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Jesuit appointed head of US religious freedom commission

Jesuit appointed head of US religious freedom commission

WASHINGTON D.C., June 23, 2016–The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom has a new chairman, and for the first time, the position will be held by a Catholic priest. Jesuit priest Fr. Thomas Reese was first appointed to a two-year term as a member of the commission by President Barack Obama in 2014, and re-appointed [...]

MEXICO CITY, Mexico, June 23, 2016–Archbishop José Luis Chavez Botello of Antequera-Oaxaca, México, called for intensifying prayer for peace after clashes between authorities and a teachers’ union left at least seven dead and more than 50 injured.   Since June 11, the National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE) in the state of Oaxaca in southern [...]

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JUBA, South Sudan, June 21, 2016–Reconciliation and work for the common good, not assumptions of perpetual doom, are necessary to overcome the problems facing South Sudan, the country’s bishops have said. “We regret the amount of negativity and pessimism that we hear – from South Sudanese who are still steeped in the old ways of [...]

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ABUJA, Nigeria, June 22, 2016–After the sorrow of an April massacre in southeastern Nigeria, a Catholic bishop said the killers of dozens of people must still be forgiven. “Although we may find it hard to forgive the violent attack that has brought us so much grief, we know that an unforgiving spirit will never bring [...]

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WASHINGTON D.C., June 21, 2016–A relic tour currently taking place in the United States highlights the virtues of two English saints who stood up for conscience and paid the ultimate price. The “Witness to Freedom” relic tour is being held in conjunction with the U.S. bishops’ Fortnight for Freedom, which take place across the nation [...]

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LONDON, June 22, 2016—As Europe held its breath on whether Britain would vote to remain or exit the European Union, the U.N. refugee agency, UNHCR, reported that numbers fleeing war and persecution have soared four times over the past decade, to 24 people per minute or more than 65 million people forcibly displaced worldwide. Concerns [...]

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DRC Bishops to launch voter education campaign

  BRAZZAVILLE, June 20, 2016–In particular, the campaign wants young people and women to take charge of their destiny, especially in view of general elections due in November. The Church has committed itself to train people not to be passive but to participate in building a nation guided by the rule of law. In the Democratic [...]

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  JUBA, June 20, 2016– “Now is not the time for recriminations. Now is the time for the government and all citizens to work together for the future. Do not indulge in destructive criticism; instead roll up your sleeves and get to work to build a new nation for ourselves, our children and our children’s [...]

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  BURUNDI, June 20, 2016–A delegation from the Symposium of Episcopal Conferences of Africa and Madagascar (SECAM), the umbrella body of the bishops’ conferences of Africa has issued a statement following a recent solidarity visit to Burundi. Following discussions with the local bishops and government officials during the June 9-12th visit, the delegation appealed for [...]

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LOS ANGELES, Calif., June 19, 2016–For the estimated 5,000 deaf and hard-of-hearing Catholics in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, parish participation can be difficult. From homilies to retreats, normal Church events can be inaccessible to those with auditory disabilities, unless specific accommodations are made in advance. Dr. Tomas Garcia Jr., who has been deaf since [...]

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ISTANBUL, Turkey, June 16, 2016–While the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople maintains the “pan-Orthodox Council” scheduled to begin on Sunday will take place, the gathering is in disarray after four Eastern Orthodox Churches announced they would not be taking part. The Holy and and Great Council, as it is officially known, was meant to gather the [...]

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ORLANDO, Fla., June 15, 2016– Following the mass shooting that claimed the lives of 49 in Orlando, Catholics have tried to be the hands and feet of Christ in showing mercy to victims and their families and loved ones. “We’re in the Jubilee Year of Mercy. And here we have individuals who are in tremendous need [...]

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SANTIAGO, Chile, June 14, 2016–In what is being lamented as a heinous act of desecration, an emblematic Catholic church in Santiago de Chile was brutally attacked after a recent student march, with masked individuals stealing and smashing a large crucifix from the building. “This is not the first time that they’ve attacked a church in [...]

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Catholic leaders urge prayer after horrific Orlando shooting

ORLANDO, Fla., June 12, 2016–Following Saturday night’s shooting at a nightclub in Orlando that killed 50 people, Catholic leaders from around the U.S. are offering prayers for the victims and their families. “Waking up to the unspeakable violence in Orlando reminds us of how precious human life is,” said Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, president of the [...]

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WASHINGTON D.C., June 12, 2016–Nigeria is a ticking time bomb, with violence and discrimination threatening to tear the country apart and spread its existing refugee crisis throughout the region, a new report claims. “Nigeria is a country on the verge of fracturing along religious fault lines,” stated a report “Nigeria: Fractured and Forgotten” released by [...]

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Priest born deaf urges sacraments for children with disabilities

ROME, June 11, 2016–No matter how complicated it is to do, all children have a need and a right to religious education and access to the sacraments, said a priest who was born deaf and became blind 16 years ago. Opening the Year of Mercy jubilee celebration for the sick and persons with disabilities, Redemptorist [...]

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