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Catholic World News

Stories for August 2011

Released Tuesday, Aug. 2

US: private insurers must offer free contraception under new mandate CWN - August 2, 2011

Beginning in August 2012, all private insurers must provide women with coverage for FDA-approved contraception--including sterilization and contraceptives that have an abortifacient effect--under a...

Iraq: Catholic church bombed CWN - August 2, 2011

A bomb exploded at a Syrian Catholic church in Kirkuk, causing severe damage to the church and injuring 23, including the parish priest, Father Imad Yalda. Police then discovered bombs at two other...

1/4 of Somalia’s population displaced by famine CWN - August 2, 2011

One fourth of Somalia’s 9.1 million people have left their homes in search of food, according to a report prepared by Caritas Somalia. “The search for food and service has resulted in a massive...

El Salvador’s bishops urge government to combat crime CWN - August 2, 2011

El Salvador’s leading prelate is urging civil authorities to do more to combat crime in the Central American nation. “We see with sorrow the perpetuation of delinquency and crime, which always...

Judge removes proposed circumcision ban from San Francisco ballot CWN - August 2, 2011

Ruling that health-care services should be regulated by states and not cities, a superior court judge has removed a proposed ban on circumcision from the November ballot in San...

Vatican prefect pays tribute to St. Justin de Jacobis CWN - August 2, 2011

Archbishop Fernando Filoni, prefect of the Congregation for the Evangelization of Peoples, paid tribute to St. Justin de Jacobis (1800-60) in a homily that concluded a year-long commemoration of the...

Obama sends Ramadan greetings to Muslims CWN - August 2, 2011

President Barack Obama has sent a message to all American Muslims at the start of Ramadan, “a festive time that is anticipated for months by Muslims everwhere.” In his message, President Obama...

Critique of New York Times coverage of Call to Action, women's ordination CWN - August 2, 2011

Spotting errors and inconsistencies in media coverage of Catholic dissidents is an endless and thankless task. Terry Mattingly does it well in his analysis of a badly skewed New York Times story on...

New York archdiocese dismisses school principal accused of white-supremacist ties CWN - August 2, 2011

The New York archdioces has dismissed a Catholic-school principal who had ties to a white-supremacist organization. A New York Daily News story revealed that Frank Borzellieri had written for...

Catholic University president argued for 'conscience clause' in health-care coverage CWN - August 2, 2011

John Garvey, the president of Catholic University of America, makes a strong case for "conscience clause" protections of those who find it morally repugnant to subsidize contraception,...

ACLU joins suit against Catholic adoption in Illinois CWN - August 2, 2011

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has joined a lawsuit against Catholic Charities in Illinois, arguing that Church-run adoption agencies should be required to provide equal treatment for...

Sentencing hearing begins for Canadian bishop in child-porn case CWN - August 2, 2011

Canadian Bishop Raymond Lahey, who in May pleaded guilty to child-pornography charges, faces a sentencing hearing today. During the 2-day hearing, an Ottawa court will hear a report from a...

Pope will attend WYD in Rio in 2013, mayor claims CWN - August 2, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI will travel to Rio de Janeiro in 2013, when World Youth Day (WYD) is held there, the city’s mayor has announced. The Vatican has not announced any plans for a papal trip to...

Australian police consider probe into suicides among Catholic-school abuse victims CWN - August 2, 2011

An Australian bishop has said that he sees no need for an investigation into a rash of suicides among the victims of sexual abuse at Catholic schools. Bishop Peter Connors of Ballarat said that...

International Eucharistic Congress in Dublin will not be postponed CWN - August 2, 2011

The International Eucharistic Congress will be held in Dublin next June, despite a leading Irish politician's call to postpone the event. Father Kevin Doran, the secretary general of the...

Church officials charge cholera threatens prisons in Dominican Republic CWN - August 2, 2011

Catholic officials in the Dominican Republic have charged that prison directors are covering up evidence of cholera in the country’s jails. The Pastoral Commission says that cholera has broken...

Vatican makes rare direct intervention in property dispute in Croatian diocese CWN - August 2, 2011

A lingering dispute between a Croatian diocese and the Benedictine religious order has prompted an unusual direct intervention by the Vatican, and caused a chill in diplomatic relations between...

Released Wednesday, Aug. 3

Archbishop: Alabama immigration law threatens religious liberty CWN - August 3, 2011

The bishops of Alabama have joined with local Episcopal Church and Methodist officials in taking legal action against immigration legislation scheduled to come into effect on September 1. The law...

Pakistan: local Muslim leaders apologize for anti-Christian rampage CWN - August 3, 2011

Two years after a mob of 1,000 Muslims attacked Christians in the northeastern Pakistani city of Gojra, leaders of a local madrassa and mosque have apologized and asked for pardon. “Even though...

Catholic Health Association ‘very concerned’ by contraception mandate CWN - August 3, 2011

The Catholic Health Association (CHA)--which broke with the nation’s bishops by supporting health-care legislation passed in March 2010--has expressed its concern about a new mandate that requires...

Late apostolic nuncio to US was slated for 'important' curial appointment CWN - August 3, 2011

A leading official of the Vatican’s Secretariat of State has revealed Archbishop Pietro Sambi, the late apostolic nuncio to the United States, was slated to be named to "an important position in the...

Presbyterian seminary defends Sister Johnson following bishops’ critique CWN - August 3, 2011

Nearly all of the faculty members at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary, including the seminary’s president, have written a letter in support of Sister Elizabeth Johnson following the...

70th anniversary of famed homily against Nazi euthanasia program CWN - August 3, 2011

L’Osservatore Romano has paid tribute to Blessed Clemens August von Galen 70 years after the Bishop of Munster preached his famed homily against the Nazi’s euthanasia program, which targeted the...

Pope's suggestion: explore Bible during summer vacation CWN - August 3, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI recommended the Bible as a summer-reading project, as he addressed a public audience at his summer residence on August 3. Resuming his weekly audiences after a break for his...

Knights of Columbus to purchase cash-strapped Pope John Paul II Cultural Center CWN - August 3, 2011

The Knights of Columbus have agreed to buy the Pope John Paul II Cultural Center, in Washington, DC, from the Detroit archdiocese. An ambitious project conceived by Detroit's Cardinal Adam Maida,...

Tomb of St. Philip the apostle found? CWN - August 3, 2011

Archeologists working in Turkey have made the claim that they have found the tomb of St. Philip the apostle. The tomb, discovered by an Italian team, is located near the ancient town of...

New York Times profiles devout Catholic baseball manager CWN - August 3, 2011

The New York Times offers a portrait of a major-league baseball manager--Jack McKeon of the Florida Marlins--who sustains his Catholic faith by attending Mass each morning. McKeon makes a point...

Syrian protesters now demand regime change, says Vatican analyst CWN - August 3, 2011

Public protests in Syria were not originally intended to bring down the Assad government, according to a noted Vatican Arab scholar. But the brutality and corruption of the regime’s response has now...

Knights of Columbus receive papal praise for public witness CWN - August 3, 2011

In a message to the annual convention of the Knights of Columbus, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone said that Pope Benedict XVI feels “deep gratitude” to the group for its “continuing contribution to...

Alabama priest's death seen as suicide CWN - August 3, 2011

A priest of the Mobile, Alabama archdiocese has been found dead, in what archdiocesan officials report was a suicide. Father Ernest Hyndman, Jr, was found death in his rectory on Tuesday morning,...

Released Thursday, Aug. 4

Archbishop Gomez: Remember the Hispanic-Catholic roots of America CWN - August 4, 2011

Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles has called upon Catholics to remember that the roots of America are “Hispanic-Catholic” as well as “Anglo-Protestant.” “The story of the founding fathers and...

Indonesia: 2 house churches burned to ground CWN - August 4, 2011

Two Christian house churches have been burned to the ground in Riau, a province on the western Indonesian island of Sumatra. Since 1967, an estimated 1,200 churches have been burned down or closed...

USCCB finds ‘good news,’ ‘bad news’ in budget deal CWN - August 4, 2011

In its analysis of the legislation associated with the US debt ceiling debate, the Department of Justice, Peace, and Human Development of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops found “good...

New Jersey man ordered to remove cross from his front yard CWN - August 4, 2011

Citing zoning ordinances, officials in Livingston, New Jersey, have twice ordered a homeowner to remove a cross from his front yard. Patrick Racaniello placed the first cross, which measured...

Vatican Bank president analyzes raising of US national debt ceiling CWN - August 4, 2011

Writing for L’Osseravtore Romano, the president of the Vatican Bank asks, “What does it mean to raise the ceiling on public debt?” “It means essentially to nationalize private debt, which had...

Michigan bishops: Don’t blame immigrants for failed public policy CWN - August 4, 2011

The bishops of Michigan have issued a brief statement on immigration. “We support the positive impact migrant communities have made in our country, and especially in our state,” the bishops...

Spanish prelate will be hosting World Youth Day for 2nd time CWN - August 4, 2011

Vatican Insider profiles Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela, who occupies a unique place in the history of World Youth Day (WYD) celebrations. In 1989, the future cardinal was the Bishop of...

Philadelphia prosecutors want testimony from ailing elderly cardinal CWN - August 4, 2011

Prosecutors in Philadelphia are asking a court for permission to question Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua—who, at the age of 88, is suffering from dementia as well as cancer—in the trial of a former...

Filipino priest says journalists must be held accountable CWN - August 4, 2011

A Catholic priest in the Philippines has called for regulations "to make journalists and opinion-makers accountable for their statements," after a spate of attacks on Catholic bishops who received...

Belarus: prisoners deprived of religious freedom CWN - August 4, 2011

Prison officials in Belarus show no concern for the religious freedoms of prisoners unless they are Orthodox, according to a Forum 18 report. Non-Orthodox prisoners face severe restrictions on...

2nd Wilmington priest faces theft charge CWN - August 4, 2011

A priest of the Wilmington, Delaware diocese faces felony charges for allegedly taking over $300,000 from an elderly parishioner. Father Michael Angeloni solicited the funds from his parishioner,...

Famine now threatens half of Somalia's people CWN - August 4, 2011

A devastating famine in the Horn of Africa has spread across three more regions of Somalia, relief officials warn, citing UN reports. More than 11 million people are now at risk because of the...

Buttiglione: Europe's future rests on Catholic political leaders CWN - August 4, 2011

Young Catholics must enter political life to safeguard Europe's future, according to one of Italy's foremost Catholic political thinkers. Rocco Buttiglione, the vice-president of Italy's Chamber...

