News Hub archives: August 2006 to March 2007

If anyone cares, this is an archive of the CNS News Hub from when it was born in August 2006, back in the days when it was hard-coded (ugh!):

Catholics and the telling of the truth under oath
The Tidings
A story in the Los Angeles Times on clergy sex abuse “is insulting to all Catholics,” according to a statement issued by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.
The Tidings in Los Angeles provides the text of the statement; here is a link to the story in question.

Sacred art: Etching faith onto eggs
St. Anthony Messenger
With Easter coming,
St. Anthony Messenger profiles a Pennsylvania nun the magazine calls “a maestro with an egg” because of how she can breathe new life into the ancient style of Byzantine art.

First Communion gifts range from jewelry to prayer guides
The Catholic Spirit
First Communion season is just around the corner for many Catholic parishes, so
The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul-Minneapolis offers readers ideas for gifts to give youngsters to mark their reception of the sacrament.

Will Easter happen this year?
The Georgia Bulletin
“Easter does not happen if we keep running away from, denying, blocking out, avoiding Good Friday,” writes a priest serving in the Atlanta Archdiocese in a column in
The Georgia Bulletin. Only by embracing life’s pains, sorrows and dyings — something our secular society for the most part tries to avoid — can we arrive “at the Easters that can and will give us new life.”

Eighth-graders grow in faith by critiquing controversial film
The Criterion
Members of an eighth-grade class in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis decided on their own initiative to critique the Discovery Channel’s “The Lost Tomb of Jesus” documentary.
The Criterion In Indianapolis reports that the students were well-equipped to counter the documentary’s claims.

Climate change getting attention
Catholic Universe Bulletin
Catholics in Ohio are getting ready for a major examination of climate change, according to the
Catholic Universe Bulletin in Cleveland. The keynote speaker for an upcoming conference, which will examine the relationship of climate change with Catholic social teaching, will be the papal nuncio to the United Nations.

Three priests to begin training in Byzantine rite liturgy
Tennessee Register
Responding to the request of the Byzantine Catholic archbishop whose territory includes Tennessee, three clerics in the Diocese of Nashville are planning to be trained as bi-ritual priests with the faculties to celebrate liurgies in both the Latin and Byzantine rites. The
Tennessee Register reports that both the priests and Byzantine Catholics they will serve are excited about the changes.

An open (and non-judgmental) invitation
Hawaii Catholic Herald
The
Hawaii Catholic Herald has a feature on efforts in the Honolulu Diocese to encourage non-practicing Catholics to return to the church. Even the couple that began the program are themselves returning Catholics.

Break down the barriers built from grudges
Catholic Explorer
For your Lenten reflection, the
Catholic Explorer in the Diocese of Joliet, Ill., has a column by Bishop J. Peter Sartain of Joliet on the importance of forgiveness. He writes that he once asked schoolchildren if they knew what a grudge was and got a very insightful answer from an 8-year-old.

City honors Civil War priest who saved downtown churches
The Georgia Bulletin
Don’t miss this if you have any interest in the U.S. Civil War: An Irish-born priest who served both Union and Confederate soldiers helped persuade Gen. William Tecumseh Sherman to spare Atlanta’s five churches from the fire that Sherman used to destroy the city, according to this story in
The Georgia Bulletin. A separate story in the same edition tells how the priest’s crypt was discovered in the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception’s basement nearly 120 years later.

Knights make a difference in Iraq
The Catholic Review
An Army major on his second tour of duty in Iraq helped form a Knights of Columbus round table in Baghdad.
The Catholic Review in Baltimore reports that Knights there help distribute Communion to other soldiers and aid members of the Iraqi Catholic minority in the city.

We need to take action to save the world’s water
The Catholic Register
For the observance of World Water Day,
The Catholic Register in Toronto published a commentary about the importance of preserving fresh water as a public trust. Water is a sacred symbol for most religions. including Christianity, the commentary notes, and should not become a commodity for the rich.

Appeals judge rejects arguments of diocese and insurers
The Catholic Observer
Neither side is happy with an appeals court judge’s ruling that the Diocese of Springfield, Mass., must turn over certain documents about its handling of clergy misconduct cases.
The Catholic Observer explains.

Omaha seminarian excels in Rome soccer tournament
The Catholic Voice
Priests and seminarians in Rome are competing in a soccer tournament for the first Clericus Cup (for background, click
here, here and here). The Catholic Voice in Omaha, Neb., profiles star goalie Andrew Roza, who is to be ordained to the priesthood in June (and who’s absence from the tournament because of a retreat led to a shootout loss to a Croatian team).

We need to stop pornography, now
Denver Catholic Register
Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Denver, in his regular column in the
Denver Catholic Register, says sexual behavior is never merely a “private” matter, whether it be homosexual acts, sexually transmitted diseases or the impact of pornography.

Hundreds of parishioners are gone; Albanian immigrants deported
The Michigan Catholic
The Michigan Catholic in Detroit notes that the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been rounding up ethnic Albanians who have lost their political asylum appeals, an action that’s impacting two Detroit-area ethnic Albanian parishes. Hundreds of families have been split by the action.

Bravo!: A parish in Erie explores the art of community
Faith
Our Lady of Peace Parish in the Diocese of Erie, Pa., has it’s own acting community, called the OLP Playhouse, that has done musicals, plays and dinner theaters, among other things. One of the founding members calls it a ministry, not just a parish organization.
Faith magazine in the Erie Diocese tells how the playhouse was born and why members think it helps them grow in faith.

Sister Doris walking journey with Texas death row inmate
Arkansas Catholic
A Texas death row inmate scheduled to die later this month has a friend in an Arkansas nun who has been accompanying him on his journey since 1998. The
Arkansas Catholic tells the story about how their friendship began and what it has meant to her opposition to capital punishment.

Sculptor enlivens Stations of the Cross
Catholic Sentinel
The
Catholic Sentinel in Portland, Ore., introduces readers to a sculptor whose bas relief Stations of the Cross are intended to remind people of the power and beauty of the Gospel message. Some older depictions of the stations are “rather boring,” says Tomasz Misztal, whose stations — as depicted in this story — seem anything but.In a related item, The Leaven of Kansas City, Kan., has a video story on one Boy Scout’s project to build outdoor stations. (Mac version available here.)

