from 5 Iraqi Christians who said that they faced persecution in their native land. The 5 Christians were returned to Iraq—at...

Muslims seek to drive Christians out of Middle East, Egyptian priest charges CWN - December 20, 2010

An Egyptian priest has charged that radical Muslims hope to drive all Christians out of the Middle East. “This is what the Muslim fundamentalists want,” Father Rafic Greische told Vatican Radio....

Released Tuesday, Dec. 21

Cardinal urges Italian senators to open hearts to Christ CWN - December 21, 2010

Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco of Genoa, president of the Italian episcopal conference, urged the nation’s senators during a December 15 homily to open their hearts to Christ, to listen to others, and to...

Report links Catholic hospital chain to sterilizations CWN - December 21, 2010

The American Life League (ALL) has issued a report linking one of the nation’s leading Catholic hospital chains with sterilization. Catholic Healthcare West (CHW) is the parent company of St. Joseph...

Church in Africa faces challenges of education, societal corruption CWN - December 21, 2010

Analyzing the remarkable growth of the Church in Africa, the former superior general of the Society for African Missions praised the hospitality and vitality that characterizes Christian life there...

‘Selective reduction’ of twins on the rise CWN - December 21, 2010

The “selective reduction” of twins by abortion is on the rise in Canada, according to anecdotal evidence in a recent National Post article. In “selective reduction,” parents who believe that they...

Fewer than half of Americans to attend Christmas services CWN - December 21, 2010

Only 47% of Americans plan to attend religious services on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, according to a recent survey. 28% plan to read or tell the account of the Nativity in the Bible, while 34%...

Most Americans believe God had role in creation CWN - December 21, 2010

78% of Americans believe that God played a part in the development of the human race, according to a new Gallup survey. 40% of Americans believe that God created human beings in their present...

Vatican statement: no change on condoms CWN - December 21, 2010

Pope Benedict’s remarks in Light of the World do not represent a change in the Church’s teaching regarding the use of condoms, the Vatican has confirmed. A December 21 statement from the...

Bishop strips Phoenix hospital of 'Catholic' designation CWN - December 21, 2010

Bishop Thomas Olmsted has declared that St. Joseph’s Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona “is not committed to following the teaching of the Catholic Church and therefore this hospital cannot be considered...

Patriarch of Jerusalem sees hope despite breakdown of peace talks CWN - December 21, 2010

The Latin-rite Catholic Patriarch of Jerusalem has urged his people to continue working and praying for peace, despite a stalemate in Israeli-Palestinian peace talks. Archbishop Fouad Twal, in...

Misguided compassion fueled sex-abuse scandal in Ireland CWN - December 21, 2010

The sex-abuse scandal in Ireland is partly attributable to a misguided compassion, which led Church officials to downplay the evidence of clerical misconduct, a leading Irish Catholic analyst...

How Pope Benedict chooses top Vatican officials CWN - December 21, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has now appointed 20 of the top 25 officials serving in the Roman Curia, notes John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter)—with a 21st appointment (a new prefect for the...

Church leaders must admit errors on abuse, says retired Belgian cardinal CWN - December 21, 2010

Cardinal Godfried Danneels, the retired Archbishop of Brussels, told a Belgian legislative committee that the Church must “look its dark side in the eyes” and candidly admit errors in handling the...

Hindu fundamentalist attacks on India's Christians mount as Christmas approaches CWN - December 21, 2010

A week ahead of Christmas, half a dozen brutal attacks on Christian targets by Hindu fundamentalists has been reported from different parts of India. On December 18, Hindu fundamentalists beat...

Church leaders brace for Christmas violence in central Africa CWN - December 21, 2010

Church leaders in Africa are warning about the prospect of violence from the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), which has been charged with multiple crimes against humanity in attacks on civilians in...

Christmas Mass barred in Indonesian province CWN - December 21, 2010

Authorities in the Indonesian province of Bogor, in West Java, have announced a ban on Christmas Mass and on any other celebrations of Christmas, explaining that Christians do not have a proper...

Ontario: Catholic teachers' union supports gay-rights advocacy CWN - December 21, 2010

The Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association (OECTA), with 45,000 members, has provided support for Equality for Gays and Lesbians Everywhere (EGALE), a group that has worked for legal...

Released Wednesday, Dec. 22

Chinese government rips Vatican statement CWN - December 22, 2010

Less than a week after the Holy See denounced the Chinese government’s repressive control of Church affairs, the State Administration for Religious Affairs has blasted the Vatican for its “attack on...

