National News

Religious orders say social media use spurs more interest in vocations

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Several religious congregations and organizations are taking advantage of social media to “introduce” individuals discerning a call to a vocation and the seminary, convent or monastery that fits them. With more than 1,400 likes on Facebook, the National Religious Vocation Conference takes full advantage of social networking, through its Vision Vocation Guide […]

Catholic media urged to help church find best way to use new media

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (CNS) — The new culture of communication requires that Catholic media rethink their approach, the president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications told a Fort Wayne audience gathered to celebrate the centennial of Our Sunday Visitor. Archbishop Claudio Celli spoke about the Catholic Church’s focus on new evangelization and addressed new […]

Conference to explore life, death of Pope John Paul I

DOUGLASTON, N.Y. (CNS) -- Experts from Europe and the United States will speak at an international conference focusing on the life of Pope John Paul I and his brief pontificate Oct. 12-13 at the Immaculate Conception Center in Douglaston. Speakers at the conference on "The True Pope John Paul I: A Man of Faith for Our Time" will include the pope's niece, Pia Luciani; Italian journalist Stefania Falasca, one of the prime movers in his sainthood cause; and Paul Spackman of Corwen, Wales, author of "God's Candidate: The Life and Times of Pope John Paul I."

Cardinal Rigali had back stage pass to Vatican II’s proceedings

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (CNS) -- Cardinal Justin Rigali, former archbishop of Philadelphia and St. Louis who is currently in residence in Knoxville, was a priest assistant at the Second Vatican Council -- a spot that essentially gave him a backstage pass. The significance wasn't lost on the then-27-year-old Los Angeles priest, who called it a privilege to play a minor role at the council.

Catholic group enlists young adults to help people ‘lift themselves up’

BALTIMORE (CNS) -- When Towana Bowers-Scott looks at Anthony Newman, she doesn't see a youthful do-gooder spending his second post-college year doing a year of service for a Catholic organization. The 30-year-old Baltimore high school dropout sees a tireless tutor determined to help her pass her GED high-school equivalency exam. "He don't give up on us," Bowers-Scott said, following a tutoring session with Newman at the McElderry Park Community Resource Center in an east Baltimore neighborhood littered with boarded-up houses and all of the markings of extreme poverty.

Missouri Catholic businessman to appeal judge’s decision on HHS lawsuit

ST. LOUIS (CNS) — A federal court ruling that rejected a Catholic St. Louis business owner's challenge to the federal mandate that employee health insurance cover contraceptives will be appealed to the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. U.S. District Judge Carole Jackson Sept. 28 granted the Obama administration's motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed […]

US Catholics urged to renew commitment ‘to defend’ life during October

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- During October, designated each year as Respect Life Month by the U.S. Catholic Church, Catholics should "renew their personal commitment to defend all human life, especially the most vulnerable members of the human family," said the chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Pro-Life Activities.

Archbishop urges Catholics to follow pope’s ‘road map’ of faith renewal

LOS ANGELES (CNS) -- In a wide-ranging address at the eighth annual Los Angeles Catholic Prayer Breakfast, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Philadelphia spoke of the "debris of failure" that must be dealt with if the Catholic Church in America is to be truly renewed. The archbishop said the obvious problems include the clergy sex abuse crisis, a decline in priestly vocations, struggling Catholic schools and parishes, years of deficit spending and unrealistic financial management, and drastic demographic changes.

True marriage ‘part of natural law,’ archbishop says in pastoral letter

Marriage is "not created by law or the state" because it is "a natural and pre-political institution," Archbishop John J. Myers of Newark said in a pastoral reflection issued Sept. 25. "How long would the state permit churches, schools or parents to teach their children that homosexual activity is contrary to the natural law if homosexual marriage were a civil right?" he asked. "Already in Canada and other democratic nations 'hate speech' laws have been used to harass or even arrest clerics who preach the biblical message about marriage."

St. Louis to host day of prayer to implore Mary’s blessing upon nation

ST. LOUIS (CNS) — St. Louis will host a National Day of Prayer in Honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary Oct. 6. Several local lay Catholics, with the blessing of St. Louis Archbishop Robert J. Carlson, have invited members of the Family of Mary to lead the day of prayer, which will be held downtown […]