Applying lessons learned from Mother Teresa
Catholic Herald
While Jim Towey spent more than four years at the White House as head of the Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, he still talks about time spent with Blessed Mother Teresa as being the most significant in his life. The
Catholic Herald in Milwaukee caught up with Towey when he was there earlier this month.

L.A. chaplain: A ministry of presence in Iraq
The Tidings
The Tidings in Los Angeles has a fascinating first-person account from a priest currently serving as a U.S. military chaplain in Iraq. Father Jose A. Bautista says his work is maybe the most rewarding ministry of all and tells the story of how soldiers and chaplains pitched in to help Iraqi civilians after a recent truck bomb exploded with massive casualities.
 

Bridging the gap with Catholic radio
Pittsburgh Catholic
Relevant Radio is a growing network of Catholic radio outlets, and the
Pittsburgh Catholic interviewed their local station’s manager to get a sense of what the network is trying to accomplish, both locally and nationally.

Cod Squad searches for good fries, faith sharing
St. Louis Review
You never can have too many good fish stories for Lent: The
St. Louis Review reports on young adults — the “Cod Squad,” naturally — who go fish-fry “hopping” on Friday evenings at local parishes. It’s becoming quite the tradition and it’s better than bar hopping, says the paper.

Spring training games drive in extra funds for Catholic groups
The Catholic Sun
This is one parish fundraiser that only works in certain places and certain times of the year — working the concession stand at spring-training baseball.
The Catholic Sun in Phoenix has a few examples and says at least one Major League Baseball team also helps raise funds for a Catholic charity.

Home sellers count on the intercession of St. Joseph for success
Catholic Chronicle
“Should he be upside down or upright? Facing toward the house or away? In the front or backyard? Is it better to place him near the ‘for sale’ sign?” That’s the lead paragraph in a story in the
Catholic Chronicle of Toledo, Ohio, on the venerable tradition of burying a statue of St. Joseph to seek his help in selling your home. Though the practice can border on superstition, it can also be a true appeal in faith, explains the chancellor of the Toledo Diocese.

Ex-gang ‘poster child’ arrested on drug charge
The Tidings
Here’s a sad story in
The Tidings of Los Angeles about a former gang member who straightened out his life, earned a master’s degree in social work and worked hard to counter the influence of gangs, only to be arrested on a drug charge. His colleagues are described as devastated.

Bishops sound alarm on stem-cell issues
The Leaven
Concerned about last year’s fight in Missouri over stem cells and cloning, the bishops of neighboring Kansas have launched their own multifaceted education effort on the controversial issues, reports
The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan. The paper also links to the full text of the Kansas bishops’ pastoral letter on stem-cell research, and to an educational video on stem cells introduced by Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann of Kansas City.

New bishop installed for Salt Lake City
Intermountain Catholic
The Diocese of Salt Lake City and the
Intermountain Catholic newspaper are celebrating the March 14 installation of Bishop John C. Wester as their new leader. As part of the celebration, the paper’s Web site includes a video from the installation Mass (QuickTime player required).

Tim Russert thanks Catholic teachers for their special vocation
Catholic Standard
The moderator of NBC’s “Meet the Press” told an audience of teachers in Washington that it was the Sister of Mercy who was his seventh-grade teacher who changed his life and launched him on a career in journalism. Washington’s
Catholic Standard tells how Tim Russert continues to honor that Mercy nun today by sponsoring an outstanding teacher award, which carries with it a $1,500 prize.

Lots of locks — and love — in Lent
The Catholic Post
A teaching intern and five students at a Catholic elementary school in Peoria, Ill., gave a Lenten sacrifice they’ll not soon forget: They donated locks of their hair to an organization that makes wigs for sick children.
The Catholic Post in Peoria reports that the rest of the school learned a valuable lesson as well.

St. Joseph was a man of mystery—like my dad
The Georgia Bulletin
Two days after St. Patrick, it’s time for St. Joseph: A commentary by Lorraine V. Murray in
The Georgia Bulletin says St. Joseph reminds her of her father — both were men of few words. Because Joseph has no speaking lines in the Gospels, he remains an enigma, she notes.

Police, parish work to resolve missing funds
The Michigan Catholic
A case of embezzlement of thousands of dollars of parish funds by a parish business manager in the Archdiocese of Detroit is being investigated by police and parish officials, according to
The Michigan Catholic.

Confession’s comeback
National Catholic Register
The
National Catholic Register calls confession “the church’s most underutilized sacrament” but cites several examples it says show confession’s comeback. An editorial in the same edition is titled “7 Ways to Promote Confession.”

Living the Catholic Faith conference enriches, rejuvenates faith of attendees
Denver Catholic Register
The
Denver Catholic Register reports that more than 2,000 people attended the Denver Archdiocese’s annual Living the Catholic Faith Conference.

Making sure ‘Catholic’ means Catholic
The Catholic Spirit
A new Catholic Identity Standard Accreditation program is being implemented for Catholic schools in Minnesota, according to
The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul-Minneapolis. Among the benefits of the new program, officials say, is that it helps teachers, students and families to reflect on the elements that make their school Catholic.

Parish that sowed much, reaped more works toward repeat harvest
St. Louis Review
An almsgiving program in a Missouri parish is being repeated this Lent after parishioners turned $1,000 into more than $10,000 last year. The
St. Louis Review tells some of the creative methods parish families used to turn $1 in seed money into something far greater, such as the man who used his dollar for water and flour, then made noodles.

Prison ministers take the word behind bars
Florida Catholic
If you’ve ever wondered why prison ministry is so important in the church, this story in the
Florida Catholic on the Diocese of Orlando’s Criminal Justice Office will answer some of your questions. As one prison minister notes here, a number of the church’s saints spent time in jail.

