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Catholic World News

Stories for week of October 19, 2014

Released Monday, Oct. 20

As synod concludes, bishops issue message, approve document; Pope weighs in CWN - October 20, 2014

The 14th and 15th general congregations (sessions) of the Third Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops on the Family took place on October 18. Preaching at Terce, Archbishop Paul...

Pope Paul VI beatified CWN - October 20, 2014

In an October 19 Mass in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis beatified Pope Paul VI, whose 15-year reign (1963-78) saw the conclusion and initial implementation of the Second Vatican Council, the...

Malta’s leading prelate resigns CWN - October 20, 2014

Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Archbishop Paul Cremona, Malta’s leading prelate, at the age of 68. The Dominican prelate, who has led the Archdiocese of Malta since 2006, cited...

New appointments to Pontifical Biblical Commission CWN - October 20, 2014

Pope Francis has appointed 20 scholars to the Pontifical Biblical Commission for the next five years. One of them is from the United States: Mary Healy, a professor at Sacred Heart Major Seminary...

Cardinal Burke confirms reports of transfer from position CWN - October 20, 2014

In two interviews, Cardinal Raymond Burke has confirmed reports that he will soon be transferred from the position of Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, which he has held...

Pope Francis meets with Vietnam’s prime minister CWN - October 20, 2014

Pope Francis met on October 18 with Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung of Vietnam, who has led the Communist nation since 2005. The meeting, according to the Holy See Press Office, “marks an...

Vatican message to Hindus emphasizes negative effects of globalization CWN - October 20, 2014

The Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue has issued its annual message to Hindus for Diwali (Deepavali), the Hindu autumn festival of lights. In the message, released October 20 and...

Pope addresses cardinals, decries ‘terrorism of previously unimaginable dimensions’ CWN - October 20, 2014

As he convened a consistory of cardinals on October 20, Pope Francis lamented the plight of Christians in the Middle East, especially in Iraq and Syria. “We cannot resign ourselves to thinking...

Act now to avert Christian 'genocide' in Middle East: Vatican Secretary of State CWN - October 20, 2014

The international community must take action “to prevent possible new genocides” in the Middle East, Cardinal Cardinal Pietro Parolin said in an afternoon address to a consistory of cardinals in...

Idaho: ministers face fines, prison for refusing to preside at same-sex wedding CWN - October 20, 2014

In Idaho, a Protestant couple who operate a non-denominational wedding chapel have been told that they must solemnize same-sex unions or else face imprisonment. Donald and Evelyn Knapp, who...

Times profile Vatican cleric now on trial for money-laundering CWN - October 20, 2014

The New York Times has profiled Msgr. Nunzio Scarano, the former Vatican financial official who is now on trial in an Italian court on corruption and money-laundering charges. Msgr. Scarano was...

Oregon priest, removed as pastor, threatens to establish rival congregation CWN - October 20, 2014

A Catholic priest whose bishop removed him from his post as a pastor in Bend, Oregon, has announced plans to set up a rival congregation. Father James Radloff, who had been pastor of St. Francis...

Presidential election in Sri Lanka throws into question plans for papal visit in January CWN - October 20, 2014

Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith of Colombo, Sri Lanka, has asked President Mahinda Rajapaksa whether a visit by Pope Francis, scheduled to begin next January 13, should be postponed in light of the news...

Head of US bishops' conference says next year's Synod should be transparent CWN - October 20, 2014

Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky, the president of the US bishops' conference, has said that next year's meeting of the Synod of Bishops should be more transparent than this year's...

Released Tuesday, Oct. 21

Thousands of Iraqi Christians in Jordan CWN - October 21, 2014

Three thousand Iraqi Christians who have fled the advance of the Islamic State are now being fed at parishes in Jordan, according to Archbishop Maroun Lahham, who serves as an auxiliary bishop of...

Cardinal Nichols: synod’s final document insufficiently welcoming toward homosexuals CWN - October 21, 2014

England’s leading prelate said that the final document of the recent Synod of Bishops on the family did not go “far enough” in its language on persons with same-sex attractions, according to a...

Kenya’s bishops concerned about vaccination campaign CWN - October 21, 2014

The Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops has expressed concerned that a tetanus vaccine campaign aimed at women of childbearing years also has contraceptive properties that could render recipients...

Cardinal Kasper expresses regret for remarks on Africans CWN - October 21, 2014

Cardinal Walter Kasper has expressed regret about controversial remarks on African prelates in a conversation with journalist Edward Pentin, according to Catholic World Report. Cardinal Kasper...

Iranian prelate: current situation reminiscent of early days of Islam CWN - October 21, 2014

A Chaldean Catholic prelate who governs two Iranian dioceses said that the current situation of Christians in the Middle East is reminiscent of the early days of Islam. “I would say Arab Winter –...

USCCB urges US government to back Congo’s bishops on constitutional revision CWN - October 21, 2014

The chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on International Justice and Peace has called upon the Obama administration to oppose the efforts of Joseph Kabila, the...

