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June 28, 2011 -- Islamabad (Agenzia Fides)
Abolishing the Federal Ministry for minorities means "killing Bhatti for the second time"
- The Pakistani government is ready to abolish the Federal Ministry for Religious Minorities, fragmenting it into "divisions" that will be distributed in the Pakistani provinces. The responsibilities of the Ministry will be diverted, then, from the federal level to the provincial level, according to a plan of "devolution" that will touch other federal ministries. please read

Christians, Muslims clash over church building
Published Date: June 27, 2011
Christians and Muslims clashed in southern Egypt over the building of a new church June 25.
A group of Muslims from the Awlad Khalaf village gathered at the construction site and demanded its demolition, a local security official said.
The Islamic mob claimed the construction was illegal and even brought in bulldozers to try and destroy what had been constructed so far.
please read

June 27, 2011 --
Senior Vatican adviser wants communion rite taken away from Andrew Cuomo over same-sex marriage stance
A senior adviser to the Vatican, who is a theology professor in Detroit, blasted the Catholic governor of New York for his strong backing of same-sex marriage, saying that he should be punished for his "brazen" violation of Catholicism by being denied Holy Communion — a key part of the Catholic faith.
He's also calling for the Catholic Church to investigate Gov. Andrew Cuomo for violating church law, calling the politician's actions a "danger" to faithful Catholics. please read

The Case of Farah Hatim
June 25, 2011 -- Fides Service -- Pakistan
An appeal on the case of Farah Hatim, the Catholic girl Islamized by force, will be presented to the UN
The Church is committed to the liberation of Farah, the Catholic girl forced to convert to Islam
"The Catholic Church in Pakistan will do everything possible to free Farah and return her to her family": this is what His Exc. Mgr. Andrew Francis, Bishop of Multan tells Fides, the diocese involved in the case of Farah Hatim, Catholic girl kidnapped in the city of Rahim Yar Khan (southern Punjab), forced to marry a Muslim man and convert to Islam.
please read

June 25, 2011 -- Middle East and Terrorism
Two teenage Coptic girls, cousins, were recently kidnapped and then "sold" in Minya, Egypt-the same region where a Coptic church was recently attacked and desecrated.
The two girls, Christine Azat (aged 16) and Nancy Magdi (aged 14) were on their way to church Sunday, June 12, when they were seized. Their abductors demanded $200,000 Egyptian pounds for their release. The people of the region quickly put their savings together and came up with the ransom money; but when they tried to give it to the kidnappers, they rejected it, saying they had already "sold" the girls off to another group which requires $12 million Egyptian pounds to return them.

please read

Archbishop Chaput warns about Catholic institutions losing religious identity
Denver, Colo., Jun 22, 2011 -- Marianne Medlin, CNA/EWTN News
Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Denver warned Catholic social workers against the danger of Church institutions losing their religious identity amidst increasing hostility from the government and society.
"The more that Catholic universities or hospitals mute their religious identity; the more that Catholic social ministries weaken their religious character ... the less useful to the Gospel they become," he said.
Archbishop Chaput delivered a dual message to Catholic social workers this week, urging them to not let their Christian identity wane and also stressing that the government has no right to impede the work of Catholic institutions. please read

Boston Columnist Slams Church-Suing Lawyer:
A wonderful priest by all accounts, Fr. Murphy was the object of not just one - but two - totally bogus abuse accusations. McGrory effectively illustrates the excruciating anguish and torment that false accusations can wreck upon a Catholic priest.
Fr. Murphy died last Saturday (June 11) at age 77, but he did not suffer from any tangible malady. McGrory explains: -- please read

June 14, 2011 -- Tripoli (Fides Service)
AFRICA/LIBYA-Mgr. Martinelli notes "a sincere desire for dialogue to restore peace" after a meeting with the Islamic Call Society
"There is a sincere desire for dialogue and to bring back peace", says His Exc. Mgr. Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli to Fides, who yesterday, June 15, met the manager of the Islamic Call Society, an organization sponsored by the Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. "During the meeting, I noticed that there is a strong desire for dialogue on behalf of Tripoli, possibly with the help of the Holy See", said Mgr. Martinelli. "The Islamic Call Society has committed to lend a hand to control the Italian cemetery in Tripoli", adds Mgr. Martinelli. In recent days the desecration of the cemetery had been denounced from the crowd. "I hope that everyone's good will prevails in order to stop this war, because we are tired of the bombing. Even last night there were several, and frankly we are all fed up" concludes the Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 06/16/2011) more
Please pray for the people of Libya.
Also, contact your US reresentatives. Ask them to stop the bombing.

June 14, 2011 -- Detroit Free Press,by Niraj Warikoo
Archbishop To Discipline Priest For Attending Dissident Conference
Archbishop Vigneron's Warned Laity and Priest Not To Attend Event
Saying there were significant abuses at a mass held Sunday by liberal Catholics, Archbishop of Detroit Allen Vigneron will commission a "careful and thorough review" of the services led by a local Catholic priest, a church spokesman said.
Defying Vigneron's orders,the Rev. Bob Wurm, 78, a retired Catholic priest from Ferndale,presided over a mass at Cobo Center attended by about 1,500 Catholics. Most of them were liberals seeking to reform the church. more
American Catholic Council and friends: If you do not like the way the Catholic Church is run please find a Protestant Church that is more to your liking. If you can't find one feel free start your own.

June 9, 2011 -- Joe Kohn
It’s important to again clarify the significance of who the American Catholic Council (ACC) is— what they espouse and the purpose of their conference. Last fall, the Detroit archdiocese posted a point-by-point advisory to the clergy and faithful on its website. It notes "...all of the invited keynote speakers have manifested dissent from Catholic teachings or support for dissenters." In fact, some of those presenting have publicly— sometimes angrily— left the church or have been dismissed because of their actions. more
The enemy within -- Information on this schism

June 8, 2011 -- CNA/EWTN News
Catholic Charities offices from three dioceses in Illinois have filed suit against the state after having to shut down their adoption and foster care services following the enactment of the state's civil union law on June 1.
“Child welfare advocates know it is in the best interest of Illinois children for Catholic Charities to stay in this business,” said Steven Roach, head of Catholic Charities in the Diocese of Springfield.
....The “State of Illinois Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Unions Act,” which became law on June 1, does not allow child welfare agencies to restrict their adoption and foster care work to married heterosexual couples, even in cases where these agencies partner with religious groups. more

June 3, 2011 -- Frank Newport -- Gallup
More than 9 in 10 Americans still say "yes" when asked the basic question "Do you believe in God?"; this is down only slightly from the 1940s, when Gallup first asked this question.
Despite the many changes that have rippled through American society over the last 6 ½ decades, belief in God as measured in this direct way has remained high and relatively stable. Gallup initially used this question wording in November 1944, when 96% said "yes." That percentage dropped to 94% in 1947, but increased to 98% in several Gallup surveys conducted in the 1950s and 1960s. Gallup stopped using this question format in the 1960s, before including it again in Gallup's May 5-8 survey this year. more

June 3, 2011 --
U.S. Bishops to Issue Document on Assisted Suicide
The U.S. bishops will debate and vote on a document on physician-assisted suicide at their spring general assembly, which will be held June 15-17 in Seattle.
The document, "To Live Each Day with Dignity," will be the first statement on assisted suicide by the full body of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).
....Patients with terminal illness deserve life-affirming palliative care that respects their dignity and worth. "Assisted suicide is not an addition to palliative care," the release said, "but a poor substitute that can ultimately become an excuse for denying better medical care to seriously ill people, including those who never considered suicide an option."
Citing the example of the Netherlands, the statement points out that voluntary assisted suicide has led to case of involuntary euthanasia. more

May 27, 2011 --
When will the culture of death STOP for good?
When will the moral crisis shaking the very foundations of Western civilization at every level stop ravaging the family and harming the salvation of so many souls?
If you’re concerned about the future, you’ll find tremendous insight, a battle plan for victory, and profound answers in Prof. Plinio Correa de Oliveira’s groundbreaking work: Revolution and Counter-Revolution
"“The theme of this study is of the highest importance for the time in which we live... I congratulate the author of this magnificent work.”"
-- Eugene Cardinal Tisserant more

May 27, 2011 -- ASIA/MYANMAR -- (Agenzia Fides)
PAKISTAN - Two Christian girls have been kidnapped and converted to Islam in Punjab
Faisalabad (Agenzia Fides) - The violence on Christian girls in central Punjab has caused two other victims: as reported by the Masihi Foundation to Fides- which deals with the protection of Christians in Pakistan - two Christian girls were kidnapped by a group of Muslims and forced to convert to Islam and get married. Rebbecca Masih and Saima Masih were kidnapped in Jhung the district of Faisalabad.
As explained by the two sisters` father, Rehmat Masih, a few days ago a wealthy local businessman, Muhammad Waseem, had previously warned that he wanted to marry the two girls, then threatened to kidnap them and convert them by force. Rehmat went to the police to file a complaint, but they did not take action. On Tuesday, May 24 the two girls were stopped while returning from the market, and some men kidnapped and threw them in a car owned by Waseem. more

