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Syrian Refugees Suffer the Hardships of a Protracted Civil War (6534)

International relief agencies are adapting to the grim truth that an estimated 2 million Syrians may not be able to return home for a long time.

10/02/2013 Comments (3)
Photo by Sam Tarling for CRS

Syrian refugee children are struggling to adjust to life in a foreign country, with many having lost parents and other family members.

– Photo by Sam Tarling for CRS

WASHINGTON — When Caroline Brennan met with newly arrived Syrian refugees in Jordan this July, she heard familiar stories of women and children forced to flee their homes without papers, money or food, while men stayed behind to protect family property.

But while the accounts of bombing attacks, deaths of loved ones and sudden destitution echoed the stories she had heard during a 2012 trip to refugee camps in the Middle East, there was also a stark difference.  

In 2012, “they would tell me they were returning in a matter of weeks —  ‘whenever the fighting stops.’ Now, they talk about a year or more,” Brennan, a communications staffer with Catholic Relief Services, told the Register.


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Vatican II-Secular Music Crisis; St. Therese and Pope Francis; What Makes a Saint? and More! (6134)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

10/02/2013 Comment

The Vatican II Crisis to Secular Music. . . Applied. Follow the link by Fr. Z to read more.

The Vatican II Crisis to Secular Music. . . Applied by Fr. Z - BigPulpit.com

St. Thérèse and Pope Francis – Sr. Theresa Noble, Pursued by Truth

What Makes a Saint? - Fr. Bartunek LC, Roman Catholic Spiritual Direction

Pope Francis: Humility Attract People to Church – The Catholic Herald

The Alamo, John Wayne and Faith - Donald R. McClarey JD, The American Catholic

The Little Flower: An Intercessor for Priests – Joe Heschmeyer, Shameless Popery

A Global Slaughter of Christians, But American Churches Silent – Byz Pulpit

Pope Francis and Rabbi Skorka Make History in the Vatican - Gerard O’Connell, Vatican Insider

Truth in Religion: Plurality of Religions and the Unity of...READ MORE

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Vatican Spokesman: Benedict XVI Could Attend Canonizations (4425)

Father Federico Lombardi did not rule out the pope emeritus' participation, which would be unprecedented, next April.

10/01/2013 Comments (2)
CNA file photo

– CNA file photo

ROME — The director of the Holy See Press Office announced that Benedict XVI could participate in the canonization ceremony next April for Blesseds John Paul II and John XXIII.

During a Sept. 30 press conference at the Vatican, Father Federico Lombardi did not rule out that the pope emeritus could be present at the canonizations. 

“There is not legal or doctrinal reason to keep Benedict XVI from taking part in a public ceremony,” he said.

It would be an unprecedented canonization ceremony: Pope Francis, accompanied by his predecessor, Benedict XVI, would canonize the initiator of the Second Vatican Council, Blessed John XXIII, as well as Blessed John Paul II, known as the "Pilgrim...READ MORE

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The Commodification of Children and the Insensitivity of the Culture (5583)


10/01/2013 Comments (12)

A couple of months ago, I wrote an article for the Catholic World Report in which several adult offspring of third-party-conceived offspring were interviewed. These adult offspring recounted the suffering they had experienced as result of their unjust conception. When the article was reprinted on a popular pro-life website as well as a well-trafficked conservative message board, the reactions from many pro-lifers, conservatives and Christians on Facebook, Twitter and comment boxes were quite surprising.

“Pathetic.” “Drama queen.” “Silly.” “…idiot loser…” Other commenters offered advice such as, “Stop dishonoring your parents” and “grow the hell up.” Why were commenters so outraged by...READ MORE

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Bishop Supports End to U.S. Embargo of Cuba (2753)

Bishop Richard Pates of Des Moines, Iowa, said the U.S. government is long overdue to engage in full diplomatic relations with Cuba.

10/01/2013 Comments (4)
Michelle Baumann/CNA

An abandoned building in Havana

– Michelle Baumann/CNA

WASHINGTON — In solidarity with a recent pastoral letter by the Cuban bishops, Bishop Richard Pates of Des Moines, Iowa, has voiced support for an end to the U.S. embargo of Cuba, which has been in place since 1959.

“We urge efforts to lift the U.S. embargo against Cuba, so that greater support and assistance can flow to ordinary Cubans,” Bishop Pates wrote in a Sept. 26 letter to Susan Rice, the U.S. national security adviser.

“Engagement will do more than isolation to advance human rights and alleviate human suffering,” he said. “It will also recognize Cuba’s constructive role in mediating Colombian peace negotiations and cooperating with the U.S. Coast Guard in drug-interdiction...READ MORE

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New Jersey to Appeal Judgeʼs Ruling on Same-Sex ʻMarriage’ Recognition (1825)

National Organization for Marriage's president, Brian Brown, calls the judicial ruling ʻa gross abuse of power.ʼ

10/01/2013 Comments (3)

Seal of New Jersey

– Wikipedia

TRENTON, N.J. — Political leaders in New Jersey have vowed to appeal a judge’s ruling that New Jersey must redefine marriage to include same-sex couples because of a recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court.

“It’s essential that a single lower-court judge not be allowed to impose her own views of marriage on the entire state,” said Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage.

Judge Mary Jacobson of the New Jersey Superior Court agreed with several same-sex couples, that the state was unconstitutionally denying them federal benefits, such as federally required medical leave and the ability to file joint federal tax returns, because New Jersey would not recognize...READ MORE

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Tributes to John XXIII and John Paul II Pour in After Canonization Announcement (4343)

Praise for the soon-to-be saints abounds.

10/01/2013 Comments (2)

VATICAN CITY — Countless tributes have been pouring in for Blessed Popes John XXIII and John Paul II after Pope Francis officially announced they will be elevated to the altars at a joint canonization Mass on April 27, 2014, Divine Mercy Sunday.

The Holy Father decreed at an ordinary public consistory in the Vatican Sept. 30 that the two greatly loved popes will be “enrolled among the saints” on the Second Sunday of Easter next year.

The announcement, which was widely expected, is considered highly appropriate, given that Divine Mercy Sunday was a special day for Blessed John Paul II, who established the feast in 2000.

Its origins date back to Polish nun St. Faustina Kowalska...READ MORE

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Pope Reveals Mystical Experience in Major New Interview (9497)

The revelations from Pope Francis, and his thoughts on reforming the Vatican, come from his second big newspaper interview published in the past two weeks.

10/01/2013 Comments (10)

VATICAN CITY — In a major new interview with an Italian newspaper, Pope Francis shared that he had a mystical experience before accepting the role as bishop of Rome. He also gave his thoughts on several issues surrounding Church reform and the need for the Church to follow the Second Vatican Council’s call to engage fully in dialogue with the modern world.

Pope Francis recounted the experience in a wide-ranging interview with Eugenio Scalfari, atheist founder of the Italian newspaper La Repubblica, which published the interview on Oct.1. Scalfari’s interview took place at the Pope’s request on Sept. 24 at the Domus Sanctae Marthae residence, where Pope Francis lives.

When asked if he...READ MORE

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