English columnist disputes Weigel's view of Irish anti-Catholicism CWN - August 4, 2011

William Oddie of London's Catholic Herald objects to a recent column in which George Weigel referred to Ireland today as the "epicenter of European anti-Catholicism." The flaw in Weigel’s article...

Released Friday, Aug. 5

Venezuela’s Chávez seeks healing from indigenous gods CWN - August 5, 2011

A month after receiving the Sacrament of the Anointing of the Sick from a bishop, President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela has said that he has turned to indigenous gods to seek healing from...

Lesotho: prelate weighs in on poverty, polygamy, AIDS CWN - August 5, 2011

In an interview with Aid to the Church in Need, Bishop Augustinus Bane, one of Lesotho’s four bishops, speaks about the challenges of ministering in a nation with widespread poverty, rampant AIDS,...

British Jesuits sell 7th-century Gospel for $14.7M CWN - August 5, 2011

The British Province of the Society of Jesus has sold the Cuthbert Gospel to the British Museum for £9 million ($14.72 million). The book was placed in St. Cuthbert’s tomb at the end of the seventh...

$24.8M settlement for Oblates of St. Francis de Sales CWN - August 5, 2011

The Wilmington-Philadelphia province of the Oblates of St. Francis de Sales has agreed to a $24.8-million settlement with 39 abuse victims. The settlement follows the Diocese of Wilmington’s recent...

Vatican newspaper pays tribute to photographer Erwitt CWN - August 5, 2011

Writing for L’Osservatore Romano,Gaetano Vallini has paid tribute to Elliott Erwitt, a black-and-white photographer born in 1928. Erwitt, writes Vallini, “has always shown creativity, gusto,...

Obama's birth-control coverage decision shows special-interest bias CWN - August 5, 2011

Columnist Timothy Carney argues that the decision to require contraceptive coverage in all health-care plans is a prime example of the approach taken by the Obama administration. Although...

Debate over the Cross threatens Jewish participation in Assisi event CWN - August 5, 2011

Rome's Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni, provoked by a statement from a leading Vatican official about the meaning of the Cross, has raised questions about whether he and other Italian Jews might pull out of...

African summit on Somalian famine postponed CWN - August 5, 2011

Despite the mounting urgency of a famine in Somalia, the African Union has postponed a meeting on that country’s crisis until the end of this month. The famine in the Horn of Africa now affects...

Filipino artists see 'fascism' in attempt to close offensive exhibit CWN - August 5, 2011

A group of artists in the Philippines has issued a statement denouncing Church leaders for suggesting that a blasphemous exhibit might violate the law. The effort to shut down the exhibit--which...

German bishops differ on approach to homosexuals CWN - August 5, 2011

German Catholic bishops are split on the proper pastoral approach to homosexuality, Vatican Insider notes. Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich says that homosexuals, like all others, are welcome in...

How pornography harms society CWN - August 5, 2011

William May of the Culture of Life Foundation provides an update on the voluminous evidence of damage done to society by the traffic in...

Pennsylvania court hearing will assess ailing cardinal's competence to testify CWN - August 5, 2011

A Philadelphia court has set a September hearing date to determine whether or not Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua is competent to give testimony for the trial of a former subordinate in the Philadelphia...

A double standard in handling of Irish abuse cases CWN - August 5, 2011

Once the leading candidate for Ireland’s presidency, David Norris has seen his campaign founder after it emerged that he once sought clemency for a convicted child abuser who was his former...

Images of torture on Bishop Lahey’s computer CWN - August 5, 2011

Bishop Raymond Lahey’s laptop computer, confiscated by police at Ottawa International Airport in 2009, contained an extensive collection child pornography, prosecutors said during an August 4...

Practical suggestions for reviving the family's role CWN - August 5, 2011

In an address delivered to a symposium on the future of the family, held in Moscow in June, Allan Carlson suggests a few practical measures that would help families recover their proper place in the...

Western powers pressure needy nations to accept abortion, homosexuality CWN - August 5, 2011

Western nations are using their financial power, and their clout at the UN, to pressure less nations to accept legal abortion and homosexuality, the Catholic Family & Human Rights Institute (C-Fam)...

Released Monday, Aug. 8

Coptic Orthodox may pull children from Toronto Catholic schools CWN - August 8, 2011

Concerned that Toronto Catholic schools will adopt a policy promoting tolerance of homosexuality, a Coptic Orthodox priest is calling upon parents to consider withdrawing their children from the...

Asian bishop bans Neocatechumenal Way activities CWN - August 8, 2011

Bishop Anthony Sharma, the apostolic vicar of Nepal, has suspended the activities of the Neocatechumenal Way. “We have about two dozen regular members who were involved in only two regular weekly...

Malaysian prelate blasts politicians after religious police raid church CWN - August 8, 2011

A Malaysian bishop has offered strong criticism of politicians who seek to foster anti-Christian sentiment in the largely Muslim nation. Bishop Paul Tan Chee Ing’s remarks follow a decision by...

Norway urges Vietnam to free imprisoned priest CWN - August 8, 2011

Norway has joined other nations in calling upon Vietnamese authorities to release Father Nguyen Van Ly, a human rights activist who was recently returned to prison. “We urge the Vietnamese...

Christian gunned down in Pakistan CWN - August 8, 2011

A 38-year-old layman has been gunned down in Pakistan’s largest city. Arnold Archie Dass was slain in front of dozens of onlookers in the oldest Christian neighborhood in Karachi. In the decades...

Pope pleads for peace in Syria, Libya CWN - August 8, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI issued a new appeal for an end to bloodshed in Syria, and added a plea for peace in Libya, during his midday public audience on Sunday, August 7. “I am following with great...

China: 1 underground priest released, 4 others jailed CWN - August 8, 2011

Chinese authorities have released a Catholic priest who had spent 4 months in prison in Hebei because of his refusal to join the government-backed Catholic Patriotic Association. But in Shandong, 4...

Trust God in times of trouble, Pope reminds audience CWN - August 8, 2011

At this Angelus audience on Sunday, August 7, Pope Benedict XVI spoke on the importance of placing trust in God at all times, especially in times of danger and difficulty. Reflecting on the day’s...

Rio not yet formally chosen for next World Youth Day, Church leaders caution CWN - August 8, 2011

Although the mayor of Rio de Janeiro has already announced that World Youth Day will be held in the Brazilian city in 2013, the Archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro has cautioned that no final decision on...

Chicago: archdiocesan gay Mass regularly celebrates, affirms ‘orientations and identities’ CWN - August 8, 2011

The Archdiocese of Chicago’s weekly gay and lesbian Mass celebrates and affirms participants’ “orientations and identities,” according to a notice posted in the Windy City Times. In June, the...

Irish government pressing religious orders to hand over schools CWN - August 8, 2011

The Irish government is putting pressure on religious orders to surrender schools and other property to the government, to help pay victims of abuse in Church-run institutions. Ruari Quinn, the...

Colombian Church leaders: see abortion as a failure of policy CWN - August 8, 2011

Leaders of the major Christian denominations in Colombia have joined in a statement calling for defense of human life, including the lives of the unborn. Catholic, Orthodox, Anglican, Methodist,...

German bishops, Pope to discuss dissent CWN - August 8, 2011

Leaders of the German Catholic hierarchy will meet with Pope Benedict XVI this week, to brief the Pontiff on affairs in his native country as he prepared for a visit there in September. German...

Somali government claims control of capital, defeat of Islamic rebels CWN - August 8, 2011

The struggling central government of Somalia, which has struggled for years to regain control of the country’s territory, has claimed a definitive victory in a long struggle with Islamic rebels for...

India: Church wants impartial probe of Hindu leader's slaying CWN - August 8, 2011

Catholic Church leaders in India’s eastern Orissa state have called for an “impartial investigation” into the 2008 murder of a prominent Hindu leader, which triggered a bloody campaign of violence...

Protect humans, not just animals, bishop in Congo urges CWN - August 8, 2011

After 3 people were severely wounded by aggressive monkeys in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a Catholic bishop there argued that government should protect human beings, not only rare...

Report: Paul VI planned resignation after 80th birthday CWN - August 8, 2011

Pope Paul VI planned to resign after reaching the age of 80, and was dissuaded from that step by Vatican officials only after his most trusted aide left the Roman Curia, according to a Vatican...

Malaysian Catholics recruit blood and organ donors during Ramadan CWN - August 8, 2011

Church leaders in Malaysia are organizing a drive to recruit volunteer blood donors and organ donors during the month of Ramadan. Donations typically drop off severely in Malaysia—a predominantly...

HLI announces new leaders CWN - August 8, 2011

Human Life International (HLI) has announced a new leadership team, with Father Shenan Boquet stepping in as the organization’s president and Father Peter West as vice president for missions. The...

Dissident Irish priests berate top theologian CWN - August 8, 2011

A group of dissident Catholic priests in Ireland has released an unusually bitter personal attack on the country’s most noted theologian because of his support for a new English translation of the...

Released Tuesday, Aug. 9

Bourgeois faces imminent dismissal from Maryknoll over support of women’s ordination CWN - August 9, 2011

Father Edward Dougherty, the superior general of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, has formally warned Father Roy Bourgeois that he will be dismissed from the institute if he fails to retract his...

Protestant prelate alleges ethnic cleansing in Sudan CWN - August 9, 2011

An Anglican bishop is charging that the military regime of Sudan is engaging in ethnic cleansing in Kordofan, the disputed border region between Sudan and the newly independent state of South...

Vatican Bank president: More government debt not the answer to economic crisis CWN - August 9, 2011

The global economic crisis demands an international response that includes austerity in government spending and investment in small and medium-sized businesses, according to the president of the...

As federal mandate looms, 28 states require contraceptive coverage CWN - August 9, 2011

Twenty-eight states currently require insurance plans to offer coverage for contraception, and 17 offer a religious exemption. Beginning in August 2012, all private insurers must provide women...

Military archbishop mourns victims of Afghan helicopter crash CWN - August 9, 2011

Archbishop Timothy Broglio of the Archdiocese of the Military Services, USA issued a statement on August 8 mourning the death of 30 Americans and eight Afghanis in an August 4 helicopter crash--the...

Bach the ‘most rich musical genius,’ says papal concert’s musical director CWN - August 9, 2011

The musician who will direct an August 9 concert at Castel Gandolfo says that Johann Sebastian Bach is “the most rich musical genius that I have ever met.” “As a believer, I am greatly moved by...

Papal visit seen as bringing new hope to secularized Spain CWN - August 9, 2011

As young people begin to arrive in Madrid for World Youth Day (WYD), the apostolic nuncio in Spain predicts that the event, and the arrival of Pope Benedict XVI, will “bring a new wind” into a...