May 24, 2011 -- ASIA/MYANMAR -- (Agenzia Fides)
Pakistan ‘in hands of Taliban’, Caritas priest warns
The outgoing head of Caritas Asia Father Bonnie Mendes has warned that Pakistan is now in the hands of the Taliban.
“Pakistan is now in the hands of the Taliban. They have become even stronger, even after the death of Bin Laden. And enjoy the consensus of large segments of the population: the ordinary citizen, the average Muslim Pakistani, is very angry with the government, the United States and NATO, and this is why they look favorably on the actions of the Taliban groups,” Father Mendes, who comes from Faisalabad, told Fides. more

May 21, 2011 -- ASIA/MYANMAR -- (Agenzia Fides)
The "American Bishop" of Pyay "priority to evangelization"
"The priority for our Church is to evangelize. The motto I have chosen for my episcopal service, 'May they have life', clearly expresses this meaning and this need to communicate the love of Christ, who gives life ", said Archbishop Alexander Cho, 62 , the new Bishop of Pyay in the central part of Myanmar, expresses his pastoral intentions in an interview with Fides. Mgr. Cho is known affectionately by his followers as "the American Bishop," as he comes from a pastoral experience in the United States, in the Diocese of Salina in the state of Kansas. From this American experience, he says, "I will try to make the most of this experience, as the good organization and the ability to delegate, elements that can give benefits to the effectiveness of missionary work, contributing to the growth and development of the Diocese of Pyay. more

May 19, 2011 -- Robert Mickens -- The Tablet
Timothy Radcliffe dropped as speaker at Caritas summit
The Vatican has dropped Fr Timothy Radcliffe OP, the internationally renowned former head of the Dominicans, from giving the keynote address at next week's Caritas Internationalis (CI) general assembly in Rome, The Tablet has learned.
Fr Radcliffe was originally scheduled to deliver the opening address on Monday morning and speak about the theology that undergirds the work of Caritas. He had already prepared a 45-minute talk. Instead, that slot has been given to Capuchin Fr Raniero Cantalamessa, the charismatic preacher of the papal household, followed by Cardinal Peter Turkson, head of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. more

May 19, 2011 -- Fred Lucas -- (
Rabbi: 'The President of the United States is Asking for Ethnic Cleansing'
– President Barack Obama has made an unprecedented demand on Israel, Jewish leaders said Thursday, after the president called for Israel to redraw its borders to where they were in 1967 before the Six Day War. One rabbi said Obama was, in essence, asking for "ethnic cleansing" of thousands of Jewish families.
“It’s immoral in that basically the president of the United States is asking that 500,000 people who live, work, and raise families around Jerusalem – Jewish families – that they be uprooted, resettled, deported from their homes, have their families broken,” Rabbi Aryeh Spero, founder of Caucus for America, told more

May 19, 2011 --
Why are Egyptian churches burning?
On a recent afternoon this month, in a busy downtown Cairo street, armed men exchanged gunfire, threw rocks and Molotov cocktails, and freely wielded knives in broad daylight. The two-hour fight, which began as an attempt by some shop-owners to extort the customers of others, left eighty-nine wounded and many stores destroyed.
In the new Egypt, incidents like this are becoming commonplace. On many nights I go to bed to the sound of gunfire, and each morning I leaf through newspapers anticipating more stories of crime. Stopped at gun-point; car stolen; head severed; kidnapped from school, held at ransom; armed men storm police station opening fire and killing four; prison cells unlocked-91 criminals on the loose. more

May 19, 2011 -- Ben Feller, AP
Obama urges Israel to go back to 1967 borders
Forcefully stepping into an explosive Middle East debate, President Barack Obama on Thursday endorsed a key Palestinian demand for the borders of its future state and prodded Israel to accept that it can never have a truly peaceful nation based on "permanent occupation."
Obama's urging that a Palestinian state be based on 1967 borders — before the Six Day War in which Israel occupied East Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza — was a significant shift in the U.S. approach. It drew an immediate negative response from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is to meet with Obama at the White House Friday.
In a statement released late Thursday in Jerusalem, Netanyahu called the 1967 lines "indefensible," saying such a withdrawal would jeopardize Israel's security and leave major West Bank settlements outside Israeli borders, though Obama left room for adjustments reached through negotiations. more
Please call your representatives. Tell President Obama that his two state Mid-east solution based on Israel's 1967 borders is not acceptable.

May 19, 2011 -- Vatican City (CNS)
Youth, Protagonists of 45th World Day of Peace

According to a communique issued today by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, "Educating Young People in Justice and Peace" is the theme that Benedict XVI has chosen for the 45th World Day of Peace this coming 1 January, 2012.
"The theme", reads the text, "engages an urgent need in the world today: to listen to and enhance the important role of new generations in the realization of the common good, and in the affirmation of a just and peaceful social order where fundamental human rights can be fully expressed and realized". more

May 14, 2011 --
The New Hungarian Constitution
There has been a great deal of discussion about Hungary's "Easter Constitution;" so nicknamed not only because it passed with a grand majority on this past Easter Monday, April 25th, but also because it may represent a resurrection of values that many thought had all but disappeared from the laws of Europe.
.....The preamble of the constitution starts with the first line of the Hungarian national anthem, "O Lord, blessed be the Hungarian nation," recalling the Christian roots of this nation. It continues to emphasize this theme, stating the unique role played by King St. Stephen in establishing Hungary and acknowledging the role that Christianity has played in her preservation. more

May 14, 2011 --
AFRICA/LIBYA-"A truce is necessary for the the civilian population to breathe again, " said Bishop Martinelli
.....Archbishop Martinelli said that "yesterday, in Marsa Brega, 16 people died and several were killed in other parts of Tripoli. The bombs are still claiming victims. A truce seems appropriate to help the civilians breathe again. Even last night there were several bombings, the strongest we heard around 3a.m. more

May 13, 2011 -- Fr. John Zuhlsdorf
RELEASED: Instruction “Universae Ecclesiae” the text and my initial observations

Here are some rapid points to help you read the document on your own. The document is not so hard that it needs a great deal of interpretation. But some points will need some extra light.
The most important point to carry away is that UE reveals something more of the mind, the mens, of the lawgiver, Pope Benedict XVI. more

May, 2011 --
Can Catholic Schools Be Saved?
In the fall of 2007, word quietly spread through the nation's capital that a dozen Catholic schools run by the Archdiocese of Washington were in dire financial straits. These were not just any schools: The specter of closure had haunted these 12 before, when financial problems had surfaced a decade earlier. At that time, the archbishop of Washington, James Cardinal Hickey, had refused to allow the shuttering of any more schools serving the poorest families in his archdiocese.
.....Today, by and large, the travails of Catholic education still do not register with the public or elected officials. In the first decade of this new century, more than 1,000 Catholic schools were shuttered; 174 Catholic schools closed or were consolidated during the 2009-10 school year alone. In the past ten years, the Archdiocese of Chicago has seen 31% of its students leave; the Archdiocese of New York and the Diocese of Brooklyn have lost 26% and 33% of their students, respectively, in the same period. Indeed, just this January, the New York archdiocese — which serves about 2.5 million Catholics — announced that it would close 27 schools, about one-eighth of its total. more

May 11, 2011 -- -- Pentagon
Navy Halts Move to Allow Gay Marriages by Chaplains After Complaints From Lawmakers
The Navy has abruptly reversed its decision to allow chaplains to perform same-sex marriages once the military's ban on openly gay service members is lifted, after dozens of House lawmakers complained.
Rear Adm. Mark Tidd, chief of Navy chaplains, issued a one-sentence memo Tuesday announcing that the earlier decision has been "suspended until further notice pending additional legal and policy review and inter-departmental coordination." more
Thank you Admiral and all those who objected.