US bishops rue failure of DREAM Act CWN - December 22, 2010

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has issued a statement lamenting the failure of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act in the Senate. A 55-41...

Victims blast diocese for destroying priests’ psychological records CWN - December 22, 2010

The Diocese of Green Bay destroyed some priests’ psychological records in 2007 in order to comply with the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), the diocese’s vicar...

CNN profile of US national shrine CWN - December 22, 2010

The Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington is the subject of a new profile by CNN’s senior photojournalist. “Many people who traveled in Europe or traveled in...

Revival of Jesus’ language at Oxford CWN - December 22, 2010

The study of Aramaic has undergone a revival at Oxford, even as the effects of the war in Iraq have threatened its existence as a spoken language. Some 56 scholars are now studying language there,...

‘What did Jesus sing?’ CWN - December 22, 2010

Anthropologist Geoffrey Clarfield, writing in a leading Canadian newspaper, explores the relation between the synagogue music of Jesus’ time and Gregorian chant. The Sacred Bridge, a CD...

Await Christmas with child-like awe, Pope urges audience CWN - December 22, 2010

“This Christmas, may the Christ Child find all of us spiritually prepared for his coming,” said Pope Benedict XVI at his weekly public audience on December 22. The traditional Christmas crèche,...

Irish Church braces for new report on abuse in Cloyne diocese CWN - December 22, 2010

Ireland’s justice minister, Dermot Ahern, was due to receive a report today on sexual abuse by priests in the Cloyne diocese. The report, which could be made public early next year, is likely to...

Phoenix bishop explains decision; CHA backs hospital in abortion case CWN - December 22, 2010

At a December 21 news conference, Bishop Thomas Olmstead of Phoenix, Arizona, explained his decision to lift the “Catholic” designation from St. Joseph’s Hospital after hospital officials declined...

Vatican at odds with Holocaust task force over criticism of Pius XII? CWN - December 22, 2010

The Vatican has pulled back from participation in an international task force on the Holocaust, because of criticism of the role played by Pope Pius XII, according to an American diplomat’s account,...

Pope's liturgical schedule for Christmas season CWN - December 22, 2010

The Vatican has confirmed the full schedule of liturgical events at which Pope Benedict XVI will preside during the Christmas season this year. The Pope will begin the celebration with midnight...

Theologian defends stand on condom use CWN - December 22, 2010

Father Martin Rhonheimer, the noted theologian who has been caught up in the controversy surrounding Pope Benedict’s remarks on condoms, has written an open letter defending his argument that the...

Hindu militants threaten new action against Christians in Orissa CWN - December 22, 2010

Hindu radicals in the Kandahamal region of India’s Orissa state have announced plans to hold a public rally on Christmas Day to “honor the memory” of a comrade who was injured during an attack on a...

Islamic pressure restricts souvenir sales in Bethlehem CWN - December 22, 2010

Christian pilgrims who travel to Bethlehem to celebrate Christmas this year may notice that fewer tourist items in the markets of the town show distinctively Christian themes, and even images of the...

Most Catholics in US Congress voted to repeal "don't ask, don't tell" CWN - December 22, 2010

Of the 160 Catholics serving in the current US Congress (135 in the House of Representatives, 25 in the Senate), 117 voted to repeal the "don't ask, don't tell" policy that had barred homosexuals...

Released Thursday, Dec. 23

US bishops laud Senate passage of nuclear arms treaty CWN - December 23, 2010

The US Senate has ratified the new Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty, which was signed by President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on April 8. The 71-26 margin was four more than...

Times, ACLU: Catholic hospitals should be forced to perform abortions CWN - December 23, 2010

The American Civil Liberties Union has again urged the federal government to compel Catholic hospitals to perform abortions that are deemed necessary to save the life of the mother. The ACLU’s...

Prominent New York priest laicized for abuse CWN - December 23, 2010

Charles Kavanagh, who once led Cathedral Preparatory Seminary in New York, supervised the famed Alfred E. Smith political dinner, and oversaw Cardinal John O’Connor’s funeral arrangements, has been...

Tribal concerns divide Nigerian diocese CWN - December 23, 2010

At the 2009 Synod of Bishops for Africa, several prelates lamented divisions in the life of the Church caused by tribalism. Cardinal Francis Arinze urged the bishops of each nation to speak as one...

