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Archbishop Gomez: The Root Violence in Our Society Is the Violence Against the Most Vulnerable (886)

“If the child in the womb has no right to be born, if the sick and the old have no right to be taken care of, then there is no solid foundation to defend anyone’s human rights,” the shepherd of Los Angeles told a pro-life gathering.

02/04/2016 Comment
OneLife LA Facebook

OneLife LA pro-life gathering on Jan. 23.

– OneLife LA Facebook

LOS ANGELES — Efforts to combat social injustice cannot forget that the right to life is foundational, Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles said at a Hispanic pro-life gathering last week.

Pro-life questions are not just one issue among many, the archbishop said, criticizing the effects of a “seamless garment” approach advocated by some Catholics, or what is sometimes called “a consistent ethic of life.” These views mislead people in practice, he said, and result in “a mistaken idea that all issues are morally equivalent.”

“So, in everything, we need to be clear that the root violence in our society is the violence against those who are not yet born and those who are at the end of their...READ MORE

Filed under archbishop jose gomez, prolife issues

Pope: ‘I Would Like to Be an Instrument of Peace in Mexico’ (820)

The Holy Father encouraged Mexican citizens to pray to Our Lady of Guadalupe, “Mexico’s mother,” whose image he looks forward to sitting before in prayer.

02/04/2016 Comments (1)
L'Osservatore Romano

Pope Francis places a bouquet of roses in front of Our Lady of Guadalupe image at the conclusion of Mass celebrated at the Pontifical North American College in Rome on May 2, 2015.

– L'Osservatore Romano

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis will leave for Mexico in just over a week. In a new interview with a Mexican news agency, he told citizens of the crime-ridden country that, while there, he hopes to be a messenger of peace, which must be fought for daily.

“Violence, corruption, war, children who cannot go to school because of their countries at war, trafficking, arms manufacturers who sell weapons so that the wars in the world can continue” is a crisis.

“More or less, this is the climate in which we are living in the world today,” the Pope said in an interview with Mexican news agency Notimex State, published Feb. 3.

The interview marks the first time Pope Francis has participated in a...READ MORE

Filed under mexico, our lady of guadalupe, prayer

I’m Turning to a Mad ‘Saint’ in My Hour of Need; Trump and Catholics and More! (2518)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

02/04/2016 Comment

Click on I’m Turning to a Mad ‘Saint’ in My Hour of Need by Melanie McDonagh of The Catholic Herald link to follow and read.

I’m Turning to a Mad ‘Saint’ in My Hour of Need by Melanie McDonagh of The Catholic Herald - Big Pulpit

Report: 2015 Saw ‘Most Violent’ Persecution of Christians in Modern History – Carl E. Olson, The Catholic World Report

12 Things Modest Feminist Catholics are Tired of Hearing – Brooke Gregory, Epic Pew

Finally, an App for Transcribing Medieval Manuscripts – Mostafa Heddaya, Hyperallergic

How to Overcome Bad Habits by Fulton J. Sheen of The Catholic Gentleman - Big Pulpit

Anglican Drama: The Episcopal Church gets a Time Out Over Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ – John Beeler, The Catholic World Report

Discerning Private Revelation: A Particular Pitfall – Kevin Symonds, Catholic Stand

Can Donald...READ MORE

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Catholics and America’s Changing Face of Drug Addiction (3418)

A recent spike in drug-overdose deaths among young whites has highlighted how the social scope of addiction has widened, as well as the need for the U.S. Church to respond creatively.

02/04/2016 Comments (14)
Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Manchester, N.H., Police Chief Enoch Willard and Holly's Song of Hope founder Tonda DaRe testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee about the recent spike in heroin and prescription-drug abuse and deaths in his city during a hearing at the Dirksen Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill on Jan. 27.

– Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

PROVIDENCE — When recent headlines marked a spike in drug overdoses for white, middle-class Americans, the news saddened but did not surprise Deacon Timothy Flanigan, an HIV specialist at Brown University medical school in Providence, R.I.

Beyond the classroom, Flanigan has directed the HIV care program at the Rhode Island state prison for two decades. He knows better than most Americans that no group is immune from the ravages of drug addiction and that controversial medical protocols for treating pain have brought this scourge to bedrock communities as well as inner-city neighborhoods.