May 9, 2011 -- cathnewsindia
Twelve dead and churches burnt in Cairo
Eight Egyptians were killed, and a church set on fire, after violence erupted between Muslims and Christians in Cairo.
Officials said the two groups clashed in the north-western district of Imbaba after Muslims attacked the St Mena Coptic church to free a Christian woman they alleged was being held against her will because she wanted to convert to Islam, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

May 6, 2011 -- catholicculture
Pennsylvania diocese drops appeal of Vatican ruling on closed parishes
The Diocese of Allentown has dropped its appeal of a decision by the Congregation of the Clergy ordering that nine closed churches be maintained for sacred worship.
The Congregation had found that the Diocese of Allentown failed to provide a “grave reason” to justify the closing of nine parish church buildings. The diocese was not required to reopen the church buildings as parish churches, since the Congregation upheld the diocese’s decision to merge parishes. In March, the diocese stated it would appeal the Congregation’s decision in six of the nine cases. more

May 5, 2011 -- (CNA).- Benjamin Mann
Don't encourage Arab revolutions, Melkite patriarch tells Western leaders
Damascus, Syria, Patriarch Gregorios III, the Syria-based head of the Melkite Greek-Catholic Church, is warning Western leaders not to encourage the revolutions currently shaking up the Middle East.
“Our Arab countries are not ready for revolutions, and not even for democracy of the European kind and model,” the patriarch explained in a recent letter to Western leaders. “I am asking the West not to encourage revolutions unconditionally here and there in the Arab world.”
In the patriarch's native Syria, government forces have killed hundreds of protesters in response to continuing mass demonstrations. more

May 5, 2011 -- visnews-en
Inspiration and Truth in Interpretation Of Sacred Texts
A message from the Pope to Cardinal William J. Levada, president of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, and the members of that commission was made public today. The message was issued on the occasion of the commission's annual plenary assembly, which focused on the theme of "Inspiration and Truth of the Bible".
The Pope emphasized that "this theme is one of the main points of the post-synodal apostolic exhortation Verbum Domini, which discusses it in the first section".
"An interpretation of Sacred Scripture that ignores or forgets its inspiration", the Holy Father writes, "does not take into account its most important and valuable characteristic: its provenance from God". more

May 3, 2011 -- catholicculture
Recognize subtle dangers to religious freedom, Pope urges
Freedom of religion, which was subjected to “systematic denial by atheistic regimes of the 20th century,” is again in danger today, Pope Benedict XVI told the members of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.
The Pontifical Academy concluded a plenary meeting devoted to discussion of religious freedom on May 3. In his message to the group the Holy Father called for “the recognition of the fundamental human right to religious freedom on the part of all states.” He added that governments should provide protection, as needed, for religious minorities. more

May 3, 2011 -- Jerry Filteau
CUA conference focuses on workers' dignity
WASHINGTON -- Former AFL-CIO president John Sweeney May 2 issued a clarion call to U.S. Catholics to reclaim the legacy of Pope Leo XIII and restore the dignity of work in the U.S. labor movement.
Sweeney delivered the keynote address on the first day of a two-day conference at the Catholic University of America marking the 120th anniversary of “Rerum Novarum” (Pope Leo’s 1991 encyclical letter, On the Condition of Labor – literally, from its Latin title, “Of New Things”).
....Several participants found remarkable parallels in the world today with the contrast that Pope Leo described in 1891 between the greed and vast riches of a few and the immense poverty of millions in the working class. more
The union "working class" is not poor! The real poor are the unemployed, under employed and the elderly. Yet these people are required to pay the wages of the working class.
Real estate taxes which are levied to pay the wages of public employees are paid by the tenants who can barely pay their rent as well as the elderly who are in danger of loosing their home. Gasoline and sales taxes impact the poor and elderly more than the "working class"

May 3, 2011 -- Agenzia Fides
Vigorous campaign against the "Document on reproductive health", in the name of John Paul II
The Catholic Church, pro-life organizations, associations and Christian schools in the Philippines have re-launched the pro-life campaign to block the approval of the "Document on Reproductive Health", recently renamed "Responsible Parenthood, Reproductive Health and Population and Development Act " which in the coming days will be examined by the Congress and is supported by the President of the Philippines, Benigno Aquino.
The campaign was re-launched in the name of John Paul II, remembered as "the shepherd in defense of life”. As reported to Fides, the Cardinal Archbishop of Manila, Gaudencio Rosales, has begun a "Novena for Life", which will end May 9, date which will open the session of Congress to consider and approve the document . more

April 28, 2011 -- Agenzia Fides
"Last night a violent bombing near the church devastated the serenity of innocent citizens, how can the UN authorize this?" complains Bishop Martinelli
"I do not know what objective was hit near the church, but it was a terrible bombing" said Archbishop Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli to Fides. "We were awakened at twelve thirty at night by a terrifying explosion. The bombing was very near, maybe a couple of miles, even though I do not have a clear idea of what was hit”, says Bishop Martinelli. "Nearby there are homes, with families with children. People poured into the streets in panic" more

April 28, 2011 -- RSS Facebook
Cardinal George suspends Father Pfleger
Cardinal Francis George has suspended the faculties of Father Michael Pfleger, the controversial pastor of St. Sabina Parish in Chicago, after the priest said that he would rather leave the Church than accept a position as a high school principal.
In an April 27 letter to the priest, Cardinal George recounted that the two were in discussions over whether the priest would leave his pastorate to become president of Leo High School. “You promised to consider what was a proposal, not a demand, even as I urged you to accept it,” the cardinal said. more
Cardinals George's letter to Fr. Pfleger.
Ed: Cardinal George is certainly right in suspending of father Pfleger and we thank him for it. However, we do not think that father Pfleger should ever have been offered the presidency of a Catholic high school.

April 27, 2011 -- Agenzia Fides
Another priest victim of violence in Mexico
The priest Francisco Sánchez Durán, 60, was killed at dawn yesterday, Tuesday, April 26, in the church El Patrocinio of San José, located on Avenida Ocho in the district Educacion, in Coyoacán (in the south of Mexico City). According to information received by Fides, the body of Father Sánchez Durán was found at around 9.30 "with wounds on the neck”, made with an edged weapon, sources of the capital`s Prosecution explained to Fides. According to local media the murder may have been the tragic conclusion of an attempted theft at church, as a result of the opposition of the priest to thieves. more

April 25, 2011 -- catholicadvocate
Obama Faces Hard Times with Catholic Voters
When Barack Obama won 54 percent of the Catholic vote in the 2008 presidential election, commentators barely noticed that John McCain won a majority of the religiously-active Catholic vote (51 percent to 49 percent). This was a small margin, to be sure, but it doesn’t bode well for the 2012 presidential race, after all the worst predictions of Obama’s support for abortion became reality. more

April 24, 2011 -- The Vatican

“In resurrectione tua, Christe, coeli et terra laetentur!
In your resurrection, O Christ, let heaven and earth rejoice!” (Liturgy of the Hours).
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Rome and across the world,
Easter morning brings us news that is ancient yet ever new: Christ is risen! The echo of this event, which issued forth from Jerusalem twenty centuries ago, continues to resound in the Church, deep in whose heart lives the vibrant faith of Mary, Mother of Jesus, the faith of Mary Magdalene and the other women who first discovered the empty tomb, and the faith of Peter and the other Apostles.
Right down to our own time – even in these days of advanced communications technology – the faith of Christians is based on that same news, on the testimony of those sisters and brothers who saw firstly the stone that had been rolled away from the empty tomb and then the mysterious messengers who testified that Jesus, the Crucified, was risen. And then Jesus himself, the Lord and Master, living and tangible, appeared to Mary Magdalene, to the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, and finally to all eleven, gathered in the Upper Room (cf. Mk 16:9-14). more

April 23, 2011 -- The Vatican
Saint Peter's Basilica

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
The liturgical celebration of the Easter Vigil makes use of two eloquent signs. First there is the fire that becomes light. As the procession makes its way through the church, shrouded in the darkness of the night, the light of the Paschal Candle becomes a wave of lights, and it speaks to us of Christ as the true morning star that never sets – the Risen Lord in whom light has conquered darkness. The second sign is water. On the one hand, it recalls the waters of the Red Sea, decline and death, the mystery of the Cross. But now it is presented to us as spring water, a life-giving element amid the dryness. Thus it becomes the image of the sacrament of baptism, through which we become sharers in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. read more

April 14, 2011 -- Tripoli (Agenzia Fides) -
Libyan women to Archbishop Martinelli: "stop bombs and violence against civilians"
"At the end of the celebration of the Holy Mass, I found about ten Muslim Libyan women at the back of the church . This is the first time in 40 years of celebrations in Libya. They came crying into the sacristy. Many of them knew some Catholic nuns " said Archbishop Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Vicar Apostolic of Tripoli to Fides.
"These women continually repeated, 'Father, please, stop with war, with bombs. They have destroyed our family, and social life, children no longer go to school. We are devastated”. Then they told me what is happening in Misurata ". They told me continues Bishop Martinelli-that women are raped and mutilated, families are trapped in homes. "You have no idea what is happening there”, said these women . more

