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Bethlehem Christians Empathize With Their Beleaguered Brethren (3497)

Palestinian faithful are keeping their eyes and prayers on those affected by the strife in Syria and Egypt.

07/16/2013 Comments (12)
Getty Images

Syrian children fill cans with water June 28 at a Syrian refugee camp in Baalbek, Lebanon.

– Getty Images

BETHLEHEM, West Bank — Palestinian Christians are watching the civil war in Syria and the unrest in Egypt with great concern, not out of fear for their own safety, but for the safety of their brethren.

While the Christian minority has always been vulnerable in the predominantly Muslim Middle East, the volatility that has shaken the region during the past two to three years has unleashed even more attacks against them.

Many Christians are among the millions of Syrians who have been forced out of their homes, an estimated 1 million of whom are now refugees outside the country, most of them in Jordan and Lebanon.

The Syrian crisis, in particular, has drawn both the world’s attention...READ MORE

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Proposition 8 Still Applies in California, Backers Say (4715)

A legal brief filed by Alliance Defending Freedom alleges that state officials acted incorrectly in response to the recent Supreme Court decision.

07/16/2013 Comments (46)


SAN FRANCISCO — Proposition 8 backers have filed a legal brief saying that the ballot measure defining marriage as a union of a man and a woman still has legal force in California, alleging that state officials acted incorrectly in response to the recent Supreme Court decision on it.

“The U.S. Supreme Court did not rule on the constitutionality of Proposition 8, and the district court’s injunction does not apply statewide; therefore, county clerks should abide by the state Constitution,” said Austin Nimocks, senior counsel with the Alliance Defending Freedom, on July 15.

The group said that the registrar does not have the authority to make such orders to county clerks and California...READ MORE

Filed under catholic faith, freedom vs. license, proposition 8, redefinition of marriage, religious freedom, u.s. politics, u.s. supreme court

States Face Same-Sex ‘Marriage’ Fallout (8629)

Lawsuits against marriage amendments brew in Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Virginia; six other states likely to face legal challenges.

07/16/2013 Comments (100)

Pennyslvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane said July 11 she won't defend the state's marriage amendment against a lawsuit filed by the ACLU July 9.

– www.attorneygeneral.gov

HARRISBURG, Pa. — Same-sex “marriage” proponents are attacking constitutional amendments and laws in states that still define marriage as the union of one man and one woman.

The American Civil Liberties Union and its allies have filed lawsuits or indicated they plan to file lawsuits in Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Virginia to force those states to recognize same-sex “marriage” in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 26 rulings that struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and opened the door for same-sex “weddings” to resume in California.

Additional legal challenges are brewing in Nevada, Colorado, New Jersey, Hawaii, Oregon and Wisconsin, according to...READ MORE

Filed under marriage amendments, marriage equality, proposition 8

Wake Me When the Persecution Is Over! Crusaders and Kings, Is Childcare Good for Children and More! (4125)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

07/16/2013 Comment

Wake Me When the Persecution Is Over! Follow the link by David Alexander of Man with Black Hat blog to read more.

Wake Me When the Persecution Is Over! by David Alexander of Man with Black Hat blog - BigPulpit.com

Crusaders and Kings: The Contrast between Richard the Lionheart and Philip Augustus – Brendan J. McGuire, Crisis Magazine

Is Childcare Good for Children? – Bernard Toutounji, Ignitum Today

Unmistakable Fervor: Servant of God Augustine Tolton – Anita Moore, V for Victory!

We Are All Saints . . . In Progress - Diane McKelva, Catholic Stand

The Trouble with Mary - Paul McCusker, Roman Catholic Spiritual Direction

Getting to Know Saint Symeon the New Theologian – Jason Liske, Ascending Mount Carmel

The Russian Church in Bethany Meets Muslim Resistance – Byz Pulpit

Former...READ MORE

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John Paul II Relics Bless WYD Rio (3921)

The Pope who founded World Youth Days will have a very personal presence at this year’s event.

07/15/2013 Comments (2)
Faebook/World Youth Day Rio 2013

– Faebook/World Youth Day Rio 2013

VATICAN CITY — Everything is going according to plan for World Youth Day, as far as the Vatican is concerned, as hundreds of thousands of young people gather in Rio de Janeiro for this year’s premier Catholic youth celebration.

As well as working with WYD organizers on the ground, the Pontifical Council for the Laity is sending 10 officials to the event, alongside a number of cardinals from Rome. And Cardinal Stanislaw Ryłko, president of the Pontifical Council, arrived a week early, bringing with him relics of Blessed Pope John Paul II.

Speaking to the Register July 12, Father Eric Jacquinet, director of the pontifical council’s youth section, said “preparations are going well” and...READ MORE

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U.S. Official: China, Russia and Uzbekistan Have Made Little Progress in Combating Trafficking (2263)

The annual State Department 'Trafficking in Persons' report was released June 19.

07/15/2013 Comment

WASHINGTON — A State Department official has testified before Congress, explaining that China, Russia and Uzbekistan have not made adequate progress in addressing human trafficking in recent years.

“Trafficking in persons affects every country in the world, and no government is doing enough to fight it,” Luis CdeBaca, ambassador-at-large for trafficking in persons, testified before a House subcommittee on Africa, global health and global human rights July 11.

The annual State Department "Trafficking in Persons" report was released June 19, and it details the state of trafficking in persons for sex, labor and other motivations in countries around the globe in the past year. 

In the...READ MORE

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White Sox Catcher Celebrates Family on All-Star Break (7845)

Tyler Flowers’ daughter is an answer to prayer.

07/15/2013 Comments (12)
Ron Vesely/Chicago White Sox

Chicago White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers

– Ron Vesely/Chicago White Sox

As the American League All-Stars take on the National League All-Stars in Flushing, N.Y., tomorrow, Chicago White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers will be relaxing with family in his hometown of Woodstock, Ga. Originally drafted by the Atlanta Braves in 2005, Flowers made his major-league debut for the White Sox in 2009.

Neither Flowers (.205 batting average) nor the White Sox (37-55 win-loss record) as a team have had a stellar season thus far, so Flowers sees the All-Star break as a way to get recharged for the second half of the season.

His wife, Nancy, has been a tremendous influence on renewing the faith of his baptism, and their daughter, Mia, is no less than an answer to prayer....READ MORE

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Pope Francis: God Desires ‘Good and Generous’ Hearts Full of Mercy (3207)

The Holy Father reflects on the Good Samaritan parable.

07/15/2013 Comments (2)

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy — In his first Angelus message from Castel Gandolfo, Pope Francis said God desires “good and generous” hearts full of mercy for those in need.

In the parable of the Good Samaritan, said Pope Francis, “Jesus shows that the heart of this Samaritan is good and generous and that, unlike the priest and Levite, he practices the will of God, who desires mercy more than sacrifice.”

“God always wants this: mercy,” added the Pope, expanding on his prepared remarks. “God well knows our pain, our difficulties, and even our sins! (Yet) he gives us his merciful heart. And this — what the Samaritan did — shows God’s own compassion: mercy towards those who are in need.”

Filed under mercy, love, god's love, god's mercy, good samaritan

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