World News

Faith in Jesus means being optimistic about future, synod message says

Despite the growth of secularism, increased hostility toward Christianity and sinful behavior by some church ministers, members of the Synod of Bishops said they are optimistic about the future because of Christ's promise of salvation. Addressing a message to Catholics around the world Oct. 26, synod members said they were certain God "will not fail to look on our poverty in order to show the strength of his arm in our days and to sustain us in the path of the new evangelization."

Vatican II betrayed by breakdown of church discipline, cardinal tells Synod

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Abandonment of internal church discipline over the past half century has undermined the reforms of the Second Vatican Council, said the American cardinal who heads the Vatican’s supreme court. Cardinal Raymond L. Burke, prefect of the Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature and a former archbishop of St. Louis, made his […]

Synod’s tone reflects ‘struggle between good and evil,’ cardinal says

If the Synod of Bishops on the new evangelization has seemed to lack a certain "fire and energy," the gathering's sober tone reflects the fact that the Catholic Church is "in the midst of an enormous struggle between good and evil," said Australian Cardinal George Pell of Sydney. "It's much easier to reorganize a seminary; it's a different challenge to spark a religious revival," especially in most modern cultures, the cardinal told reporters Oct. 19.

Kateri and Jake: American Indians are joined in sainthood cause

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Jake Finkbonner knows what it’s like to have kids tease him because of the way he looks, but one of his heroes also grew up being teased. The 12-year-old boy said Kateri Tekakwitha, who was to become an official saint Oct. 21, was “an inspiration because I remember reading that many […]

People need to believe in miracles, says woman cured of infection

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Though she had always believed in miracles, Sharon Smith never dreamed she would be the recipient of one. Her unexplained recovery from a near fatal infection in 2005 was the second miracle that cleared the way for the Oct. 21 canonization of Blessed Marianne Cope. Smith will present Pope Benedict XVI […]

Evangelization must start with people’s real lives, synod members say

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- New evangelization efforts cannot succeed unless they begin with the concrete lives, cultures and languages of the people whom the Catholic Church is trying to reach with the Gospel, said participants at the Synod of Bishops. Indonesian Bishop Ignatius Suharyo Hardjoatmodjo of Jakarta said a problem comes with translations of the Mass from the original Latin. While the Vatican has insisted on translations being as literal as possible in order to remain faithful to the full content and rich implications of the Latin terms, the Indonesian bishop said a "literal translation is not always possible, because of the diversity and complexity of languages."

Pope says farm co-ops can protect values while feeding people

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Farm co-ops can provide the world with an “alternative vision” to government or international agriculture policies that place too much emphasis on profits, protecting certain markets or employing new technology that could prove dangerous, Pope Benedict XVI said. The pope made his comments in a message marking the Oct. 16 celebration […]

Bishops tell synod church needs lively parishes, Bible literacy

The liturgies of African Catholic churches are a model for other Catholic communities seeking to invigorate their parishes and reach out to lapsed members, a Nigerian bishop told the world Synod of Bishops. Bishop Emmanuel Badejo of Oyo told the synod Oct. 15 that "the solemn, but exuberant multimedia liturgy" found in many African parishes helps people focus on the action of the Holy Spirit. He said church leaders need to leave the "catacombs of fear and self-consciousness" and go where people spend their time, including "the streets, town squares, market places, nightclubs, shopping malls, even pubs and the slums."

Cardinal says converts’ top 3 Catholic things are penance, pope, Mary

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Adult converts to Catholicism regularly cite three things about Catholicism that they find attractive: the sacrament of confession, the pope and devotion to Mary, said New York Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan. “Those three things, guess what, were kind of de-emphasized” after the Second Vatican Council, the cardinal said Oct. 15 during […]

Vienna to reduce its parishes by more than 75 percent over 10 years

Austria's Vienna Archdiocese will press ahead with a major reorganization that will including liquidating most of its parishes over 10 years, despite objections from some local Catholics. The archdiocese's 660 parishes will be merged over the next decade into around 150 larger parishes, each served by three-five priests and offering regular Masses.