April 14, 2011 -- (
Antioch Tradition Adorns the Church, Says Pope
Addresses New Patriarch of Maronites
Benedict XVI is affirming his communion with the new patriarch of the Maronite Church, and praising the rich tradition of Antioch, where the faithful were first given the name Christians.
The Pope had a private audience today with Patriarch Béchara Boutros Raï, 71.
Last month, the patriarch succeeded Cardinal Nasrallah Pierre Sfeir, becoming the 77th patriarch of Antioch of the Maronites. Cardinal Sfeir resigned at age 90. more

April 14, 2011 -- (Agenzia Fides)
"Providing weapons just means extending the war, " says Bishop Martinelli
Tripoli - "The risk of providing weapons to rebels in Benghazi is a way of not ending the war, or rather a way to lenghthening it, " says Archbishop Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Vicar Apostolic of Tripoli to Fides. Tuesday, April 13, in Doha (Qatar), the "Contact Group on Libya" has decided to introduce "a temporary financial mechanism" to fund the Transitional National Council of Benghazi, while some countries that participated in the Summit have announced the 'intention to provide military equipment to the rebels.
"We prayed for the meeting of Doha, for dialogue to prevail in the truth without getting caught by so many vested interests, " says the Vicar Apostolic of Tripoli. Referring to the document of the Christian churches in Tripoli sent to the UN (see Fides 13/4/2011) Archbishop Martinelli comments: "We hope that in our small way we can grow the seed of reconciliation which only the power of God can give. " The Vicar Apostolic of Tripoli adds that in his view, the crisis could have perhaps been avoided if " more attention had been given to the needs of young people who desire a job and a future. "

April 12, 2011 -- -- Mark Whittington
Bolivia is preparing a draft United Nations treaty that would give "Mother Earth" the same rights as human beings. Bolivia has recently passed a law giving rights to insects, trees, and other "natural things."
"That document speaks of the country's natural resources as 'blessings,' and grants the Earth a series of specific rights that include rights to life, water and clean air; the right to repair livelihoods affected by human activities; and the right to be free from pollution. more

April 11, 2011 --
150 US Catholic schools have links to Planned Parenthood
At least 150 Catholic colleges and universities in the US have provided some support for Planned Parenthood, the Cardinal Newman Society has disclosed.
In a detailed new report, the Cardinal Newman Society shows how Catholic schools have given Planned Parenthood opportunities to provide counseling and referrals, to recruit interns and offer fellows, to participate in campus events, and to make presentations to student audiences.
The Cardinal Newman Society shows connections between Planned Parenthood and such prominent Catholic institutions as Notre Dame, Georgetown, Boston College, Marquette, and many others. more
The report

April 11, 2011 -
One Vote Stops Civil Unions Bill
Archbishop Chaput urges Catholics in Colorado to thank legislators for standing up for marriage. He called on Catholics to thank legislators for rejecting a civil unions bill, saying, “It took courage, especially in an environment of bitter criticism.” more

April 7, 2011 -
Africa/Cote D'Ivoire - The words of the Pope resonate, appeal for peace in war-torn Cote d'Ivoire
Abidjan (Agenzia Fides) - “The appeal by Pope Benedict XVI has found great resonance in Côte d'Ivoire and was broadcast several times by the Catholic radio station,” Fr Celestine Ikomba, Scalabrinian, chaplain for the port in Abidjan, tells Fides. “I continue to follow with great concern the dramatic events that the dear people of Ivory Coast and Libya are experiencing at this time,” said Pope Benedict XVI at the end of the General Audience in St Peter's Square on Wednesday, 6 April.
Fr Celestine also describes the worsening humanitarian situation: “several areas lack electricity, and water and food are scarce. We have 300 refugees in the hospital. There are a hundred in our parish.” While former President Laurent Gbagbo remains barricaded in the presidential residence, transformed into a bunker, attacked by the Republican forces, some foreign embassies have asked for the protection of the Licorne French military force to evacuate their personnel. Speaking to Fides, Archbishop Ambrose Madtha, Apostolic Nuncio in Abidjan, said he could not talk right now but urged everyone to pray for Côte d'Ivoire. The Nunciature is located near the presidential residence, in the midst of the battle. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides 7/4/2011) more

April 6, 2011 -
Africa/Cote D'Ivoire - “There have been violent explosions in the centre of Abidjan,” Archbishop Kutwa tells Fides, before communications are cut off
Abidjan (Agenzia Fides) - “I am in a hidden place. Violent fighting continues. We can hear massive explosions,” Archbishop Jean-Pierre Kutwa of Abidjan, says to Fides before he hangs up. He is in the centre of the administrative capital of Côte d'Ivoire, where incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo is still barricaded in the presidential residence, which is currently being assaulted by the Republican forces close to President-elect Alassane Oattara. According to news agencies, loud explosions can be heard coming from the Presidential Palace and from the residence of the Head of State. more

April 6, 2011 -
An “appeal for tolerance to avoid further violence” launched online by the parish priest for the port of Abidjan
Abidjan (Agenzia Fides) - “We need to continue to launch appeals for peace through parish networks, also via the internet – at least in the areas where it still works – because religious leaders need to appeal to peoples' spirits, asking them to be tolerant,” says Scalibrinian priest Fr Celestine Ikomba to Fides, parish priest and chaplain for the port of Abidjan, where a fierce battle is currently raging, driven by the Republican Forces (for President-elect Alassane Ouattara), to take the Presidential Palace and the residence of the Head of State (of outgoing President Laurent Gbagbo). Every attempt to convince Gbagbo to release power has failed. more

April 5, 2011 - -- Joan Frawley Desmond
Polls: Do the Numbers Lie?
Survey claims that more American Catholics are breaking with Rome over same-sex relationships. Recent headlines trumpeting Catholic support for "gay rights" suggest that the faithful reject Church teaching. But critics allege that the latest opinion research is part of a political strategy to promote same-sex "marriage" and should not be trusted.
....A new survey suggests that Catholics favor same-sex "marriage," but critics such as Bishop Salvatore Cordileone of Oakland, Calif., advise caution. Bishop Cordileone, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Ad Hoc Committee for the Defense of Marriage, says, "The track record shows that polling data on this issue is not all that reliable. In state after state where this has been voted on by the people, the activists have cited polling data in their favor - but they have not won an election once." more

Bishop Cordileone is right.
Robert P. Jones, Ph.D. CEO and Founder of Public Religion Research Institute and Daniel Cox, Director of Research and Co-founder are or at least had positions in the liberal People for the American Way Foundation:
Robert P. Jones, Ph.D., Director and Senior Fellow
Dan Cox, Policy and Values Research Associate
Center for American Values in Public Life
People for the American Way Foundation
See memo:
Also see the People for the American Way Foundation web site:
You can prove anything you want with a survey!

April 4, 2011 -
Life Bill Passes in South Dakota
State requires all seeking abortion to visit a pro-life pregnancy center.
In a forceful indictment of the way abortions are done in South Dakota, the state has passed a law requiring women to consult with a pro-life pregnancy center before getting an abortion.
Based on testimony of women who now regret their abortions, the state Legislature found that “the overwhelming majority” of women arrange their abortions without seeing a doctor or receiving any counseling about side effects. more

April 4, 2011 - Lee Ross
Supreme Court Upholds Arizona School Vouchers
The Supreme Court has ruled in favor of an Arizona school voucher program that critics say improperly directs taxpayer funds to religious schools.
Monday's 5-4 ruling expands long-standing court precedents that citizens don't have standing to legally challenge taxes they don't like simply because they're taxpayers.
The minority on the court maintained that since the case involved claims of a violation of religious freedoms, that the Arizona plaintiffs didn't need to demonstrate a specific personal injury.
The decision, written by Justice Anthony Kennedy and joined by the court's more conservative members, preserves Arizona's school voucher program that is funded by tax credits offered to state taxpayers. Most of the students who use the voucher money attend religious schools.
Read more:

April 4, 2011 - Tripoli (Agenzia Fides)
“Strengthen the will for peace” says Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli, who adds: “the Church appeals for mediation”
Tripoli (Agenzia Fides) - “There haven't been any bombs in Tripoli for two days. The situation is dire due to the lack of food and petrol but at least things are a bit calmer. Perhaps they realised that however much they try to hit military targets with precision, it is impossible not to hit civilians. I understand the intentions of the bombing, but that's not how you solve the crisis,” Bishop Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Vicar Apostolic of Tripoli, tells Fides.
“I think that the will to negotiate is strengthening, although there are still several obstacles to overcome. I appeal once more to the African Union and also to Europe to step up peace efforts. The people are tired of war and the bombings,” says Bishop Martinelli. In the past few days, some emissaries from the Libyan regime travelled to some European capitals to seek a political solution to the crisis. more