Politicians challenged over rising poverty
The Catholic Register
Child poverty in the Canadian province of Ontario is on the minds of a prominent lobby group there, according to
The Catholic Register in Toronto.

Middle schoolers stand up for poor at ‘That’s Not Fair’ rally
The Catholic Key
Students at 16 schools in the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, Mo., are in the midst of a poverty awareness program called “That’s Not Fair,” and many of them came together for a rally to “get fired up” to fight the problem.
The Catholic Key tells about the program and covered the recent rally.

Right ways and wrong ways to express dissent
The Catholic Spirit
Two recent events that disparaged the Catholic faith or Christianity can serve as a reminder that prayerful, peaceful protests work better than sarcastic personal attacks in changing minds and hearts, says an editorial in
The Catholic Spirit of St. Paul-Minneapolis.

I’d like to say: Sunday Mass is more than obligation
St. Anthony Messenger
Why aren’t more people at Sunday Mass? That’s one of the questions a Capuchin Franciscan priest asks in an article in
St. Anthony Messenger magazine. A solution to getting more Catholics to Mass, he says, lies in restoring a healthy sense of obligation while realizing that we willingly accept obligations — to family, to work, to community service — in other areas of our lives.

There’s something fishy going on (the grill)
The Leaven
Yet another Lenten fish story (but this one’s healthy!):
The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., reports that some parishes are abandoning the Friday fish fry in favor of healthier fare, like grilled salmon, boiled shrimp or baked fish.

Lenten dining delights: pierogi, potato pancakes, fish — and muskrat?
The Michigan Catholic
A few days ago in this space you may have seen a couple links for Lenten recipe ideas (click here and here if you missed them). Now comes The Michigan Catholic with four stories on Lenten culinary specialties. There are pierogi that raise funds for one parish, potato pancakes made with love at another parish, a third parish with drive-thru service for their Friday fish or mac and cheese dinners — and then there’s the standing dispensation to eat muskrat on Ash Wednesday and Fridays during Lent for one area of southeast Michigan. Yum!
 

Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day
The Catholic Review, The Leaven, The Tablet
St. Patrick’s Day is coming, and various Catholic papers are celebrating. First,
The Catholic Review in Baltimore writes about an 81-year-old grandmother who wouldn’t think of missing Baltimore’s St. Patrick’s Day parade. Next The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., tells the story of The Elders, a local Celtic rock band. And The Tablet in Brooklyn, N.Y., has photos of the St. Patrick’s Day parade earlier this month in the borough of Queens.

Catholics and cremation: Times have changed
The Catholic Telegraph
If you’re uncertain what the church teaches about cremation, this article in
The Catholic Telegraph of Cincinnati offers some basic history along with options for purchasing a cremation urn.

Future saint?
Catholic Herald
If you’ve never heard of Father Samuel Mazzuchelli — or even if you have — you should read this story in the
Catholic Herald of Madison, Wis., on the latest efforts to have him beatified. An editorial in the same edition calls him the “living legacy” of an order of Dominican sisters in Wisconsin that he founded in 1847.

Jesus’ tomb? It’s here
Florida Catholic
Just when you thought James Cameron and the Discovery Channel might be onto something when they say they’ve found the “lost tomb of Jesus,” there’s word that Jesus’ ossuary has been at the Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art since early December. The
Florida Catholic explains.

No deal, Rudy
National Catholic Register
In a hard-hitting editorial, the
National Catholic Register says Republicans who want pro-lifers to accept a “deal” to support the candidacy of former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani don’t understand what the pro-life movement really cares about.

Mother shares joys, blessings of raising a son with Down syndrome
The Long Island Catholic
When people tell Robin Roach they’re sorry her son has Down syndrome, her response is, “I’m not”
The Long Island Catholic reports that Roach is concerned that many will exaggerate the problems associated with Down syndrome and overlook the child.

Restoring order
The Catholic Sun
Speaking of confirmation (see “Clearing up the confusion about confirmation” below),
The Catholic Sun in Phoenix writes about the ongoing adjustment in that diocese, where confirmation is being moved to before first Communion. The article says parishes are using the change as an opportunity to connect students to a deeper spirituality at an earlier age.

Clearing up the confusion about confirmation
West River Catholic
Bishop Blase J. Cupich of Rapid City, S.D., has written two columns as part of a broader examination in his diocese of the best age to administer the sacrament of confirmation. Currently in his diocese, confirmation takes place during high school, but as the bishop notes in his first column in the
West River Catholic, “only about 50 percent of those who are baptized as infants come to confirmation preparation in their high school years.” His second column discusses developments in the theology of confirmation — we no longer use the phrase “soldier of Christ” for those who have been confirmed — and the rediscovery of the sacrament as an initiation into the eucharistic community.

Honoring the call to ministry and marriage
The Tidings
Former Episcopalian priests who are married have been admitted to the Catholic priesthood for more than two decades now, and this spring a new one will be ordained in Los Angeles.
The Tidings has the story of a couple who left the Episcopal Church not because they were angry or upset but because they were drawn to Catholicism for positive reasons.

Boon or boondoggle?
National Catholic Reporter
A story in the
National Catholic Reporter questions whether a hotel built on land leased from the Archdiocese of Detroit has been, as the headline says, a boon or a boondoggle. The archdiocese, for it’s part, says the hotel “is not owned, managed or supported” by the archdiocese and that no archdiocesan funds were used in it’s construction, but that it cannot comment further on lease details out of concern for the privacy of the hotel’s investors. Related to this, there’s an editorial in the same edition of the Reporter questioning why many dioceses omit their assets and liabilities from their financial reports, and a story published earlier this year in The Michigan Catholic, Detroit archdiocesan newspaper, saying the archdiocese follows proper accounting procedures.

Experts say no high-speed screening software is foolproof
National Catholic Register
Parents should not rest easy thinking that software they install on their computers to block family members from viewing inappropriate material actually works all the time, according to this story in the
National Catholic Register.

Campus ministry leaders start school in Uganda
The Catholic Virginian
They describe themselves as “ordinary Catholic campus ministry alums” and they credit their Catholic service projects while they were in college with helping them create educational opportunities for children in Africa, according to
The Catholic Virginian in Richmond.