Critics--including some priests--rap costs of papal visit to Spain CWN - August 9, 2011

Led by dissident Catholics—including a group of liberal priests—some Spaniards are raising objections to the expenses of World Youth Day (WYD) and the visit by Pope Benedict XVI to Madrid. The...

Catholic governor debates archbishop on same-sex marriage CWN - August 9, 2011

Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley has rejected an appeal from Baltimore’s Archbishop Edwin O’Brien, who urged him not to promote same-sex marriage out of “mere political expediency.” Responding...

Philippines: blasphemous exhibit closed; artists protest CWN - August 9, 2011

The Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) has closed down a blasphemous art exhibit, amid angry protests from Catholic leaders and from the country’s political leaders. President Benigno...

Pakistani media portray death of Catholic politician as result of family feud CWN - August 9, 2011

The media in Pakistan are trying to explain the murder of a leading Catholic politician as the result of a family quarrel rather than a political assassination, according to a lawyer who is tracking...

Salvadoran ex-soldiers to face charges for 1989 murder of Jesuits CWN - August 9, 2011

In El Salvador, 9 retired soldiers have surrendered for questioning about the killing of 6 Jesuit priests in 1989. The suspects—including a former Salvadoran defense minister—are among 20 people...

Catholic college professor is 'abortion doula' CWN - August 9, 2011

A sociology professor teaching at a Catholic college in New York is promoting her course on a pro-abortion web site, and describing herself as an “abortion doula” at a public hospital, the Cardinal...

The Pope's answer to critics of World Youth Day CWN - August 9, 2011

Who was it who described World Youth Day as "a sort of rock festival in an ecclesial key, with the Pope as its main attraction," or "a huge spectacle, magnificent perhaps, but of no real...

Released Wednesday, Aug. 10

Egypt: thousands of Muslims attack Christian village CWN - August 10, 2011

Looting and burning homes, thousands of Muslims attacked a largely Christian village in southern Egypt on the night of August 7-8. A local priest was beaten, and a 50-year-old layman was...

Holy See’s apostolic visitor intervened on behalf of Croatian Jews in WWII CWN - August 10, 2011

In the months following the April 1941 establishment of the fascist Ustashe regime in Croatia, the Holy See sent an apostolic visitor who subsequently intervened on behalf of Jews, L’Osservatore...

India: extremists disrupt prayer meeting, beat convert to Christianity CWN - August 10, 2011

A gang of 50 Muslim extremists disrupted a prayer meeting at a Christian woman’s home in West Bengal, an Indian state that borders Bangladesh. Threatening to burn down the home, the group told...

Federal child-porn charges against Kansas City priest CWN - August 10, 2011

A federal grand jury has indicted Father Shawn Ratigan, a priest of the Diocese of Kansas City - St. Joseph, on 13 counts of child pornography. The priest, who was educated at Mundelein Seminary and...

Bishop Aquila discusses pro-life activism, support for NFP CWN - August 10, 2011

In an interview with Catholic World Report, Bishop Samuel Aquila of Fargo discusses his efforts to end abortion in North Dakota, his decision to mandate NFP classes for couples preparing for...

Vida Humana Internacional head among winners of pro-life award CWN - August 10, 2011

The head of the Hispanic division of Human Life International is among three recipients of the People of Life Award, an honor bestowed by the US Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Secretariat of...

India's Christians observe anniversary of official discrimination against dalits CWN - August 10, 2011

Wearing black badges and raising black flags, Christians of different denominations joined together on August 10 to observe 'black day' to mark the 61st year of official discrimination against...

Vatican called Portuguese cardinal to explain statement on women's ordination CWN - August 10, 2011

A Portuguese cardinal was called to a meeting at the Vatican in July, and asked to clarify statements in which he suggested that there was no major theological barrier to the ordination of...

Silence is key to contemplation, Pope reminds audience CWN - August 10, 2011

Silence is the key to contemplative prayer, Pope Benedict XVI told his weekly public audience on August 10. “God speaks in silence, but we need to know how to listen,” the Pope told the crowd in...

Orange diocese increases offer to buy for Crystal Cathedral CWN - August 10, 2011

The Diocese of Orange, California has raised its bid to buy the Crystal Cathedral, as creditors have pressed the bankrupt Protestant owners to sell the building. Last week spokesmen for the...

Filipino art director resigns over offensive exhibit; Christian groups plan suit CWN - August 10, 2011

The visual-arts director of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) has resigned, and some Christian groups are calling for the removal of the institution’s entire board, after a blasphemous...

China selling fetal remains as medicine? CWN - August 10, 2011

According to South Korean media reports, Chinese hospitals are packaging the remains of aborted babies into “human-flesh capsules” to be sold as medications. South Korean authorities have...

English prelate condemns rioting, asks for prayers CWN - August 10, 2011

England’s leading Catholic prelate has condemned the violent rioting that has erupted in urban areas, and exhorted the country’s people to act “with honesty, compassion, and prayer.” Archbishop...

Concert honors Pope, his brother, on anniversary of ordination CWN - August 10, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI and his brother, Msgr. Georg Ratzinger, were guests of honor at a concert at Castel Gandolfo on Tuesday evening, August 9. The concert by the New Seasons Ensemble, featuring...

Released Thursday, Aug. 11

Vatican official rues tone of apostolic visitation of religious: ‘they keep people afraid’ CWN - August 11, 2011

Archbishop Joseph Tobin, the secretary of the Congregation for Religious is offering strong criticism of the atmosphere surrounding the Vatican’s apostolic visitation of institutes of women...

Governor intervenes in hospital merger; sterilizations to be permitted CWN - August 11, 2011

Intervening in a pending merger between a Catholic hospital and the University of Louisville Hospital, Gov. Steve Beshear of Kentucky stated that the resulting entity should have a “public mission”...

Iraqi bishop: Politicians ultimately responsible for continued persecution CWN - August 11, 2011

The Iraqi government’s failure to provide security is at the root of the recent bombing of a Syrian Catholic church in Kirkuk, according to one of the nation’s leading prelates. “The local...

US bishops urge Catholics to help African famine victims CWN - August 11, 2011

Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), and Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson, chairman of Catholic Relief Services, are calling...

China pledges to combat sex-selection abortions CWN - August 11, 2011

Amid reports that 130 boys are born for every 100 girls in some Chinese provinces, Communist officials are pledging to crack down on sex-selection abortions. The government’s new “Outline for the...

World Youth Day participants can meet US bishops CWN - August 11, 2011

Young adults taking part in World Youth Day will have several different opportunities to meet various US bishops attending the event in Madrid. Eight bishops will offer catechesis, Archbishop J....

Indulgence available for World Youth Day participants CWN - August 11, 2011

The Vatican has announced a plenary indulgence for participants in next week’s World Youth Day festivities in Madrid. At the request of Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela of Madrid, Pope...

Irish bishop denies report of 'horrific' new report on abuse CWN - August 11, 2011

The Irish Independent today said that a forthcoming report on clerical abuse in the Raphoe diocese will show that there were “hundreds and hundreds” of victims of sexual abuse by priests, and...

New York archdiocese raps new school sex-ed program CWN - August 11, 2011

The New York archdiocese has criticized a policy calling for sex-education courses in all the city’s middle schools and high schools. The archdiocese has encouraged Catholic parents to opt out...

New York parish shrine honors Father Mychal Judge as 'gay saint' CWN - August 11, 2011

A parish in Syracuse, New York is inaugurating a memorial to Father Mychal Judge, a New York priest who was killed in the bombing of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Father Judge,...

Filipino artist faces criminal charge for blasphemous exhibit CWN - August 11, 2011

A Filipino artist faces criminal charges after a blasphemous exhibit of his work was closed down by popular outrage. Christian groups in the Philippines lodged formal charges against the artist,...

Australian bishop protests census recognition of same-sex 'marriage' CWN - August 11, 2011

An Australian Catholic bishop has decried the decision of national census officials to count some homosexual couples as “married,” despite the fact that same-sex marriages are not legally recognized...

Suspected planner of Indonesian Christmas Eve bombings to face trial after extradition CWN - August 11, 2011

A suspected Islamic terrorist leader has been extradited by Pakistan to face charges in Indonesia, where he has been charged with planning the 2002 Christmas Eve bombing in Bali and a series of...

Vatican planning major restructuring of Irish hierarchy? CWN - August 11, 2011

Commentator David Quinn reports widespread rumors that the Vatican plans a radical restructuring of the Irish Catholic hierarchy in response to the sex-abuse scandal there. The reforms suggested...

Released Friday, Aug. 12

Croatia blocks Vatican decision, confiscates monastery CWN - August 12, 2011

Croatia’s justice minister, Drazen Bosnjakovic, has blocked a recent Vatican decision transferring the ownership of a monastery in Dajla from the Diocese of Porec i Pula to Italian Benedictines and...

Vatican official: Do not oversexualize John Paul’s theology of the body CWN - August 12, 2011

The secretary of the Pontifical Council for the Family is cautioning Catholics against making an oversexualized interpretation of Blessed John Paul II’s theology of the body--a series of...

Chile’s bishops call for compromise amid student protests CWN - August 12, 2011

Amid mass student protests against inequities in the nation’s educational system, Chile’s bishops are calling upon civil authorities and students to compromise. “The country cannot go forward...

Dominican nuns serve heroically in midst of Iraq’s violence CWN - August 12, 2011

In an interview with the Catholic Near East Welfare Association, two Iraqi Dominican nuns recounted their efforts to serve the Church and the needy in the nation amidst war and violence. “When...

China: family-planning officials kidnap, sell babies CWN - August 12, 2011

Spurred on by the draconian one-child policy and a black market in children, some local officials in China have “treated babies as a source of revenue, routinely imposing fines of $1,000 or...

Chinese paper challenges Vatican's authority to appoint bishops CWN - August 12, 2011

China has pressed its case for the local appointment of bishops, with an article in the government-controlled People Daily arguing that the Vatican’s claim to authority is “the West’s historical...

Shrines urged: balance popular piety with liturgy, encourage confessions CWN - August 12, 2011

In a message to the rectors of Catholic shrines throughout the world, the Vatican has emphasized that popular piety must not supersede the Church’s official liturgy. The message from the...

Seminary professor arrested for groping teen CWN - August 12, 2011

A seminary professor attending a conference for canon lawyers has been charged with assaulting a 15-year-old girl. Father David Szatkowski, SCJ, recalls having several drinks at his hotel and...

Belleville diocese ends costly 9-year legal battle, settles with abuse victim CWN - August 12, 2011

Finally ending a 9-year string of legal appeals, the Diocese of Belleville, Illinois, has paid a financial settlement to a sex-abuse victim that was awarded by a jury in 2008. The Belleville...

