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Priests’ group recommends revisions in U.S. priestly formation

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Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON — An organization of 1,200 priests has called for revisions in the way seminarians are prepared for ministry so that the U.S. Catholic Church can better address challenges that include declining membership and falling seminary enrollment.

The Association of U.S. Catholic Priests addressed five areas of concern, saying that priests must get closer to the people they serve and better understand what it means to be a disciple of Jesus as envisioned by Pope Francis.

The concerns were outlined in a March 29 letter and eight-page document sent to Cardinal Joseph W. Tobin of Newark, New Jersey, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations. Read more »

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Catholic tradition guides teaching on contraception, archbishop says

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Catholic News Service
WASHINGTON — The Catholic Church’s teaching on marriage, abortion, human sexuality and contraception is rooted in the same respect for human dignity that guides its work for social justice and care for poor people, Philadelphia Archbishop Charles J. Chaput told a Catholic University of America audience.

It is imperative that the church make known why it upholds its teaching, as reiterated in Blessed Paul VI’s 1968 encyclical “Humanae Vitae” (“Of Human Life”), so that Catholics and the world understand God’s plan for humanity, the archbishop said during the April 4 opening session of a symposium marking the 50th anniversary of the papal teaching.

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‘Kings Bay Plowshares’ arrested at Naval submarine base

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Catholic News Service
WASHINGTON — Seven Catholic peace activists were detained at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay in Georgia early April 5, hours after entering to protest nuclear weapons.

The group carried “hammers and baby bottles of their own blood,” which was spilled on at least three sites on the base, supporters said in a statement.

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Catholic leaders fear worst for poor in Trump budget

February 14th, 2018 Posted in National News Tags:

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WASHINGTON — Catholic leaders cautioned that federal spending must safeguard the common good after the White House released its fiscal year 2019 spending plan that boosts military spending and cuts human services, environmental protection, diplomacy and international humanitarian assistance while assuring that the budget deficit will grow over the next decade.

The chairmen of two U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ committees joined Catholic Relief Services, Catholic Charities USA and Jesuit Refugee Service/USA officials in expressing concern that the proposed budget disproportionately cuts programs assisting the poor and elderly, placing human life and dignity in danger.

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Catholic schools focus of transformation at bishop’s conference

January 23rd, 2018 Posted in National News Tags: ,

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Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON — Catholic bishops are looking to “transform” Catholic schools in response to decades of declining enrollment that has forced hundreds of schools to close since 2005.

The effort, said the chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Catholic Education, encompasses a wide-ranging look at issues facing Catholic schools and a renewed effort to help parents better understand that the spiritual development of a child goes hand in hand with academic achievement.

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Congress up against deadline to renew CHIP health program for low-income children

November 30th, 2017 Posted in National News Tags: , ,

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WASHINGTON (CNS) — A health program that serves children from low-income families that has enjoyed bipartisan support for 20 years faces an uncertain future unless Congress adopts legislation reauthorizing it before funding runs out in the coming months.

Congress failed to meet a Sept. 30 deadline to continue the federally funded and state-run Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP. Several states were preparing in late November to notify families that the program would end unless the federal government recommits to funding it.

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Church leaders decry administration plan to end TPS for Haitians

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Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON — Advocates and church leaders rallied around 58,000 Haitians living in the United States since a ferocious 2010 earthquake after the Trump administration moved to end a humanitarian program that allowed them stay in the country.

The Haitians will be forced to leave the country by July 22, 2019, or face deportation. Read more »

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Archbishop Vigneron elected next USCCB secretary beginning fall 2018

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Catholic News Service

 

BALTIMORE (CNS) — Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron of Detroit will be the next secretary of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, taking office next November.

Bishops voted 96-88 to elect Archbishop Vigneron Nov. 14 during their fall general assembly. Read more »

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Civility must guide debate on social challenges, USCCB president says

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Catholic News Service

 

BALTIMORE (CNS) — Acknowledging wide divisions in the country over issues such as health care, immigration reform, taxes and abortion, the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops called for civility to return to the public debate.

Contemporary challenges are great, but that they can be addressed without anger and with love Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston said in his first address as USCCB president during the bishops’ fall general assembly. Read more »

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40 Catholic institutions plan to divest $5 trillion from fossil fuel companies

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Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON — Forty Catholic institutions, including the Belgian bishops’ conference and a leading church social welfare agency in South Africa, have decided to divest from fossil fuel companies.

The organizations cited the call of Pope Francis in his 2015 encyclical, “Laudato Si’, on Care for Our Common Home,” to take steps to protect the environment as well as the importance of making investments that lead to a carbon-neutral economy in an effort to address climate change. Read more »

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