Sons of Adam to support men touched by abortion
Tennessee Register
The
Tennessee Register in Nashville reports on a local priest who is starting a discussion group for men who are suffering from an experience of abortion.

Caritas helps uninsured obtain coverage
The Pilot
Massachusetts made national headlines nearly a year ago when it mandated health insurance coverage for all its residents.
The Pilot, Boston archdiocesan newspaper, says one Catholic agency there has assisted 30,000 patients in enrolling in the program.

‘Amazing Grace’ and the task of living our faith more deeply
Denver Catholic Register
Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Denver recommends the new film “Amazing Grace” as a compelling portrait of William Wilberforce, a man “on fire with his faith and its consequences.” In his column in the
Denver Catholic Register, Archbishop Chaput says the movie points to our own duties as Christians.

Shattered lives: ‘Secret’ addiction can carry not-so-secret price tag
The Leaven, The Catholic Key
The devastating effect that a hidden addiction to pornography had on one family is detailed in
The Leaven of Kansas City, Kan., while in neighboring Kansas City, Mo., The Catholic Key has an article on their bishop’s warning on pornography’s assault on human dignity.

Priest guides blind skiers down slope
Catholic Herald
A Wisconsin priest has volunteered for 20 years to help the blind learn how to ski. The
Catholic Herald in Milwaukee tells how he and his fellow volunteers do it.

Bishops: HPV vaccine bill has problems
Florida Catholic, The Tidings
The nationwide push for a mandatory vaccination against the human papillomavirus is getting the attention of the church. The
Florida Catholic has a story on the objections that state’s bishops are raising there and an editorial likening the measure to jumping off a bridge because everyone else is doing it. The Tidings in Los Angeles, meanwhile, has a backgrounder on what Catholic leaders elsewhere are saying about the issue.

Illinois bishops, leaders hold ‘summit’ on Catholic schools
The Catholic Post
Catholic school officials from across Illinois held the state’s first Summit for Catholic School Education to discuss the challenges and hopes for strengthening elementary and secondary education.
The Catholic Post in the Diocese of Peoria, which hosted the meeting, says calls were voiced throughout the day for increased cooperation between dioceses and for a greater embracing of stewardship.

XV Años: Quinceañera rituals welcome young Hispanic women into responsibilities of adulthood
Arkansas Catholic
The
Arkansas Catholic offers readers a feature on a girl’s quinceañera, featuring a Catholic family that wanted to keep as true as possible to the religious significance of the day.

Kinko’s co-founder to students: Be ‘stupid’ — and trust
The Tidings
Be stupid? That’s not traditional advice for students. But when you read this story in
The Tidings in Los Angeles you’ll understand what Kinko’s co-founder Paul Orfalea was trying to say recently at the Catholic Center of the University of Southern California.

New ideas for Lenten dining
The Criterion, Hawaii Catholic Herald
Looking for some new meatless recipies for Lent? We found two Catholic papers with stories that may help. The Criterion in Indianapolis has a Lenten feature with links to four recipies (one from the archbishop of Indianapolis), and the Hawaii Catholic Herald writes about its annual Lenten luncheon and shares a dozen recipies so readers can get through Lent “without ever having to eat a McDonald’s Filet-o-Fish.”
 

Reconciliation is personal encounter with Christ
Arkansas Catholic
Here’s another good feature to encourage people to return to regular confession: The
Arkansas Catholic interviewed a number of people in the Little Rock Diocese — priests and lay — for their stories on the great spiritual benefits of participating in the sacrament of reconciliation.

Praying the Stations of the Cross
The Catholic Spirit
Save this page for the rest of Lent.
The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul-Minneapolis has a unique gift for its readers: a photo presentation of living Stations of the Cross performed by a local youth group. Each of the stations in this online slideshow has reflections to guide your prayer. It’s worth a weekly visit!

Bishop testifies against death penalty
The Catholic Review
As part of an effort to abolish the death penalty in Maryland, a Baltimore auxiliary bishop testified in favor of a bill that would replace the death penalty with life sentences without parole.
The Catholic Review in Baltimore tells why the bishop’s testimony was unusual and tells how one Catholic state senator could cast the deciding vote.

Gambling culture a scandal, says bishop
Western Catholic Reporter
A Canadian bishop’s pastoral letter against gambling also gives Catholic parishes, schools and other organizations in his diocese up to three years to stop pursuing revenues derived from gambling, according to the
Western Catholic Reporter in Edmonton, Alberta. The paper also has a link to the full text of the letter.

40th anniversary of charismatic renewal is celebrated
The Michigan Catholic, The Catholic Spirit

Earlier we posted a link here to
a pastoral letter on the charismatic renewal by Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory. Here are two more items marking the movement’s 40th anniversary: a story in The Michigan Catholic on an anniversary conference in Detroit that attracted 3,000 people, and another story in The Catholic Spirit of St. Paul-Minneapolis that combines some history of the movement and its growth in the local community there.

The sacrifice of Lt. Col. McCloud
Hawaii Catholic Herald
A memorial Mass was celebrated in February for Marine Corps Lt. Col. Joseph Trane McCloud, who died when his helicopter crash landed in western Iraq. The
Hawaii Catholic Herald tells the story of this Marine’s devotion to his family and to the Corps.

Confession: Do we still need to go?
The Catholic Free Press
For the beginning of Lent,
The Catholic Free Press in Worcester, Mass., examines the falloff in Catholics going to confession, interviews some local priests on their experiences, and asks in a separate story (scroll down) how often one should go.

Book ban lifted
The Catholic Register
A Catholic school board near Toronto initially pulled the novel “Snow Falling on Cedars” by David Guterson from classes, but a review committee determined that the book was appropriate for school libraries and decided it could remain in the curriculum for 11th graders.
The Catholic Register in Toronto tells the story.

Lenten remembrance
The Catholic New World
Here’s a Lenten tradition you may not be aware of: Byzantine-rite Catholics, in addition to the usual increase in fasting, prayer and almsgiving, also pray for the souls of their departed loved ones every Saturday during Lent.
The Catholic New World in Chicago explains.
 

