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Belgium’s Slippery Slope: Lethal Injections for Deaf Twins Going Blind (5741)

Grounds for euthanasia expand in Belgium, where legislators are also challenging the right of doctors and hospitals to say ‘No’ to doctor-directed death.

02/11/2013 Comments (16)

– Wikipedia

JETTE, Belgium — Marc and Eddy Verbessem dressed in their new suits and shoes, had a cup of coffee and said goodbye to their parents and brother for the last time. Then the 45-year-old identical twin brothers gave a last little wave, and “they were gone,” said the doctor who gave them both lethal injections in December at the Brussels University Hospital in Jette, Belgium.

Born deaf, the brothers had lived together their entire lives, sharing a small apartment and working as cobblers in the village of Putte near Antwerp. When they were diagnosed nearly two years ago with a rare form of congenital glaucoma and told that they would eventually go blind, they sought euthanasia in Belgium,...READ MORE

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Pope Benedict XVI to Step Down Feb. 28 (16452)

The Holy Father, who became the leader of the world's more than 1 billion Catholics nearly eight years ago, says 'my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry.'

02/11/2013 Comments (81)

– Wikipedia

Editor's note: Following is the full statement from Pope Benedict XVI resigning his papacy Feb. 28:

Dear brothers,

I have convoked you to this consistory, not only for the three canonizations, but also to communicate to you a decision of great importance for the life of the Church. After having repeatedly examined my conscience before God, I have come to the certainty that my strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry. I am well aware that this ministry, due to its essential spiritual nature, must be carried out not only with words and deeds, but no less with prayer and suffering. However, in today’s world, subject to so...READ MORE

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Momentum Builds Around National March for Marriage (2050)

The event will take place in Washington, D.C., on March 26.

02/11/2013 Comments (1)

WASHINGTON — Plans for a national March for Marriage in downtown Washington are generating excitement and enthusiastic support, according to organizers of the event.

The upcoming March for Marriage “is an opportunity to witness to the culture about our pro-marriage beliefs,” said Thomas Peters, cultural director for the National Organization for Marriage.

Peters told Catholic News Agency that coming together visibly to support the institution of marriage is critically important.

The National Organization for Marriage announced in late January that it would be hosting a March for Marriage in the nation’s capital on March 26.

The date coincides with the first day of oral arguments...READ MORE

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Trust in God's Strength When You Answer His Call, Pope Counsels (1894)

The Holy Father’s Angelus reflections focused on the Gospel reading from St. Luke that recounts Jesus calling St. Peter to follow him.

02/11/2013 Comments (3)

– Mazur/catholicnews.org.uk

VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI spoke about how Jesus calls his followers to believe in his power to overcome their sins so that they do not stand in the way of answering his call.

“The experience of Peter, certainly unique, is also representative of the call of every apostle of the Gospel, who must never be discouraged in proclaiming Christ to all men to the ends of the world,” Pope Benedict said Feb. 10, before reciting the Angelus prayer in St. Peter’s Square.

His reflections focused on today’s Gospel reading from St. Luke, which recounts Jesus calling St. Peter to follow him.

“The call is in fact preceded by the teaching of Jesus to the crowd and a miraculous catch of fish,...READ MORE

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Bishop John D'Arcy: a Legacy of 'Tough Love' (7892)

The former Boston auxiliary recalls his attempts to stop the sex-abuse scandal before it happened.

02/10/2013 Comments (16)

Bishop John D'Arcy

– Courtesy of Catholic Charities, Fort Wayne, Ind.

Editor's Note: Bishop John D'Arcy, bishop emeritus of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Ind., died Feb. 3 at the age of 80. In this January 2012 article, Register senior editor Joan Frawley Desmond recounted Bishop D'Arcy's prescient call for stronger measures to prevent clergy sexual abuse in the 1970s and 1980s, while he was serving the Archdiocese of Boston as a priest and subsequently as an auxiliary bishop.

Originally published 01-04-2012

BOSTON — Ten years ago, Bishop John D’Arcy of the Fort Wayne-South Bend (Ind.) Diocese got an urgent call from lawyers representing the Boston Archdiocese, where he had previously served as an auxiliary bishop from 1975-1985. He learned that...READ MORE

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Downton’s Delightful Dilemmas (13968)

Commentary: The BBC television show provokes fascinating, instructive dialogue.

02/10/2013 Comments (65)

Downton Abbey, a very popular series halfway through its third season on PBS, features a British family in possession of a huge and somewhat crumbling estate and the large staff employed to serve them.

The acting is excellent, the costumes stunning and the scenery most pleasing to the eye. The story lines are many, intricate and engaging. That said, a case could be made for watching the show solely for the few minutes in which Dame Maggie Smith appears in each episode.

Although some critics complain that Downton is just a sophisticated soap opera, not too many specify what they find “soap opera-ish” about it. It can’t just be that it focuses on complicated human relationships that...READ MORE

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Vatican Council Examines Problem of Low Emotional Intelligence (7044)

Moral theologian and cultural analyst Pia de Solenni, a Register contributor, discussed the issue at a Pontifical Council of Culture session.

02/08/2013 Comments (13)
Stephen Driscoll/CNA

Pia de Solenni.

– Stephen Driscoll/CNA

ROME — The Pontifical Council for Culture spent its last session tackling the problem of emotional illiteracy among younger generations and discovering how to restore that among the youth.

“If people learn how to experience intimacy on a natural level, then they are going to be disposed to it on a supernatural level, on a spiritual level,” said Pia De Solenni, just before delivering the final talk for the council’s Feb. 6-9 plenary assembly in Rome.

“Pope Benedict said at the start of the Year of Faith: ‘The crisis in faith is happening at the same time as the crisis in the family.’”

“You can’t ignore that,” she stressed in a Feb. 8 interview with Catholic News Agency.

During the...READ MORE

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Archbishop Müller: U.S. Ordinariate Brings Gifts to the Church (1435)

In a speech delivered in Houston, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith addresses Anglican communities that have recently entered the Church.

02/08/2013 Comment
Photo courtesy of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith

Archbishop Gerhard Müller.

– Photo courtesy of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith

HOUSTON — The head of the Vatican’s doctrine office called on Anglican communities that have entered the U.S. Catholic Church to have courage in bringing their patrimony into the larger Catholic community.

“Be courageous pioneers of communion, placing the diversity of your gifts at the service of the universal Church,” Archbishop Gerhard Müller said on Feb. 2. “The distinctiveness of your traditions and manner of prayer and worship are no obstacle to true unity in the Church.”

The archbishop, who is the prefect of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, spoke at St. Mary’s Seminary in Houston during a symposium on the mission of the U.S. ordinariate.

Erected Jan....READ MORE

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