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U.S. Axes AIDS Relief Funding to Church in South Africa (4170)

American funds will soon be channeled to the country’s government, forcing Church agencies to seek new sources of money.

07/19/2013 Comments (14)

ROME — The United States has stopped funding AIDS-relief programs in South Africa organized by the Catholic Church, handing the money instead over to the country’s government.

“We have a problem because the American funding, the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, known as PEPFAR, is coming to an end,” Benedictine monk Father Gerhard Lagleder told Vatican Radio.

“I am in Europe today to beg,” added the monk, who has been a missionary in South Africa for 26 years.

“I always say jokingly that the Benedictines are not a mendicant order [relying on donations], but I have become a beggar because it is about saving lives,” he said during the July 16 interview.

President George...READ MORE

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Canon-Law Expert: Indulgences Not a ‘Magical Formula’ (5426)

Pope Francis has allowed plenary indulgences for World Youth Day participation, including via social media.

07/19/2013 Comments (9)

Rear of the Holy Door of St. Peter's Basilica. Pilgrims who pass through the door during a Jubilee Year of the Church and who have fulfilled the usual conditions may obtain plenary indulgences.

– Wikipedia

LINCOLN, Neb. — In contrast with media reports of “time off of purgatory” for Pope Francis’ Twitter followers, a canon lawyer explained that indulgences are a way that the Church encourages Christians to pray.

“Because the Church has the spiritual authority that Christ has given it, the Church can invite us to particularly sanctifying moments and particularly sanctifying opportunities,” J.D. Flynn, special assistant to Bishop James Conley of Lincoln, Neb., explained to Catholic News Agency July 18.

An indulgence is defined as the remission of the temporal punishment — the required atonement by which an individual makes reparation — due to sins that have already been forgiven.


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WYD and the Trayvon Tragedy (11542)


07/19/2013 Comments (182)

Trayvon Martin.

– Wikipedia

On July 13, when Catholics worldwide were focusing attention on Brazil’s upcoming World Youth Day in Rio de Janeiro, those in the United States were forced to divert their attention instead to a Florida courtroom. In the wake of a six-woman jury’s acquittal of George Zimmerman on charges of murder and manslaughter, fair-minded Americans of all faiths and ethnicities can agree on one thing: Trayvon Martin’s death was a senseless tragedy.

And many will readily accede to the call made afterward by prominent African-American leaders for a respectful, nationwide dialogue regarding the controversial issue of “profiling” of suspicious strangers.

After all, while the precise circumstances...READ MORE

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Pope Francis Increases Anglican Ordinariates Power to Evangelize, On Meeting Angels and Much More! (3387)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

07/19/2013 Comment

Pope Francis Increases Anglican Ordinariates Power to Evangelize. Follow the link by Damian Thompson to read more.

Pope Francis Increases Anglican Ordinariates Power to Evangelize by Damian Thompson - BigPulpit.com

On Meeting Angels – Saint Etheldreda’s Place

How to Join a Third Order - T. J. Burdick, Ignitum Today

Hope, Fear, and the Imagination - Luke Chapter 12, Faithbook

The De-Funding of Planned Parenthood - Dominic Pedulla MD, Catholic Stand

Poem: “A Coffin—is a Small Domain” - Emily Dickinson, Catholic Lane

Next in the Marriage Debate? – God & Caesar

The Pope and the the Elusive Bird Poverty – Fr. Dwight Longenecker, Standing on my Head

Texas, Satan and Gosnell – Donald R. McClarey JD, The American Catholic

The Moral Exploitation of Penguins - Fr. George W. Rutler, Crisis...READ MORE

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World Youth Day a Seedbed for Consecrated Vocations (4244)

Previous events have fostered a flood of U.S. vocations, and Church officials anticipate a similar response among Rio’s WYD 2013 pilgrims.

07/18/2013 Comments (4)

Father Jeffrey Gubbiotti of Ansonia, Conn.

WASHINGTON — Hundreds of thousands of young pilgrims from all over the world are converging on Rio de Janeiro to join Pope Francis for World Youth Day, but for many of these youth, the road to Rio will also put them on the road to the priesthood or religious life.

Many priests and religious credit the Holy Spirit with awakening or confirming their vocations through World Youth Day pilgrimages.

“It was a watershed moment,” said Father Jeffrey Gubbiotti, describing the impact his first World Youth Day had on his own vocation. A 17-year-old pilgrim at WYD 1993 in Denver, he had not thought much of a vocation or much about Catholic life outside his own parish.

However, seeing the...READ MORE

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SDG Reviews 'Turbo' (7445)

Visually inventive and basically harmless, DreamWorks’ latest leans a bit too heavily on Pixar’s playbook, but lacks what makes even minor Pixar efforts special.

07/18/2013 Comments (22)

That snail is fast.

– DreamWorks

If Pixar’s Brave — with its Scots accents, medieval/fantasy setting and rebellious youth vs. authoritarian parent conflict — felt somewhat like a DreamWorks animated film, DreamWorks’ Turbo feels in some ways remarkably like a Pixar film. Specifically, it’s a lot like Ratatouille crossed with Cars, though you may also be reminded of Toy Story, A Bug’s Life and even Finding Nemo.

As in Ratatouille, the hero is a soulful critter — a garden snail rather than a country rat — living on the margins of human habitation in a large community of fellow critters, but longing for something the others can’t comprehend: something he sees on television. His hero, a human celebrity, assures him over the...READ MORE

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Catholic Company Temporarily Forced to Comply With HHS Mandate (3362)

Federal court denies a preliminary injunction to Mersino Management Co., forcing it to provide contraceptive coverage.

07/18/2013 Comments (18)

WASHINGTON — While its lawsuit continues through the court system, Mersino Management Co. will be forced to offer contraceptive coverage to its workers under the HHS mandate, despite its owners’ Catholic faith.

A July 11 decision of U.S. district court Judge Paul Boreman denied a preliminary injunction against the contraception mandate to the owners and shareholders of the business, Karen and Rodney Mersino.

They “have not demonstrated that they are likely to succeed on their claims, because it appears more likely to the court that Mersino Management, as a secular for-profit company, cannot ‘exercise’ religion and cannot act as the alter ego of its owners in challenging the...READ MORE

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Vatican: Change of Popes ‘Intensified’ World Youth Day (1986)

Some elements, including a papal pilgrimage to Brazil's national shrine of Aparecida, were added after the election of Pope Francis.

07/18/2013 Comment
Wikipedia/Agência Brasil

The National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida

– Wikipedia/Agência Brasil

VATICAN CITY — A Vatican spokesman said the change of popes that occurred between the announcement of World Youth Day to its fruition has caused some adaptations to the event for the new Holy Father.

“The trip had already been decided, but the program has also been adapted, we might indeed say intensified and enriched with further events, with the change of pontificate,” Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said at a July 17 press conference.

“You will recall that practically the same thing happened at the last change of pontificate,” he added.

Benedict XVI’s first trip was to Cologne in his native Germany for the World Youth Day decided by his predecessor, Blessed John Paul...READ MORE

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