National News

Detroit ‘families of parishes’ plan moves ahead; Pittsburgh announces mergers

The Detroit Archdiocese will begin a new governance model for its 218 parishes next year in which groups of three to six parishes will share clergy, pastoral ministers and other parish staff.

Panel: Dorothy Day’s focus on the neglected would resonate in COVID-19 era

A panel of top writers led a webinar with 2,000 registrants who reflected on Day, the journalist, social-justice activist and co-founder of the Catholic Worker Movement, on the 40th anniversary of her death.

Beatified teen inspires song from Long Island Catholic high school

Blessed Carlo Acutis, the Italian teen beatified in October, is not only responsible for a medical miracle, he also has inspired a song by New York Catholic high school students featuring his own quotations.

Catholic leaders decry additional federal execution measures

A move by the Department of Justice to expand how it carries out federal death sentences -- to include electrocution, gas or firing squads along with lethal injections --was sharply criticized by Catholic anti-death penalty activists.

Priest with Philly roots marks 100th birthday in Virginia

Father John Van de Paer, who served Black Catholics for 43 years as pastor at St. Charles Borromeo Parish in South Philadelphia, welcomed a line of cars with young and old wishing him happy birthday, including some from Philadelphia.

Pope appoints Washington auxiliary bishop to head Buffalo Diocese

Bishop Michael Fisher, 62, is the Washington Archdiocese's vicar for clergy. He will be installed Jan. 15 as head of the Buffalo Diocese, which has been rocked by the clergy sexual abuse scandal and forced into bankruptcy this year.

Court dubious of Trump’s plan to exclude immigrants in census

Justice Amy Coney Barrett told the lawyer representing the Trump administration position that "the historical evidence and long-standing practice really cuts against your position."

Black Catholics express joy at elevation of first African American cardinal

The elevation of Cardinal Wilton Gregory "says that the faith, the contributions, the experience of Black Catholics truly do matter," said one leader, echoing the voices of many in the Washington area.

Court says N.Y. limits on houses of worship restrict religious freedom

In a 5-4 decision, the Supreme Court lifted the pandemic restrictions on congregation sizes at houses of worship imposed by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, siding with the Diocese of Brooklyn and two Jewish synagogues.

Advent during pandemic can be time to draw closer to Jesus

The global pandemic and new limits on daily activities present a special time for a renewal of faith and a deeper appreciation for Jesus in daily life, bishops across the country said in Advent messages.