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Pope Gives Easter Treats to Hospitalized Children (969)

The Holy Father sent chocolate eggs during Holy Week to the children in the oncology unit at Bambino Gesu Pediatric Hospital.

04/22/2014 Comment

– Shutterstock

ROME -- Pope Francis sent 150 Easter eggs to the Bambino Gesu Pediatric Hospital as an Easter gift to children hospitalized with cancer.

According to hospital officials, a van from the Vatican filled with chocolate eggs arrived at the facility during Holy Week, and the eggs were given to the children in the oncology unit.

The Bambino Gesu Hospital, known as “the Pope's Hospital,” was founded in 1869 and is the oldest pediatric hospital in Italy.

Families in Italy traditionally give chocolate eggs to their children during Easter. The eggs are often elaborately decorated and specially packaged at bakeries and candy shops.

Pope Francis met with children at the hospital during a Christmas...READ MORE

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Strength and Solidarity at the 118th Boston Marathon (1183)

Last year’s tragedy provides motivation for some of the 36,000 participants in the world’s oldest annual marathon.

04/22/2014 Comments (4)
Courtesy of Elizabeth Lay

Timothy Vafides competes in the 118th Boston Marathon on April 21.

– Courtesy of Elizabeth Lay

BOSTON — Laurie Kearney, 47, of San Diego had already planned to run in the Boston Marathon for the 19th time before the terrorist bombs exploded a year ago — abruptly ending the iconic event with bloodshed, death and terror.

However, she said the attack motivated some of her San Diego friends to qualify for this year’s marathon “as a show of strength and support that the bad guys weren’t going to take away this race.”

Indeed, on a warm and sunny Easter Monday, the 118th Boston Marathon was held as scheduled, in part through the endurance of some 36,000 participants, the legions who cheered them on and law enforcement, medical personnel and volunteers who worked to ensure a safe day.


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Philippines Issues New Stamps of Blessed John Paul II, John XXIII (609)

The country’s postmaster said a large delegation of Filipinos is heading to Rome for the canonization ceremonies.

04/22/2014 Comments (1)
CNA/Philippine Postal Corp.

Detail of a Philippines' stamp commemorating the April 27 canonization of Pope John Paul II.

– CNA/Philippine Postal Corp.

VATICAN CITY — Following the presentation of a new stamp of Pope Francis, Philippine Postmaster Maria De la Cruz revealed that the country will also release stamps honoring Popes John Paul II and John XXIII for their canonizations.

“You see, Pope John Paul is also very popular in the Philippines,” De la Cruz said April 16, after the official presentation of the new stamp of Pope Francis.

Recalling her experience attending World Youth Day as a child, De la Cruz explained, “You feel you want to cry when you see the Holy Father. It’s tears of joy, really. So now we are coming out with those two stamps” for the canonizations this week.

Speaking of the significance of the Pope to the...READ MORE

Filed under canonization, catholic faith, communion of saints, philippines, pope francis, pope john paul ii, pope john xxiii

Pope Francis Names Coptic Priest Second Personal Secretary (5590)

Msgr. Yoannis Lahzi Gaid had been translating the Holy Father’s general audiences into Arabic.

04/22/2014 Comments (1)
Wikimedia Commons

Seal of the Coptic Patriarchate of Alexandria

– Wikimedia Commons

VATICAN  CITY — Msgr. Yoannis Lahzi Gaid, a priest of the Coptic Patriarchate of Alexandria, has been made second personal secretary to Pope Francis.

The position is among the Pope’s closest collaborators, and this marks the first time that an Eastern Catholic priest has been appointed to the position.

The vacancy filled by Msgr. Lahzi Gaid March 17 was created when Msgr. Alfred Xuereb was transferred from his position as Pope Francis’ personal secretary to being prelate secretary general of the Secretariat for the Economy.

Msgr. Fabian Pedacchio Leaniz, who had been second to Msgr. Xuereb and is a priest of the Archdiocese of Buenos Aires, is now first secretary to the Pope, and Msgr....READ MORE

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The Greatest Easter Painting Ever Made, Fr. Barron v. Bart Ehrman: No Contest and Much More! (2356)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

04/22/2014 Comments (1)

Follow the The Greatest Easter Painting Ever Made link by Elise Ehrard of Crisis Magazine to read more.

The Greatest Easter Painting Ever Made by Elise Ehrard of Crisis Magazine - BigPulpit.com

Book Review: Killing Jesus – Fr. David Friel, Views from the Choir Loft

Father Barron v. Bart Ehrman: No Contest – Don. R. McClarey JD, The American Catholic

John Paul II & The Blessed Sacrament – Jason Evert, The Catholic World Report

The Joys of a Praying Family – Michelle Fritz, Catholic Stand

The Five-Fold Argument for the Resurrection – Joe Heschmeyer, Strange Notions

A Day Without Him – Rebecca Frech, Ignitum Today

The Question of Suffering, the Response of the Cross – Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, Ignatius Insight Scoop

Spiritual Adolescence – Vicki Burbach, Roman Catholic Spiritual...READ MORE

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CHA’s Sister Carol Keehan Insists Obamacare Bars Federal Dollars for Abortion: Is She Right? (3701)


04/22/2014 Comments (18)
World Economic Forum/Wikipedia

Sister Carol Keehan, president of the Catholic Health Association, speaks at the 2013 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

– World Economic Forum/Wikipedia

WASHINGTON — Does the Affordable Care Act (ACA) permit federal dollars for elective abortion, in a sharp departure from legislative precedent?

No, says Daughter of Charity Sister Carol Keehan, the president of the Catholic Health Association (CHA), an industry lobby that represents Church-affiliated hospitals and nursing-care facilities, which provided crucial backing for the controversial health-care law when it narrowly passed Congress in 2010.

“We are always alert to additional legislative protections that ensure federal funds are not used to provide or facilitate abortions,” Sister Carol told the Register in an email exchange.

“At the same time, we continue to be confident, as we...READ MORE

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New Survey Shows Secularist Pull Among the West’s Educated Elites (5475)

The international poll found positive attitudes towards religion worldwide, but support drops sharply in Western Europe and within academia.

04/21/2014 Comments (4)

WASHINGTON — A majority of the world’s people believe that religion plays a positive role in society, according to a new WIN/Gallup International survey released April 17. However, the poll found two areas where religion is likely to be viewed more negatively: Western Europe and academia.

More than half (59%) of the close to 67,000 people interviewed by WIN/Gallup International reported that religion plays a positive role. Overall, those in the world who felt positive about religion outnumbered those who felt negatively about religion by 37%.

“What we see is in line with other religious studies we have been doing for the past 30 years, which is that religion is important for people in...READ MORE

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Pope Francis: Spread Easter’s ‘Joyous Wonder’ (618)

Addressing thousands of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square April 21 for the Regina Coeli, the Holy Father cited the example of Mary Magdalene.

04/21/2014 Comment

Pope Francis prays the Regina Coeli on April 21.

– ctv.va

VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis on Monday exhorted the Christian faithful to spread the joy of Easter to others.

“Happy Easter!” he said. “Christ is risen! He is truly risen.”

The Pope addressed thousands of faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the Regina Coeli on April 21.

“Let the joyous wonder of Easter Sunday radiate through our thoughts, looks, attitudes, gestures and words,” he said, according to Vatican Radio.

Those who help radiate the joy of the Resurrection can bring the “light” of the risen Lord to others by spreading happiness, by helping those in pain and by bringing “serenity and hope,” the Pope explained.

This radiating wonder must come “from within us,” from a heart...READ MORE

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