“Many of my old patients have died of drug overdoses,” said Deacon Flanigan, a physician and a...READ MORE

Filed under addiction, heroin, joan frawley desmond, overdose, oxycontin

Cloistered Communities Count Blessings as They Pray for More Vocations (1939)

How did the Year of Consecrated Life impact ‘hidden’ vocations?

02/03/2016 Comments (1)
Courtesy of the Passionist Nuns, Holy Spirit Adoration Sisters and Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles

Pasionist Sisters from Whitesville Ky.; below, a Holy Spirit Adoration Sister prays in front of the tabernacle; and Benedictine Sister Jacinta Phipps (r) on the day of her profession.

– Courtesy of the Passionist Nuns, Holy Spirit Adoration Sisters and Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles

On Feb. 2, Pope Francis ended the Year of Consecrated Life with a special Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica at the Vatican. But what fruits has the year delivered, in terms of highlighting cloistered religious communities and fostering more vocations there?

When the Holy Father, himself a consecrated religious, opened the special year on Nov. 30, 2014, he said he was doing so because he hoped the “shining witness of [the consecrated] life will be as a lamp,” placed where it can “give light and warmth to all of God’s people.”

As reported by the Register, His Holiness urged religious to “‘wake up the world,’ illuminating it with their ‘prophetic and countercurrent witness.’”

And yesterday, he...READ MORE

Filed under benedictines, brian o'neel, dominicans, pope francis, sisters of life, solt, year of consecrated life

Amnesty International Clubs Pose Moral Conundrum on Catholic Campuses (1840)

The international organization is famed for its advocacy of human rights, but its policy positions on abortion and marriage complicate the picture for Catholic campuses.

02/03/2016 Comments (8)
Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

Amnesty International supported Sarah Ewart, pictured with her lawyer outside Belfast Magistrates' Court in Northern Ireland on Dec. 16, in her legal bid to abort her child after it was diagnosed with anencephaly.

– Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

WASHINGTON — Back in 1961, Catholic convert Peter Benenson founded Amnesty International to challenge the conscience of the world on human rights. But today, Amnesty International challenges the consciences of Catholics who have a passion for human rights but cannot sign on board with the organization’s newfound advocacy of abortion.

The dilemma becomes most apparent on the campus of Catholic colleges and universities. According to a recent special report from the Cardinal Newman Society (CNS), a Virginia-based nonprofit that promotes Catholic identity at Catholic educational institutions, 20 Catholic colleges and universities, as well as six Catholic law schools, sponsor student chapters...READ MORE

Filed under amnesty international, peter jesserer smith

New Scorecard Will Track Congressional Action on Religious Liberty (1271)

Wilberforce Initiative’s creation to promote freedom for embattled minorities worldwide.

02/03/2016 Comments (3)

– Shutterstock

WASHINGTON — Religious-liberty advocates hope a new congressional scorecard will embolden members of Congress to promote freedom for embattled religious minorities worldwide.

“We know that religious liberty is more than just freedom of conscience. It touches everything from national security to trade policy to the fundamental values of what it means to be an American,” said former congressman Frank Wolf, announcing the creation of the Wilberforce Initiative’s international religious-freedom scorecard. The initiative promotes religious freedom abroad as a “fundamental human right.”

“I am hopeful that the scorecard will be a tool to provide encouragement, an opportunity to increase...READ MORE

Filed under congress, religious liberty

Texas Bishops, Catholic Conference File Brief Ahead of SCOTUS Hearing Abortion Safety-Standards Case (1026)

If abortion facilities fail to meet established safety standards, the solution is not to lower those standards, said Catholic leaders.

02/03/2016 Comments (2)

WASHINGTON — If abortion facilities fail to meet established safety standards, the solution is not to lower those standards, said Catholic leaders in a brief before the U.S. Supreme Court.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Office of General Counsel filed a friend-of-the-court brief on Feb. 1 on behalf of the national bishops’ conference and the Texas Catholic Conference. 

Abortion businesses’ “failure to comply with health and safety laws” should not be a reason to strike down the laws, the brief said.

“There is ample evidence in this case that hospital admitting privileges and ambulatory surgical center requirements protect women’s lives and health. When such requirements are not...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, bishops, catholic, planned parenthood, religious liberty

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