One-third of world's people subject to growing restrictions on religion CWN - August 12, 2011

A new study by the Pew Forum has found that restrictions on religion are rising in countries that account for one-third of the world’s population. Restraints on religious activity became more...

German priests' group protests bishops' handling of abuse inquiry CWN - August 12, 2011

A conservative group of German priests has issued a public protest against the German bishops’ decision to open diocesan personnel files to researchers investigating sexual abuse. The Network of...

Pope makes surprise visit to Italian town CWN - August 12, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI made a surprise visit to the Italian town of Rosciolo di Magliano dei Marsi on August 11, leading a Vespers service in the 11th-century church of Santa Maria. The Holy Father,...

Pope's plan for World Youth Day: a message of confidence CWN - August 12, 2011

During his visit to Madrid for World Youth Day next week, Pope Benedict XVI will bring an extremely positive and challenging message for all young people in the world,” his spokesman told reporters...

Restoration project begins in St. Peter's Square CWN - August 12, 2011

A massive restoration project has begun in St. Peter’s Square, designed to restore the columns, statues, and moldings to their original vivid colors. The project is expected to take 30...

Another Irish bishop calls on Bishop Magee to account for Cloyne leadership CWN - August 12, 2011

Another Irish prelate has called upon Bishop John Magee, who resigned under pressure last year, to give a public accounting for his handling of sex-abuse complaints in the Cloyne diocese. Bishop...

World financial authority, with restricted power, seen needed to address crisis CWN - August 12, 2011

Father Bernardo Cervellera, the director of the AsiaNews service, argues that the current worldwide economic crisis points to the need for some international authority to guide financial affairs....

New York Times reports on selective abortion of twins CWN - August 12, 2011

The New York Times carries a truly chilling report on women who, discovering that they are pregnant with twins, choose to destroy one of the babies in order to ensure an easier pregnancy--and an...

Retired Milwaukee bishops will testify in bankruptcy case CWN - August 12, 2011

A federal bankruptcy-court judge has given sex-abuse victims the opportunity to take sworn testimony from retired Milwaukee Archbishop Rembert Weakland and a key auxiliary, Bishop Richard Sklba,...

Australian dissidents demand changes in Church teaching; bishops sidestep CWN - August 12, 2011

A group of dissident Australian Catholics have released an open letter to their country’s bishops, calling for reconsideration of Church teachings on matters of sexuality, and great consultation...

Released Monday, Aug. 15

Nigeria: police monitor churches, mosques CWN - August 15, 2011

In an effort to counter the spread of the Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram, police in the south-central state of Kogi, Nigeria, are monitoring sermons at churches and mosques. In July, the...

Australian prelate: government grants tame Church’s advocacy for poor CWN - August 15, 2011

On the eve of his retirement, an Australian prelate said that fear of the loss of government funding for Catholic social service agencies prevented him from speaking out more boldly on behalf of the...

Caritas: Millions at risk in Kenya CWN - August 15, 2011

Caritas Internationalis, the confederation of Catholic relief and development agencies, has launched a $5.6-million appeal on behalf of drought-stricken Kenya. “Over 3.6 million people are in...

Philippines: cardinal orders prayers of reparation for blasphemous art exhibit; exorcist leads rite CWN - August 15, 2011

Cardinal Gaudencio Rosales of Manila has called for prayers of reparation for a blasphemous art exhibit. “As Church we will kneel before our loving God to pray and seek reparation for this public...

Cardinal Egan, priests recall 9/11 CWN - August 15, 2011

Cardinal Edward Egan, who served as Archbishop of New York from 2000 to 2009, has joined with several priests, rescuers, and others in offering reflections on the tenth anniversary of the September...

Groundbreaking series on Catholicism to air on PBS this fall CWN - August 15, 2011

“Catholicism,” a ten-episode series developed by a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago, will air on 80 PBS stations beginning this fall. Father Robert Barron hopes that those who are “not...

Costa Rica: ‘slut walk’ protests bishop’s remarks on modesty CWN - August 15, 2011

Montserrat Sagot, a women’s studies professor at the University of Costa Rica, has organized a “slut walk” outside the capital’s metropolitan cathedral to protest a bishop’s remarks on...

Another church bombing in Iraq CWN - August 15, 2011

A bomb ripped through a Syrian Orthodox church in Kirkuk, Iraq, in the early hours of Monday, August 15. St. Ephraim’s church was empty at the time of the blast, and no one was hurt, but the...

Pope recalls St. Maximilian Kolbe on 70th anniversary of martyrdom CWN - August 15, 2011

During his Angelus audience on Sunday, August 14, Pope Benedict XVI recalled the heroic witness of St. Maximilian Kolbe, who died at Auschwitz. Calling attention to the 70th anniversary of his...

At audience, Pope asks prayers for WYD success CWN - August 15, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI asked for prayers for the success of this week’s World Youth Day festivities during his Angelus audience on Sunday, August 14. The Pope offered special recognition to a group of...

Spain is ripe for WYD evangelization, says Vatican cardinal CWN - August 15, 2011

Tens of thousands of young Catholics from all over the world have arrived in Madrid, where World Youth Day (WYD) festivities formally begin on Tuesday, August 16. Although isolated protests about...

Austrian media ignore pro-abortion violence CWN - August 15, 2011

Austrian media outlets ignored a violent attack on pro-lifers and the vandalizing of the offices of Human Life International (HLI). “Imagine the reaction of the press if some pro-lifer had gone...

7th-century saint's remains unearthed in England? CWN - August 15, 2011

English archeologists believe that they have discovered the remains of St. Edburga (Edburg) of Bicester, the daughter of a 7th-century pagan king. Workers uncovered a reliquary as they prepared...

New York Times rehashes Kansas City abuse case CWN - August 15, 2011

The New York Times has rehashed the story that was widely reported in May, about the criticism of Kansas City’s Bishop Robert Finn that arose after the arrest of a local priest, Father Shawn...

Economic statistics neglect family values CWN - August 15, 2011

Economic statistics can provide misleading testimony on the health of a society, and even on its economic strength, notes a report from Ireland’s Iona Institute. One of the most common measures...

Enabling Christians join the 'Arab Spring' insurgents CWN - August 15, 2011

Catholic prelates in several Arabic countries have defended the incumbent regimes against the insurgents of the “Arab Spring,” notes John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter. (The most...

Sex-selection abortion more common among wealthy in India CWN - August 15, 2011

In India’s struggle to combat sex-selection abortion—a practice that has resulted in a severely skewed ratio of male to female births—a new fact has emerged: the practice of aborting female babies...

New violence flares in Northern Ireland CWN - August 15, 2011

Rioting in Londonderry led to 7 arrests on August 13, as republican demonstrators clashed with pro-British marchers in the annual Apprentice Boys parade. The rioting, in which cars were burned...

German bishops brief Pope on national dialogue CWN - August 15, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI met on August 13 with the leaders of the German hierarchy, for a briefing on a nationwide “process of dialogue and reflection” intended to defuse a crisis of authority for the...

Released Tuesday, Aug. 16

Pakistan: Christians beaten for showing movie on Jesus CWN - August 16, 2011

In Abbottabad--the eastern Pakistani city where Osama bin Laden was killed in May--members of a Protestant church were beaten for showing a movie on Jesus in a city park. In addition, angry...

UK: pharmacists face attack on conscience rights CWN - August 16, 2011

New guidelines issued by the General Pharmaceutical Council may mark the beginning of the end of respect for the conscience rights of pharmacists in Great Britain. “Until now, the conscience...

Irish bishop: 2-parent family best for children’s self-worth CWN - August 16, 2011

Children of divorced parents, despite the heroic efforts of single mothers, risk being “denied a sense of self-esteem and self-worth,” Bishop Christopher Jones of Elphin has told the Irish...

North Dakota abbey abandons ranching legacy CWN - August 16, 2011

Suffering a dearth of vocations, Assumption Abbey in North Dakota is abandoning its legacy of beef ranching. “It’s so good to have the animals here, to see cows when you look out the window or...

100th anniversary of birth of Small Is Beautiful author CWN - August 16, 2011

Writing in the National Catholic Register, Joseph Pearce pays tribute to economist E. F. Schumacher (1911-77), author of Small Is Beautiful and a convert to Catholicism. “Schumacher’s lasting...

Columnist notes orthodoxy of young practicing Catholics CWN - August 16, 2011

Anna Williams, a USA Today editorial intern, notes that practicing Catholics under the age of 30 “are spearheading a resurgence of traditional Catholic liturgy and disciplines that their parents...

Despite complaints on costs, WYD will boost Spain's economy CWN - August 16, 2011

As World Youth Day (WYD) opens in Madrid, with roughly 1 million young people joining in the festivities, the world’s mainstream secular media are focused on the costs of the event and the...

Canadian bishops' web site prepares for new Mass translation CWN - August 16, 2011

The Canadian bishops' conference has launched a new web site to help Catholic prepare for the introduction of a new English translation of the Roman Missal, which will be introduced on the First...

Vietnamese Catholics protest arrests of lay activists CWN - August 16, 2011

An estimated 2,000 Vietnamese Catholics joined in a prayer vigil on August 14 in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) in support of the lay Catholics who have been arrested in a recent government...

Released Wednesday, Aug. 17

Madrid cardinal invites ‘Benedict XVI generation’ to prayer, sacraments CWN - August 17, 2011

Preaching before an estimated half million pilgrims in Madrid’s Plaza de Cibeles, Cardinal Antonio María Rouco Varela celebrated the opening Mass of World Youth Day. In his lengthy homily, which...

Netherlands: authorities investigate 1950s deaths at Catholic facilities CWN - August 17, 2011

Authorities in the Netherlands are investigating the suspiciously high number of deaths in the early 1950s at two Catholic homes for the mentally handicapped in the southeastern town of Heel. 34...

Madrid: man arrested for plot against anti-Catholic protestors CWN - August 17, 2011

Spanish police have arrested a 24-year-old chemistry student from Mexico on suspicions that he was plotting a chemical attack on anti-papal protestors at World Youth Day. The man planned to use...

Satanists suspected in Indian church desecration CWN - August 17, 2011

A Syro-Malankara Catholic church in the southwestern Indian city of Pune was desecrated on the night of August 15. Those responsible for the desecration “vandalized the altar, burnt the...

Summer brings a chance for contemplative prayer, Pope tells audience CWN - August 17, 2011

At his weekly public audience on August 17, Pope Benedict XVI asked the faithful to “join me spiritually in prayer” as he heads to Madrid for World Youth Day. Pope Benedict will leave Rome on...

