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Pope Francis Inspires Notre Dame: Be Missionary Disciples (8061)

Father John Jenkins, the university’s president, discusses the Pope’s recent message to Notre Dame and the school’s renewed commitment to his call for ‘missionary discipleship.’

02/13/2014 Comments (32)

Father John Jenkins, president of the University of Notre Dame

– president.nd.edu

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — In just one year of his pontificate, Pope Francis has managed to inspire and invigorate the Church and those who meet him with renewed energy and joy for the Church’s Gospel mandate.

And a Jan. 30 meeting with Pope Francis seems to have left a strong impression on the trustees at the University of Notre Dame, the United States’ flagship Catholic university, which faces cultural and governmental challenges to its Catholic identity.

Notre Dame is suing the federal government over the federal mandate that requires all employers to provide their employees with health plans that cover contraception, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs, even if it violates their...READ MORE

Filed under catholic colleges and universities, catholic faith, catholic identity, evangelii gaudium, jesus christ, papal audience, pope francis, university of notre dame, vatican city

Church in Korea Prayerful Ahead of Family Reunions (1903)

The Feb. 20-25 reunions of people separated by the 1953 partition would be the first since 2010, but North Korea’s Communist government has threatened to cancel the event.

02/12/2014 Comments (1)

Archbishop Andrew Yeom Soo-jung of Seoul, South Korea

SEOUL, South Korea — As North and South Korea prepare for reunions for some families separated by the 1953 partition of the peninsula, the Church in Korea remains concerned for the countries’ reunification.

Family reunions are scheduled to take place Feb. 20-25, though North Korea has threatened to cancel the event. Such reunions would be the first since 2010.

Archbishop Andrew Yeom Soo-jung of Seoul, who will become a cardinal on Feb. 22, is known for his dedication to reconciliation between North and South Korea, and the South Korean bishops’ conference held a month of prayer for the reconciliation and unity of the Korean people last year.

The reunion will be held at Mount...READ MORE

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Benedict’s Abdication, One Year Later (2981)

COMMENTARY: The pope emeritus has been a picture of grace and humility since he stepped down last Feb. 28.

02/12/2014 Comments (14)
Franco Origlia/Getty Images

Pope Benedict XVI celebrating midnight Mass at St. Peter's Basilica on Dec. 24, 2012.

– Franco Origlia/Getty Images

A year after doing what no similarly situated pope had ever done, the abdication of Pope Benedict XVI now belongs to history. How history will judge that decision remains to be seen; it is too soon to tell. Benedict would be the first to acknowledge that utter novelties in the life of the Church are usually mistakes, which is why so many were unsettled that the grand master of the Catholic Tradition did something that, while permitted by that same tradition, could not in any sense be considered as belonging to it.

Benedict changed the papacy. With a vigorous and popular pope, it remains a change in theory more than practice. But should Pope Francis become less vigorous or less popular,...READ MORE

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Courage Head Sees Christ in Pope’s ‘Non-Judgment’ Remarks on Homosexuality (5769)

The July 2013 comments were patterned after Jesus’ example of personal engagement, Father Paul Check suggests, and don’t indicate any change in Church doctrine.

02/12/2014 Comments (42)
Andreas Dueren/CNA

Father Paul Check, executive director of Courage International

– Andreas Dueren/CNA

ROME — As many look for signs of change in Pope Francis’ comments on people with same-sex attraction, the leader of a ministry for those with homosexual inclinations instead believes the Pope’s words hearken back to Christ himself.

“I don’t think there’s any reason to believe that anything our Holy Father is saying now is inconsistent with 2,000 years of Church teaching, so I would hope people could be at peace and at rest about that,” said Father Paul Check, executive director of Courage International.

Father Check, who has led the Catholic organization dedicated to offering spiritual and practical support to people experiencing same-sex attraction since 2008, spoke with CNA on Jan....READ MORE

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Serving Those Who’ve Served Their Time (1787)

Catholic apostolates across the country help ex-offenders make the difficult transition out of prison life and back into society.

02/12/2014 Comments (2)

– Shutterstock

When Eric Schultz found out he was getting out of prison early, the 27-year-old remembers being full of anxiety and fear.

“I didn’t know where I was going to go,” said the St. Louis native, who had received a three-year sentence for crimes related to drug and alcohol abuse.

“I just thought I would go to the release center, which is notorious for just being a stopping place before one heads back to prison.”

However, his one sliver of hope was Gino Martinez, a case manager with Criminal Justice Ministry (CJM).

“Gino was a friend to me from the start,” said Schultz. “He visited me regularly and even ‘followed’ me as I transferred a couple of times.”

As Schultz’s release date...READ MORE

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Pope: Eucharist Helps Us to See the Face of Christ in Others (2559)

The Holy Father’s Feb. 12 general audience remarks reflected on how Catholics should manifest the gift of the Eucharist in their daily lives.

02/12/2014 Comments (2)
Kyle Burkhart/Catholic News Agency

– Kyle Burkhart/Catholic News Agency

VATICAN CITY — During his general audience Feb. 12, Pope Francis reflected on how we live the Eucharist in our daily lives, explaining that it helps us to truly encounter others as a community and opens us to God’s mercy.

“In the Mass, we encounter many people, but do we really see them as brothers and sisters? Does the Eucharist lead us to reach out to the poor, to the sick, to the marginalized, seeing the face of Jesus in them?” the Pope asked during his general audience.

Speaking to those gathered in St. Peter’s Square for his weekly address, the Holy Father continued his reflections on the sacraments of initiation, stating that he now wished to explore “how we live the Eucharist...READ MORE

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U.N. Committee’s Effort ‘to Teach Theology to the Holy See Caught Us by Surprise’ (5849)

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican’s U.N. representative in Geneva, discusses the recent report that attacked Church teachings on sexuality and the sanctity of human life.

02/12/2014 Comments (17)
AP photo

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations in Geneva.

– AP photo

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the permanent observer of the Holy See to the United Nations in Geneva, told the Register in an email this week that a U.N. committee issued a “rather negative” report on the Catholic Church’s steps in recent years to protect children.

Archbishop Tomasi also told the Register that the committee apparently does not understand the nature of the Catholic Church. He said he was surprised that a U.N. committee tried to teach theology to the Holy See.

 On Feb. 5, the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child, an 18-member treaty body designated with monitoring the implementation of the Convention of the Rights of the Child, issued its “concluding observations”...READ MORE

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Looking Back at Benedict XVI’s Fateful Decision (3219)

U.S. Catholic leaders say that the pope emeritus’ resignation taught valuable lessons.

02/11/2014 Comments (4)
CNA/Stephen Driscoll

Pope Benedict celebrates Mass on Ash Wednesday 2013, two days after he announced his intention to resign the papacy.

– CNA/Stephen Driscoll

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, recalls his “disbelief” when he heard the news from Rome on Feb. 11, 2013.

According to media reports, then-Pope Benedict XVI had announced to a gathering of cardinals that he would resign from the Petrine office. It was the first resignation of a pope in almost 600 years, and Benedict had explained that his “strengths, due to an advanced age, are no longer suited to an adequate exercise of the Petrine ministry.”

Initially, the shocking news “mystified” Archbishop Kurtz. But over the past year, he has developed a deep appreciation for the moral and spiritual...READ MORE

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