Program announced for Pope’s trip to Turkey CWN - October 21, 2014

The Holy See Press Office has formally announced that Pope Francis will make an apostolic journey to Turkey from November 28 to 30. On November 28, Pope Francis will arrive in Ankara, the...

Archbishop Forte reports 'widespread consensus' on final Synod document CWN - October 21, 2014

Archbishop Bruno Forte, who served as special secretary for the October meeting of the Synod of Bishops, has said that there was a “widespread consensus” among the bishops in support of the Synod’s...

Cardinal George: no regrets for defense of Catholic teaching CWN - October 21, 2014

Cardinal Francis Eugene George, who will step down in November after 17 years as Archbishop of Chicago, said that he was sorry that some of his public statements caused controversy, but he did not...

Christians safer under Egypt's new government, but threats remain CWN - October 21, 2014

Egyptian Christians feel considerably more secure since the fall of a government dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood, the spokesman for the country’s bishops reports. But serious tensions remain and...

Christian woman will appeal blasphemy conviction to Pakistan's supreme court CWN - October 21, 2014

An attorney for Asia Bibi has confirmed that the Pakistani woman, who has been sentenced to death on blasphemy charges, will appeal the verdict to the country’s supreme court. “I have a very...

Chaldean leader vows to discipline priests who leave Iraq without bishops' permission CWN - October 21, 2014

The head of the Chaldean Catholic Church has announced that priests who have left their dioceses in Iraq face suspension. Patriarch Louis Raphael I Sako set a deadline of October 22 for priests...

Helen Hull Hitchcock, RIP CWN - October 21, 2014

Helen Hull Hitchcock, founding director of Women for Faith & Family, died in St. Louis on October 20 after a brief illness. Raised as an Episcopalian, Helen Hitchcock entered the Catholic Church...

Iran: Evangelical pastors given 6-year prison sentences CWN - October 21, 2014

Three Evangelical Christian pastors in Iran have been sentenced to 6-year prison terms for their leadership roles in the house-church movement, the Fides news service reports. Pastors Behnam...

Vatican's UN envoy repeats support for 2-state solution to Israeli-Palestinian conflict CWN - October 21, 2014

Speaking on October 21 at a UN Security Council session on the Middle East, the Holy See’s permanent representative reiterated the Vatican’s support for a two-state solution to the...

Released Wednesday, Oct. 22

Vatican envoy calls for greater respect for indigenous peoples CWN - 20 hours ago

The Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations said in an October 20 statement that “much still needs to be done to safeguard the human rights and fundamental freedoms of indigenous...

Iraq: Christian refugees’ plight worsened by flooding CWN - 20 hours ago

Heavy rains have flooded Dohuk, the northern Iraqi city to which 100,000 of the nation’s Christians have fled, according to the Assyrian International News Agency. The floods have compounded the...

Ukrainian Catholic leader laments foreign aggression CWN - 19 hours ago

The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church said in a radio interview that Ukraine is a victim of foreign aggression, and not in the midst of a civil war. Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk...

Liturgical items on agenda of US bishops’ meeting CWN - 19 hours ago

The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops will discuss several liturgical items at its November 10-13 meeting. The bishops will vote on a revision of the current (1989) translation of the...

Dallas diocese housed Ebola victim’s fiancée, family CWN - 19 hours ago

Bishop Kevin Farrell of Dallas said that the diocese has housed the fiancée of Ebola virus victim Thomas Eric Duncan, as well as her son and two nephews, for several weeks. The four, who had to...

Rhode Island bishop critiques synod CWN - 19 hours ago

Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence has written a candid and critical series of “random thoughts” on the recent Synod of Bishops. “In trying to accommodate the needs of the age, as Pope Francis...

Pope Francis reflects on the Church as the Body of Christ CWN - 18 hours ago

Continuing his series of Wednesday catecheses on the Church, Pope Francis devoted his October 22 general audience to the Church as the Body of Christ. Recalling the prophet Ezekiel’s vision of...

Archbishop Chaput: believers are outsiders in America today CWN - 10 hours ago

Christians should recognize that they are outside the mainstream in American society today, Philadelphia’s Archbishop Charles Chaput said in the annual Erasmus Lecture, sponsored by First Things...

African bishops oppose closing borders in fight against Ebola CWN - 9 hours ago

"The closing of borders is not the solution to Ebola,” the Symposium of the Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM) said in a statement released to the Fides news...

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Recent Catholic Commentary

Ignatius Press into the Breach: Trumping the Kasper Proposal 9 hours ago
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The Synod: It's a Wrap! October 21
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Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Key synod report calls for 'gradualism' in Church response to irregular family situations CWN - October 13
As synod concludes, bishops issue message, approve document; Pope weighs in CWN - October 20
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Synod of Bishops opens with Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica CWN - October 6