Priest-confessors at World Youth Day given authority to lift excommunication for abortion CWN - August 17, 2011

Priests hearing confessions at World Youth Day have been given the authority to lift the excommunication of penitents who have been involved in abortions. Cardinal Antonio Maria Rouco Varela of...

Vatican banker sees flaws in Western economies CWN - August 17, 2011

Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, the head of the Vatican Bank, has some interesting and incisive thoughts on the worldwide economic crisis and the moral underpinnings of capitalism, in this interview for...

Vatican releases dossier, rejects accusations in Oregon abuse lawsuit CWN - August 17, 2011

In a highly unusual move, the Vatican has issued a public response to an Oregon lawsuit that alleges the Holy See bears responsibility for sexual abuse by a Servite priest. In the case of Doe v....

Dublin archdiocese nears financial crisis CWN - August 17, 2011

Shaken by the sex-abuse scandal and suffering from a sharp drop in Mass attendance, the Dublin archdiocese is near a “state of financial collapse,” according to a leaked internal...

British riots show society has 'lost its Christianity,' bishop says CWN - August 17, 2011

Recent rioting in Britain is a sign of a society that has “lost its Christianity,” said Bishop Arthur Roche of Leeds. Speaking from Madrid, where he is leading a delegation of young Catholics at...

Cohabiting parents seen a danger to children's welfare CWN - August 17, 2011

America has seen an explosion in the number of couples who live together and raise children without benefit of marriage. A new study shows that the number of couples has increased by 1200% since...

Korean bishop opposes naval-base construction plan CWN - August 17, 2011

Bishop Peter Kang U-il of Cheju, South Korea, has issued a statement opposing the construction of a naval base on Jeju island. The bishop said that the naval base would have a negative impact on...

Liberal groups sue to block football field for Catholic school CWN - August 17, 2011

Two liberal groups have filed suit to stop the transfer of public property in South Bend, Indiana, to a local Catholic high school. The American Civil Liberties Union and Americans United for...

LCWR embraces 'a new way' of religious life at annual meeting CWN - August 17, 2011

The Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) has elected a new leader, at an annual meeting that emphasized “transforming” religious life and embracing “a new way.” Sister Florence Deacon...

Melkite archbishop sees 'conspiracy' against Syria CWN - August 17, 2011

A controversial Melkite Catholic archbishop has charged that Syria is “the victim of a conspiracy,” designed to advance the interests of Israel and the US in the Middle East. Archbishop Hilarion...

Illinois priest starts 60-day jail term for stealing parish funds to support gambling CWN - August 17, 2011

An Illinois judge has sentenced a Catholic priest to a 60-day jail term for stealing nearly $300,000 from parish funds. Father John Regan admitted that his conduct had been "absolutely wrong." He...

Theology in 'crisis,' says head staff member for US bishops' doctrine committee CWN - August 17, 2011

The chief staff aide to the US bishops’ committee on doctrine has spoken of a “crisis” in Catholic theology, reflecting “a radical divide over the central tenets of the Catholic faith and the...

Released Thursday, Aug. 18

Riot police, anti-papal protestors clash in Madrid CWN - August 18, 2011

On the eve of Pope Benedict’s arrival in Madrid, riot police clashed with thousands of protestors, some of whom were chanting “God yes, Church no” and “we are not the Pope’s youth.” Eight protestors...

Foreign movies deter youth from marriage, says Philippine prelate CWN - August 18, 2011

Young people in the Philippines are less likely to become married because of the unnecessarily high cost of weddings and the baneful influence of foreign media, according to one of the nation’s...

‘Human One’ replaces ‘Son of man’ in new ecumenical Bible translation CWN - August 18, 2011

Twelve Catholic biblical scholars have joined nearly 200 scholars from two dozen Protestant denominations in translating the newly published Common English Bible (CEB). “It's an honor and a pleasure...

US Catholics urged to advocate for special envoy to Congo CWN - August 18, 2011

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and Catholic Relief Services are urging Catholics to advocate for the appointment of a special envoy to the Great Lakes region of Africa. The...

Marian jubilee year in Burundi CWN - August 18, 2011

Burundi’s bishops, joined by the apostolic nuncio, hundreds of priests and religious, and thousands of laity, inaugurated the golden jubilee of the nation’s principal Marian shrine on August 15....

WYD costs Spanish taxpayers nothing, Vatican notes CWN - August 18, 2011

Responding to protests in Spain over the costs of the World Youth Day celebration, the Vatican has released a statement pointing out that the costs will be absorbed completely by participants and...

New Zealand: Caritas advises removing shoes for St. Francis liturgy CWN - August 18, 2011

The New Zealand bishops’ relief and development agency is advising Catholic school administrators to plan a special liturgy for the feast of St. Francis that involves taking off shoes in repentance...

New York archbishop wonders: resume meatless-Friday obligation? CWN - August 18, 2011

New York's Archbishop Timothy Dolan has raised the possibility of returning to the obligatory Friday abstinence from meat, saying that the measure could help to strengthen Catholic...

Most Catholics unaware of new Mass translation CWN - August 18, 2011

Most American Catholics are not aware that a new translation of the Mass will be introduced later this year. A study by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University...

Former consultant to US bishops keynotes conference pushing for acceptance of pedophilia CWN - August 18, 2011

A former consultant to the US bishops was the keynote speaker at a conference organized by a group that is lobbying for decriminalization of pedophilia. Dr. Fred Berlin of Johns Hopkins...

Pope arrives in Madrid, says World Youth Day like 'pure and youthful breeze' CWN - August 18, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI arrived in Madrid on August 18 to join in the World Youth Day (WYD) observances there, and immediately sent a message to the young participants: “Let nothing and no one take away...

Ethical guidance is key to economic health, Pope says CWN - August 18, 2011

An economic system “cannot be measured only by the highest profits, but rather according to the common good,” Pope Benedict XVI said on August 18. In an exchange with reporters who accompanied...

India: official in Orissa threatens to demolish refugees' church CWN - August 18, 2011

The Global Council of Indian Christians appealed to the federal Supreme Court of India on August 18, seeking to block the demolition threat of a church built by the Catholic refugees in the troubled...

Archbishop, imam to co-chair national reconciliation commission in Guinea CWN - August 18, 2011

The president of Guinea has named a Catholic archbishop and an Islamic leader to co-chair a commission of national reconciliation. Alpha Conde, who last year became the first democratically...

Follow Christ closely, build on rock, Pope tells WYD participants CWN - August 18, 2011

In his first meeting with the thousands of young people who have gathered in Madrid for World Youth Day (WYD), Pope Benedict XVI exhorted them to listen carefully to the teachings of Jesus...

Released Friday, Aug. 19

Nicaragua: cardinal, bishop at odds over President Ortega CWN - August 19, 2011

President Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua--a leftist who ruled Nicaragua from 1979 to 1990 and was elected president again in 2007--is making extensive use of Christianity in his reelection campaign....

Illinois: judge rules against Catholic Charities in foster care case CWN - August 19, 2011

Stating that “no citizen has a recognized legal right to a contract with the government,” an Illinois circuit judge has ruled that the state is not obliged to renew its annual foster care contract...

Pakistan: Christian kidnapped, tortured for 2 years; false conversion to Islam CWN - August 19, 2011

A Pakistani Christian woman who was abducted in 2009 has escaped from her captor. After Arifa Alfred, 27, was drugged and kidnapped in central Pakistan, she awoke and was shown papers stating...

USCCB campaign urges parishes to pray, preach on behalf of DREAM Act CWN - August 19, 2011

The Justice for Immigrants campaign of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is urging priests across the nation to “incorporate petitions, prayers and homilies” into Sunday Masses on...

New Mexico bishops back driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants CWN - August 19, 2011

The bishops of New Mexico have announced their opposition to Gov. Susana Martinez’s efforts to prevent illegal immigrants from receiving driver’s licenses. New Mexico is currently one of three...

Vatican newspaper pays tribute to Boris Pasternak CWN - August 19, 2011

L’Osservatore Romano has paid tribute to Boris Pasternak (1890-1960), the Russian novelist and poet best known for Doctor Zhivago. “The fundamental spirit of my experiences or attempts is a...

Catholics, Muslims should teach youth to value human dignity, says Vatican official CWN - August 19, 2011

In a message to the world's Muslims, timed for the close of Ramadan, the president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue has focused on the need to educate young people in...

Do not pass by those who suffer, Pope exhorts WYD crowd CWN - August 19, 2011

After praying the Stations of the Cross at World Youth Day on Friday evening, August 19, Pope Benedict XVI told the young participants to “be sure not to pass by on the other side in the face of...

'Gospel radicalism' needed to counter religious 'amnesia,' Pope tells young religious CWN - August 19, 2011

“Gospel radicalism” is needed today to counteract religious “amnesia,” Pope Benedict XVI told an audience at World Youth Day on August 19. Speaking to a group of young women religious at...

Pope decries 'utilitarian' approach to higher education CWN - August 19, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI argued against a “utilitarian approach” to education, in an August 19 address to Catholic university instructors in Madrid. In today’s society, “increasingly confused and...

Refugee camp becomes Kenya's 3rd-largest 'city' CWN - August 19, 2011

A refugee camp for Somali refugees has become the 3rd-largest “city” in Kenya. The Dadaab refugee camp, in northern Kenya, is now a temporary home to at least 450,000 people. Originally built for...

Irish dioceses acknowledge financial woes CWN - August 19, 2011

The scandal-plagued Diocese of Cloyne, Ireland, is facing a financial crisis, Church spokesmen there have acknowledged. "The finances of the diocese of Cloyne have come under extreme pressure...

Media ignore importance of fathers to children CWN - August 19, 2011

When Bishop Christopher Jones of Elphin, Ireland, said that the children brought up in single-parent households were "born losers," it was "a most unfortunate turn of phrase," writes columnist David...

WYD participants--evangelical, conservative--represent Church's future CWN - August 19, 2011

The success of World Youth Day reflects the vigor of “Evangelical Catholicism,” writes John Allen in a revealing analysis for the National Catholic Reporter. Allen concedes that the phenomenon he...

Released Monday, Aug. 22

Nigeria: bishops urge action against Islamist terrorists CWN - August 22, 2011

In separate statements, Catholic and Anglican bishops in Nigeria have questioned the proposed introduction of Islamic banking and called upon the government to do more to combat the Islamist...

Malawi bishop calls for end to presidential repression CWN - August 22, 2011

Joined by other Christian and Muslim leaders, the president of Malawi’s episcopal conference has called upon President Bingu wa Mutharika to “stop suffocating civil society, the press, the judiciary...

