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Pope Francis Film Is in the Works (7413)

REGISTER EXCLUSIVE: Producer Christian Peschken has secured $25 million in financial backing and is assembling a production team that includes prominent Vatican journalist Andrea Tornielli.

04/26/2013 Comments (16)
CTV/Vatican Radio/Facebook

Pope Francis smiles from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica following the announcement of his March 13 election.

– CTV/Vatican Radio/Facebook

ROME — When producer Christian Peschken watched Pope Francis appear on the balcony in Rome on the day of his election, he thought: “This will make a great scene for the end of a movie about his life up to the point where he became Pope.”

In a matter of days, Peschken began turning the thought into a reality. He is already deep into the project with the working title Friend of the Poor: The Pope Francis Story.

Peschken is organizing it as a theatrical motion picture and is in the process of recruiting some prominent people in the industry to help him with the endeavor. A European investment group has already approved a $25-million budget for the film.

Projects don’t always come...READ MORE

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New Treatment Could Improve Thinking, Memory in People With Down Syndrome (4509)

And, pro-life advocates say, if successful, it might serve to stem the current pandemic rate of abortion for unborn children with Down syndrome.

04/26/2013 Comments (5)
dsrtf.org

– dsrtf.org

MARLBOROUGH, Mass. — It’s not a cure for Down syndrome, but if a new drug called RG1662 works on people with Down’s as well as it has on mice, it could bring significant improvement to their thinking and learning and their chance for an independent lifestyle.

Life itself is at stake: While one in 800 children born in the United States has Down syndrome, when parents discover their child has Down’s in the womb, 90% opt for abortion.

Already, the trial drug has improved the ability of mice with Down’s to find, and then remember, their way through mazes. Further tests on humans unaffected by Down syndrome have indicated the drug has no side effects, so Swiss pharmaceutical giant Roche...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, dignity of human persons, down syndrome, genetics

Rhode Island Set to Be 10th State to Approve Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ (3154)

Despite heavy push back from the Catholic community led by Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence, legislation to legalize same-sex 'marriage' was approved by the Senate April 24 and will likely pass the House May 2.

04/26/2013 Comments (19)

Facebook/Bishop Thomas J. Tobin

The Catholic community in Rhode Island pushed back hard against the drive to legalize same-sex “marriage” in their state, but years of intense lobbying and advocacy by the homosexual lobby finally prevailed with state legislators.

Gov. Lincoln Chafee, a former Republican turned Independent, is expected to soon sign a bill that will make Rhode Island the sixth and final state in New England to legalize same-sex “marriage” and the 10th in the country, including Washington D.C.

On April 24, the Rhode Island State Senate voted 26-12 to allow same-sex couples to “marry” in the state. The state’s House of Representatives already approved a similar bill, and it is expected to pass the...READ MORE

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Do Emergency Contraceptive Medications Cause Early Abortions? (4331)

COMMENTARY: Part II, scientific experts give ambiguous opinions on emergency contraception’s effects.

04/26/2013 Comments (18)
Getty Images

– Getty Images

Part I of this essay can be read here.

In the first part of this essay, I outlined two conflicting opinions of conscientious Catholic thinkers on the question of whether Plan B causes early abortions. This second part summarizes the views of a secular authority on EC, James Trussell, and then sets forth my own conclusion on the issue.

 

The Arguments of James Trussell

Around the time that the German bishops released their statement on EC, James Trussell and Elizabeth G. Raymond published a paper entitled, “Emergency Contraception: A Last Chance to Prevent Unintended Pregnancy.” Trussell is the director of the Office of Population Research at Princeton University and is considered...READ MORE

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‘Oblivion’ Offers Mixed Bag of Post-Apocalyptic Humanity (3001)

FILM REVIEW

04/26/2013 Comments (3)
Universal Pictures

Tom Cruise stars in 'Oblivion.'