'Star of Bethlehem' may have been conjunction of Jupiter, Regulus CWN - December 23, 2010

The star of Bethlehem mentioned in St. Matthew’s Gospel may have been a conjunction of the planet Jupiter and Regulus, a star in the constellation of Leo, according to Mark Thompson, a fellow of the...

Connecticut man fasts on bread, water for Christ-centered Christmas CWN - December 23, 2010

A Connecticut activist began a bread-and-water fast on November 28 to “to get people to focus on Christmas as the focal point of human history, the birth of Christ, and to say ‘Merry...

Chinese priest chosen for key Vatican mission post CWN - December 23, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has chosen a Chinese priest to become the new secretary of the Congregation for Evangelization. Father Savio Hon Tai-Fai, a native of Hong Kong and member of the Salesian order,...

Papal Christmas liturgies available online CWN - December 23, 2010

The Vatican is making the Christmas liturgical celebrations of Pope Benedict XVI available online this year, with live coverage on three web sites. The Vatican Television Centre, in cooperation...

Pakistani Church leaders fear reprisals after Christmas-eve protests against blasphemy law CWN - December 23, 2010

Church leaders in Pakistan are calling for the postponement of demonstrations against the country’s blasphemy laws, scheduled for December 24 and 31, for fear of a violent backlash by Islamic...

Pope will give Christmas Eve talk on BBC CWN - December 23, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI will offer the “Thought for the Day” on the BBC radio broadcast for Christmas Eve. The special papal message is the product of “many months” of negotiations between BBC and the...

The common-sense case against homosexuals in military service CWN - December 23, 2010

In an outstanding essay for the National Catholic Register, Tim Drake argues that the decision to allow avowed homosexuals into the US armed services is likely to produce unattractive results—of a...

Italian foreign minister raps EU on ignoring persecution of Christians CWN - December 23, 2010

Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini has criticized the European Union for its failure to protest the persecution of Christians, especially in Iraq and other countries of the Middle...

Iraq's Christians plan quiet Christmas, hope to avoid violence CWN - December 23, 2010

Christian leaders in Iraq are scaling back on their plans for Christmas celebrations, fearful of new violence against the country’s Christian minority. In Baghdad, Kirkuk, Mosul, and Basra,...

A Christmas reminder: don't 'miss the child in Christ' CWN - December 23, 2010

Borrowing a line from Chesterton, Anthony Esolen writes that while working to “keep Christ in Christmas,” we should also remember to “keep Christmas in Christ”—to be mindful that the Savior is a...

Israeli mayor bars Christmas trees from suburb of Nazareth CWN - December 23, 2010

The mayor of Nazareth Illit (Upper Nazareth), a suburb of the city where Jesus was raised, has refused to allow Christmas trees in the town’s Arab distict. “Nazareth Illit is a Jewish city,”...

Islamic group threatens Copts living in Canada CWN - December 23, 2010

A web site linked to Al Qaida has published the names and addresses of more than 100 Coptic Christians now living in Canada, saying that these “dogs in diaspora” are encouraging Muslims to convert...

Released Friday, Dec. 24

Pope Benedict’s Christmas Eve message on BBC (link to full text) CWN - December 24, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI offered the “Thought for the Day” on BBC Radio 4 on Christmas Eve morning. “The child that was born in Bethlehem did indeed bring liberation, but not only for the people of that...

China again lashes out at Vatican CWN - December 24, 2010

Echoing comments made earlier this week by China’s State Administration for Religious Affairs, the layman who serves as honorary chairman of the Chinese Catholic Patriotic Association lashed out at...

Custos of Holy Land: Christmas message CWN - December 24, 2010

The Franciscan superior in the Holy Land, whose friars minister at the principal Christian shrines, has released his annual Christmas message. Father Pierbattista Pizzaballa...

Java: Catholics will defy ban on Christmas Mass CWN - December 24, 2010

Catholics and Protestants in the Indonesian province of Bogor, in West Java, will hold Christmas worship services despite a ban by local authorities. Supportive of Islamic militants’ demands,...

Haiti: 1 million in camps, 100,000 with cholera CWN - December 24, 2010

Vatican Radio presents a sobering picture of life in Haiti nearly a year after the earthquake that claimed more than 200,000 lives. “Even though there’s been a decrease in the number of refugees...