Islam spreading in Brazil CWN - August 22, 2011

Islam is on the rise in Brazil, attracting those who disdain society’s libertinism as well as fans of a soap opera with a Muslim hero. Since 2000, the number of mosques in Brazil has quadrupled to...

Amid scandal, Philadelphia priests form association CWN - August 22, 2011

Citing a “vacuum of information” from the archdiocese on the status of priests suspended following a grand jury report on clerical abuse, a group of Philadelphia priests has formed an independent...

Nuns who administer hospitals are ‘a dying breed’ CWN - August 22, 2011

The New York Times notes that the lack of vocations in many US women’s religious communities has left most Catholic hospitals without religious leadership. “In 1968, nuns or priests served as chief...

‘Fracking’ to take place at 11 Pittsburgh Catholic cemeteries? CWN - August 22, 2011

In 2008, the Catholic Cemeteries Association of the Diocese of Pittsburgh signed a five-year lease permitting an energy company to drill for natural gas using the controversial procedure known as...

Closing WYD Madrid, Pope sends out 2 million 'apostles of the 21st century' CWN - August 22, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI challenged nearly 2 million young people to be “apostles of the 21st century,” as he closed World Youth Day (WYD) ceremonies in Madrid on August 21. “There is no reason to lose...

Spanish premier faces criticism from leftist supporters for welcoming Pope to WYD CWN - August 22, 2011

Spanish Prime Minister José Luis Zapatero, who has crossed swords with Church leaders frequently because of his support for a liberal social agenda, now faces complaints from his Socialist...

Embattled Irish bishop, missing since Cloyne report, discovered at home CWN - August 22, 2011

The former Bishop of Cloyne expressed his sorrow over clerical abuse in the Irish diocese, and promised to make a fuller statement on the issue, after he was tracked down by the Irish...

France: more practicing Muslims than practicing Catholics CWN - August 22, 2011

“Islamic mosques are being built more often in France than Roman Catholic churches, and there now are more practicing Muslims in the country than practicing Catholics,” the Hudson Institute...

Oldest living cloistered nun meets Pope in Spain CWN - August 22, 2011

During his visit to Spain for World Youth Day, Pope Benedict XVI met with the world’s oldest living cloistered nun. Sister Teresita, who is 103 years old, probably does not qualify as a “youth.”...

Priest's homily provokes brawl CWN - August 22, 2011

Critics of a controversial priest fought with his defenders inside a Catholic church in Kerela, India, on August 21, forcing police to intervene. Ten people required hospital treatment after the...

Somalia's children decimated by hunger CWN - August 22, 2011

A Caritas International report estimates that "every 11 weeks, 10% of the under-5 population in Somalia is dying" because of a famine. Caritas, the international Catholic charitable consortium,...

After St. John of Avila: other candidates to be 'doctor of the Church' CWN - August 22, 2011

Now that Pope Benedict XVI has named St. John of Avila a doctor of the Church, Sandro Magister of L'Espresso runs down the list of others who might be accorded that honor. Among the candidates...

Released Tuesday, Aug. 23

Bishop Magee apologizes; 'I beg forgiveness' CWN - August 23, 2011

Bishop John Magee has apologized for the clerical abuse that took place during his tenure as Bishop of Cloyne. Appointed to the see in 1987, he retired under pressure in March 2010 amid reports of a...

Orissa: government forbids rebuilding of destroyed churches CWN - August 23, 2011

Three years after an anti-Christian rampage left an estimated 100 dead and 50,000 homeless, the government of the Kandhamal district in the eastern Indian state of Orissa is forbidding the...

Philippines: bishops continue opposition to reproductive health measure CWN - August 23, 2011

Bishops in the Philippines are continuing their opposition to reproductive health legislation backed by President Benigno Aquino. “We will continue with meetings, conferences, protests,...

India: regional government pays people to be sterilized CWN - August 23, 2011

In the northwestern Indian state of Rajasthan, the ministry of health in the Jhunjhunu district has set a goal of sterilizing 1% of the population and is paying people to be sterilized. Men who...

Brooklyn bishop criticizes New York sex-ed program CWN - August 23, 2011

Bishop Nicolas DiMarzio of Brooklyn has offered strong criticizing of the New York City public schools’ new sex-education program, which requires sixth-graders to be instructed in condom...

Canadian man sentenced for extorting $90,000 from priest CWN - August 23, 2011

An Ontario man has been sentenced to 18 months in jail for extorting $90,000 from a local priest. Robert Sammut, 46, had told the priest, whose name has been sealed by court order, that he would...

SSPX leader called to Vatican for meeting CWN - August 23, 2011

The head of the traditionalist Society of St. Pius X (SSPX), Bishop Bernard Fellay, has been called to the Vatican for a meeting on September 14. News of the meeting has revived speculation that...

Vatican controlled abusive priest's assignments, Anderson insists CWN - August 23, 2011

Plaintiff's lawyer Jeffrey Anderson, who is seeking to hold the Vatican responsible in a sex-abuse lawsuit, insists that documents released last week by the Holy See show that Vatican officials...

Conservative critiques Pope's views on profit motive, common good CWN - August 23, 2011

Conservative scholar Richard Epstein, in an essay defending free-market principles and low tax rates, classifies Pope Benedict XVI alongside Warren Buffett as prominent figures who are “working...

Police guard churches on anniversary of violence in Orissa CWN - August 23, 2011

Christians in India’s troubled Orissa state heaved a sigh of relief on August 23, as a massive rally organized by Hindu militants ended without incident. The Hindus’ rally was called to mark the...

Biden: not 'second-guessing' China's one-child policy CWN - August 23, 2011

During a visit to China, US Vice President Joseph Biden said that he can "fully understand" that country's brutal one-child population policy. "Your policy has been one which I fully...

Libyan prelate says rebels not ready to take power CWN - August 23, 2011

Libya’s leading Catholic prelate, who has frequently decried the effort to oust the Qaddafi regime, still holds out hope for a peaceful accord between the government and the rebels who have entered...

World Youth Day pumped €160 million into Spanish economy CWN - August 23, 2011

The head of Madrid's chamber of commerce estimates that last week's World Youth Day festivities brought €160 million ($230 million) into the Spanish economy. Pilgrims traveling to Madrid spent...

Islam's hidden weakness CWN - August 23, 2011

Father James Schall makes the provocative observation that Islam's rise to power could be reversed--just as quickly and peacefully as the Soviet empire perished--because of a fundamental...

Released Wednesday, Aug. 24

Orissa prelate emphasizes love of enemies on massacre anniversary CWN - August 24, 2011

On the third anniversary of the beginning of the wave of anti-Christian persecution that left 100 dead and 50,000 homeless, the leading prelate in the eastern Indian state of Orissa said that...

China: police detain bishop, diocesan administrator CWN - August 24, 2011

Police in the central Chinese city of Tianshui have detained diocesan administrator Father John Baptist Wang Ruohan, retired Bishop Casimir Wang Milu, and several other priests and lay leaders of...

Russian Orthodox Church honors anti-Communist protestors CWN - August 24, 2011

A leading Russian Orthodox Church official has paid tribute to Russians who died in protests against Communism in August 1991. “We gathered together here to pray for people who had lost their...

Karnataka: Christians fear police census could lead to ethnic cleansing CWN - August 24, 2011

In the southwestern Indian state of Karnataka, where 138 incidents of anti-Christian violence have taken place in the last two years, some Christians fear that a new police census of Christian...

Vatican newspaper pays tribute to philosopher Fabro CWN - August 24, 2011

L’Osservatore Romano has paid tribute to Father Cornelio Fabro (1911-95) on the centenary of his birth. The philosopher was known for his studies of the writings of Soren Kierkegaard and St. Thomas...

Alabama: priest involved with woman is badly beaten CWN - August 24, 2011

Father Emmanuel Isi, a Nigerian priest who ministers at the cathedral in Birmingham, Alamaba, has been brutally beaten. The husband of a woman with whom the priest was involved is suspected in the...

Pope sees WYD as 'great gift,' announces themes for 2012 and 2013 CWN - August 24, 2011

Last week's World Youth Day in Madrid was "a stupendous manifestation of faith for Spain and for the whole world," Pope Benedict XVI told his Wednesday public audience on August 24. Following his...

Florida bishops ask clemency in death-penalty case CWN - August 24, 2011

The Catholic bishops of Florida have appealed for clemency for a convicted murderer who faces execution on September 1. The bishops intervened in the case of Manuel Valle, who shot and killed one...

Historic Baltimore church, damaged by earthquake, closed for repairs CWN - August 24, 2011

A historic Catholic church in Baltimore has been closed because of damage from the earthquake that shook the east coast of the US on August 23. St. Patrick's church in Fells Point, built in 1898...

Franciscans pinned down in Tripoli CWN - August 24, 2011

A community of 3 Franciscan friars has been pinned down inside a monastery in Tripoli as fighting rages through the Libyan capital. The Franciscans were barricaded inside their monastery during...

Former Cloyne vicar general: I should have resigned CWN - August 24, 2011

The former vicar general of Ireland’s Cloyne diocese has conceded that he should have resigned in 1996, since he was unwilling to enforce the sex-abuse policies adopted by the Irish hierarchy....

Australian religious leaders oppose change in Marriage Act CWN - August 24, 2011

More than 50 Australian religious leaders have joined in a plea to lawmakers to resist calls for the legal recognition of same-sex marriage. In a letter to legislators, arguing against proposed...

Pope was deeply moved by Madrid WYD, cardinal recalls CWN - August 24, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI was profoundly moved by the World Youth Day celebration in Madrid, and at times he was "so emotional, he almost wept," according to the city's archbishop. Cardinal Antonio Maria...

Released Thursday, Aug. 25

Georgia grants Catholic Church legal status CWN - August 25, 2011

Georgia--the former Soviet republic located between Russia and Turkey--has granted juridical status to the Catholic Church and other ecclesial communities “that have close historical ties with...

Defense, criticism of unions in US bishops’ Labor Day statement CWN - August 25, 2011

In its annual Labor Day statement, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops rued “new efforts to restrict collective bargaining rights” but noted that “some unions in some places have taken...

India: bishop blasts corruption but questions activist’s tactics CWN - August 25, 2011

An Indian prelate who once served as undersecretary of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue has denounced corruption in Indian society but questioned the tactics of Anna Hazare, the...

Biden amends statement, states opposition to China’s 1-child policy CWN - August 25, 2011

Stung by public criticism, US Vice President Joseph Biden has backtracked from recent remarks in which he said that he “fully understand[s]” and is “not second-guessing” China’s brutal one-child...

