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Blessing of Bella (3980)

Feb. 12 issue editorial on how the life of 3-year-old Isabella Maria Santorum has turned out to be a blessing for all of us.

02/06/2012 Comments (9)
Reuters/Jason Cohn

Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum reaches back to rub the forehead of his daughter Isabella Maria, who is held by his wife, Karen, at a rally to officially announce his candidacy for president of the United States on the steps of the courthouse in Somerset, Pa., June 6, 2011.

– Reuters/Jason Cohn

Rick Santorum may never get past the string of presidential primaries that are leading up to the Republican convention.

But with the former Pennsylvania senator’s profile now much higher than it has ever been, he has already attained a “bully pulpit” of sorts for the values that matter most to him and his Catholic family.

While we would never wish the burden of serious illness on any family, the life of 3-year-old Isabella Maria Santorum has turned out to be a blessing for all of us.

The Santorums already knew her life was precious and full of potential — even when they received the devastating news shortly after Bella’s birth that she had Trisomy 18, a syndrome that can cause heart defects,...READ MORE

Filed under children with disabilities, dignity of human life, faith, life, pro-life, rick santorum

Virginia Senate Passes Ultrasound Bill (2227)

Governor and state Catholic Conference support the bill.

02/06/2012 Comments (18)

– Shutterstock

The Virginia Senate passed legislation on Feb. 1 requiring a woman seeking an abortion to first obtain an ultrasound image of her unborn child.

Bill sponsor Republican Sen. Jill Vogel said the legislation will help keep women informed about their health and will bring current laws “in line with current reproductive technology.”

“It is critical that a woman have the opportunity to have the ultrasound because the ultrasound can lead to information that would save your life or, at a minimum, have an impact on the outcome of the procedure,” she told the Northern Virginia Daily.

The legislation passed by a 21-18 vote, with two Democrats voting in favor and one Republican voting against. It...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, pro-life legislation, ultrasounds, virginia

Washington State Catholics Fight Againt Marriage-Redefinition Law (1928)

Bill passed state Senate on Feb. 1.

02/06/2012 Comments (3)

– Shutterstock

The Washington Catholic Conference is preparing to fight against a bill redefining marriage, which is expected to become law after its passage in the State Senate on Feb. 1.

“We’re disappointed that they passed it, but suspected they were going to,” the conference’s executive director Sister Sharon Park told EWTN News Feb. 2.

“It hasn’t passed our House of Representatives yet, but they have enough votes there, and the governor has already come out saying she will sign it.”

“The next process is the referendum process,” Sister Sharon explained. “If a law is passed that the people don’t want, and they can gather a little over 120,000 signatures by a certain date, then a referendum can go on...READ MORE

Filed under marriage, marriage redefinition, same-sex 'marriage', washington state

Pope: Faith Can Overcome Suffering of Illness (2055)

Benedict XVI said Feb. 5: The sick can 'overcome and defeat the test of disease with a heart immersed in the love of God.'

02/06/2012 Comment

Faith in the love of Jesus Christ can overcome the suffering of long-term illness, Pope Benedict XVI said in his Sunday Angelus address Feb. 5.

Just as Jesus faced the devil “with the power of love that was from the Father,” the Pope explained, so also a sick person can “overcome and defeat the test of disease with a heart immersed in the love of God.”

Indeed, he noted, “we all know people who have endured terrible suffering because God gave them a deep serenity.”

Pope Benedict addressed his remarks to thousands of pilgrims braving the cold and snow in St. Peter’s Square. From the window of the papal apartments, he reflected on the day’s Gospel, in which Jesus “healed many who were sick...READ MORE

Filed under faith, illness, pope benedict xvi

Faith in French Canada (2906)

A weekend winter pilgrimage to Montreal. Jan. 29 issue feature.

02/05/2012 Comments (4)
Justin Bell

Notre Dame Basilica interior

– Justin Bell

Stepping out of the Notre Dame Basilica of Montreal on a late afternoon in early January, the light and color was just right: Ornate lampposts cast a warm glow on the snowy ground as white angels cast a blue light at the entrance of the church, welcoming visitors.

Father Daniel Hennessey had invited members of the Sacred Heart House, a Catholic men’s household that I live in, to go to Quebec for a pilgrimage.

It didn’t take me long to agree to go. Having not returned home for the holidays, a break from Beantown would be a welcome turn, and the cost was really low — an easy choice.

Our pilgrim band was a group of five: three of us guys, Father Michael Harrington and Father...READ MORE

Filed under montreal, saints

Love, the Christian Difference (2186)

User's Guide to Sunday, Feb. 5.

02/05/2012 Comment

– Shutterstock

Sunday, Feb. 5, is the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time.


St. Scholastica, Feb. 10: We love the book The Holy Twins by Tomie de Paola, which tells the story of today’s saint, the twin sister of St. Benedict. The story imagines what their childhood must have been like. Of course, central to the book is the story of the storm that God sent in answer to Scholastica’s prayers when she wished to spend more time with her brother. Get the book to share that story with your family or search YouTube for St. Scholastica and click on the Apostleship of Prayer link.

Our Lady of Lourdes, Feb. 11: There is a good, nearly 15-minute documentary available on YouTube about Lourdes called “Lourdes:...READ MORE

Filed under christian love, gospe, user's guide to sunday

Loyal Supporters (1738)

Jan. 29 issue publisher's note on the Register's circulation boost: an increase of more than 14% in 2011 — and the results from the early part of 2012 indicate that the number continues to climb.

02/05/2012 Comments (3)

The prolonged economic downturn in which we find our world has greatly affected all segments of society — and the publishing industry is no exception. But, in the face of that hardship, you have remained loyal to the Register.

For that we are truly grateful.

It’s remarkable for any publication to experience a circulation boost in a soft economy. But, because of your unwavering support, we at the Register witnessed an increase of more than 14% in 2011 — and the results from the early part of 2012 indicate that the number continues to climb.

That response inspires every member of our team to continue our mission to bring you the most comprehensive and timely coverage possible. We are...READ MORE

Filed under circulation, national catholic register, readership

Will the HHS Contraception Mandate Derail Obama's Chances of Re-Election? (7783)

Two weeks after HHS Secretary Sebelius approved the controversial final rule, Speaker Boehner and Romney take up religious liberty issue.

02/05/2012 Comments (35)
Pete Marovich/Getty Images

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) speaks during his weekly on-camera news conference on Capitol Hill Feb. 2 in Washington. Boehner said President Obama should reconsider a decision to compel church-affiliated employers to cover birth control in their health care plans.

– Pete Marovich/Getty Images

WASHINGTON — The new health-care bill was supposed to be President Barack Obama’s ticket to his re-election. But, for now, those hopes have dimmed, as the White House fights to defend its controversial policy to require Catholic institutions to provide contraceptive services in their employee health plans.

Under President Obama’s health-care overhaul law, most private employer health benefits will have to cover birth control, free of charge, as a preventive service for women. For much of 2011, the U.S. bishops lobbied for a broad religious exemption that would shield church-affiliated hospitals, social agencies and universities from being forced to provide health services that violated...READ MORE

Filed under conscience, election, hhs, religious freedom

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