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Despite Rise of ʻNones,ʼ U.S. Religious Belief Still Strong, Say Experts (5785)

Changes in politics are behind the motives of most of the unchurched, but inactive Catholics are most likely to hold onto Catholic identity.

08/21/2013 Comments (5)
Mazur/CNA

– Mazur/CNA

WASHINGTON — An increase in the number of people who claim no religious affiliation in the U.S. does not necessarily mean that the country is growing significantly more secular, according to some experts.

Frank Newport, editor in chief of Gallup, explained during a panel discussion held by the Pew Research Center in Washington that the data indicating the rise in self-described “nones” reveals simply the “already unreligious who are just changing the way they label themselves.”

Claude Fischer, a professor of sociology at the University of California-Berkeley, added that, despite these changes, “Americans have long been, and still remain, the most religious people among the peoples of...READ MORE

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Picasso's First Communion, My Final 500 Words to College Students, Doctrine, and Much More! (5319)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

08/21/2013 Comment

Pablo Picasso’s First Communion Painting. Follow the link by Rich of the Over the Rhine and Into the Tiber blog to view and read more.

Pablo Picasso’s First Communion Masterpiece Painting by Rich of the Over the Rhine and Into the Tiber blog – BigPulpit.com

My Final 500 Words to College Students – Dr. Taylor Marshall, Canterbury Tales

Doctrine Is Not Just about Doctrine – Stacy Trasancos PhD

Audrey Assad: Songs Humbly Offered Gift to Catholics – Megan Hodder, Catholic Herald

The Flight from God – God & Caesar

Jesuit University Offers Master’s Degree in Yoga Spirituality – Matt Archbold, Catholic Education Daily

Igniting the World: Ablaze with the Spirit – Abram Muenzberg, Ignitum Today

The Holy Belt of the Virgin, a Relic of the Assumption - Gregory DiPippo, New Liturgical Movement

An Encounter in Front...READ MORE

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Tracing the Roots of Anti-Christian Violence in Egypt (4845)

Samuel Tadros, an authority on Islamic movements in the Middle East, says the persecuted minority may soon flee, following the path of Christians in other Muslim countries.

08/20/2013 Comments (14)
Ed Giles, Getty Images News/Getty Images

An Egyptian man stands amongst debris in the Nasr City district on Aug. 14 in Cairo.

– Ed Giles, Getty Images News/Getty Images

On Aug. 14, a wave of anti-Christian violence swept through Egypt, resulting in at least five deaths and the destruction of more than 30 churches. The Associated Press recorded an eyewitness account of nuns paraded through the streets “like prisoners of war.” Among the collateral damage: the historic Virgin Mary and Anba Abraam Monastery, where Christians have gathered since the fifth century.

The reports confirmed the worst fears of Egypt’s embattled Christian community, which faced mounting violence after the 2011 election of Mohammed Morsi, the country’s first democratically elected president, who was removed from power by the military on July 3.

Religious-freedom activists had...READ MORE

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Sept. 30 Consistory to Determine John XXIII and John Paul II Canonization Date (8757)

Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, announced the news today in Rimini at a meeting of international Church leaders.

08/20/2013 Comments (22)
Wikipedia

Pope John Paul II

– Wikipedia

VATICAN CITY — A senior Vatican official has confirmed that Pope Francis will preside over a consistory Sept. 30 that will determine the date of the canonizations of Blessed John Paul II and Blessed John XXIII.

Speaking to Vatican Radio during a break at the 34th Meeting for Friendship Among Peoples in Rimini Tuesday, Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, said, “This Sept. 30, the Pope will preside over the consistory on the saints, and on that occasion, he will announce the dates of the canonizations.”

Many, including the Holy Father, have pondered aloud on possible dates. During his papal press conference on his return from Rio de Janeiro last...READ MORE

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Catholic Coptic Patriarch Says Egypt Locked in ʻWar Against Terrorism’ (4599)

Patriarch Sidrak praises Egyptʼs military and moderate Muslims for their support as Muslim Brotherhood violence intensifies.

08/20/2013 Comments (1)
Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem

Patriarch Ibrahim Isaac Sidrak of Alexandria

– Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem

ALEXANDRIA, Egypt — The leader of the Coptic Catholic Church has expressed solidarity with other Egyptians over the wave of violence that has struck the country, bluntly calling the events a struggle against terrorist forces.

Patriarch Ibrahim Isaac Sidrak of Alexandria said that, “out of love for our country and in solidarity with all lovers of Egypt, both Christians and Muslims,” the patriarchate will not label the crisis “a political struggle between different factions.”

Rather, the conflict is “a war against terrorism,” the patriarch said in an Aug. 18 statement.

On Aug. 14, Egyptian security forces violently broke up the camps of protesters allied with the Muslim Brotherhood,...READ MORE

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Catholic League Petition Demands End to HHS Mandate (6607)

The organization’s president, Bill Donohue, argues the Obama administration must scrap the HHS mandate now that repeated fixes have failed.

08/20/2013 Comments (9)

WASHINGTON — A new online petition is asking the federal government to withdraw the Department of Health and Human Services' controversial contraception mandate on the grounds that it violates the fundamental “inalienable right” to religious liberty.

“The amount of time and money spent trying to reconcile the HHS mandate with legitimate First Amendment concerns has been considerable, and without a satisfactory conclusion,” said Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. “The only sensible outcome is for the administration to withdraw the mandate altogether.”

The petition stresses that religious liberty is “a First Amendment right that cannot be...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, catholic league for civil rights, contraception, hhs mandate, persecution of christians, president barack obama, religious freedom, surgical sterilization, u.s. conference of catholic bishops, u.s. constitution

LCWR 2013 Assembly: Little Evidence Yet of Any Reforms (11590)

NEWS ANALYSIS: More than a year after the Vatican-mandated changes, the U.S. women religious leaders’ group appears uninterested in complying.

08/20/2013 Comments (54)

When the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) met in its annual assembly Aug. 13-16 in Orlando, Fla., the main topic of business was how the sisters would respond to a 2012 mandate of reform from the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF). The LCWR is a canonically erected superiors’ organization of nearly 1,400 sisters who are leaders of about 80% of the women religious in this country.

Interest in their 2013 assembly was heightened by the presence of the Vatican’s apostolic delegate charged with conducting the reform, Archbishop J. Peter Sartain of Seattle. He had offered to attend the LCWR 2012 assembly to discuss the mandate that had come out April 18 of...READ MORE

Filed under bride of christ, catholic faith, congregation for the doctrine of the faith, doctrinal assessment, jesus christ, leadership conference of women religious, religious vocations, u.s. conference of catholic bishops

Historic Pro-life Petition Close to Igniting EU Abortion Debate (3456)

Organizers hope a successful petition can jump-start a new European pro-life movement.

08/20/2013 Comments (4)
PreciousLife.com

One of Us petition gatherers at Stormont, Northern Ireland.

– PreciousLife.com

BRUSSELS — A citizen-led initiative is nearing the 1 million signatures needed to prompt a discussion in Europe's parliament on the value of human life and putting a stop to funding abortion and embryo-destroying research.

The initiative, called “One of Us,” seeks to protect the “dignity, the right to life and the integrity of every human being” at all stages of development in the European Union.

It asks the European Union “to end the financing of activities which presuppose the destruction of human embryos, in particular in the areas of research, development aid and public health,” according to the organizers’ website.

The petition was introduced as a European citizens’ initiative,...READ MORE

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