Today’s athletes, tomorrow’s leaders
The Michigan Catholic
Character-building for high school athletes was one of the goals of a daylong seminar held recently in the Detroit Archdiocese to help build teens’ leadership qualities. This story in
The Michigan Catholic might help other communities develop similar programs and ministries.

Men’s conference hears heavy dose of Catholicism
Catholic Herald
An inaugural “Men of Christ Conference” held in the Milwaukee Archdiocese attracted more than 2,000 men, far more than organizers initially expected. The Milwaukee
Catholic Herald tells how it came about, what the men were told about living the Christian life, and provides an audio slideshow of photos from the event.

Work of Mercy: Students help with burial of woman
The Catholic Key
A teacher and 13 fourth- through eighth-grade students at a Catholic school in Missouri adopted the cremated remains of a woman who died in 2003.
The Catholic Key in Kansas City-St. Joseph, Mo., has the amazing story of how the adoption came about and what the students learned from the experience.

Rachel’s Vineyard retreats: A chance to find healing
Catholic Herald
The
Catholic Herald in Madison, Wis., has a feature on Rachel’s Vineyard, a weekend retreat to help women and men heal from the trauma of an earlier abortion.

Discernment is tough habit for college senior
Catholic Explorer
The
Catholic Explorer in the Diocese of Joliet, Ill., profiles a local student attending the University of Illinois who is now trying to discern a call to religious life. Even though she opted to attend a public university, she found a vibrant Catholic ministry program on campus that helped support her beliefs.

Perspectives on Lent
Various publications
Now that Lent has arrived, here are several perspectives on it from around the Catholic press:

Couples learn how to stay engaged after marriage
Intermountain Catholic
Communication is not the key component in marriage, a family ministry expert told a workshop in the Salt Lake City Diocese, according to the Intermountain Catholic. In fact, the workshop learned, the world is full of couples who are communicating and divorcing, and so there are other factors couples must consider in staying married, the paper reported.

Bishop: Work of Cuba’s church will continue despite political climate
Florida Catholic
Bishop Thomas Wenski of Orlando, Fla., visited Cuba in early February, invited to attend an annual meeting of Caritas Cuba, the Cuban version of Catholic Charities. The Florida Catholic has a story on the visit as well as a column by the bishop on the progress the church is making there.

Abstinence saves lives
National Catholic Register
It’s time for the church to go on the offensive on the AIDS epidemic in Africa by insisting that condom backers are promoting a failed dogma to address the disease, says the National Catholic Register in an editorial which says only one African nation — taking a different approach — has shown success in fighting new HIV infections.

Rights groups fight refugee deal
The Catholic Register
In Toronto, The Catholic Register reports on efforts to persuade a Canadian judge to suspend Canadian co-operation with the United States on handling of refugees. The allegation is that the United States violates basic human rights by sending some refugee applicants back to their country of origin to face torture and death.

Time to act on global warming
National Catholic Reporter
“Now it’s time for policymakers to do their jobs” on global warming, says an editorial in the National Catholic Reporter, which adds that “future generations are depending on us to do whatever we can to turn things around.”

Parishes work together to honor fallen firefighter
The Michigan Catholic
A funeral for a firefighter who dies in the line of duty is always a major event, and in this case the funeral Mass had to be moved to a neighboring parish to accommodate all the mourners. The Michigan Catholic gives the details and has several photos as well.

Pastoral letter gives ‘loving witness’ to charismatic renewal
The Georgia Bulletin
Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of Atlanta has written a pastoral letter marking the 40th anniversary of the charismatic renewal movement in the church. The full text is in The Georgia Bulletin.

Fortified by faith, Filipinos weave their way into tapestry
The Catholic Advocate
The Catholic Advocate in Newark, N.J., reports that Filipinos make up one of the fastest growing minority groups in the Newark Archdiocese and bring fervent Catholic faith while emphasizing family values and community spirit.

Tithing for social justice
The Catholic Spirit
A Minnesota parish is combining its social justice efforts with paying down a parish mortgage. Read in The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul-Minneapolis why one parish leader thinks the approach is “novel and unique.”

Cancer gives catechist new perspective on prayer, religious education
The Criterion
A young man’s battle with a malignant brain tumor has undoubtedly had an impact on how he approaches catechetical ministry, according to The Criterion of Indianapolis. Read here how he hopes his story will strengthen other people’s faith.

Hospitals eye ethics, economics
Catholic Courier
The lead sentence in this story in the Catholic Courier in Rochester, N.Y., sums up the issue: “In this day and age, more and more Catholic health care facilities face the immense challenge of protecting their ethical principles while seeking nonsectarian partners to maintain operational stability.” Mandates unique to New York State, the story notes, makes the issue even more complicated there.

Archdiocese of L.A. will continue its HIV/AIDS ministry
The Tidings
After an announcement this winter that the National Catholic AIDS Network will shut down this year due to lack of funding, the Los Angeles Archdiocese said its HIV/AIDS ministry will continue. According to The Tidings in Los Angeles, the ministry is two-fold: helping people face their reality and being a Good Samaritan to them.

Holy Name Housing celebrates 25 years
The Catholic Voice
In Omaha, Neb., a story on the good works of the church is in The Catholic Voice in a report on Holy Name Housing, founded 25 years ago to help families achieve the right to a decent home.

Every Christian has a calling, cardinal tells BC students
The Pilot
Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston, famed already for his blog and podcasts, told a group of Boston College students that church teachings are often challenging, but there’s a good reason for that. The story is in The Pilot.

New program’s goal: From Sunday-only to everyday Catholics
Arkansas Catholic
A program called “Why Catholic?” is being launched throughout Arkansas this Lent to give adult parishioners an opportunity to learn more about the faith through reading and sharing about the Bible and the catechism, according to the Arkansas Catholic.