Philippine bishop fears military coup CWN - December 24, 2010

A Philippine prelate is warning of the possibility of a military coup d’etat following the plea bargain release of a general who had been charged with corruption. “I don’t want it to happen, but...

Tens of thousands of pilgrims in Bethlehem for Christmas CWN - December 24, 2010

Tens of thousands of pilgrims crowded into Manger Square in Bethlehem on Christmas Eve, as a decline in violence on the West Bank encouraged a surge of Christian visitors. Israeli authorities...

San Francisco archbishop to consult with Catholic Healthcare West on ethical policies CWN - December 24, 2010

Archbiship George Niederauer of San Francisco has indicated that he plans to “initiate a dialogue” with officials at Catholic Healthcare West (CHW), after the corporation’s commitment to Catholic...

Christmas in China's underground Church CWN - December 24, 2010

From northern China, AsiaNews brings a report on the loyal priests of the “underground” Catholic Church, who are braving bitter cold weather and official disapproval to celebrate Christmas Mass for...

New York Times headlines approval of Marian apparition in Wisconsin CWN - December 24, 2010

The December 24 issue of the New York Times gives front-page coverage to the news that Bishop David Ricken of Green Bay has confirmed the apparitions of the Virgin Mary at a shrine in Champion,...

'Santa' busts reputed Sicilian Mafia figure CWN - December 24, 2010

Naughty children are warned that they may find coal in their stockings on Christmas morning. But in a Sicilian village near Catania, an accused Mafia member received an even greater rebuke from...

Pope Benedict: Homily at Midnight Mass CWN - December 24, 2010

“You are my son, this day I have begotten you”-- with this passage from Psalm 2 the Church begins the liturgy of this holy night. She knows that this passage originally formed part of the coronation...

Released Saturday, Dec. 25

Pope Benedict: Christmas Message Urbi et Orbi (To the City and the World) CWN - December 25, 2010

Dear brothers and sisters listening to me here in Rome and throughout the world, I joyfully proclaim the message of Christmas: God became man; he came to dwell among us. God is not distant: he is...

Released Monday, Dec. 27

Nigeria: 38 dead in church attacks, bombings CWN - December 27, 2010

Armed men attacked two Protestant churches in Nigeria on Christmas Eve, killing a pastor and setting fire to one of the churches. The churches were located in Maiduguri, a northeastern city that...

Philippines: bomb explodes during Christmas Mass CWN - December 27, 2010

A bomb exploded during Christmas Mass in a chapel on the island of Jolo, injuring 11. “I was reading the Gospel,” said Father Romeo Villanueva. “I was not yet finished when there was a loud...

Patriarch of Jerusalem laments abortion, violence against Christians CWN - December 27, 2010

In his Christmas homily, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem Fouad Twal called upon Christians to love their enemies and pray for peace. “Christmas presents us with the unique value of human life, a...

Canadian bishop forgives man who almost killed him CWN - December 27, 2010

Two months after he was brutally beaten in the cathedral rectory, a Canadian bishop has been released from the hospital and publicly forgave the man who attacked him. “We are to forgive, that’s...

Pope hosts a meal for Mother Teresa's poor CWN - December 27, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI hosted a Sunday dinner on December 26 for about 250 people who would ordinarily have been served at the soup kitchens operated by the Missionaries of Charity in Rome. More than 100...

Arizona newspaper offers a curious profile of Bishop Olmsted CWN - December 27, 2010

The Arizona Republic published a profile of Bishop Thomas Olmstead of Phoenix, offering some perspective on the quiet prelate who has captured nationwide attention by announcing that a hospital in...

Barred from church, Indonesian Catholics celebrate Christmas Mass in a parking lot CWN - December 27, 2010

Unsuccessful in their efforts to roll back a decision by local official banning Christmas Mass in the local parish church, Indonesian Catholics in the Bogor region of West Java held their...

Cardinal Cañizares outlines Pope's plan for liturgical reform CWN - December 27, 2010

Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, the prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, discusses Pope Benedict’s drive to restore proper reverence to the Eucharistic liturgy, in an interview with...

Pope condemns Christmas-day violence, asks prayers for victims and perpetrators CWN - December 27, 2010

During his midday audience on December 26, Pope Benedict XVI condemned the violence that left more than 40 people dead in Christmas-day attacks in Nigeria, the Philippines, and Pakistan. “Once...

