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Mortar Fire Hits Vatican Embassy in Syria (2567)

No lives were lost in the strike on the Damascus nunciature, but tensions are high just two weeks after a large massacre of Christians.

11/06/2013 Comments (1)
Weenson Oo/picture-u.net

Melkite Greek Patriarch Gregorios III of Antioch

– Weenson Oo/picture-u.net

DAMASCUS — The Vatican’s nunciature in Damascus was hit by a mortar round at 6:30am  on Tuesday, damaging the building but neither killing nor injuring any persons.

“Given the hour, there was only material damage, not to people,” Vatican spokesman Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi said in a Nov. 5 press conference.

“Had it been later, it would have been much more dangerous,” he said. “Thanks to God, no one was hurt.”

The mortar hit the embassy’s rooftop, and, according to The Associated Press, it is “not clear” if the building was targeted.

Archbishop Mario Zenari, apostolic nuncio to Syria, told Vatican Radio that “we do not know why it happened. … We cannot say that the Vatican...READ MORE

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Pro-Life Advocates Demand Abortion Transparency in Health-Care Plans (2804)

A bill in Congress would require health insurers on the exchanges to be up-front with consumers about whether their plans include an abortion surcharge.

11/06/2013 Comments (1)
Addie Mena/CNA

Rep. Chris Smith, R-N.J.

– Addie Mena/CNA

WASHINGTON — Pro-life leaders are calling for transparency in the health-care exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act, asking that they include an open acknowledgement of whether each individual plan funds abortion.

“Abortions are covered” under the health-care law, and “taxpayers are going to be funding it,” said Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, at an Oct. 31 rally in front of the U.S. Capitol.

“But what’s really interesting is the secretary [of Health and Human Services] herself wrote a memo this April demanding that all insurance providers cover Planned Parenthood and their services in the health-insurance exchanges,” she said.

Participants in the...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, abortion coverage, health care, healthcare, obamacare, rep. chris smith

Different Generations, Common Commitment to Life (2563)

African American Catholics Elbert Guillory and lawyer Louis Brown explain why their faith impelled them to shift their political allegiances.

11/06/2013 Comments (7)

Louis A. Brown, Jr.

DETROIT — As a law student at Howard University, Louis Brown loved politics. He had immersed himself in the world of the Democratic Party. The 20-something Detroit native had spent a summer working for U.S. Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich. He spent another summer as a law clerk at Michigan’s Democratic Gov. Jennifer Granholm’s office for legal counsel.

“It was an exciting time being a student in Washington, D.C. I loved every minute of it. I was a political junkie, in every sense of the word,” recalled Brown.

During his third year in law school, Brown had a reversion back to his Catholic faith: “I was facing graduation, had just broken up with my girlfriend and was feeling the real need to be...READ MORE

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Families Face Moral Dilemmas With Obamacare (8877)

With federal regulations putting the squeeze on families and their options, some Christian ministries offer a hopeful alternative.

11/06/2013 Comments (30)
YouTube

HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius speaks Oct. 30 during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing.

– YouTube

WASHINGTON — The disastrous rollout of President Barack Obama’s signature legislation, the Affordable Care Act (ACA), has challenged the president’s famous promise: “If you like your plan, you can keep it; if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor.”

But according to Catholic and other Christian critics, Obamacare appears also to say that if a person likes his morals, he can’t keep those either.

Scott Griswold, a Catholic insurance agent in South Carolina, said health insurance has been part of his insurance business for more than two decades. But the ACA’s mandates have made him decide that his conscience won’t allow him to sell health policies in the future.

“I’m going to...READ MORE

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Ten Bishops Nominated for USCCB President (5435)

A successor to current president Cardinal Timothy Dolan will be elected at the Nov. 11-14 USCCB general assembly in Baltimore.

11/06/2013 Comments (16)

WASHINGTON — Ten bishops are nominees to become the next president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops at the group’s general assembly to be held in Baltimore Nov. 11-14.

The nominees come from a wide variety of backgrounds. The conference president plays a significant role in coordinating and leading charitable and social work and education, while providing a public face for the Catholic Church in the U.S.

Archbishop Gregory Aymond is the first New Orleans native to head the city’s archdiocese, where he had served as an auxiliary bishop from 1997-2000. He is the former bishop of Austin, Texas, and has been archbishop of New Orleans since 2009.

The archbishop recently made...READ MORE

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Why the Church Will Never Approve Same-Sex Unions, How to Spring a Soul from Purgatory and More! (5726)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

11/06/2013 Comments (1)

Why the Church Will Never Approve Same-Sex Unions. Follow the link by Fr. Dwight Longenecker to read more.

Why the Church Will Never Approve Same-Sex Unions by Fr. Dwight Longenecker - BigPulpit.com

How to Spring a Soul from Purgatory in 4 Easy Steps – Taylor Marshall PhD

Good News About Down Syndrome – Chelsea Zimmerman, Ignitum Today

O’Malley: Public Should Know which Health Plans Cover Abortion – Catholic Herald

The Unia & Vatican II – Byz Pulpit

The Blacklisting of Orson Scott Card – Matthew Archbold, Creative Minority Report

Why Religion Matters More Than Science – Stacy Trasancos PhD

On the Ringing of Bells and Other “Anachronisms” - Peter Kwasniewski, New Liturgical Movement

Blessed John Paul II’s ‘Thomystic’ Personalism - Deacon Jim Russell, Catholic Stand

The...READ MORE

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U.S. Bishops: ENDA Bill Is Wrong Solution to Discrimination (4436)

A bill to prohibit workplace discrimination against homosexual and transgender persons threatens religious freedom and undermines the biological basis of gender, its critics say.

11/05/2013 Comments (12)
Wikipedia

U.S. Capitol

– Wikipedia

WASHINGTON — A bill to prohibit workplace discrimination against homosexual and transgender persons poses serious threats to religious freedom and undermines the biological basis of gender, say its critics as it heads to a crucial Senate vote.

“All Americans should oppose unjust discrimination, but ENDA does not advance that goal. In fact, it moves us in the wrong direction,” said scholar and author Ryan T. Anderson.

He told CNA on Nov. 5 that the proposed law “creates new, subjective protected classes that would expose employers to unimaginable liability.”

“No doubt these are difficult and delicate issues, and that is why they are best left to those closest to the decision — not a...READ MORE

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Vatican Releases Preparatory Document for Synod on Family (2287)

The synod, which will take place in October 2014, will explore the theme of the pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelization.

11/05/2013 Comments (2)
Alan Holdren/CNA

Cardinal Peter Erdo, relator general of the 2014 Extraordinary Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, speaks at at a Nov. 5 Vatican press conference.

– Alan Holdren/CNA

VATICAN CITY — At a press conference Tuesday, the Vatican released the official preparatory document on the upcoming synod of bishops on the family, revealing key topics the meeting’s discussion will focus on.

“The document contains, as well as a general presentation on the matter, various essential biblical and magisterial quotations on the theme as well as a questionnaire on the main challenges regarding the family,” said Cardinal Peter Erdo of Esztergom-Budapest, Hungary.

Cardinal Erdo, who was appointed as the new general secretary of the Synod of Bishops by Pope Francis on Sept. 21, made the announcement at the press conference.

The Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod...READ MORE

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