Dentists volunteer at clinic event to help underprivileged children
The Michigan Catholic
Free dental care for underprivileged children was the goal of a volunteer effort held at the University of Detroit Mercy. According to The Michigan Catholic in Detroit, the smiles of children who saw colored pictures of superheroes covering the walls, streamers, balloons and clowns to paint their faces were made even brighter by the work of an array of dental professionals.

Parish families play cupid with married couples
Catholic Explorer
This may be the month for Valentine’s Day, but an Illinois couple interviewed by the Catholic Explorer in the Joliet Diocese downplays the day’s impact on their ministry to other married couples because marriage enrichment goes beyond candy and flowers.

Unique collaborative project leads to art exhibit through students’ eyes
Intermountain Catholic
The Salt Lake City Cemetery was the subject of a collaborative project of Catholic high school writers, illustrators, photographers and other young people who captured the cemetery’s history and environment through students’ artistic expressions and feelings in an art exhibit and landscape survey, according to the Intermountain Catholic, Utah’s Catholic newspaper.

‘Master’ rosary maker gives back to God
The Catholic Post
The Catholic Post in Peoria, Ill., tells the story of Eddie DePauw, who the paper says won’t cure cancer or get elected to public office but who has a gift with the potential to change lives around the world.

‘Showers’ of grace for Bowl coaches
Florida Catholic
An editorial in the Florida Catholic says it was refreshing to see two coaches in this month’s Super Bowl whose faith was so integral to their lives.

Immigrant experiences of Hispanics, Africans shared at conference
Denver Catholic Register
An annual meeting in the Archdiocese of Denver that usually focuses on African-American spirituality, according to the Denver Catholic Register, addressed instead the rhetoric surrounding immigration and showed that it’s not a Hispanic-only issue.

How to support your child if they say they have been abused
The Tidings
As part of the ongoing church effort to ensure that children are safe from abuse, The Tidings in Los Angeles published an article that includes nine specific guidelines parents can use to assure children that they are safe and that reporting abuse was the right thing to do.

Local station manager views radio as way to evangelize
The Catholic Spirit
The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul, Minn., interviewed the station manager for the local Relevant Radio station, Paul Sadek, about the network’s Catholic-based programming and about the things that are the most rewarding about Sadek’s job.

It’s February: (En)lighten up!
The Leaven
Nothing wrong with a little shameless promotion of the Catholic press: Father Mark Goldasich, editor of The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., writes an enjoyable column about February being Catholic Press Month. “It’s an annual reminder that there’s much more to our faith: more to learn, more to experience, more to love, more to put into practice,” he says (but only after telling a tall tale about a mountaineer, his wife and their dog on a rainy night).

Bicentennial logo unveiled
The Pilot
You may not realize that the Archdiocese of Boston was founded nearly 200 years ago. The archdiocese has unveiled a bicentennial logo, and The Pilot tells you what it symbolizes.

Blogging from Guatemala
The Colorado Catholic Herald
Jim Myers, assistant editor of The Colorado Catholic Herald in Colorado Springs, is, as of this writing, blogging from Guatemala, where he’s on a one-week mission awareness trip with the Christian Foundation for Children and Aging. Plenty here to read and see, including photos he’s taking along the way.

Here comes everybody
America
In an editorial, America magazine calls the current list of presidential candidates for 2008 “the most diverse presidential pool in U.S. history.” It adds, “It is possible that barriers to the government’s top spot may finally be starting to melt like a warmed-up glacier.” (For a related item, don’t miss our own story on who the Catholic candidates are and what the race could mean for the church.)

‘Materialize your spirituality,’ archbishop urges young adults at Theology on Tap
Denver Catholic Register
Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput recently gave a talk for the increasingly popular Theology on Tap series for young adults, and the Denver Catholic Register has the story.

Toronto archbishop installed
The Catholic Register, Western Catholic Reporter
Archbishop Thomas Collins was installed last week as the new head of the Toronto Archdiocese. There are story links here from The Catholic Register in Toronto and the Western Catholic Reporter in Edmonton, Alberta, the see Archbishop Collins led for nearly eight years before the pope transferred him.

Thomas More High School becoming technology showcase
Catholic Herald
Here’s a glimpse of the future: Thomas More High School in the Milwaukee Archdiocese is poised to be the first Catholic high school in Wisconsin to go wireless, according to Milwaukee’s Catholic Herald, and it’s also making a name for itself with its engineering program.

Students’ food certificates go to homeless in D.C.
St. Louis Review
As the St. Louis Review reports, “When a group of St. Louisans left for the March for Life in Washington, D.C., late last month, their intention was to help more than just the unborn.”

Local man combines devotion, creativity to make ‘buckeye’ rosaries
The Southwest Kansas Register
You would think this story would be from the Buckeye State (Ohio, for those of you not born there), but it’s not: The Southwest Kansas Register tells the story of a Dodge City man who makes large rosaries from buckeye seeds (which he finds in Missouri). Click on the thumbnail photos in this story to see a larger view.

Prayer over popularity
North Texas Catholic
In an appearance in the Diocese of Fort Worth, Texas, and in an interview with the North Texas Catholic, a former cast member of the hit TV reality series “The Apprentice” (he lasted 10 weeks before Donald Trump told him “you’re fired”) encouraged teens to look beyond the superficial in their lives.

Schools launch marketing campaign to fill empty desks
The Tidings
After two years of research, brainstorming and fundraising, the Los Angeles Archdiocese’s Department of Catholic Schools has launch a major marketing campaign to increase enrollment in 225 elementary and 50 secondary Catholic schools in the archdiocese, reports The Tidings. Enrollment has been declining since 2000, the paper says.

BeFriender Ministry offers a compassionate ear
The Record
The Archdiocese of Louisville, Ky., is launching the BeFriender Ministry, according to the local archdiocesan newspaper, The Record. The goal of the ministry is not to replace social service agencies but to offer listening — actively and compassionately — to those who need companionship, who need to share the experiences that may be challenging, troubling or complicating their lives.

God has bigger market share than Super Bowl
Florida Catholic
The hype surrounding the Super Bowl doesn’t impress the Florida Catholic, which says in an editorial, “Many more people will likely worship on any given weekend where they actually ought to be worshipping — in a church, synagogue or mosque — than are watching the Super Bowl.”

