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Catholic Hospitals Are Right to Reject Contraceptives, Doctors Say (3236)

The doctors spoke in defense of a Catholic-operated hospital in Oklahoma that was criticized recently for its directives that do not approve or support contraception.

04/11/2014 Comments (9)

Jane Phillips Medical Center in Bartlesville, Okla.

– jpmc.org

TULSA, Okla. — Following controversy over a Catholic-affiliated medical center’s rejection of contraceptive practices in Oklahoma, physicians have said that such institutions are trying to act with integrity.

“Catholic hospitals and health-care providers do not prevent women from accessing what they want; they just don’t provide it themselves,” Lester Ruppersberger, a Pennsylvania physician and vice president of the Catholic Medical Association, said April 3.

“They are not lobbying against contraception; they just do not wish to be forced to violate their beliefs and ethics.”

He told CNA that those who do not agree with Catholic medical ethics “are not being deprived” and “do not have...READ MORE

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Pope to Venezuelan Leaders: ‘Violence Can Never Bring Peace’ (1768)

Responding to a government invitation to participate in the country’s peace talks, Pope Francis sent a letter to all parties encouraging open dialogue.

04/11/2014 Comment
Diego Urdaneta/Wikimedia Commons

Protesters demonstrate peacefully against the government in Caracas, Venezuela, on Feb. 12.

– Diego Urdaneta/Wikimedia Commons

VATICAN CITY — Answering an invitation from Venezuela's foreign affairs minister to participate in the country’s peace talks, Pope Francis sent a letter to all parties involved, encouraging them to foster open dialogue.

“I am deeply convinced that violence can never bring peace and well-being to a country, because it only ever generates more violence,” the Pope stated in his April 10 letter.

“On the contrary, through dialogue, you can rediscover common and shared ground that will help to overcome the current moment of conflict.”

Pope Francis’ message was read aloud by Archbishop Aldo Giordano, the apostolic nuncio in Caracas, at the beginning of the highly anticipated meeting Thursday...READ MORE

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Reforming the LCWR: Where Does It Stand? (8273)


04/11/2014 Comments (20)

Two years ago this month, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) issued a sweeping mandate for reform and renewal of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), on April 18, 2012. The LCWR is a superiors’ conference made up of about 1,100 sisters who are on leadership teams in about 80% of the U.S. women’s apostolic orders in the United States.

Yet, to date, there are no signs of any reforms taking place; rather, a just-released book by the LCWR repeats its criticism of the mandate and presents a defense of the organization. Spiritual Leadership for Challenging Times (Orbis Books, 2014) is the brainchild of Sister Sandra Schneiders, a Sister of the Immaculate Heart...READ MORE

Filed under archbishop j. peter sartain, archbishop leonard blair, catholic dissent, catholic faith, congregation for the doctrine of the faith, leadership conference of women religious, pope benedict xvi, pope francis, religious congregations

Christian Unity: A Goal Shared by John XXIII and John Paul II (2635)


04/11/2014 Comments (4)

VATICAN CITY — Both John XXIII and John Paul II, who will be canonized April 27, acted for Church unity and dedicated much of their lives and magisterium to foster relations among Christian communities.

John XXIII’s effort was highly appreciated among the Orthodox Churches; when he convoked the Second Vatican Council, representatives of both the Orthodox Churches and Protestant ecclesial communities were invited as observers of the ecumenical council.

According to the late Cardinal Johannes Willebrands, who was for many years president of the Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity, the forerunner of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, John XXIII was revered by the...READ MORE

Filed under blessed pope john paul ii, blessed pope john xxiii, catholic faith, chrisitan unity, ecumenism, pope francis, ut unum sint

Conspiracies and Catholicism: Easter Special; St. Francis on Kickstarter; The Cistercians and More! (3110)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

04/11/2014 Comment

Follow the Conspiracies and Catholicism: Easter Special link by Foxfier of Catholic Stand to read more.

Conspiracies and Catholicism: Easter Special - Foxfier, Catholic Stand

Saint Francis on Kickstarter – Thomas L. McDonald, God and the Machine

Gay Thought Police Disappointed with Pope Francis - Don. R McClarey JD, The American Catholic

The Gods of Israel: Does the Bible Promote Polytheism? – Dr. Matthew Ramage, Strange Notions

About That 'Pedophilia' Crisis. . . by Phil Lawler of The City Gates - BigPulpit.com

Does Inaction Politicize the Faith? – Kristina Johannes, The Catholic Thing

When People Make Mistakes (But Not You!) – J. R. Baldwin, Ignitum Today

The End of Christian America – Shane Schaetzel, Catholic In The Ozarks

The Cistercians Are Back at Zirc by Randall Smith PhD of...READ MORE

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NYC Pro-Life Centers Gain Victory in Free-Speech Fight (3681)

A federal appeals court has agreed to stay a ruling that pro-life pregnancy-resource centers say would put them at a great disadvantage to the unregulated abortion industry.

04/10/2014 Comments (4)

– aclj.org

NEW YORK — Pro-life pregnancy-resource centers gained an important victory in their fight to overturn a New York City disclosure law, which they say is aimed to put them out of business.

A federal appeals court in New York agreed April 7 not to enforce its ruling that allows New York City officials to require crisis-pregnancy centers to disclose whether they have a licensed medical professional on staff. The order allows pregnancy-resource centers (PRCs) to continue operating without the required disclosures while attorneys with the public interest firms Alliance Defending Freedom and American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) pursue their legal challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court.

“We’re...READ MORE

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Fatima Statue Visits Castel Gandolfo (4927)

Pilgrims from around the world flocked to the community where the papal summer residence is located to join together in prayer and Marian devotion.

04/10/2014 Comments (2)
Lucia Fiore/CNA

A statue of Our Lady of Fatima at the Church of St. Thomas of Villanueva in Castel Gandolfo, Italy, on April 7.

– Lucia Fiore/CNA

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy — Locals and swarms of pilgrims from various parts of the world gathered in Castel Gandolfo outside of Rome recently to show their Marian devotion and join in communal prayer.

From April 3-7, the Pontifical Church St. Thomas of Villanova hosted the statue of Our Lady of Fatima. Parish priest Father Pietro Diletti told CNA that the arrival of the statue has sparked an intensity and ardor of faith within the local community as well as the throngs of visitors.

“It's been in the thousands, because there are so many pilgrims — there is a continual coming and going of even non-Catholics who try to get close to Madonna,” he said. “The Masses are overflowing, and also the...READ MORE

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Court Ruling on Philippines RH Bill Met With Mixed Responses (2231)

Church leaders applauded the country’s Supreme Court for striking down parts of the law, but lamented that other elements were upheld.

04/10/2014 Comment

MANILA, Philippines — While disappointed that the country’s Supreme Court has upheld a controversial “reproductive health” law, the Catholic bishops of the Philippines voiced gratitude that the ruling also strengthened parental rights and religious freedom.

“Although the Supreme Court has upheld the constitutionality of the RH law, it has truly watered down the RH law and consequently upheld the importance of adhering to an informed religious conscience, even among government workers,” said Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen Dagupan, the president of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines.

He added in his April 8 statement that the court “stood on the side of the rights...READ MORE

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