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Group Accuses Gates Foundation, USAID of Hiding Injectable Contraceptive Dangers (13424)

Congressional hearings are being triggered by allegations that agencies concealed FDA warnings from poor minority women targeted for the injections.

12/26/2013 Comments (10)

WASHINGTON — Hundreds of thousands of impoverished women and girls in both the U.S. and Africa are not being told about dangerous side effects associated with a contraceptive injection that is heavily promoted by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), USAID, Planned Parenthood and a collection of “racist” family-planning groups, a human-rights report alleges.

The scathing report from the Washington-based Rebecca Project for Human Rights, a group that advocates for vulnerable women and girls in the U.S. and Africa, accuses the Gates Foundation of colluding with family-planning organizations to deliberately conceal known risks of the injectable hormonal contraceptive, Depo-Provera,...READ MORE

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Padre Pio and Christmas, When St. Francis Built the First Nativity and Much More! (3897)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

12/26/2013 Comment

Padre Pio & Christmas. Follow the link by Frank M. Rega to read more.

Padre Pio & Christmas by Frank M. Rega - BigPulpit.com

When St. Francis Built the First Nativity – Dale M. Coulter, First Thoughts

Rhetorical Questions: In Defense of Pope Francis – Meghan Garcia, Ignitum Today

The Deeper Meaning of Christmas – Marcellino D’Ambrosio PhD, Catholic Exchange

What Did Pope Francis Say About Orthodox Church? – Byz Pulpit

The Promise & Fulfillment of Christmas - Fr. Robert Johansen, Crisis Magazine

St. John Vianney, Patron Saint of Bad Memories? – Jamey Brown, Catholic Stand

12 Songs of Christmas – Matthew Becklo, Aleteia

LiveScience Asked Me About Why We Believe – Stacy Trasancos PhD

The Story of the Magi in 12 Works of Art – H. H. Ambrose,...READ MORE

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Fr. Robert Barron Comments on The Nativity of Luke's Gospel, Christmas with the Poor and More! (2706)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

12/25/2013 Comment

Fr. Robert Barron Comments on The Nativity of Luke’s Gospel. Follow the link to learn more.

Fr. Robert Barron Comments on The Nativity of Luke’s Gospel - BigPulpit.com

Francis: Christmas Is for Jesus, Not Parties & Shopping – Domenico Agasso Jr., Vatican Insider

Reconciling Belief in the Virgin Birth With Science – Stacy Trasancos PhD

Christmas with the Poor – Carlos X, Super Martyrio

Round-Up of the Best Christmas Posts - BigPulpit.com

God Sent Forth His Son – Fr. Mark S. Camp ThD PhD, MC Catholic

Christmas Carol For Our Time – Donald R. McClarey JD, The American Catholic

Preparing for the 12 Days of Christmas – Dale Ahlquist, Catholic Exchange

Pope Francis Christmas Special - BigPulpit.com

Benedict XVI on the Christmas Readings - Matthew Ramage, Crisis...READ MORE

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Pope Francis’ Christmas Messages (9217)

The Holy Father celebrated his first Christmas midnight Mass at the Vatican and delivered his first urbi et orbi message.

12/25/2013 Comments (26)
CTV

Pope Francis delivers his 2013 urbi et orbi message Dec. 25 from the loggia of St. Peter's Basiica.

– CTV

VATICAN CITY — In his first Christmas urbi et orbi message, Pope Francis has issued impassioned pleas for peace in the Middle East and war-torn countries in Africa, while also remembering children who are victims of war, the elderly, battered women, the sick, trafficked persons and refugees. 

Addressing a crowd of pilgrims from the loggia of St. Peter’s Basilica, the Pope said that true peace is not a “balance of opposing forces,” nor a “lovely facade which conceals conflicts and divisions.” Rather, he said, peace calls for “daily commitment, starting from God’s gift, from the grace which he has given us in Jesus Christ.”

Looking at the Child in the manger, he said “our thoughts turn...READ MORE

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Christmas Joy to the World (3102)

COMMENTARY

12/24/2013 Comments (5)

Detail of The Adoration of the Shepherds, by Von Honthorst

This being the Christmas season, it is worth recalling that this word in English is a conjoining of the words “Christ” and “Mass.”

Today, many in society wish to take both Christ and the Mass out of Christmas and make it merely a secular holiday of tolerant goodwill for a secular religion based on material prosperity. Joy to the world would not be because the Lord is come, but a joy we cause ourselves precisely by ignoring the Lord and the Mass.

It is true that there is good cheer accompanying this feast, and we give gifts. But the good cheer is caused by the fact that in the darkest time of the year, the light begins again to break forth. Christ is born, and God enters the world as a...READ MORE

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Dominican Carolers Bring Joy of Christmas to the Nation’s Capital City (3053)

This choir of preachers is evangelizing downtown D.C. by spreading faith in song.

12/24/2013 Comments (2)
Addie Mena/CNA

Dominican friars and sisters sing carols in Washington on Dec. 16.

– Addie Mena/CNA

WASHINGTON — Passersby stopped for a moment to pause and listen in the busy streets of Washington, as Dominican brothers, sisters and friars gathered in joyful song to wish people a merry Christmas.

One observer, John Cherry of Washington, described the scene as “very soothing to my spirit.”

He told CNA that religious brothers and sisters represent the “call of the future” of the Christian Church.

“The purpose of Jesus is to come and let the light shine in the darkness,” he continued, saying that the Dominicans’ singing offered a reminder of this in an often busy and sometimes difficult city.  

Student brothers and friars from the Dominican House of Studies, along with Dominican...READ MORE

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Spanish Poor Clares Give Pope Francis a Hen for Christmas Dinner (2085)

The special hen was delivered to the Vatican from the manostery of the cloistered nuns, who raise hens ‘with great love and care’ to support themselves.

12/24/2013 Comments (3)
CTV

The Vatican's Christmas 2013 creche was unveiled Dec. 24 in St. Peter's Square.

– CTV

VATICAN CITY — The Poor Clares of Allariz, in western Spain, have given Pope Francis the finest hen from their farm to be served as the main dish for his Christmas dinner.

“This is not just another hen; it is a poulard, a type of high-quality bird fed a special fodder and bred longer than normal, which gives the meat a more tender and flavorful quality,” Sister Maria Pureza, abbess of St. Clare Monastery, told CNA by phone from her cloister on Dec. 18.

The monastery is located on the Camino de Santiago in Galicia, about 80 miles southeast of Santiago de Compostela,

The Poor Clares at Allariz are devoted to prayer and contemplation, and the sisters raise hens “with great love and...READ MORE

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From Merciless Linebacker to Merciful Messenger (20295)

Eric Mahl of the Cleveland Browns was transformed by God’s forgiving love.

12/24/2013 Comments (23)

Eric Mahl

Eric Mahl has always loved a challenge. In his youth, it was the prospect of being the best football player ever. This desire drove him to bench press 450 pounds, earn an NCAA Division I football scholarship and later a place on the Cleveland Browns’ roster.

The 30-year-old Ohio native’s challenge now, however, is sharing the message of Divine Mercy with the world — particularly the poor and most abandoned. This has meant enduring regular rejection and sometimes sub-freezing temperatures on the streets of Cleveland and other cities, in the hope of convincing souls that God’s love for them has not expired.

Eric Mahl spoke about his radical transformation with Register correspondent...READ MORE

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