Category: National and International

Lent is time to become aware of false prophets, cold hearts, pope says

VATICAN CITY | Catholics should use the season of Lent to look for signs and symptoms of being under the spell of false prophets and of living with cold, selfish and hateful hearts, Pope Francis said. Together with “the often bitter medicine of the truth,” the church — as mother and teacher — offers people… Read more »

Cardinal Zen: ‘Vatican is ready to surrender to the Chinese communist party’

Hong Kong, China | A possible Vatican agreement with the Chinese government has prompted feelings of unease and fears of betrayal, Cardinal Joseph Zen has warned in a strong statement continuing his criticism of negotiations. “In recent days, the brothers and sisters living on the Chinese mainland have learned that the Vatican is ready to… Read more »

Benedict says he’s journeying toward God

VATICAN CITY | “I am on a pilgrimage toward Home,” retired Pope Benedict XVI wrote, capitalizing the Italian word “casa” or “home.” Almost exactly five years after announcing his intention to be the first pope in nearly 600 years to resign, Pope Benedict wrote the letter to a journalist from the Italian newspaper Corriere della… Read more »

Program develops leaders for Catholic schools in U.S. mission dioceses

CHICAGO | At a time when many Catholic schools are struggling with enrollment, fighting to survive and at times shutting their doors, Catholic Extension and Loyola Marymount University have teamed up to strengthen Catholic schools in some of the nation’s poorest communities. They have launched the Catholic School Leadership Development Initiative to develop a pipeline… Read more »

Supporters say vilification of immigrant children, families must stop

 WASHINGTON | Hours before President Donald Trump’s first State of the Union address Jan. 30, immigrant supporters said they were concerned with his administration’s “systematic targeting of vulnerable populations.” In particular, they were bothered by the portrayal of migrant children, youth and families as gang members and criminals. The president and Congress are haggling over… Read more »

Bishops defend Congo church’s role in ‘actions affecting politics’

KINSHASA, Congo | The Congolese bishops’ conference defended its “engagement in actions affecting politics” in a Feb. 1 website statement, following church talks with a delegation from the Southern African Development Community. “The church here is often asked to act as arbitrator or reconciler, to enable politicians to meet and discuss questions about our national… Read more »

Vatican, China nearing agreement on bishops, according to reports

VATICAN CITY | Multiple news reports indicate the Vatican has made substantial progress in reaching an agreement with China’s communist government on the naming of bishops for several dioceses. The news agency Reuters and The Wall Street Journal both reported Feb. 1 that the deal would involve two bishops recognized by the Holy See stepping… Read more »

Government’s plan to protect Syrian refugees too limited, CLINIC says

WASHINGTON | The Department of Homeland Security’s extension of Temporary Protected Status for 6,900 Syrians in the United States since 2016 leaves hundreds of more recently arrived refugees at risk, said the executive director of the Catholic Legal Immigration Network. CLINIC’s Jeanne Atkinson called the Jan. 31 decision by Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen… Read more »

Congolese official denies ordering police to stop cathedral Mass

ARU, Congo | A provincial governor denied allegations by Catholic Church authorities that he ordered police to prevent the celebration of Mass Jan. 21. Alphonse Ngoyi Kasanji, who heads the government in Kasai Oriental, challenged the clergy accusing him to provide evidence of their claims. United Nations Radio reported Jan. 30 that Catholic clergy in… Read more »

Prelates’ friendly Super Bowl wager will benefit poor whoever wins game

PHILADELPHIA | A friendly wager between the archbishops of Philadelphia and Boston for Super Bowl LII Feb. 4 in Minneapolis between the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots will benefit needy people in both cities. Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Philadelphia and Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston, both longtime friends and classmates from their… Read more »