Vatican City, Apr. 1, 2011 (VIS)
Challenges Facing Jewish and Catholic Leaders
The Bilateral Commission of Delegations of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and the Holy See's Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews celebrated its tenth meeting in Jerusalem from 29 to 31 March. The meeting - presided by Chief Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen and by Cardinal Jorge Maria Mejia, archivist and librarian emeritus of Holy Roman Church - discussed the challenges of faith and religious leadership in secular society.
At the end of its meeting the commission published an English-language communique stating that the deliberations "sought to define the challenges that modern secular society faces. In addition to its many benefits; rapid technological advancement, rampant consumerism, and a nihilistic ideology with an exaggerated focus on the individual at the expense of the community and collective wellbeing, have led to a moral crisis. Together with the benefits of emancipation, the last century has witnessed unparalleled violence and barbarity. Our modern world is substantially bereft of a sense of belonging, meaning and purpose". more

March 31, 2011 - Tripoli (Agenzia Fides)
“At least 40 civilian deaths in air raid on Tripoli,” complains Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli, repeating the urgency for a diplomatic solution
“The so-called humanitarian air raids have taken the lives of dozens of civilians in various areas of Tripoli,” complains Bishop Giovanni Innocenzo Martinelli, Apostolic Vicar of Tripoli, to Fides. “I heard various eye-witness accounts from trustworthy people about this,” says Bishop Martinelli. “Of particular concern, in the district of Buslim, a building collapsed because of the bombing, killing 40 people. Yesterday I reported that the bombing had affected some hospitals, albeit indirectly. I can now confirm that one of these hospitals is in Misda.” According to a report on the Euronews website, in Misda, south of Tripoli, the explosion of an ammunition dump - hit during a raid - also resulted in damages to a hospital and several houses, causing injuries to 13 people according to hospital sources.
“If it is true that the bombings appear to be very targeted, it is also true that they are hitting military targets, which are in the midst of civilian neighbourhoods, thus the local people are also affected,” said Bishop Martinelli. more

March 31, 2011 - Wally Herger (R-CA) and Dave Reichert (R-WA)
BEHIND THE VEIL: The AARP America Doesn't Know
As the facts set forth in this report reveal, AARP is not simply a non-profit entity claiming to advocate on behalf of America's seniors. AARP is in fact a large, complex and sophisticated organization with over $2.2 billion in total assets and had revenues in excess of $1.4 billion in 2009 alone. When measured by the products it endorses and profits it derives from those deals, AARP is one of the nation's largest insurance companies and by far the largest provider of Medicare plans to seniors.
The report also details the Democrats' health care law's significant cuts to Medicare Advantage (MA) and how the interplay in the marketplace between MA and Medigap will increase Medigap sales. This will have a direct, significant, and positive impact on future profits at AARP. Also troubling is the report's central finding: The Democrats' health care law, which AARP strongly endorsed, could result in a windfall for AARP that exceeds over $1 billion during the next 10 years. more

March 31, 2011 - catholicworldreport
CWR: How has the Catholic community in Rhode Island responded to efforts to legalize same-sex marriage?
Bishop Tobin: Historically there has been some apathy about it among the citizenry of Rhode Island, including among the Catholic population. But recently, because our political landscape has changed, we’ve done a better job in getting our pastors involved, rallying the Catholic faithful against it. I’m proud of what our pastors and people have done, both in reaching out to our legislators and making their voices heard in the media, saying this is not something that is acceptable to us.
We need our people to understand that this is a serious issue. Our greatest danger as a Catholic community is apathy. If we’re not aware of the situation, don’t care about it or make it a priority, gay marriage will pass in Rhode Island. But if we’re galvanized and make our voices heard, we’ll keep it out of our state.
It is important to emphasize that this is not just an exercise in partisan politics. This is an expression of our faith. We have to be involved in this issue as disciples of Christ and members of his Church. more

Vatican City, 31 Mar. 2011 (VIS)
Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intensions for April
Pope Benedict's general prayer intention for April is: "That through its compelling preaching of the Gospel, the Church may give young people new reasons for life and hope".
His mission intention is: "That by proclamation of the Gospel and the witness of their lives, missionaries may bring Christ to those who do not yet know Him".

March 21, 2011
The Immigration Debate and U.S.- Mexico Relations: A Catholic Perspective
Most Rev. José H. Gomez. Archbishop of Los Angeles
Chairman, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Migration
... I have three basic goals tonight: First, I want to outline what I believe to be the root issues with U.S.-Mexican migration. Second, I want to explain the Catholic Church’s approach to these issues. Third and finally, I want to make some suggestions and observations about the current debate in light of Catholic principles. text

March 18, 2011 -- National Catholic Register (CNS)
Crucifixes Allowed in European Union Classrooms
Vatican pleased by court decision, which effects 47 countries.
Crucifixes displayed publicly in Italy, including in classrooms, are a sign of Christianity’s key contribution to European culture and civilization, said Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture.
Christianity is a “founding element” of Western civilization, and “even if someone does not want to recognize it, it is an objective fact that the Christian presence is absolutely relevant, decisive,” the cardinal told reporters March 18. more

March 18, 2011 -- National Catholic Register -- Tim Drake
The Lutheran Landslide.....
Increasing Number of Lutherans are Coming into the Catholic Church
One of the most under-reported religious stories of the past decade has been the movement of Lutherans across the Tiber.
What first began with prominent Lutherans, such as Richard John Neuhaus (1990) and Robert Wilken (1994), coming into the Catholic Church, has become more of a landslide that could culminate in a larger body of Lutherans coming into the collectively.
In 2000, former Canadian Lutheran Bishop Joseph Jacobson came into the Church.
“No other Church really can duplicate what Jesus gave,” Jacobson told the Western Catholic Reporter in 2006. more

March 15, 2011 -- Steven Ertelt --
Republicans Probe “Death Panels” Added, Removed From Obamacare
The top Republican on the House committee charged with health care oversight is planning an investigation of the inclusion and subsequent removal of the controversial “death panels” from the Obamacare health care law.
Under the regulations the Obama administration put in place in December, doctors would instruct patients in the annual “voluntary” exams to write “advance directives listing the kind of treatment they wish to receive or not receive if they are unable to make their own medical decisions. After considerable pro-life backlash from those who worried physicians would pressure or persuade patients to make decisions that would ration care or withdraw lifesaving medical treatment, the Obama administration removed them from the regulations implementing Obamacare. more

Save our Catholic Schools -- Help Save St. Peters.....
March 14, 2011 -- Christine Begeman-Thomson -- Facebook
Ok all....I am compelled and asked to provide some info, and this was the best way I knew how. PLEASE READ EVERYTHING written here. I will do my best, without being too long winded, what happened and what is going on now.
Feb 11, Arch announces St Peters closing, Feb 16 a save St Peters Rally with the Arch present to get answers and to try to convince them save the school. On Feb 18, I connect with 2 prominent business people. Together we discuss a plan to try to save the school.
They projected that they will have to subsidize St Peters at the end of this school year for 75,000 dollars and with the low enrollment for next year, the projected subsidiary would be in excess of 100,000 dollars. We then asked each other what we needed to do to save the school. more

March 13, 2011 -- National Catholic Register
President Obama’s DOMA Outrage Will Backfire
Mr. President, you just picked a fight you can’t win.

By refusing to defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), by calling it “legally indefensible,” by inventing a new constitutional doctrine (i.e., that sexual orientation is a protected class) never accepted by the Supreme Court, by rejecting controlling Supreme Court precedent in Baker v. Nelson on marriage, by nakedly politicizing the Justice Department, by nationalizing the marriage question and forcing major GOP leaders and presidential candidates to act, President Obama is not only helping build up a national marriage movement — he has actually made it far more likely the Supreme Court will ultimately vote to uphold DOMA.
Obama, living in an increasing bubble, must have started believing those press releases and New York Times headlines saying Americans don’t care about marriage anymore. He must have calculated that Congress would not respond to his outrageous dereliction of duty.
Instead, Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, today announced that the House will act to intervene in the DOMA legal cases. This is a huge victory for marriage — and hugely important to winning these cases in the Supreme Court. more

Lent: Rediscovering Our Baptism
Vatican City, 9 MAR 2011 (VIS)
"Today, with the austere symbol of the ashes, we enter the period of Lent, beginning a spiritual journey which prepares for a worthy celebration of the Paschal mysteries. The ashes ... are a sign reminding us of our status as created beings and inviting us to penance, to intensify our commitment to conversion so as to continue following the Lord", said the Pope in his general audience today, held in the Paul VI Hall in the presence of 7,000 faithful.
"Lent is a journey, it means accompanying Jesus as He travels to Jerusalem, the place where the mystery of His Passion, Death and Resurrection is to be fulfilled. It reminds us that Christian life is a 'road' to be travelled, consisting not so much in a law to be observed as in the person of Christ Himself, Who must be encountered, welcomed and followed". more

