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Pope and Patriarch Generate Hope for Unity in Jerusalem (3664)

A U.S. Orthodox archon told the Register he came to ‘witness history’ in the making, as both Catholic and Orthodox leaders continue to make historic ecumenical gestures for East and West.

06/03/2014 Comments (7)
Facebook/EcumenicalPatriarch/John Mindala

Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew stand together May 26 in the courtyard of the Patriarchate of Jerusalem's summer residence at Little Galilee.

– Facebook/EcumenicalPatriarch/John Mindala

JERUSALEM — The historic meeting between Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople in the Holy Land continues to make its effects felt throughout the Catholic and Orthodox worlds.

The public display of fraternal love between the apostolic successors of the brothers St. Peter and St. Andrew has raised hope to new heights that full communion between East and West may be achieved before the Great Schism turns 1,000 years old in 2054.

Since the historic joint prayer meeting in the Holy Sepulcher on May 25, and their signing of a joint declaration, there is already discussion under way that both leaders will meet in the ancient city of Nicaea in modern Turkey to...READ MORE

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Spanish Bishops Seek Prayers for Current, Future Kings (1212)

King Juan Carlos announced June 2 that he would abdicate the throne in favor of his son, Prince Felipe.

06/03/2014 Comments (4)
Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images

King Juan Carlos of Spain (l) and Prince Felipe of Spain at a June 3 public event in San Lorenzo de El Escoria, Spain.

– Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images

MADRID — The Spanish bishops' conference has called for prayers for King Juan Carlos and his successor, after the king announced he would abdicate the throne in favor of his son, Prince Felipe.

The conference’s leadership committee recognized Juan Carlos’ career, praising “his generous dedication and his contribution to the recent history of Spain.”

The king said in a televised message June 2 that he began to consider his decision Jan. 6, when he turned 76 years old.

“A younger generation deserves to be at the forefront, with new energies and a new way of confronting today's reality,” Juan Carlos said.

He said Felipe has “the maturity, preparation and commitment necessary” to be Spain’s...READ MORE

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Doubts Raised Over Release Reports of Christian Woman in Sudan (3347)

Meriam Yehya Ibrahim Ishag, who was sentenced to execution for her faith, gave birth to a baby girl May 27 while imprisoned and in chains.

06/03/2014 Comments (1)


WASHINGTON — A government official in Sudan is denying claims that a Christian woman sentenced to execution for her faith may soon be freed.

Meriam Yehya Ibrahim, 27, is recognized as Muslim under Sudanese law because her father was Muslim, despite the fact that her father abandoned the family when Ibrahim was 6 years old, and she was raised as a Christian by her Ethiopian Orthodox mother.

Ibrahim is married to Daniel Wani, a Christian and an American citizen. She gave birth to their second child while imprisoned and in chains on May 27.  

She was arrested in August 2013; a Khartoum court convicted her May 15 of apostasy from Islam, as well as adultery, on the grounds that marriage...READ MORE

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Vatican Candlelight Vigil Honors Mary’s Faith and Example (2046)

Cardinal Angelo Comastri led hundreds of pilgrims in prayer to close a month dedicated to the Blessed Mother.

06/03/2014 Comment
CNA/Daniel Ibáñez

Pilgrims pray during a prayer vigil dedicated to the Virgin Mary in the Vatican Gardens on May 31.

– CNA/Daniel Ibáñez

VATICAN CITY — Hundreds of clergy, religious and laity processed through the Vatican Gardens in a candlelight vigil on Saturday evening to mark the close of a month traditionally dedicated to the Virgin Mary.

Led by Cardinal Angelo Comastri, the pilgrims prayed the Rosary and sang Marian hymns as evening fell over the Vatican. Families with infants and small children processed alongside religious sisters and priests as meditations on the life of Christ were read.

Cardinal Comastri began the procession by reading a passage from Pope Francis’ recent apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel). Mary is “the Mother of the evangelizing Church, and without her, we cannot...READ MORE

Filed under catholic faith, evangelii gaudium, jesus christ, pope francis, the virgin mary, vatican gardens

Taking Live Action in Congress Against Planned Parenthood (2892)

The pro-life group Live Action, which has exposed misconduct at Planned Parenthood facilities, has launched a new campaign to defund the abortion funder.

06/03/2014 Comment

WASHINGTON — After several years on the backburner, the issue of federal funding for Planned Parenthood is back in the news.

On Wednesday, the pro-life organization Live Action launched a centralized website for six years of videos and phone calls highlighting alleged racism, sexism and illegal actions taken at Planned Parenthood facilities across America. Along with the website is a petition calling for the defunding of Planned Parenthood by Congress.

As the nation’s largest abortion provider, with 327,166 abortions done in 2012, Planned Parenthood has long been a target of pro-life activists and politicians. In 2011, when the federal government nearly shut down as Democrats and...READ MORE

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A Dying Prominent Catholic Author's Last Post, 10 Commandments for Catholics Online and More! (5061)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

06/03/2014 Comment

Click on the Search for the Secret of Life and Death link by Stratford Caldecott to read more.

The New York Times and the Big Fish that Got Away by Jeff McLeod of Catholic Stand - BigPulpit.com

A Dying Prominent Catholic Author's Last Post: Search for the Secret of Life and Death - Stratford Caldecott

Rediscovering Devotion to Our Lady of Good Help – Edward Looney, Ignitum Today

Archbishop Eamon Martin of Armagh Offers 10 Commandments for Catholics Online – The Catholic Herald

Martin Treptow’s Pledge - Don. R. McClarey JD, The American Catholic

How to Address the Crisis in Fatherhood Through Prayer – David Clayton, The Way of Beauty

So I Went to Rome – Tammy Ruiz, Catholic Stand

What the San Antonio Spurs & Catholicism have in Common – Martina Kreitzer, Catholic Sistas


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Pope Francis Encourages Married Couples (7943)

The Holy Father pointed to fidelity, perseverance and fruitfulness as the three characteristics of authentic Christian love.

06/02/2014 Comments (5)

– Shutterstock

VATICAN CITY -- In his June 2 homily, Pope Francis addressed married couples at the Vatican, pointing to fidelity, perseverance and fruitfulness as the three characteristics of authentic Christian love.

Using the fidelity of Christ to sinners as the ultimate example, Pope Francis commented: "It is a faithful love. It is a persevering love. He never tires of loving his Church."

The Holy Father encouraged married couples to mirror the Lord, saying that Christ’s "faithfulness is like a light on marriage."

Pope Francis went on to note the importance of perseverance as the driving force against the inevitable difficulties and struggles that all married couples encounter.

"Married life must...READ MORE

Filed under marriage, love, pope francis

Bishop Michael Barber: A ‘Career Classroom Teacher’ (9633)

The Jesuit bishop of the Diocese of Oakland, Calif., discusses Catholic identity in education and his reason to contractually require diocesan teachers to behave in accord with Church teaching.

06/02/2014 Comments (31)

Bishop Michael Barber of Oakland, Calif.

– OakDiocese.org

In May, almost a full year after his installation as the fifth bishop of Oakland, Calif., Bishop Michael Barber sparked headlines when he made changes to the 2014-15 teachers’ contract for schools in his diocese that required faculty to “model and promote behavior in conformity with the teaching of the Roman Catholic faith in matters of faith and morals” in their personal and professional lives.

Three teachers have refused to sign the contracts, and one likened it to a “loyalty oath.” In media interviews, teachers and parents criticized Bishop Barber for altering the contracts and subjecting teachers to unacceptable scrutiny of their private conduct.

The Oakland Diocese has since provided...READ MORE

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