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Obama Threatens to Veto Bill Protecting Soldiers’ Conscience Rights (6940)

The presidential move is the latest in a string of incidents that have generated concern among Catholics and other Christian leaders.

06/14/2013 Comments (7)
2010 John Moore/Getty Images

U.S. Army Chaplain Carl Subler (l) prays with soldiers before a military operation at Howz-e-Madad in Kandahar province, Afghanistan.

– 2010 John Moore/Getty Images

EDITOR’S NOTE: An earlier version of this article was updated on June 14.

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama has threatened to veto the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act if it includes a section requiring protection of the religious beliefs of military personnel.

On June 5, the House Armed Services Committee adopted an amendment to H.R. 1960, the defense authorization bill. It specified that “the armed forces shall accommodate the beliefs, actions and speech” that reflect the “conscience, moral principles or religious beliefs” of its members, except in cases of military necessity.

On June 11, the White House released a "Statement of Administration Policy" (SAP) on the bill,...READ MORE

Filed under catholicism, christians in the military, president barack obama, religious freedom, religious persecution

Drone Use Prompts Catholic Call for Greater Caution (2476)

Moral theologian advises that drone strikes must be ‘formed by the virtue of justice’ and of prudence.

06/14/2013 Comments (2)
USAF photo by Lance Cheung

An unmanned aerial vehicle, or drone.

– USAF photo by Lance Cheung

WASHINGTON — Catholic leaders and academics have outlined the need for greater public discussion on the American policy of using drones to kill terrorists, saying it shouldn’t be done “uncritically.”
“I think it needs to be worked through and thought about ... and I do think that we’re rushing into drone technological warfare very rapidly, and certainly without public debate,” said Dr. Christian Brugger, a professor of moral theology at Saint John Vianney Theological Seminary in Denver, Colo.
“This seems to be centered on executive policies which need considerable debating,” he told CNA June 12, “so that the whole country can be involved in a way that it’s not being involved right now.”...READ MORE

Filed under catholic, just war

Global Religious Freedom Law is Ineffective, Panel Says (3435)

A representative from the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom testified before the House on global religious liberty.

06/14/2013 Comments (2)
Addie Mena/CNA

Religious Freedom experts before the Subcommittee on National Security for the House Oversight and Regulations Committee, June 13, 2013.

– Addie Mena/CNA

WASHINGTON — Speaking before a congressional subcommittee, religious liberty experts warned that a U.S. law passed 15 years ago to promote international religious freedom needs stronger enforcement.

“This hearing is important because religious freedom is important: it is a pivotal human right that is both central to U.S. history and heritage and affirmed by international treaties and obligations,” said Dr. Katrina Lantos Swett.

“This hearing also is both important and timely given that religious freedom also is a practical necessity crucial to both the security of the U.S. and the world.”

Lantos Swett, who chairs the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom — an...READ MORE

Filed under religious freedom, religious liberty

Pope Confirms Faith Encyclical Nearly Done (2556)

Pope Francis also stressed the need for the Church to address the crisis of the family.

06/14/2013 Comments (2)
Lauren Cater/CNA

– Lauren Cater/CNA

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis put aside his prepared remarks and told members of the Synod of Bishops that the encyclical on faith is almost ready and the exhortation on evangelization will be finished before the Year of Faith is over.

“Now the fourhand encyclical should be released, which Pope Benedict XVI had begun,” Pope Francis said June 13.

“He handed it to me; it is an intense document,” he told the bishops.

“He has been the one to do the great work,” he added.

Pope Francis made his comments during a meeting with 25 members of the Synod of Bishops on June 13 in the Consistory Hall of the Apostolic Palace.

The group gathered in Rome to help him choose the theme of their next...READ MORE

Filed under new evangelization, pope francis, vatican, year of faith

Evangelium Vitae and the Rationality of Catholic Thought (6156)

An interview with philosopher Francis Beckwith.

06/14/2013 Comments (14)

Francis Beckwith

– baylor.edu

Francis Beckwith is a U.S. philosopher who sparked a furor when he resigned as president of the Evangelical Theological Society, upon his return to his cradle Catholic faith.

On June 15, Beckwith will speak at a Vatican conference sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Promoting the New Evangelization to celebrate Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life). He will be the keynote speaker at the Aug. 1-3 Napa Institute Conference, where he will outline new challenges to the rationality of Christian belief and the need for a public response from the Church.

Beckwith is a professor of philosophy and church-state studies at Baylor University and resident scholar in Baylor's Institute for...READ MORE

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Newly-Professed Sisters Celebrated as ‘Sign of Hope’ (2347)

Little Sisters of the Poor made their profession after completing a two year novitiate and a nine month postulancy.

06/14/2013 Comment
John Feenan

Cardinal Dolan distributes the Constitutions of the Congregation to the newly professed.

– John Feenan

BROOKLYN, N.Y. — At a Brooklyn Mass where six Little Sisters of the Poor made their first vows, Cardinal Timothy Dolan emphasized all the good that the order does for elderly poor around the world.
“Our six soon-to-be professed Little Sisters of the Poor, what a joy you are, what a gift you are, what an inspiration you are, what a sign of hope you are,” the archbishop of New York said June 1, the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
“I unite with my brother priests who are here in such impressive number today, with your Sisters, with your families and friends, in thanking God that you, like Mary, said yes to the invitation of God to follow him as a consecrated woman religious.”

Filed under cardinal timothy dolan, little sisters of the poor, prayer

What Does the Catholic Church Teach About Tattoos? The Sheer Joy of Fatherhood and Much More! (4893)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

06/14/2013 Comment

What Does the Catholic Church Teach About Tattoos? Follow the link by Matt Fradd to read more.

What Does the Catholic Church Teach About Tattoos? by Matt Fradd - BigPulpit.com

The Sheer Joy of Fatherhood – Arland K. Nichols, Crisis Magazine

Save Our Catholic Schools! Send This Article To Your Bishop! – Francis, Catholic Stand

What Will We Do in Heaven? – Howard Kainz, The Catholic Thing

Pope Francis Twitter Feed Reaches Almost Seven Million – Rocco Palmo, Whispers in the Loggia

On Being Well-Rounded or Socialized – Ebeth Weidner, Catholic Lane

The Catholic Gentleman: Dressing the Part (Seminary Edition) – Whiskey Catholic

Homeschooling Methods – Jen Dunlap, Forever For Always No Matter What

Descendant of Charles Darwin Becomes a Catholic Apologist – Ed West,...READ MORE

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Request Denied: Philadelphia Won’t Let Church Bury Gosnell Babies (7964)

A request from the Archdiocese of Philadelphia appears to have been rebuffed, but pro-life groups plan a National Day of Remembrance for babies killed by abortions.

06/13/2013 Comments (26)

Tomb of the Unborn Child at Franciscan University of Steubenville

– franciscan.edu

PHILADELPHIA — The city of Philadelphia has rejected overtures made by Archbishop Charles Chaput and others to give the babies killed by notorious “House of Horrors” abortionist Kermit Gosnell a fitting burial.

For now, the unclaimed fetal remains of Gosnell’s victims, once stored in the abortionist’s freezer, will have their final resting place at the Philadelphia Medical Examiner’s Office.

At the close of the trial that resulted in Gosnell’s conviction on three charges of first-degree murder, Archbishop Chaput renewed the archdiocese’s request made back in 2011 to gain custody of the bodies of Gosnell’s fetal victims and bury them.

“This would be something that would happen...READ MORE

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