March 6, 2011 --
US Bishop Decries Injustice Against Marriage
Says President's Position Is Threat to Democracy
Archbishop Timothy Dolan of New York is decrying the "alarming and grave injustice" of U.S. President Barack Obama's instruction to the nation's justice department to cease its defense of marriage.
The president's instruction to stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) was announced on Feb. 23 by the U.S. attorney general, Eric Holder.
Archbishop Dolan, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, released a statement in response to this announcement, and also sent a personal message to Obama regarding the administration's move. more

posted March 6, 2011
Archbishop Chaput:
Luke Warm Christianity Is A Convient Form Of Paganism!
Addressing a gathering of European church officials on March 4, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Denver warned that many contemporary Christians have reduced their faith to a convenient "form of paganism," which cannot compete with the widespread "idolatry" of modern consumer culture. more

posted March 6, 2011
Message Of His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI
For The 45th World Communications Day -- June 5, 2011

Truth, Proclamation and Authenticity of Life in the Digital Age
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
On the occasion of the 45th World Day of Social Communications, I would like to share some reflections that are motivated by a phenomenon characteristic of our age: the emergence of the internet as a network for communication. It is an ever more commonly held opinion that, just as the Industrial Revolution in its day brought about a profound transformation in society by the modifications it introduced into the cycles of production and the lives of workers, so today the radical changes taking place in communications are guiding significant cultural and social developments. more

"Thoughts that you would be better off dead"
Question in an AARP survey received by an 86 year old relative.
Beware of what your elderly relatives and friends receive in the mail. Don't let them fill out forms they do not understand. "survey" wording

March 1, 2011
Hundreds of Catholic schools have been and will be closed.
Saint Peter's High School in New York is a good example:

A Proud Tradition: A Rich Future
A college preparatory school located in the historic preservation district of Saint George in Staten Island, New York, Saint Peter's High School for Girls is just minutes away from the Staten Island Ferry and the main transportation hub on Staten Island. more

February 28, 2011 -- By TFP Student Action
SHOCKER: Catholic College Helps Planned Parenthood
Should Catholic universities aid Planned Parenthood and other pro-abortion groups? The answer is obviously NO. However, Seattle University – a Catholic institution – offers students the option of interning for Planned Parenthood of Western Washington more

February 24, 2011 -- Catholic World Report -- Jim Graves
Look Forward and Upward
Bishop Robert Vasa on pro-abortion Catholics, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, and what authentic renewal of the Church will look like
Bishop Robert Vasa has served as bishop of Baker, Oregon since 2000. On January 24, the Vatican announced that he will serve as coadjutor bishop for the Diocese of Santa Rosa, California. Bishop Vasa will assist the current head of the diocese, Bishop Daniel Walsh, and then succeed him as bishop once Walsh reaches the mandatory retirement age of 75 in 2012. more

February 24, 2011 --
Government Won’t Support Defense of Marriage Act Anymore
U.S. bishops and traditional-marriage advocates criticize Obama administration’s decision.
WASHINGTON (CNS) — The U.S. bishops’ Office of General Counsel said the Obama administration’s decision to no longer support the Defense of Marriage Act in legal challenges ahead “represents an abdication” of its “constitutional obligation to ensure that laws of the United States are faithfully executed.” more

February 24, 2011 -- -- Joan Frawley Desmond
Unions and the Church -- What’s changing in the way the Church deals with organized labor?
Union protests in the Midwest have prompted a muted response from local Catholic bishops, signaling that the once close bonds of Church and labor leaders have loosened in recent decades. But it also indicates that a new generation of bishops approach hot-button economic issues in a more nuanced way.
Last week, as throngs of public employees converged on the Madison statehouse to protest legislative efforts to curb their right to collective bargaining and cut benefits in Wisconsin, Archbishop Jerome Listecki of Milwaukee issued a carefully worded statement that acknowledged the rights of workers, but included a pointed caveat: “It does not follow from this that every claim made by workers or their representatives is valid.” more

February 24, 2011 -- Madison Catholic Herald
Under the Gospel Book by Bishop Robert C. Morlino
This column is the bishop's communication with the faithful of the Diocese of Madison. Any wider circulation reaches beyond the intention of the bishop.

Dear Friends,
Believe it or not, I frequently try to avoid weighing in-on certain situations. However, the recent happenings in our state capital with regard to legislation about labor union practices beg for a comment. In this column, I simply want to point out how a well-informed conscience might work through the dilemma which the situation poses.
Should one support or oppose the legislation which regulates union procedures? The Wisconsin Catholic Conference (WCC) has chosen a neutral stance because the present dilemma comes down to either a choice for the common good, of sacrifice on the part of all, at times that pose immense economic threats, both present and future on the one hand, and on the other hand, a choice for the rights of workers to a just compensation for services rendered, and to the upholding of contracts legally made. As Catholics, we see both of these horns of the dilemma as good, and yet the current situation calls many of us to choose between these two goods. more

February 24, 2011 -- USCCB
USCCB Chairman Supports Wisconsin Bishops on the Rights of Workers
Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton, California, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, expressed his “support for and solidarity” with the Wisconsin bishops’ statement on the rights of workers.
He quotes Pope John Paul II:
In Laborem Exercens, Pope John Paul II calls labor associations “an indispensable element of social life, especially in modern industrialized societies,” but also reminds unions “to secure the just rights of workers within the framework of the common good of the whole of society.” more

However, in this case:
1. The unions are not representing the rights of workers. They are willing to give up benefits as long as they can continue to have union dues collected by the state.
2. Unions must respect the "common good of the whole of society."
3. The same unions are preventing school vouchers that would save taxpayers billions.
4. Catholic school teachers salaries do not compare to that of Wisconsin teachers.
5. Many Catholic tax payers have to pay for public and Catholic school teachers.
Will the USCCB continue to overlook the devil in the details?
Pope John Paul II -- Laborem exercens
Pope Leo XIII -- RerumNovarum

February 24, 2011 -- Terrence McKeegan, J.D. (C-FAM)
UN Promotes Prostitution as Harm Reduction
A United Nations agency is actively funding the full legalization of prostitution with the support of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon. The agency even partnered with a prostitution advocacy group to co-chair a UN advisory group on HIV and "sex work."
UNAIDS, a joint program of the major UN agencies, is promoting “sex work” programs under the guise of harm reduction in combating HIV/AIDS and preventing discrimination against vulnerable groups.
One UNAIDS-funded organization is the Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP). The NSWP is the featured website on the controversial Interagency Youth Working Group, a US-funded project. The NSWP is described as an “alliance of sex workers and organizations that provide services to sex workers and promote sex workers' health and human rights.” more

February 23, 2011 --
US will no longer defend Defense of Marriage Act in court
In a major policy shift on gay rights, the Obama administration announced on Wednesday that it would no longer defend the constitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act in cases pending in federal court.
Attorney General Eric Holder made the announcement in a written statement and in a letter sent to House Speaker John Boehner.
It said both he and President Obama had concluded that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) unconstitutionally discriminates against same-sex couples who are in marriages that are legally recognized by their state governments.
"The president has instructed the [Justice] Department not to defend the statute in such cases," Mr. Holder said in his statement. "I fully concur with the president's determination."
Speaker Boehner responded through a spokesman, questioning the timing of the announcement.
"While Americans want Washington to focus on creating jobs and cutting spending, the president will have to explain why he thinks now is the appropriate time to stir up a controversial issue that sharply divides the nation," said Boehner spokesman Michael Steel. more
When a President can an repeal a law enacted by the people "Government by the People" will cease to exist.