Moral theologian warns of dangers of POLST documents in end-of-life care CWN - August 25, 2011

E. Christian Brugger, a moral theologian at Denver’s archdiocesan seminary, warns that POLST (Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment) documents--which have become part of legislation in 12...

15 parishes damaged by earthquake CWN - August 25, 2011

Fifteen parish churches suffered damage in the August 23 earthquake that shook parts of the eastern United States. Seven are located in the Archdiocese of Baltimore, seven in the Archdiocese of...

Grand jury probing Kansas City diocese on handling of abuse case? CWN - August 25, 2011

A grand jury in Missouri is looking into the case of Father Shawn Ratigan, the priest whose indictment on child-pornography charges has sparked criticism of the Kansas City diocese. According to...

Kenya: 3 men face execution for murder of priest CWN - August 25, 2011

Three Kenyan men face the death penalty after being convicted of the brutal 2009 murder of Father Gerry Roche, an Irish missionary priest. Two other men who had been tried in connection with the...

Pope's former students gather for annual seminar CWN - August 25, 2011

Former students of Professor Joseph Ratzinger—now Pope Benedict XVI—have gathered with the Pontiff at Castel Gandolfo for an annual seminar, at which they will discuss the “new...

Columnist suggests return to all-male altar servers CWN - August 25, 2011

British Catholic columnist William Oddie argues that the decision to allow female altar servers was an error, and should be reversed. The 1994 decision to allow girls to become altar servers was...

Nepal: conversions to be outlawed? Church scrubs catechism classes CWN - August 25, 2011

Catholic Church officials in Nepal have halted a popular catechism class, as the country’s lawmakers prepare to vote on a law that would ban all religious conversions. Since Nepal became a...

Wisconsin bishops lament partisan attitudes toward faith CWN - August 25, 2011

In the wake of a divisive political battle, Wisconsin's Catholic bishops are urging Catholics to overcome their differences, and to resist the temptation to see Church teaching from a partisan...

SSPX seen taking tough line in talks with Vatican CWN - August 25, 2011

Following up on the report that Bishop Bernard Fellay has been called to the Vatican for a September meeting, John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter reports on the latest round of talks...

Australian lawmakers report widespread opposition to same-sex unions CWN - August 25, 2011

A proposal to recognize same-sex marriage in Australia will fail if legislators are allowed a "conscience vote" rather than subject to party discipline, The Age reports. A solid majority of...

Nicaraguan Church leaders want probe of priest's death CWN - August 25, 2011

Church officials in Nicaragua are demanding an inquiry into the violent death of a priest who had been a critic of the government. The body of Father Marlon de Jesus Garcia was discovered in a...

Rio sees WYD as boost for Brazil's shrinking Catholic population CWN - August 25, 2011

Archbishop Orani João Tempesta of Rio de Janeiro says that the city is looking forward to hosting World Youth Day in 2013. "We want to show that Rio is not just sports and carnivals," the...

Hawaii court clears priest, says sex-assault charges 'fabricated' CWN - August 25, 2011

A court in Hawaii has cleared a Catholic priest of sexual misconduct, finding that the complaint against him had been "fabricated." Father Buohdan Borowec, a visiting priest from the Ukrainian...

Irish columnist uses abuse crisis as springboard for familiar proposals CWN - August 25, 2011

An Irish columnist, in the course of berating the bishops for their handling of the sex-abuse crisis, unintentionally provides an illustration of how that crisis has allowed Church critics to pursue...

Boston archdiocese identifies all accused priests CWN - August 25, 2011

Bowing to demands from victim’ advocates, the Boston archdiocese has released a list of priests who have been accused of sexual abuse. The Boston archdiocese made public an online data-base that...

Ukrainian Catholic, Orthodox leaders talk of easing tensions CWN - August 25, 2011

Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk of the Ukrainian Catholic Church met on August 23 with the leader of the Russian-backed Ukrainian Orthodox Church, for a friendly conversation that contrasted...

Released Friday, Aug. 26

Iran: authorities confiscate 6,500 Bibles CWN - August 26, 2011

Amid heightened persecution of Iranian Christians, authorities in the northwestern province of Zanjan have seized 6,500 Bibles. “Missionaries with reliance on huge money and propaganda are...

Church desecrated in India CWN - August 26, 2011

Vandals broke into a Syro-Malankara Catholic church in the southeastern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, setting fire to the altar, Bibles, and other sacred objects. Members of Bajrang Dal, a...

Cincinnati archbishop asks school not to sponsor Ramadan dinner CWN - August 26, 2011

Acceding to a request from Archbishop Dennis Schnurr, Mother of Mercy High School will not be hosting an iftar dinner with the local chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations. Iftar is...

Scotland: Church backs anti-bigotry initiative CWN - August 26, 2011

The director of the Scottish Catholic Media Office, has praised the charity Nil by Mouth for developing anti-bigotry seminars for the workplace. “Sectarianism is often a euphemism for...

Cardinal calls upon activist to end hunger strike CWN - August 26, 2011

The president of the Indian bishops’ conference has called upon activist Anna Hazare to end his hunger strike against endemic corruption. “I’m appealing, and the Church has appealed, to Anna...

Professor opposes Mass at public university campus CWN - August 26, 2011

An English professor at Central New Mexico Community College has announced that he will protest an outdoor Mass that will take place on the campus of the University of New Mexico on August...

Pakistan: son of assassinated political leader is abducted CWN - August 26, 2011

Shahbaz Taseer, the son of the late Salman Taseer, was seized by armed men in Lahore, Pakistan, on August 26. Salman Taseer, the governor of Punjab, was killed on January 4, apparently by...

Arkansas Anglican parish prepares to enter Catholic ordinariate CWN - August 26, 2011

An Anglican parish in Arkansas is preparing to enter the Catholic Church, as one of the first communities to join an Anglican ordinariate. St. George Anglican Church is a small parish, with only...

Embryo-research proponent leaves Notre Dame board CWN - August 26, 2011

For the second time in recent weeks, the University of Notre Dame has announced the departure of a board member whose public views clashed with the teachings of the Catholic Church. Marye Anne...

German leftist praises Pope's stress on faith and reason CWN - August 26, 2011

A leftist German politician has praised Pope Benedict XVI for stressing the need for partnership between faith and reason. Gregor Gysi said that the Pontiff is right to teach that modern society...

Victims' advocates unsatisfied by Boston archdiocese list of accused clerics CWN - August 26, 2011

Victims’ advocates, who had been pressing the Boston archdiocese to release the names of all priests accused of abuse, have complained that the list made public on August 25 is incomplete. When...

Cardinal Ambrozic, retired Archbishop of Toronto, dead at 81 CWN - August 26, 2011

Cardinal Aloysius Ambrozic, the retired Archbishop of Toronto, died on August 26 at the age of 81, after a long illness. Aloysius Ambrozic was born in Slovenia, but his family was displaced...

Catholics hopeful for continued freedom in Libya CWN - August 26, 2011

Catholic leaders in Libya are hopeful that the Church will be able to continue functioning freely in the African country in the wake of the apparent fall of the Qaddafi regime. Catholics were...

Indian Supreme Court upholds compensation for unborn killed in accident CWN - August 26, 2011

The federal Supreme Court of India, in a historic ruling, has upheld compensation for a pregnant woman who gave birth to a stillborn child following an accident. The top Indian court upheld the...

Contraception: the consequences are more expensive CWN - August 26, 2011

The Obama administration has sometimes hinted that federal funding for contraception is a wise expenditure because it cuts down the number of babies born into poor households who will need...

Who will be the next head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith? CWN - August 26, 2011

Cardinal William Levada, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), has passed retirement age, and has evidently indicated that he does not wish to extend his appointment....

Vatican journalist sees Pope Benedict as a lenient professor CWN - August 26, 2011

During the week when Pope Benedict has gathered at Castel Gandolfo with his former theology students, Vatican-watcher Sandro Magister writes that the Pontiff still has the characteristics of a...

Released Monday, Aug. 29

China: hardline Communist to influence Vatican relations CWN - August 29, 2011

Zhang Qingli, until recently the leading Communist official in Tibet, has been named the top Communist official in the northeast Chinese province of Hebei, home to a quarter of the nation’s...

Work begins for 2013 World Youth Day in Rio CWN - August 29, 2011

In an interview with the Vatican newspaper, the president of the Pontifical Council for the Laity discussed preparations for the 2013 World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro. “The great wooden cross...

Argentine bishops speak out against abortion CWN - August 29, 2011

One year after Argentina legalized same-sex marriage, the nation’s legislature is discussing the legalization of abortion. “When a woman is pregnant, it is not one life we are talking about , but...

Vatican Bank president warns against higher taxes CWN - August 29, 2011

The president of the Vatican Bank is warning that higher taxes are not a solution to the current economic crisis. “During a prolonged crisis, inheritance taxes, new forms of taxation or similar...

Caritas appeal for Ethiopia CWN - August 29, 2011

Caritas Internationalis, the confederation of Catholic relief and development agencies, has launched a $2.1-million appeal on behalf of drought-stricken Ethiopia. “Four and a half million people...

Organizers: Madrid WYD was carbon neutral CWN - August 29, 2011

The 26th World Youth Day in Madrid was a “zero emissions” event, according to organizers. “Unable to avoid the kind of pollution that comes from mass demonstrations like that of Madrid, the...

Baltimore's Archbishop O'Brien named to Vatican post CWN - August 29, 2011

Archbishop Edwin O’Brien of Baltimore has been named by Pope Benedict XVI to become grandmaster of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre. The appointment is a surprise, because Archbishop O’Brien has...

Resisting the Cross means resisting Christ, Pope reminds audience CWN - August 29, 2011

“Thinking as the world thinks is setting God aside, not accepting his plan of love,” Pope Benedict XVI told his midday audience on Sunday, August 28. Reflecting on the day’s Gospel, in which...

Turkish government to return properties taken from Orthodox, other religious minorities CWN - August 29, 2011

Turkey’s Prime Minister Tayip Erdogan has announced plans to return thousands that were seized by the government from religious ownership. The surprise announcement from Erdogan will result in...

Pope, former students conclude annual seminar CWN - August 29, 2011

Pope Benedict XVI presided at a Mass for his former students on August 29, closing the annual meeting of the Ratzinger Schülerkreis. The annual meeting of the Pope with his former theology...

'Martyrs Day' celebrated in troubled Indian state CWN - August 29, 2011

Hundreds of churches across India’s central Madhya Pradesh state observed “Martyrs Day” on August 28, in an initiative begun by Catholic Church leaders. The “Martyrs Day” observances included...