Diocese settles sex abuse lawsuit without admission of liability
Hawaii Catholic Herald
The evening before the case was to go to trial, a legal dispute between the Diocese of Honolulu and a 26-year-old man who claimed he was abused by a Capuchin friar was settled out of court, says the Hawaii Catholic Herald. The issue was “resolved without admission of liability.”

Terrorism is not part of Islam, speakers say at forum
The Michigan Catholic
A Michigan imam told an audience near Detroit that violent incidents often shown on the evening news involve Muslims inappropriately using Islam to justify political objectives or simply Muslim people committing criminal acts, according to a story in The Michigan Catholic.

Super chaplain: Priest sees humility in Super Bowl-bound Colts
The Criterion
After the Indianapolis Colts’ stirring victory Jan. 21 to qualify for the Super Bowl, The Criterion in Indianapolis wrote a feature on the Colts’ chaplain, Father Peter Gallagher. It’s exciting being on the sidelines and sharing moments of faith with team members, he says, but it’s also a form of evangelizing.

Black Hills get a taste of French Taize spirituality
West River Catholic
The pastor of Our Lady of the Black Hills Church in Piedmont, S.D., is borrowing the prayer form of the Taize community in France to enrich the spiritual life of his parish, according to this article in the West River Catholic of the Diocese of Rapid City, S.D.

Global warming: time to reverse it
National Catholic Reporter
There’s more and more evidence that the Earth’s warming trends are caused by human activites, according to an editorial in the National Catholic Reporter, which also argues that what’s lacking now is the political will to make needed changes.

Holy people ‘walk the talk’
St. Anthony Messenger
A feature article on the new U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults in St. Anthony Messenger magazine focuses on the holy people profiled at the beginning of most chapters, including “the 28 people whose stories of living their Catholic faith in this hemisphere can inspire us.”

Some readers question profile of pro-choice lawmaker
The Catholic Spirit
“Why would you run a story about a pro-choice Catholic politician?” That’s the question the editor of The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul, Minn., Joe Towalski, says he got several times after the paper profiled two new Catholic state legislators, one of whom identifies herself as a “pro-choice woman.” The answer, he writes, lies partly in political practicalities as well as the wisdom of preserving civility and dialogue.

Widows of Prayer find support, healing in group
Catholic Herald
The Catholic Herald in Milwaukee tells the story of a group known as the Widows of Prayer, where members who have lost their husbands feel a calling to a ministry of prayer for priests and other church leaders. One member tells how it’s a time-consuming lifestyle that helps in healing.

Why continue to March for Life?
Florida Catholic
Part of the answer, according to an editorial in the Florida Catholic, is to educate. “While pro-life advocates work to educate and inform, God can work to change the hearts of those who favor abortion as a quick and easy answer to unplanned pregnancies,” it says.

Priest details strategy to fight in greatest ‘moral war’
Arkansas Catholic
Here’s another example of observances of the U.S. Supreme Court’s abortion decision: the Arkansas Catholic reports that the administrator of the Diocese of Little Rock (which has been without a bishop since last May) called the issue of abortion the “defining moral war of all history” at the diocese’s annual Mass for Life.

Parishes shelter homeless
The Tablet
Fifteen parishes in the New York boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens participate in an organized effort to aid the homeless called the “Faith Shelter Network,” according to The Tablet in Brooklyn. Parishioners volunteer to help, and some bring their children to better understand that homeless people are far from stereotypical.

A new voice for pro-life
The Catholic Northwest Progress
A Washington state legislator who helped found a local chapter of Democrats for Life told The Catholic Northwest Progress in Seattle that he believes the Democratic Party is more open to people with pro-life views, unlike the first two times he tried running for office and was denied his party’s backing.

Diocese will launch new marriage prep program
The Monitor
The Diocese of Trenton, N.J., has decided to launch the “God’s Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage” program to expand its marriage-formation offerings, reports the Trenton diocesan newspaper, The Monitor. The article says staff members focused on two questions before choosing the new program: “What can be done to win over the hearts, minds and imaginations of today’s engaged couples?” and “How can we adequately prepare engaged couples for a lifelong sacramental marriage in today’s over-secularized culture?”

Now, a new chance to age at home
Catholic Sentinel
An Oregon Catholic businessman, told by his mother that her home of 53 years was becoming too much to handle, decided that a senior-focused home renovation venture would be his new vocation. The Catholic Sentinel in Portland, Ore., tells the story.

‘Stunned joy,’ thanks surround boys’ return
St. Louis Review
The St. Louis Review archdiocesan newspaper had a good Catholic angle to the recent release of two Missouri boys by an alleged kidnapper, a case still making national headlines. “Stunned joy” was the reaction to the news, says a local priest.

Snow and freezing temperatures fail to dampen pro-life spirits at walk
The Catholic Voice
In addition to the annual March for Life in Washington, hundreds of local marches and other events take place across the country to commemorate the anniversary of the Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion, as evidenced by this story in The Catholic Voice in Omaha, Neb., on this month’s march at the State Capitol in Lincoln.

Down syndrome no obstacle for Knights’ brotherly love
Florida Catholic
The Florida Catholic tells the story of a Florida man who has achieved fourth-degree membership in the Knights of Columbus, the Catholic men’s organization’s highest level, despite challenges such as Down syndrome.

Catholic Daughters strive to change with the times
The Catholic Northwest Progress
“Century-old lay women’s group still doing ‘good things’ for the community” is the subhead on this story in The Catholic Northwest Progress in Seattle on the challenges faced by the Catholic Daughters of the Americas, an organization that’s now 103 years old.

Priests have their own favorites when it comes to vehicles
The Michigan Catholic
The North American International Auto Show is a big deal in Detroit — they don’t call it the Motor City for nothing — so The Michigan Catholic marked the arrival of the annual show with an interview with some Detroit archdiocesan priests on what they look for when shopping for new wheels. Mileage is high on the list, but, for some priests, so is style and power.

