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Catholic Schools Respond to the Charter School Challenge (8156)

The rise of charter schools has siphoned students from Catholic schools in some parts of the country.

08/29/2013 Comments (9)
CNA file photo

– CNA file photo

ALBANY, N.Y. — A recent article in the Albany Government Law Review suggests that the emergence of charter schools — public schools not bound by the same operating procedures as conventional schools — has siphoned many students from Catholic schools, many of whom are minorities in poor, working-class neighborhoods.

This has added an additional dimension to the pressures that Catholic schools have faced in recent decades, as they have been forced to introduce sweeping changes in many U.S. dioceses to cope with the changed realities of sharply declining student populations, greatly reduced numbers of religious sisters and brothers willing and able to work in the schools, and severe...READ MORE

Filed under catholic education, catholic faith, charter schools, magnet schools, public education

The Science of Sex Differences, Catholic Couple Die on Sunday after 65 Years of Marriage and More! (3812)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

08/29/2013 Comments (1)

The Science of Sex Differences. Follow the link by Matt Fradd of the Catholic Answers blog to read more.

The Science of Sex Differences by Matt Fradd of the Catholic Answers blog – BigPulpit.com

Catholic Couple Die on Sunday after 65 Years of Marriage - Jean M. Heimann, Catholic Fire

As For Me and My Household: Helping the Faith Thrive at Home – Michael Lane, Catholic Stand

A Theology of Women? What Does Pope Francis Mean? - Pat Gohn, Catholic Lane

Joseph Bottum and 'Same-Sex Marriage' – BigPulpit.com

The Dark Age Myth: An Atheist Reviews "God’s Philosophers" – Tim O’Neill, Strange Notions

Solemn Evensong at the Ordinariate Church in London - Charles Cole, New Liturgical Movement

Forgiveness: Is Someone You Love Poison for Your Soul? - Birgit Jones, Catholic Sistas


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Rape Victim Consoled and Encouraged by Surprise Call From Pope Francis (32574)

“You are not alone” Pope Francis told the woman, adding to have faith that justice will be done.

08/28/2013 Comments (26)
Stephen Driscoll/CNA

Pope Francis prays at a Passion Service at St. Peter's on March 29.

– Stephen Driscoll/CNA

ROME — A 44-year-old woman from Argentina said that, after writing a letter to Pope Francis telling him that she had been raped by a local police officer, the Pope called her personally to tell her, “You are not alone.”

“The Pope told me he receives thousands of letters each day, but that what I wrote moved him and touched his heart,” the woman said in an interview with the National University of Cordoba’s Canal 10 TV station.

“When I heard the Pope’s voice, it was like feeling the hand of God,” she said.

The woman explained that, in her letter, she asked the Holy Father for help and explained that she had been raped on two occasions by a police officer, who later threatened her.


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Middle-East Scholar Paints Stark but Realistic Picture of the Situations in Syria and Egypt (24682)

Jesuit Father Samir Khalil Samir says all involved parties need to heed Pope Francis’ advice and come together to work out the peace process.

08/28/2013 Comments (5)

Jesuit Father Samir Khalil Samir

Jesuit Father Samir Khalil Samir is a professor of philosophy, theology and Islamic studies based at St. Joseph University in Beirut, Lebanon. He also teaches at the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome.

In an Aug. 27 interview, Father Samir, a native of Cairo, discussed the precarious situations in Egypt — where sympathizers with the Muslim Brotherhood have targeted the Coptic Catholic and Christian churches for retribution for the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi — and Syria — where the civil war and the use of chemical weapons on civilians has escalated the conflict to the point that the United States is considering military engagement in the Middle-Eastern country.

What are...READ MORE

Filed under catholic faith, fundamentalist muslims, human dignity, middle east, persecution of christians, u.s. politics

Iran Rejects Imprisoned U.S. Pastor's Appeal (7129)

Saeed Abedini’s wife, Naghmeh, says the U.S. government is ‘awkwardly silent’ as Iranians pressure her husband to renounce Christ.

08/28/2013 Comments (3)
American Center for Law and Justice

Imprisoned pastor Saeed Abedini with his family.

– American Center for Law and Justice

WASHINGTON — Calls for U.S. action continue after an Iranian court rejected an appeal from Christian pastor Saeed Abedini, a U.S. citizen imprisoned in Iran for his religious work in the country.

“The news out of Iran is devastating to our family,” Naghmeh Abedini, wife of the pastor, said in an Aug. 26 statement.

“From past cases, we know that the decision to release my husband lies solely at the mercy of the supreme leader,” she said. “It is imperative in the coming days, weeks and months that we remain vigilant to call for Pastor Saeed’s release. This includes continuing to put pressure on Iran from the U.S. government and governments around the world.”

Born and raised as a...READ MORE

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Myth Busted: Benedict XVI 'Mystical Experience' Story Not True (7081)

The pope emeritus’ personal secretary said Zenit's source fabricated the entire story.

08/28/2013 Comments (2)

Pope Benedict (left) and then-Msgr. Georg Ganswein in St. Peter's Square, December 2012.

– Mazur/catholicnews.org.uk

VATICAN CITY — The retired pope's personal secretary came forward and said the recent and widely circulated news story claiming that Benedict XVI stepped down after having a “mystical experience” is completely false.

“It was invented, from the alpha to the omega,” Archbishop Georg Gänswein said.

“There is nothing true in this article,” he told journalist Alessandra Buzzetti in an interview on Italian television channel Tg5.

Zenit, a Rome-based Catholic news outlet, had reported Aug. 19 that Benedict XVI resigned after having a mystical experience in which God told him to do so.

The agency said that the former pope told a visitor to Mater Ecclesiae, the monastery in the Vatican...READ MORE

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University of Notre Dame Changes Policy to Accept and Fund Undocumented Students (4338)

A university spokesman said that Notre Dame is following a path taken by other Catholic colleges.

08/28/2013 Comments (9)
Kahunapule Michael Johnson/Flickr

University of Notre Dame

– Kahunapule Michael Johnson/Flickr

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Taking a cue from the U.S. Catholic bishops’ support for immigration reform, the University of Notre Dame has announced that it will now accept qualified undocumented students who apply for undergraduate admission.

“In many ways, Notre Dame is itself a university of immigrants,” Notre Dame spokesman Dennis Brown told CNA.

“While the legal circumstances are certainly different, we have a long and proud history of educating the marginalized and least among us,” he said.“This is a central component of Church teaching and our mission as a Catholic university.”

Brown acknowledged that the status of immigrants is “a contentious issue” in the U.S. and many will not agree...READ MORE

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U.S. Military Action in Syria Could Spark World War, Syrian Bishop Warns (10852)

‘Even in Syria, there are alternatives to war,’ said Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo.

08/28/2013 Comments (14)

Bishop Antoine Audo of Aleppo


ALEPPO, Syria — A Catholic bishop in Aleppo has warned that U.S. and foreign military action in the war-torn country could ignite a global war, making the “tragic situation” in Syria much worse.

“The only road to peace is dialogue,” said Bishop Antoine Audo. “War will not take us anywhere.”

“People live in anguish, not knowing what awaits them, and this has been happening during the two years of conflict,” he told the Missionary International Service News Agency.

The Chaldean Catholic bishop of Aleppo, one of the cities worst affected by the turmoil, is also the president of Caritas Syria.

He spoke amid escalating international discussions of how to respond to reported...READ MORE

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