Category: National and International

Explosive devices detonated in Mexican border churches

MEXICO CITY | The bishop of Matamoros, across the border from Brownsville, Texas, has expressed alarm after two church explosions within four days. “What initially seemed like an isolated incident has taken a new turn, worrying us deeply, as the faithful and citizens in general have the right to a secure environment, both in their… Read more »

Pope adds feast of Mary, mother of the church to universal calendar

VATICAN CITY | Pope Francis has decreed that Latin-rite Catholics around the world will mark the feast of “the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church” on the Monday after Pentecost each year. The Gospel reading for the feast, which technically is called a “memorial,” is John 19:25-31, which recounts how from the cross Jesus… Read more »

Catholics urge political leaders to take steps to curb gun violence

WASHINGTON | In a Feb. 28 open letter to President Donald Trump and members of Congress, Jesuit Father Michael Sheeran, president of the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities, urged U.S. leaders to listen to the teens who survived the Parkland, Florida, school shooting and help them “fix this” plague of gun violence in our… Read more »

Blessed Paul VI to be canonized at close of synod, cardinal says

ROME | Blessed Paul VI will be declared a saint in late October at the end of the Synod of Bishops on youth and discernment, said Cardinal Pietro Parolin, Vatican secretary of state. After mentioning the late pope in a speech to the International Catholic Migration Commission March 6, Cardinal Parolin confirmed to reporters that… Read more »

Immigrants, advocates navigating post-DACA-deadline landscape

WASHINGTON | The last government shutdown — well, threatened shutdown, anyway — seems so long ago. The nine-hour “funding lapse” of Feb. 9, like the three-day shutdown that began Jan. 20, hinged on how Congress was going to address the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program that President Donald Trump said he would end March… Read more »

Christian leaders reopen Church of the Holy Sepulcher after ’emergency’

JERUSALEM | Christian leaders in the Holy Land reopened the Church of the Holy Sepulcher Feb. 28 after the Israeli government set up a negotiating team to resolve a municipal dispute over property taxes. The heads of Christian churches expressed “our gratitude to all those who have worked tirelessly to uphold the Christian presence in… Read more »

Congo’s bishops: Two killed during protests against ‘dictatorship’

KINSHASA, Congo | Congo’s bishops said a young Catholic was killed at point-blank range and another was shot dead while trying to return home from anti-government protests. The protests, organized by the church’s Lay Coordination Committee, were designed to be peaceful marches “to say no to dictatorship,” said a statement on the bishops’ website Feb…. Read more »

Dozens of Catholics arrested as they ask Congress to help ‘Dreamers’

WASHINGTON | Dozens of Catholics, including men and women religious, were arrested near the U.S. Capitol Feb. 27 in the rotunda of a Senate building in Washington as they called on lawmakers to help young undocumented adults brought to the U.S. as minors obtain some sort of permanent legal status. Some of them sang and… Read more »

Chicago priest fasting to support ‘Dreamers’ plans to march at White House

CHICAGO (CNS) — A Chicago pastor who has been on a strict fast for weeks to show solidarity for DACA recipients and push for humane immigration laws plans to take his protest to Washington March 4 and 5. Congress must vote to save the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program by March 5. That is… Read more »

Catholics urged to join pope in prayers for South Sudan, Congo Feb. 23

WASHINGTON | The president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops encouraged Catholics across the nation to join with Pope Francis Feb. 23 for a special day of prayer and fasting for peace, with special prayers for Congo and South Sudan. “Tragically, violent conflict rages in both nations” and “innocent families suffer” in both countries,… Read more »