Posted -- February 22, 2011 -- Vatican City, (VIS)
Renew Our Acceptance of Baptismal Grace During Lent
Made public today was the 2011 Lenten Message of the Holy Father Benedict XVI. The text, dated 4 November 2010, has as its title a passage from St. Paul's Letter to the Colossians: "You were buried with Him in Baptism, in which you were also raised with Him". Extracts from the English-language version of the document. more

February 21, 2011 -- By TFP Student Action
Catholic College to Host Same-Sex "Marriage" Activist
Canisius College – a Jesuit institution – has invited an open homosexual activist, Dustin Lance Black, to talk about “Leadership for Equal Rights: GLBT Equality.” According to the college’s web site, the lecture is scheduled on March 10 as part of a Leadership Series program. more

Posted -- February 18, 2011 --
Is Our Culture Worse Than Sodom And Gomorrah?
Father Robert
We have heard in the Gospel reading about towns where Our Lord did the vast majority of His work, and He condemns them because they did not believe. It is quite amazing to hear what He has to say about these other towns, about Tyre and Sidon, about Sodom and Gomorrah, that Sodom would still have been around to that particular day if the works done in Capernaum had been done in Sodom. more

February 17, 2011 -- Lauren Funk -- (C-FAM)
Controversial Document Guides Plans for UN Youth Conference
The same controversial agenda that guided the chaotic youth conference last summer in Leon, Mexico will inspire the UN’s World Youth Conference, which is now scheduled for this July at UN Headquarters in New York City.
This agenda, laid out in the World Program of Action for Youth (WPAY), promotes youth autonomy and grants them new “rights”. One UN legal expert called the document a “Cairo for youth,” since it calls on states to assign high priority to providing sexual and reproductive health services, sexual education outside the purview of the parents, and curriculum reforms to eradicate the perpetuation of “traditional female roles.” more

February 10, 2011 -- NCR/EWTN News
What to Do About Obamacare
Stand and Deliver or Repeal and Replace?
Less than one year after President Obama signed into law the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), the largest health-care legislation passed in the last 45 years, the House of Representatives has voted to repeal the law (and is pledging to hold hearings into its many provisions), more than half of the states have filed lawsuits to have the PPACA overturned, a key provision of the law was ruled unconstitutional by a federal judge on Jan. 31, and the majority of the public continues to voice opposition.
What should faithful Catholics be thinking and doing at this time? more

February 4, 2011 -- CNA/EWTN News
Vatican to update bioethics guidelines for Catholic health care workers
The Vatican department in charge supporting Catholic health care workers has announced that it will soon release updated guidelines on bioethics issues.
The guidelines offered in the "Charter for Health Care Workers" provide a point of reference on Church teaching for medical professionals. It is being updated to provide current teaching on complex topics in the health care field like stem-cell research, reproductive issues, euthanasia and abortion. more

February 3, 2011 -- -- Lauren Funk
French High Court Affirms Traditional Marriage
A ruling in the homeland of “égalité” last week found the French prohibition of same-sex marriage is in accord with the French constitution, effectively ruling that there is nothing unequal about upholding the definition of marriage as between man and woman.
The demand for “equality” is the hallmark of most national and international campaigns for homosexual rights, particularly those concerned with same-sex marriage. Discussions at the UN regarding sexual orientation are rife with references to equality and non-discrimination.
The French Constitutional Council is the nation’s highest authority on the constitution, and while it normally advises the government on the constitutionality of elections and laws, it also has authority to rule on constitutionality of individual cases brought to it by French citizens. more

February 2, 2011 --
Archbishop Dolan and CHA president affirm local bishop’s authority in medical ethics
Washington D.C., Feb 2, 2011 / 05:43 am (CNA).- Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York and Sr. Carol Keehan, president and CEO of the Catholic Health Association (CHA), have exchanged letters affirming that the local bishop is the authoritative interpreter of religious and ethical guidelines in Catholic health facilities.
The exchange also looked ahead to further cooperation on pro-life and religious freedom issues. more

January 31, 2011 -- Jimmy Akin --
Pope Questions Celibacy?
There’s a story that’s been percolating around some quarters for the last few days, but until recently it hasn’t breached the English-speaking news net. It’s likely to.
The nub of the story is this: In 1970 the young(er) theologian Joseph Ratzinger signed a letter to the German conference of bishops suggesting that the Church reconsider the practice of clerical celibacy as the norm for the Latin Church.
Given the MSM’s fixation on the Catholic Church and sex—and particularly its dislike of clerical celibacy—this story could potentially gain traction. more

January 24, 2011 -- C-FAM -- Samantha Singson
US Policymakers Look for Ways to Cut United Nations Funding
Members of Congress met this week to discuss cutting some US funding of the United Nations until it undertakes "sweeping" reform measures to prevent corruption and allow for voluntary funding.
The US is the single largest donor to the UN, covering nearly a quarter of the organization's annual operating budget, which does not include the additional funds that the US provides for peacekeeping operations. US lawmakers are pressing for broad spending cuts as they seek to reduce the US budget deficit.
US Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the new chairman of the House Foreign Affairs committee, pushed for "reform first and payment later," and minced no words over her displeasure with the controversial UN Human Rights Council.
“I’d like to make sure that we once and for all kill all U.S. funding for that beast,” Ros-Lehtinen said. more

January 24, 2011 --
Catholic Health Association Backs Bill for Obamacare Abortion De-Funding
by Steven Ertelt | Washington, DC | | 1/25/11 7:02 PM
The Catholic Health Association didn’t believe abortion funding was in the final health care bill Congress approved last year and President Barack Obama signed into law, so it supported the bill. Now CHA is endorsing a measure that would remove the abortion funding from it.
Sr. Carol Keehan put forward the convoluted position in a new letter to Congressman Joe Pitts of Pennsylvania, the sponsors of the legislation, sent yesterday.
“I am writing to applaud your efforts to ensure the protection of the unborn and of providers’ conscience rights,” Keehan writes. “We want to offer our support for your legislation, H.R. 358, the Protect Life Act.” more
"didn’t believe abortion funding was in the final health care bill"?
Even after all the letters and emails we sent her? -- Unbelievable! Let's hope she repents and supports life.

January 24, 2011 --
Rick Santorum, Man with a Chest, Defends Right to Life and the Natural Law
Senator Rick Santorum's speech in Houston and recent interview with Terry Jeffrey are a breath of fresh air in an age of political sound bites. He is a man with a chest who defends the Right to Life and the Primacy of the Natural Law. He is man of courage in an age of cowardice
WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - Throughout the day on Thursday I read the reactions from a wide ranging interview which former Senator Rick Santorum gave to Terry Jeffrey of entitled "Santorum Says He Agrees With MLK on Moral Basis for Human Rights; Can't Understand Why Obama Would Deny Them to an Unborn Child." more

January 23, 2011 -- Catholic World Report -- Jim Graves
Bishop Robert Vasa on pro-abortion Catholics, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, and what authentic renewal of the Church will look like
Bishop Vasa, age 59, has been outspoken in his defense of Catholic doctrine and moral teachings, particularly related to the life issues. He made news recently when he declared that a bishop’s authority in his own diocese supersedes that of the national bishops’ conference, stating, “It is easy to forget that the conference is the vehicle to assist bishops in cooperating with each other and not a separate regulatory commission.” He added, “there may also be an unfortunate tendency on the part of bishops to abdicate to the conference a portion of their episcopal role and duty.” more
Thank you Bishop Vasa for defending our Faith.

January 23, 2011 -- CNA/EWTN News
Profile: US ambassador (Miguel H. Diaz) seeks to 'build bridges' with Vatican
America's ambassador to the Holy See says the two sides are working to rebuild trust following the leak of alleged diplomatic cables that caused embarrassment late last year.
He does not downplay the continued differences between the U.S. and the Holy See on issues such as abortion, embryonic stem cell research, the homosexual lifestyle, and the promotion of condoms for AIDS prevention. more
Ambassador Diaz is wrong. He may be representing President Obama but he is not representing faithful American Catholics. Holy See issues are not negotiable. You either follow the Magisterium or you are wrong!

January 22, 2011 --
Obama Marks Anniversary Of Abortion Rights Case
On Roe V. Wade Anniversary, Obama Says He's Committed To Constitutional Right To Abortion
President Barack Obama is marking the 38th anniversary of the Supreme Court's landmark decision on abortion by calling the procedure a constitutional right he's committed to protecting.
Obama also said in a statement Saturday that he remains committed to policies designed to prevent unintended pregnancies. And he called on Americans to recommit themselves to ensuring that, in the president's words, "our daughters have the same rights, the same freedoms, and the same opportunities as our sons to fulfill their dreams."
Obama said the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion affirmed what he called a "fundamental principle: that government should not intrude on private family matters." more

January 22, 2011 --
All Mass Murderers Are Not Created Equal
by Matthew Archbold Sunday, January 23, 2011 10:42 PM Comments (10)
In the wake of the mass murder of seven babies by a Philadelphia abortionist I have to ask where's the Presidential press conference? Where's the nationally televised memorial? Where are the t-shirts with the catchy slogan? Where's the media blame game? Where's the feature pieces in national magazines on the societal implications of the murders?
Seriously. I'm wondering why isn't the murder of seven babies of similar national implications to the horrible murders in Tuscon? more

January 20, 2011 --
Ralph McCloud, Head of CCHD, Worked Officially for a Pro-Abortion Candidate, Document Reveals
According to a document revealed by Creative Minority Report (CMR), we now have definitive proof that the pro-abortion mindset dwells even at the highest levels of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The document is a public campaign finance report for Planned Parenthood-endorsed pro-abortion candidate Wendy Davis listing Ralph McCloud as campaign treasurer during his first year as the Director of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD).
The Catholic Church in America has been suffering from a profound division over abortion on the question of whether or not Catholics — the “biggest ‘swing faith’ in the country” — should ignore the issue when they go to the polls. While the bishops have maintained in varying degrees that abortion is not a negotiable issue for Catholics, a position born out in their opposition to Obamacare based solely on abortion, the revelation that the head of CCHD was an official in the campaign of a pro-abortion candidate shows the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops‘ (USCCB) failure on a mind-boggling level to be an organization that consistently defends life and dignity. more

January 20, 2011 --
Doctor accused of killing seven babies with scissors after they were born alive
Millionaire assisted in 'barbaric murders' by nine employees - including a 15-year-old student
Mother, 41, also died from alleged anaesthetic overdose
Clinic was used by poor and immigrant women
Charged: Dr Kermit Gosnell, who has been charged with the murder of seven babies and one mother, shown here in 2010
A doctor has been accused of snapping the spinal cords of seven newborn babies with a pair of scissors in a 'House of Horrors' abortion clinic. more

January 16, 2011 -- Elena Garcia -- Christian Post Reporter
A Christian opinion you should know:
Franklin Graham: The Spirit of Anti-Christ Is Everywhere
Franklin Graham told students at John Brown University on Tuesday to remain committed in their faith in Jesus Christ and preach the Gospel in spite of the persecution they may face.
Speaking during a special chapel service, the evangelical preacher asked the students of the private Christian university in Siloam Springs, Ark., to "set the sail for the course that God has in front of you," while overcoming the pitfalls, temptations and challenges in their path.

