Category: National and International

Catholic groups denounce child’s death near U.S. border on Christmas Eve

WASHINGTON | Immigration officials announced new health checks for immigrant children under detention after a second child, an 8-year-old boy, died Christmas Eve while under the agency’s care. “This is a tragic loss. On behalf of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, our deepest sympathies go out to the family,” said CBP Commissioner Kevin K. McAleenan… Read more »

U.S. bishops take part in weeklong retreat about clergy sex abuse crisis

WASHINGTON | The U.S. Catholic bishops are taking part in a closed-door retreat Jan. 2-8 at Mundelein Seminary at the University of St. Mary of the Lake near Chicago to prayerfully consider ways to rebuild trust over the clergy sex abuse crisis. “We are honored to welcome the bishops of the United States to Mundelein… Read more »

Illinois attorney general releases report on clergy sex abuse

CHICAGO | Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s report claiming that the clergy sexual abuse of minors in the state is “significantly more extensive” than what the state’s dioceses had previously reported is unfair and “just false,” according to the top lawyer for the Archdiocese of Chicago. William R. Kunkel, general counsel of the archdiocese, made… Read more »

Catholic-themed socks offer practical, spiritual support

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. | Some people wear their faith on their sleeve, others on their feet, which is hardly sacrilegious. It is in fact, Sock Religious. Catholic socks are a rarity, but images like Mary, Pope Francis, St. Teresa of Kolkata and St. Joseph can be found at sockreligious.com. The Diocese of Little Rock also… Read more »

Pope accepts resignation of Los Angeles auxiliary accused of abuse

VATICAN CITY | Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of 69-year-old Auxiliary Bishop Alexander Salazar of Los Angeles after the archdiocese’s independent Clergy Misconduct Oversight Board recommended he not be allowed to minister because of an allegation of sexual misconduct with a minor in the 1990s. The Vatican announced Dec. 19 that Pope Francis had… Read more »

Shooting in Brazilian cathedral leaves five dead, four injured

SAO PAULO | A gunman opened fire inside a Brazilian church, killing four people and injuring four others before turning the gun on himself, police said. The shooting occurred Dec. 11 just as parishioners from Our Lady of the Conception Cathedral in Campinas, near Sao Paulo, were leaving a midday Mass. “I conducted the Mass… Read more »

Don’t be afraid to ask for things from God in prayer, pope says

VATICAN CITY | No one should be afraid to turn to God with prayer, especially in times of great doubt, suffering and need, Pope Francis said. Jesus does not want people to become numb to life’s problems and “extinguish” those things that make them human when they pray, the pope said Dec. 12 during his… Read more »

Church will spare no effort to end abuse, pope tells Curia

VATICAN CITY | Acknowledging the gravity of the clerical sexual abuse crisis, Pope Francis told members of the Roman Curia that the church’s strength does not depend on its members’ perfection, but on the willingness to recognize its failings and correct them. “Let it be clear that before these abominations, the church will spare no… Read more »

U.S. bishops, others mourn death of Guatemalan girl near border

WASHINGTON | Three U.S. Catholic bishops Dec. 18 joined their voices in mourning the death of a 7-year-old Guatemalan girl shortly after she crossed the U.S.-Mexico border with her father and they turned themselves in to U.S. Customs and Border Protection seeking asylum. The girl, who was identified by the Guatemalan government as Jackeline Caal,… Read more »

West Bank residents work to ensure tourists spend time with locals

BEIT SAHOUR, West Bank | Bethlehem and the neighboring towns of Beit Jala and Beit Sahour depend economically on tourism, but traditionally have struggled with keeping visitors in the area for more than half a day. Although the hotels are fully booked for Christmas this year, that does not necessarily mean it will translate into… Read more »