– Universal Pictures

Summer 2013 at the movies will not be kind to planet Earth. Hollywood will serve up four high-profile movies — all featuring brand-name leading men — that envision bleak destinies for this third rock from the sun that we call home, or at least our place on it.

Perhaps it’s the anxieties of these uncertain times projected onto the screen. Or maybe it’s just that post-apocalyptic scenarios sell more popcorn.

Either way, first up is Oblivion, a serviceably entertaining sci-fi thriller set on a post-human Earth, in a not-so-distant future, decades after a war with alien invaders known as the Scavengers or “Scavs.”

Opening narration recounts how, in a last-stand effort, mankind resorted...READ MORE

Filed under dystopia, film

Law Must be Based in Truth, Archbishop Tells Judges (2615)

Miami Archbishop Thomas Wenski says the state justly favors stable marriages because they serve the common good as the optimal conditions for the raising of future generations of its citizens.

04/26/2013 Comments (7)
ANA RODRIGUEZ-SOTO / Florida Catholic

Archbishop Thomas Wenski preaches the homily at the annual Red Mass for the Miami Catholic Lawyers Guild

– ANA RODRIGUEZ-SOTO / Florida Catholic

MIAMI — Discussing the push for same-sex “marriage,” Archbishop Thomas Wenski of Miami told judges and lawyers at the city’s 2013 Red Mass that freedom and law must be based on reality and objective truth.

“When a democracy bases itself on moral relativism and when it considers every ethical principle or value to be negotiable … it is already, and in spite of its formal rules, on its way to totalitarianism,” Archbishop Wenski preached during his homily on April 24.

“The might of right quickly becomes might makes right.”

The Red Mass is traditionally an annual Mass of the Holy Spirit for the sake of legal professionals. The Mass preceded a reception of the Miami Catholic Lawyers...READ MORE

Filed under catholic, marriage, prayer

Colombian Senate Rejects Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ (2097)

The president of the Bishops’ Conference of Colombia, Cardinal Ruben Salazar, had issued a plea to lawmakers to consider the Church’s arguments on the question and to protect marriage.

04/26/2013 Comments (4)

Cardinal Ruben Salazar

– JuanCardozo/wiki

BOGOTÁ, Colombia — By a vote of 51-17, the Colombian Senate has rejected a bill that would legalize same-sex “marriage” in the country.

The bill was proposed by Senator Armando Benedetti in August 2011. It received only a fraction of the 50 ‘Yes’ votes that would have been needed from the nation’s 98 senators in order to pass. 

Both supporters and opponents of the bill demonstrated outside the Senate building as lawmakers voted down the measure after several hours of debate on April 23.

The president of the Bishops’ Conference of Colombia, Cardinal Ruben Salazar, had issued a plea to lawmakers to consider the Church’s arguments on the question and to protect marriage as being a...READ MORE

Filed under bishops, marriage

Vatican Official Cautions of ‘Subtle’ Religious Freedom Violations (3152)

Cardinal Giancarlo Ravasi says the restrictions on religious freedom ‘are not simply legal or political issues but a direct outrage on the human dignity of persons.’

04/26/2013 Comments (1)
Estefania Aguirre/CNA

Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi, president of the Pontifical Council for Culture at the Pope's book launch Nov. 20 in Pius X Hall.

– Estefania Aguirre/CNA

VATICAN CITY — The president of the Pontifical Council for Culture cautioned that both “direct and indirect religious persecution” is growing in many areas of the world, even in democratic nations.

In remarks addressed to the TEDx conference on religious freedom held April 19 in the Vatican, Cardinal Gianfranco Ravasi lamented “the tragic and painful lack of religious liberty in different parts of the world today.”

In the modern “globalized world,” where various cultures and religions intermingle, “religious liberty is not a luxury ... but an imperative imposed on modern society for congenial living and progress,” he said.

The cardinal pointed to St. Peter’s statement before the...READ MORE

Filed under catholic, faith, religious freedom, religious liberty

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