January 16, 2011 -- Fr. Kneemiller;
Warning: Eastern Meditation Should Never Be Used
From New Age Transcendental Meditation Teacher To Catholic Priest.
Fr. Kneemiller Reveals His Innocent Beginnings With The New Age Movement, His Conversion Through the Family Rosary, A Healing Process Lasting Well Into His Priesthood and A Warning For All To Hear.
The topic of New Age movements, once a budding campus phenomenon, is now mainstream and as close to us as our local bookstore or DVD movie. New Age refers to forms of spirituality that draw from old systems of knowledge such as Zen, Gnosticism (secret knowledge) and Eastern meditation. more

January 13, 2011 -- C-FAM -- Lauren Funk
US State Department Steps Up Promotion of Homosexual Agenda
The Obama administration has made it repeatedly clear that one of their priorities is the promotion of the homosexual agenda both in the US and around the world. The latest salvo in this campaign is the just-announced policy that the applications for Consular Reports of Birth Abroad and passports would use the designations of “Parent 1” and “Parent 2,” instead of “Mother” and “Father.”
The State Department said, “The improvements are being made to provide a gender neutral description of a child’s parents and in recognition of different types of families.” Homosexual activists celebrated the change. Such groups have been pushing for the gender neutralization of passport applications and other official document for years, more

January 11th, 2011 -- From Fr. John Corapi
Catholics Must Read Scripture In Light of Sacred Tradition and Magisterial Teaching
God our loving Father has revealed himself to us, giving us the unimaginably generous gift of his Word. This Word is transmitted to us in the form of Sacred Tradition, Sacred Scripture, and magisterial teaching, no one of which can stand without the other two. May we be thankful for and ever-faithful to this gift.
.... God himself is the author of Sacred Scripture (CCC 105), and because of that the Word of God as transmitted to us in the Bible is to be accepted as inspired and true. We accept it, as we do the Doctrine of the Faith in general, not because it sounds plausible to us, but because of the One who has given it to us - God, who is Truth itself; the One who can neither deceive nor be deceived (VATICAN I, Dei Filius, 3, Denzinger Schinmetzer 3008). more

January 11, 2011 -- CNA/EWTN News
Archbishop Chaput remembers deep Catholic faith of judge killed in Ariz. shooting
Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver expressed anguish over the recent Arizona shooting that left 6 dead and over a dozen wounded, noting particularly the life and deep Catholic faith of victim Judge John Roll. more

January 10, 2011 -- CNA/EWTN News
In address to diplomats, Pope condemns limits on religious freedom
Pope Benedict XVI has once more urged Muslim religious leaders and repressive governments to do more to protect the rights of Christians and other religious minorities in their countries
....Despite their professed interest in “pluralism and tolerance,” the Pope said, in many countries in the West “there is a tendency to consider religion, all religion, as something insignificant, alien or even destabilizing to modern society, and to attempt by different means to prevent it from having any influence on the life of society.”
....In addition, the Pope criticized efforts to ban Christian holidays and symbols “under the guise” of showing respect for non-Christians and atheists. “By acting in this way, not only is the right of believers to the public expression of their faith restricted, but an attack is made on the cultural roots which nourish the profound identity and social cohesion of many nations.” more

January 8, 2011 -- (CNA)
Cardinal George Pell – Politicians Who Claim a Catholic Identity
Sydney, Australia, (CNA)- As the country faces intense legislative debate this upcoming year over same-sex “marriage” and euthanasia, Cardinal George Pell of Sydney blasted politicians who claim a Catholic identity, yet consistently defy Church teachings on major issues.
In a Jan. 4 interview with the Sunday Herald Sun, Cardinal Pell gave a sharp rebuke to Australian members of parliament who “fly under the Christian or Captain Catholic flag” but “blithely disregard Christian perspectives” in their actions. more

January 7, 2011 --
Saving Big Apple Babies
Archbishop Dolan and other pro-lifers pledge to help pregnant women in need.
In response to recent statistics revealing that 41% of pregnancies in New York City in 2009 ended in abortion, New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan reiterated the pledge of his predecessors to help any pregnant woman in need. more

January 5, 2011 -- Steven Ertelt --
Obama Admin Removes Death Panels After Pro-Life Backlash
After massive pro-life backlash following the publication of new rules instituting "death panels," the Obama administration has agreed to remove them from ObamaCare.
The "death panels" caused considerable concern for pro-life groups, which believe they would have given financial incentives to doctors to hold end-of-life discussions with patients that will lead to the rationing of their medical care.
Under the regulations the Obama administration put in place in December, which was the first to cover, doctors would instruct patients in the annual "voluntary" exams to write "advance directives listing the kind of treatment they wish to receive or not receive if they are unable to make their own medical decisions. more

January 4, 2011 --
Gunned Down for Defending Christians
A Pakistani governor was assassinated today for seeking to pardon a Christian woman. The archbishop of Lahore talks to the Register about what the future holds for his 97% Muslim country.
LAHORE, Pakistan — Archbishop Lawrence Saldanha, president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Pakistan, has joined the mourners paying tributes to Salman Taseer, the governor of Punjab province who was assassinated today for his opposition to the Islamic blasphemy law. more

Dec. 31, 2010 -- An NCR Editorial
Sister Keehan is The National Catholic Reporter's person of the year for 2010
"NCR has never named a person of the year, and we might not again in the future. However, as we sent our last print issue to press in the waning days of 2010, we felt the need to single out one American Catholic who showed extraordinary leadership and courage this last year." more
In defiance of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, Sister Keehan supported the pro abortion healh care bill.
She praised Berwick's appointment to head Medicare even though she knows that he is pro-rationing
On July 5th. 2010. The Knights of Malta pressured Keehan to resign from a prestigious hospital board post.
On March 21, 2010 -- "The Catholic Health Association applauds the U.S. House of Representatives and President Obama for enacting health care reform legislation that will bring security and health to millions of American families"

Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Olmsted, Keehan and Moral Authority
"The Catholic Health Association has once again found itself at odds with Church authority- this time, over Bishop Thomas J. Olmsted's decision to revoke the Catholic status of a hospital that admitted to serious ethics violations, including a highly-publicized abortion.
... In other words, what we have here is rot and decay, corruption and collusion. We have a Church in America that has become less about truth and more about Progressivism and Social Justice, both offsprings of the Marxist ideology condemned by every Pope since Pius IX. more

Dec 29, 2010 --
ACLU launches war on Catholic hospitals
Last Wednesday, the American Civil Liberties Union sent a letter to federal health officials urging the government to force Catholic hospitals in the United States to perform abortions in violation of their core moral commitment to protecting the lives of the unborn. They're counting on sympathetic Obama rationing czar Donald Berwick to dictate which religious principles hospital operators can and cannot follow.
The ACLU reiterated its call for a federal probe -- read: fishing expedition -- of Catholic hospitals nationwide that refuse to provide "emergency" contraception and abortions to women. In practice, of course, every request for abortion is an "emergency" to the left. more

Other years:

2011 Jan to
2010 July to Dec
2010 Jan to June

Pro Choice = Pro Abortion
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This single volume is the complete source of the Bible passages and prayers that form the rich tapestry of our Mass.
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March of the Survivors
All the polls show that young people are more pro-life than adults. This offers great hope for the future as these youngsters become voters and decision makers. Share the pro-life message with a young person today. As one of the speakers says, "The pro-life movement is getting younger and younger." Praise be to God! The energy and zeal of these youngsters fills me with hope. Video Pro-Life Headlines

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