Media Watch

Belgian Youth Say They Want to Marry

EXPATICA.COM, May 26 — Most young Belgians say they want to get married sometime in their lives, and two-thirds say they want a church wedding, according to a new survey.

Researches from the Catholic University at Leuven found in the study of 1,500 adolescents between ages 15 and 18 that 80% wanted to tie the knot, the European news site reported. Fifty-eight percent of those said they wanted a church wedding.

However, the survey also found some disturbing news — 60% of those questioned said they wanted to live with their future spouse before getting married. Also, only 16% said love would be their main reason for marrying.

Religious Leaders Support Palestinian State

THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, June 1 — A group of Christian, Muslim and Jewish leaders announced their support June 1 of President Bush's call for a Palestinian state and called for a special U.S. envoy to the Middle East to aid in peace negotiations.

“We believe in the road map. … We believe the United States has to do more and has to do it now,” said Cardinal Theodore McCarrick of Washington, D.C., referring to the U.S.-backed plan for peace, after the group met with U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell.

“We know there is going to be a two-state solution,” said Reform Rabbi Paul Menitoff of the Central Conference of American Rabbis.

A State Department spokesman said Powell isn't opposed to sending an envoy to the Middle East but the level of violence must subside so peacemaking can move forward.

Kenyan Abortion Doctor Arrested

THE AGE (Australia), June 2 — An abortionist and two nurses were arrested in Nairobi, Kenya, in late May after the remains of 15 fetuses were found close to a nearby river. Abortion is illegal in Kenya, as it is in most African countries.

Approximately 20,000 women are admitted to hospitals each year due to complications from abortions, and about 2,600 die from post-abortion complications, The Age newspaper in Australia reported. Those numbers and the recent findings have prompted debate over legalizing abortion.

Father Wesonga Maloba of the Archdiocese of Nairobi described the discovery of the fetuses as “the height of human hatred and irresponsibility.”

“(It is) a situation,” he said, “where people have relegated human life to the level of trash.”

Church Opposes New Spanish Government Policies

THE NEW YORK TIMES, May 31 — Spain's new government wants to allow homosexual marriages, grant divorces quicker and make abortion easier to obtain — and the Catholic Church there plans to do all it can to oppose it.

“Laws that permit the elimination of human lives don't deserve to be called laws,” said the secretary-general of the Spanish bishops’ conference, referring to the proposed abortion laws, the New York Times reported.

He also said Church leaders would support demonstrations against homosexual marriage and other steps taken since the March 14 elections.

Currently, couples must be legally separated for a year before filing for divorce, and in some places, same-sex couples are allowed some — but not all — of the benefits of marriage.