New report to confirm Irish sex-abuse problem? CWN - August 29, 2011

A new report on the sexual abuse by Catholic priests in the Irish county of Donegal will renew public outrage, the Guardian predicts. The forthcoming report, on the handling of sex-abuse...

India: Christian evangelists arrested, beaten CWN - August 29, 2011

Four Pentecostalist Christians have been arrested in India’s troubled Karnataka region, after reportedly going door to door to evangelize Hindus in an impoverished neighborhood. The Christian...

Artist will alter unpopular statue of Bl. John Paul II in Rome CWN - August 29, 2011

The sculptor of a highly controversial image of Blessed John Paul II has agreed to modify the statue, in response to a wave of public hostility. Oliviero Rainaldi says that he will make some...

Franciscan scholar dismisses teaching of Catechism, Pius XII on Adam and Eve CWN - August 29, 2011

In comments appearing in diocesan newspapers across the United States, Father Michael Guinan, a professor of Old Testament at the Franciscan School of Theology in Berkeley, California, has dismissed...

Illinois diocese reveals parish-closing plan after lawsuit settlement CWN - August 29, 2011

The diocese of Belleville, Illinois has announced plans to close as many as 20 parishes of its 117 parishes in a consolidation move prompted by “very serious financial challenges.” Bishop Edward...

Released Tuesday, Aug. 30

800,000 attend Communion and Liberation’s Rimini meeting CWN - August 30, 2011

An estimated 800,000 people from 38 nations traveled to Rimini, Italy, to attend the annual meeting associated with the Communion and Liberation movement. Speakers at the meeting, which took place...

Protestant pastor murdered in Orissa CWN - August 30, 2011

A Bapist minister has been murdered in Orissa, the eastern Indian state that was the site of massive anti-Christian persecution in 2008. Aid to the Church in Need reported on August 29 that...

Vietnam: prelate analyzes, downplays government amnesty CWN - August 30, 2011

The Vietnamese government’s decision to release 10,000 prisoners on the nation’s independence day will principally affect common criminals and not human rights advocates, according to the chairman...

Canada: new missal to be implemented in November CWN - August 30, 2011

The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops has published a decree stating that the new translation of the Roman Missal will be implemented in the nation’s parishes on November 27, the First Sunday...

Argentina: diocese blasts gambling CWN - August 30, 2011

The Vatican newspaper is drawing greater attention to a recent condemnation of gambling by one of Argentina’s largest dioceses. The pastoral-social agency of the Archdiocese of Córdoba, which has...

Vatican newspaper pays tribute to art historian Schlosser CWN - August 30, 2011

The year 2011 marks the centenary of Julius von Schlosser’s work on wax portraiture, L’Osservatore Romano noted in an August 30 article. Schlosser (1866-1938) was the leader of the Viennese school...

Interfaith White House sit-in against proposed pipeline CWN - August 30, 2011

Two Franciscan priests and the director of the Maryknoll Office of Global Concerns were among those taking part in an August 29 interfaith protest in front of the White House against a proposed...

Nigerian archbishop worried by Christian-Muslim clashes CWN - August 30, 2011

Archbishop Ignatius Ayau Kaigama of Jos, Nigeria, voiced sadness and frustration at a new episode of violence between Christians and Muslims in central Nigeria. The latest bloodshed occurred in...

Chicago archdiocese to identify accused priests CWN - August 30, 2011

As part of a settlement in a sex-abuse lawsuit, the Chicago archdiocese has agreed to release the personnel files of 35 priests who have been accused of sexual abuse. The files to be made public...

Abuse report from Ireland's Raphoe diocese delayed CWN - August 30, 2011

The publication of a new report on sexual abuse in the Irish Catholic Church—this time in the Raphoe diocese—has been delayed until October. The National Board for Safeguarding Children in the...

San Francisco's Archbishop Niederauer has emergency cardiac surgery CWN - August 30, 2011

Archbishop George Niederauer of San Francisco underwent cardiac bypass surgery on August 29, after being hospitalized the previous day because of chest pains. The archbishop—who was on vacation...

Could Archbishop O'Brien rally support for endangered Christians of the Middle East? CWN - August 30, 2011

Archbishop Edwin O’Brien, the newly appointed grandmaster of the Knights of the Holy Sepulchre, has a reputation as an unflinching “tell-it-like-it-is” personality, notes John Allen of the National...

Catholic university opening in Jordan CWN - August 30, 2011

A new Catholic university serving the Middle East, located in Madaba, Jordan, is accepting registrations from new students. The American University of Madaba, the fruit of an initiative launched...

Modern culture needs moral conversion: Cardinal Bagnasco CWN - August 30, 2011

"There is need of a great cultural and social conversion," said Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, the president of the Italian bishops' conference. The Italian cardinal said that today's society needs a...

Italian prelate to become apostolic nuncio in Washington? CWN - August 30, 2011

Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the secretary of the Vatican city-state government, will soon be named apostolic nuncio to the US, EWTN reports. Archbishop Vigano, the 2nd-ranking official in the...

Melkite patriarch urges Syria to talks with protesters, raps Western interference CWN - August 30, 2011

Melkite Catholic Patriarch Gregory III Laham has issued a call for Syria’s government to negotiate with opposition leaders. In a message to Muslims as they end Ramadan, the Melkite patriarch...

Pakistan: boy kidnapped while at Mass? CWN - August 30, 2011

A 13-year-old Christian boy disappeared from a church in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, and his family fears that he was abducted while attending Mass, in the latest of a series of kidnappings of young...

Vatican pressure on US Jesuit theological journal? CWN - August 30, 2011

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has been putting pressure on the editors of a Jesuit journal, Theological Studies, according to the National Catholic Reporter. Citing unnamed...

Mayor Bloomberg and religious intolerance CWN - August 30, 2011

Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York urged tolerance when Muslims sought to build a mosque near the site of the World Trade Towers, notes William McGurn of the Wall Street Journal. But now Bloomberg...

Irish analyst sees major breach in ties with Vatican CWN - August 30, 2011

The Vatican’s decision to recall the apostolic nuncio from Dublin, after an inflammatory speech by Irish Taoiseach (prime minister) Enda Kenny, signals a serious diplomatic breach, writes Dermot...

Released Wednesday, Aug. 31

Church attacked in Karachi CWN - August 31, 2011

Vandals attacked a parish in Karachi, Pakistan’s largest city, on August 27. “Wooden ventilators 14 feet high were broken,” said Father Richard D’Souza, pastor of St. Joseph’s Church in Nasrat...

Vatican newspaper criticizes school sex-education programs CWN - August 31, 2011

L’Osservatore Romano has published an article criticizing New York’s new mandatory sex education program. “The new course is part of an initiative launched by Mayor Bloomberg to improve the...

South Sudan prelate warns tribalism could destroy new nation CWN - August 31, 2011

Amid reports of hundreds of deaths caused by violence between the Lou Nuer and Murle tribes, South Sudan’s leading prelate has called upon the citizens of the newly independent nation to shun...

Cardinal backs indigenous protest against Bolivian highway CWN - August 31, 2011

Bolivian Cardinal Julio Terrazas Sandoval is supporting Amazonian Indians’ protests against socialist President Evo Morales’s plan to build a 190-mile highway through their territory. Environmental...

Cuban dissidents appeal for cardinal’s help CWN - August 31, 2011

Leaders of the Cuban dissident organization Ladies in White are appealing to Cardinal Jaime Ortega to urge the government to end the increased harassment of members of their organization. “We...

Father Twomey recalls Pope’s years as professor, discusses new evangelization CWN - August 31, 2011

In an interview with Vatican Radio, prominent Irish theologian Father Vincent Twomey--one of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger’s doctoral students--recalls the Pope’s years as a theology professor and...

Pope speaks on art, the 'path of beauty' leading to God CWN - August 31, 2011

At his weekly public audience on August 31, Pope Benedict XVI spoke about the “path of beauty” as an approach to God, and the role of art strengthening faith. The Pope asked the 5,000 people who...

Austrian priests plan open disobedience, await cardinal's response CWN - August 31, 2011

A group of dissident Austrian priests has announced plans to engage in open defiance of Church law. The Priests’ Initiative, which claims the support of 329 clerics, has argued in favor of...

Dispute at theological journal: authors reveal essay was peer-reviewed CWN - August 31, 2011

Rebutting a story published by the National Catholic Reporter, two noted theologians have revealed that an article they wrote for the Jesuit journal Theological Studies was submitted to peer review...

Pope attends concert organized by retired Sistine Chapel choir director CWN - August 31, 2011

On Wednesday, August 31, Pope Benedict XVI attended a concert of sacred music organized in his honor by Cardinal Domenico Bartolucci. Cardinal Bartolucci, the longtime director of the Sistine...

Faithful should stand for Communion, says Scottish archbishop CWN - August 31, 2011

A Scottish archbishop has announced that the faithful should receive Communion standing, arguing that “kneeling at the altar rails (where they continue to exist) is not the practice envisaged by the...

Filipino workers feel the brunt of Israel's anti-family immigration policy CWN - August 31, 2011

A Filipino woman and her 4-year-old child, the wife and daughter of a legal immigrant worker, have been deported from Israel, in the first unhappy application of a policy designed to protect the...

Lawyer seeks to protect aged Cardinal Bevilacqua from courtroom appearance CWN - August 31, 2011

An attorney for Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua is seeking to avoid courtroom testimony by the retired prelate, saying that he is too frail to make an appearance. The attorney, Brian McMonagle,...

Irish woman's complaint illustrates confusion about confessional seal CWN - August 31, 2011

An Irish woman who says that she was abused by a priest in a confessional has told reporters that she feels "hurt" by the statements of priests who insist that they would never violate the secrecy...

London reporter finds no neutral advice on pregnancy options CWN - August 31, 2011

Prompted by a proposal to provide independent counseling for women considering abortion, a reporter for the London Daily Mail visited several existing services, pretending to be pregnant, to see...

Barred from China, cardinal sees native land from coastal island CWN - August 31, 2011

An elderly Chinese cardinal, unable to visit his native land, came as close as he could when he traveled to the island of Matsu, just off the Chinese coast, to speak at a conference...

Turkey bucks a trend toward religious restrictions in Islamic world CWN - August 31, 2011

In a recent study on religious freedom, the Pew Foundation found that restrictions were growing in many countries, especially in the Islamic world. But Sandro Magister of L'Espresso notes that one...

Irish government, Church should end debate on confessional seal, editor argues CWN - August 31, 2011

Editor Gary O'Sullivan of the Irish Catholic argues that Cardinal Sean Brady and Frances Fitzgerald, the government's minister for children, should end their public debate about a proposal to...

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