Washington Post takes note of Pope Benedict's liturgical plans CWN - December 27, 2010

The Washington Post took an unusually careful look at liturgical changes within the Catholic Church, and especially at the Vatican, highlighting the different approach adopted by Pope Benedict....

After muted Christmas celebration, Iraqi prelate vows Church will persevere CWN - December 27, 2010

As Christians in Iraq observed a quiet Christmas, foregoing decorations and midnight liturgical celebrations for fear of new violence, Archbishop Louis Sako of Kirkuk insisted that the Christian...

Vietnamese officials restrict bishop in diocese marked by conversions CWN - December 27, 2010

Facing a wave of conversion to Catholicism among ethnic Montagnards, the local government of Vietnam’s Kontum Province has obstructed the bishop’s pastoral duties with many obstacles, including a...

Released Tuesday, Dec. 28

Quebec bans Christmas carols in government-subsidized daycare centers CWN - December 28, 2010

Quebec’s family minister, Yolande James, has banned all religious instruction in government-subsidized daycare centers. Since 1997, the province has subsidized 85% of daycare costs, with parents...

‘Death panels’ return to health care discussion CWN - December 28, 2010

By regulatory fiat, the Obama administration has decided that annual discussions of end-of-life care are a reimbursable wellness benefit under Medicare. A 2009 legislative proposal that would have...

Orissa: 9 sentenced for burning Christians’ homes CWN - December 28, 2010

Two years after an anti-Christian pogrom in the eastern Indian state of Orissa left nearly 100 dead, a court has sentenced nine men to five years of hard labor for burning Christians’ homes. The...

Oregon: Catholic agency withdraws from United Way over Planned Parenthood CWN - December 28, 2010

At the direction of Archbishop John Vlazny of Portland, Catholic Community Services has withdrawn from United Way of Lane County because of United Way’s funding of Planned Parenthood. The decision...

‘What is frankincense?’ CWN - December 28, 2010

Frankincense, a tree resin, “is the very scent of Oman, deeply entrenched in the culture, burned as incense in homes and offices, added to perfumes, and used for medicinal purposes to ease...

Washington Post foresees more states testing abortion law CWN - December 28, 2010

When the Supreme Court upheld a ban on partial-birth abortions, the Washington Post notes, pro-life activists saw opportunities for other sorts of state legislation that would protect both mothers...

European Parliament to monitor treatment of Iraqi Christians CWN - December 28, 2010

The president of the European Parliament has promised to keep a careful watch on the conditions facing Christians in Iraq. After meeting with a delegation of Iraqi Church leaders, members of the...

Papal spokesman looks back at 2010 CWN - December 28, 2010

Looking back across 2010, the director of the Vatican press office sees the sex-abuse scandal, persecution of Christians, and papal trips abroad as the year’s top stories. Father Federico...

Father John Harvey, founder of Courage, dead at 92 CWN - December 28, 2010

Father John Harvey, the founder of the Courage apostolate, died on December 27 in Maryland at the age of 92. Born in Philadelphia, John Harvey made his first vows as an Oblate of St. Frances de...

New appointments expected for Roman Curia CWN - December 28, 2010

A noted Vatican-watcher is predicting two new appointments to the Roman Curia, to be announced soon. Andrea Tornielli of Il Giornale, who has accurately predicted a number of Vatican...

Bomb stirs tensions in Philippines province CWN - December 28, 2010

Tensions remain high in the Mindanao province of the Philippines, where a Catholic church was bombed on Christmas Day. Nevertheless, thousands of people attended Christmas Mass at nearby churches....

Moscow Patriarch urges acceptance of immigrants CWN - December 28, 2010

Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill has called for acceptance of the immigrants who are flocking into Moscow, suggesting that xenophobic feelings have fueled a surge in crime in the city. “The...

Belgian church roof collapses just after Christmas Mass CWN - December 28, 2010

The roof of a Catholic church in Diepenbeek, Belgium, collapsed early on Christmas morning—shortly after the departure of worshippers who had filled the building for midnight Mass. The weight of...

Vietnam: Christmas marked with violent crackdowns CWN - December 28, 2010

Beatings, Church raids, arrests, forbidding Christmas Mass, bulldozing monasteries – are some of the violent incidents inflicted on Christians by authorities in Vietnam. An estimate of 2000...

Released Wednesday, Dec. 29

Chavez pushing Venezuela toward totalitarianism, cardinal charges CWN - December 29, 2010

Cardinal Jorge Urosa-Savino of Caracas is expressing concern that a “totalitarian dictatorship” is developing under the leadership of President Hugo Chavez. “If someone gets angry because the...

