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U.S. Help for Jailed Iran Pastor ‘Woefully’ Inept, Congressmen Charge (2868)

Six members of Congress urged the State Department to use the full resources of the U.S. government to free the Christian pastor.

03/22/2013 Comments (4)
American Center for Law and Justice.

Imprisoned pastor Saeed Abedin with his family.

– American Center for Law and Justice.

WASHINGTON — Six members of Congress say the U.S. State Department is not doing enough to help Pastor Saeed Abedini, an imprisoned U.S. citizen being held in an Iranian prison because of his Christian beliefs.
“To date, the State Department’s posture on this case has been woefully inadequate, especially given that the life of an American citizen hangs in the balance,” their March 20 letter said.
“Both the European Union and the United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in Iran have advocated publicly for Pastor Saeed — the same cannot be said of this administration.”
Those who signed the letter to Secretary of State John Kerry included Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., co-chair of the...READ MORE

Filed under catholic, congress, religious freedom

Bishops Say HHS Mandate Still Threatens Religious Liberty (3105)

USCCB legal analysis states that the Obama administration’s latest accommodation proposal is inadequate.

03/22/2013 Comments (11)

WASHINGTON — Despite proposals to modify the federal contraception and abortion mandate, the U.S. bishops said that the regulation is still unacceptable due to its narrow view of religion and resulting violations of religious liberty.

“The identity of the person or group having the religious-freedom objection should not matter; what should matter instead is whether the person or group faces government coercion to violate conscience,” said a document filed on behalf of the U.S. bishops.

“Religious freedom is for all who face this threat, not just some,” the March 20 statement declared. 

The document was written by Anthony Picarello and Michael Moses, general counsels for the U.S....READ MORE

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Pope Francis Reveals Secret of Priestly Celibacy; On Listening to Good Music and Much More! (6364)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

03/22/2013 Comment

In 2012 interview, Pope Francis Reveals Secret of Celibacy. Follow the link via Aleteia to read more.

In 2012 interview, Pope Francis Reveals Secret of Celibacy via Aleteia - Big Pulpit

On Listening to Good Music – Dr. Peter Kwasniewski, Corpus Christi Watershed

Protestant Bridges Catholic-Evangelical Gap – Ryan Eggenberger, Ignitum Today

The Devil Hates Priests – Christopher Check, Catholic Answers

Brave New World – Paul Zummo JD, The American Catholic

The Trouble With Evangedating – Lisa Cotter, Focus Blog

Should We Be “Desirable”. . .or “Sexy”? – Anthony S. Layne, Catholic Stand

The Veils of Lent – Jacob Tawney, Roma Locuta Est

Is It Okay to Have a Spiritual Director Not Advanced in Prayer? – Daniel Burke, Roman Catholic Spiritual Direction

12 Steps Up Mountain of...READ MORE

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Poll: Most American Catholics Pleased With Pope Francis (3220)

Among weekly Mass attendees, almost 90% are happy with his selection.

03/21/2013 Comments (4)

WASHINGTON — A new survey shows that U.S. Catholics are overwhelmingly content with the election of Pope Francis, with 73% of Catholics expressing happiness with the new Holy Father.

The poll, conducted by the Pew Research Center less than a week after the Pope’s March 13 election, also reports a subset of 31% of Catholics who say they are very happy with his election.

Though reported happiness was high, about 24% of Catholic respondents told the Pew Research Center they have not heard enough about the Pope to make a judgment.

However, only 2% said they were unhappy with the cardinals’ choice.

Among weekly Mass attendees, almost 90% are happy with his selection, compared to only...READ MORE

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Loving a Child With Same-Sex Attraction (10611)

Father Check of the Courage apostolate asks parents to be guided by the clarity and authentic compassion of the Gospel message.

03/21/2013 Comments (13)
Facebook/The John Paul II Centre for Life

– Facebook/The John Paul II Centre for Life

Earlier this month, Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, endorsed same-sex “marriage.” In a March 15 column for the Columbus Dispatch, Portman reported that he changed his position after his son told him he was a homosexual.

“I wrestled with how to reconcile my Christian faith with my desire for Will to have the same opportunities to pursue happiness and fulfillment as his brother and sister. Ultimately, it came down to the Bible’s overarching themes of love and compassion and my belief that we are all children of God,” he wrote.

Portman’s announcement comes in the wake of similar declarations from other public officials who have children with same-sex attraction.

To better understand the...READ MORE

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Arkansas, Idaho Abortion Restrictions Facing Legal Challenges (2438)

Many pro-life leaders think that ‘fetal pain’ laws stand a better chance of surviving judicial scrutiny than Arkansas’ new ‘heartbeat protection’ bill.

03/21/2013 Comments (3)

Twenty-week-old unborn child.

– www.doctorsonfetalpain.com

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A Supreme Court showdown over laws banning abortions that inflict pain on the unborn became more likely with the passage of a pair of new laws in Arkansas and the overturning of another in an Idaho lower court.

The Arkansas laws provide the state with the broadest abortion restrictions in the nation.

In late February, state legislators overrode Democratic Gov. Mike Beebe’s veto of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which bans abortions after 20 weeks on the grounds that they inflict pain on their unborn victims.

And one week later, they overrode Beebe’s veto of the Arkansas Human Heartbeat Protection Act, which bans nearly all abortions after 12 weeks...READ MORE

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Pope to Celebrate Holy Thursday Mass at Youth Prison (3140)

Benedict XVI also celebrated a Mass at the prison’s Chapel of the Merciful Father in 2007.

03/21/2013 Comments (6)
Vatican Radio/Facebook

– Vatican Radio/Facebook

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis will celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper at a youth detention center rather than the traditional Basilica of St. John Lateran, the Vatican says.

On March 28, Holy Thursday, Pope Francis will celebrate the chrism Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica in the morning, but then go to the Casal del Marmo youth detention center rather than the Basilica of St. John Lateran.

This tradition is one the new Pope has practiced since his days as archbishop of Buenos Aires.

During that time, then-Cardinal Bergoglio would celebrate Holy Thursday Mass in a hospital, prison or shelter for the poor.

Images of the then-cadinal washing and kissing the feet of AIDS patients and...READ MORE

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Did Pope Francis Say Women Are Unfit for Political Office? Three Types of Marriage and Much More! (3559)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

03/21/2013 Comment

Did Pope Francis Say Women Are Unfit for Political Office? Follow the link by Sr. Theresa Noble to read more.

Did Pope Francis Say Women Are Unfit for Political Office? by Sr. Theresa Noble - Big Pulpit

Holy Marriage, Contraceptive Marriage and Homosexual Marriage - Sword of Peter

Cardinals Vote Down Drone Strikes Against Liturgical Abuses – LarryD, The American Catholic

Catholics Draw Distinctions – David Mills, First Things/First Thoughts

There Is Only One Morality. . .Is It Yours? – Bernard Toutounji, Ignitum Today

Joseph, the Father of God – Michelle Arnold, Catholic Answers

Inadequacy is My Constant Companion – Tammy Ruiz, Catholic Stand

The Joy of Mary’s Marriage to Joseph – Sarah Reinhard, Catholic Lane

The Monastery of Our Lady of the Rosary (Summit, New Jersey) – Br....READ MORE

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