Report: Pope to reform Vatican bank structure CWN - December 29, 2010

Pope Benedict will issue a document on December 30 that reforms the Vatican banking system, the Vatican has confirmed. Shortly after the appearance of a German press report that the Pope would...

Activist laments US bishops’ silence on ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ CWN - December 29, 2010

A military activist who opposed the repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy lamented the failure of “the Catholic Church”-- presumably, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops-- to...

Columnist rues US indifference to Iraqi Christians CWN - December 29, 2010

Tim Rutten, who shared a Pulitzer Prize in 1994, lamented Western indifference to the plight of Iraq’s Christians in a recent Los Angeles Timescolumn. “Oil and geopolitics prevent the United...

50th anniversary of John Courtney Murray’s We Hold These Truths CWN - December 29, 2010

Writing for The American Spectator, G. Tracy Mehan III pays tribute to Father John Courtney Murray’s We Hold These Truths on the 50th anniversary of its publication. The Jesuit’s influential work,...

Vatican II peritus, potential Nobel Peace Prize winner, admits abuse CWN - December 29, 2010

Father François Houtart, an 85-year-old Belgian activist priest who served as a peritus at the Second Vatican Council, has admitted twice abusing his cousin in 1970. His cousin was then an...

Bomb scare defused at US embassy to Vatican CWN - December 29, 2010

Rome’s bomb squad was called in to the US embassy to the Holy See on December 29 to examine a suspicious package. Police reported that there was no bomb. Officials in Rome, particularly at...

Two #2 officials named to Vatican congregations CWN - December 29, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has named new secretaries to the Congregations for Clergy and for the Causes of Saints, confirming reports that circulated earlier this week. Msgr. Marcello Bartolucci, who has...

Papal audience topic: St. Catherine of Bologna CWN - December 29, 2010

At his weekly public audience on December 29, Pope Benedict XVI continued his series of talks on the great women of Church history, speaking about the 15th-century Poor Clare abbess, St. Catherine...

Cardinal Dias to represent Pope at celebration in Vietnam CWN - December 29, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has named Cardinal Ivan Dias, the prefect of the Congregation for Evangelization, as his personal envoy to attend the closing ceremonies of the Jubilee Year celebration for the...

Released Thursday, Dec. 30

Radical Muslims continue violence in Nigeria CWN - December 30, 2010

The Islamist group Boko Haram, which is thought to be responsible for Christmas Eve attacks on two Nigerian Protestant churches, is also responsible for the killing of three people at a hospital in...

Chile: bishops lament abortion proposal CWN - December 30, 2010

The bishops of Chile issued a statement on the Feast of the Holy Innocents lamenting a proposal that would legalize abortion in the cases of rape, birth defects, or a threat to the life of the...

Italian missionary acquitted in Peru CWN - December 30, 2010

Father Mario Bartolini, a Passionist missionary who has ministered in the Amazon region of Peru for 35 years, has been acquitted of charges of an “attack on public transport or communication, and...

Effort to end public funding for Catholic schools in Alberta CWN - December 30, 2010

David King, Alberta’s former education minister, has launched a campaign to abolish the province’s system of separate publicly-funded Catholic schools. King supports the merger of public schools and...

Ethiopian Christians seek pardon for former Communist officials CWN - December 30, 2010

The head of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church, joined by Catholic, Protestant, and Muslim leaders, is requesting a pardon for dozens of officials of the Communist regime of Mengistu Haile Mariam...

Philippine bishops speak out against New Year’s Eve firecrackers CWN - December 30, 2010

Two Philippine bishops are urging the faithful not to spend immoderate amounts of money on firecrackers for New Year’s Eve. “I do not forbid buying firecrackers, but they have become very, very...

Pope Benedict the ‘Orwell of our time’ CWN - December 30, 2010

Writing in the latest edition of a British conservative quarterly, Theodore Dalrymple reflects on Pope Benedict’s recently apostolic journey to England and Scotland. Dalrymple, who is not...

23 Church workers killed in 2010 CWN - December 30, 2010

The Fides list avoids use of the word “martyr,” the Church has not officially ruled on the circumstances of the deaths. Most of the deaths appear to be the result of ordinary criminal activity...

Papal audience with child choristers CWN - December 30, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI met in a private audience on December 31 with 5,000 young singers sponsored by the International Pueri Cantores Federation, who were in Rome for Christmas performances. In...

Pope sets out new rules for Vatican banking transactions CWN - December 30, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI has released a new set of regulations governing all financial transactions by the Vatican and bringing the Holy See into line with new European banking standards to prevent...

Margaret Thatcher pressed Pope John Paul to intervene in IRA hunger strike of 1980 CWN - December 30, 2010

British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher appealed to Pope John Paul II for help in ending a hunger strike by imprisoned members of the Irish Republican Army (IRA) in 1980, according to documents...

Hong Kong election plan would add seats for religious representatives CWN - December 30, 2010

The government of Hong Kong has announced plans to increase the number of religious representatives of a commission that will choose the chief executive of the Chinese territory in 2012. The...

Recognize Pope as defender of freedom, columnist urges policy-makers CWN - December 30, 2010

Daniel Henninger of the Wall Street Journal argues that policy analysts who think of themselves as "realists" are too quick to write off the influence of the Roman Pontiff. Citing the enormous role...

Vietnamese bishop rejects government propaganda CWN - December 30, 2010

Bishop Chau Ngoc Tri of Da Nang, Vietnam, has condemned a government propaganda campaign against Catholic activists who oppose the seizure of church properties. After government-controlled media...

Police disrupt Islamic terror plot in Denmark CWN - December 30, 2010

Police in Denmark and Sweden have arrested five Islamic militants, who were reportedly planning to “kill as many people as possible” in a massacre designed as a reprisal against the publication of...

Released Friday, Dec. 31

Baghdad: 14 bombs target Christian homes CWN - December 31, 2010

In a new wave of violence against Iraqi Christians, 14 bombs were placed at the homes of Christians in Baghdad on December 30. Ten of the bombs went off, causing two deaths. Ten Christians were...

Belgians scandalized by archbishop's remarks on abuse: cardinal’s spokesman CWN - December 31, 2010

Toon Osaer, the spokesman for Cardinal Godfried Danneels, says that the “vast majority of people” are “quite scandalized” by Archbishop André-Joseph Léonard’s December 22 testimony on clerical abuse...

Philippine prelate: Population control not the solution to poverty CWN - December 31, 2010

In his New Year’s message, the president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines said that anti-corruption initiatives, rather than population control measures, are the key to the...

Sacred Music editor bullish on new missal, Simple Propers Project CWN - December 31, 2010

In an interview with the National Catholic Register, Jeffrey Tucker, the managing editor of Sacred Music, said that the forthcoming revised translation of the Roman Missal may augur a revival of...

The Popes and the World Day of Peace (background) CWN - December 31, 2010

On January 1, the Church will commemorate the 44th World Day of Peace. In his message for the 1st World Day of Peace, Pope Paul VI wrote, “We address Ourselves to all men of good will to exhort them...

Pope’s prayer intentions for January 2011 CWN - December 31, 2010

The Apostleship of Prayer has announced the prayer intentions of Pope Benedict XVI for January 2011. The Pope’s general intention is “that the riches of the created world may be preserved,...

Pope prays for families in need as 2010 ends CWN - December 31, 2010

Pope Benedict XVI offered a prayer for families that live “in conditions of poverty or deprivation,” as he presided at a Vespers service in St. Peter’s basilica on New Year’s eve. The Pope...

Korean bishops join in call to abolish capital punishment CWN - December 31, 2010

The Catholic bishops of Korea have joined in a call for the abolition of the death penalty. Although South Korea has not carried out a death penalty since 1997, and the country is listed by...

John Allen lists five 'under-reported' stories of 2010 CWN - December 31, 2010

America's top Vatican-watcher, John Allen, lists 5 stories that deserved more attention in 2010: the Boffo case, the Vatican banking scandals, the debate over crucifix displays in Europe, the Synod...

Iraqi archbishop: martyrdom may awaken Christians elsewhere CWN - December 31, 2010

“For us Christians of Iraq, martyrdom is the charism of our Church,” said Archbishop Louis Sako of Kirkuk, Iraq, as the final day of 2010 saw a string of bombings aimed at Christian targets. The...

Catholic hospitals seen as focus of next key Church conflict CWN - December 31, 2010

Conflicts between Catholic hospital administrators and local bishops-- like the conflict between Bishop Thomas Olmsted and St. Joseph's Hospital in Phoenix-- are likely to be the next major...

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