In pastoral, Indiana bishops urge welcoming immigrants
The Criterion
A pastoral letter by Indiana’s bishops on the treatment of immigrants is, according to The Criterion of Indianapolis, “the first of its kind issued collectively by the Indiana bishops in recent times.” There are also links here to the full text in both English and Spanish.

Pro-lifers cheer local doctor’s federal appointment
The Pilot
Dr. Eric Keroack’s appointment by President George W. Bush two months ago to oversee federal family planning and abstinence programs was controversial at the time, but The Pilot in Boston has a story detailing some of the work Keroack did in the community in Massachusetts before moving to Washington.

Jeb Bush: Faith shaped service, will shape future
Florida Catholic
The Florida Catholic did an “exit interview” with Jeb Bush, who left office as Florida governor in early January. In the interview, the brother of President George W. Bush reflects on what’s next in his life and how his Catholic faith shapes who he is.

Schools, parishes find it’s easy being green
The Pilot
In the Boston Archdiocese, The Pilot reports that many Catholic schools are participating in a recycling program sponsored by a major paper manufacturer that earns cash for the schools and protects the environment.

The Ten Commandments: Are they still written in stone?
The Catholic Spirit
This is a must-read: The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul-Minneapolis has an excellent series of articles on the relevance of the Ten Commandments for today. This isn’t some dry recitation of facts you learned in catechism classes but a vibrant lesson on how each of the commandments apply to today’s problems, such as alcoholism, blogging and pirating music from the Internet.

Archbishop writes columns on new U.S. adult catechism
Catholic Standard
The year 2006 saw the publication of the U.S. Catholic Catechism for Adults, and now one of the chief architects of that catechism, Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl of Washington, is writing a series of columns working its way through the catechism’s many sections. The columns are being compiled on the Web site of the Catholic Standard, his archdiocesan newspaper. Archbishop Wuerl served as chairman of the editorial oversight board that developed the new catechism. Bookmark this page and visit here often to follow the series as it continues during the new year. (For background on the catechism itself, read the archbishop’s initial column, Why a catechism for adults now?)

Governor’s proposed health plan: Catholic leaders are encouraged and concerned
The Tidings
Catholic leaders are weighing in on California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s ambitious health care proposal for the state. Details are in The Tidings in Los Angeles.

New political landscape requires expediency, grace
Florida Catholic
Commenting on the new political realities in Washington — new Catholic speaker of the House, different parties controlling the executive and legislative branches — the Florida Catholic editorializes that, in a real world democracy, Catholics must “work with those who have been elected to get the very best laws possible,” especially since neither political party “has cornered the market on issues that matter greatly to the Catholic Church.”

Task force takes on pornography
The Catholic Spirit
In the Diocese of Austin, Texas, The Catholic Spirit reports on the formation of a diocesan Anti-Pornography Task Force. Goals include providing education about pornography and compiling resources for priests, parents and catechists.

Friends in the neighborhood
North Texas Catholic
Fred Rogers, host of the famed “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood” program on public television, had an unlikely friendship with a Fort Worth newspaper columnist, according to the North Texas Catholic, which also reveals how Rogers introduced the columnist to the works of Catholic spiritual writer Henri Nouwen.

‘Forming young disciples’
The Catholic Telegraph
In preparation for new guidelines for adolescent religious education in the Cincinnati Archdiocese, The Catholic Telegraph reports on a study on the faith knowledge of young Catholics. The study provides a “compelling look into how young people view their religion and faith lives,” says the newspaper.

Resolutions 2007: A new beginning
The Catholic New World
The Catholic New World in Chicago asked a number of people — priests, religious and lay — for their spiritual resolutions for 2007. Their answers to questions such as what will you do to lead a more faith-filled life, or to make the world better, might give you food for thought.

Sexual abstinence has a familiar Ring to it
Pittsburgh Catholic
The Pittsburgh Catholic describes the “Silver Ring Thing” as the fastest-growing teen sexual abstinence program in the United States. The article explains what it’s all about if you’ve not heard of it.

Campus weathers ‘storm’
Pittsburgh Catholic
The Pittsburgh Catholic also has an update on the September shooting in Pittsburgh that injured five Duquesne University basketball players and how the school community united in the shooting’s aftermath.

Time capsule sends letters to Dominicans of the future
Tennessee Register
Dominican Sisters in Tennessee have linked their past, present and future, according to the Tennessee Register in Nashville, when they sealed a time capsule due to be opened in 100 years.

New friar expects his medical experience to help in ministry
The Michigan Catholic
Another good story for Vocations Awareness Week: The Michigan Catholic interviews a new Capuchin brother who talks about how he drifted away from regular church attendance as a registered nurse and his path back, which soon will include studies for the priesthood.

City priest-country priest
The Catholic Voice
As The Catholic Voice in Omaha, Neb., notes, “One deals in large numbers of people. The other faces the miles of long distance. One can turn to a paid staff for support and assistance. The other might rely on parish volunteers.” And so on. Read about the differences in the lives of a country priest and a city priest in an interview the newspaper did with both.

Learning from the past
Arlington Catholic Herald
Five years after the clergy sex abuse scandal broke in the pages of The Boston Globe, key lessons from the scandal still haven’t sunk in, writes columnist Russell Shaw in the Arlington Catholic Herald of Arlington, Va. Shaw, a former official of the U.S. bishops’ conference, writes that among the lessons are the continuing need for transparency in all areas of church life, plus some needed perspective on the dimensions of the scandal.

Skating seniors hit the ice for Geri-Hatricks hockey team
Catholic Standard
You might have to be a hockey fan to understand the name “Geri-Hatricks” — think “geriatric” and “hat trick.” The Catholic Standard in Washington will explain the rest: How about 30 men, ages 60 and over, meet twice a week to play hockey.

Students chime in, add cheer
The Catholic Transcript
A Connecticut Catholic school has three “chime choirs,” with one seventh-grade member — described here as more athletic than musical — saying it’s the hardest thing he’s ever done. The Catholic Transcript in Hartford tells how the choirs were formed and what the students think about their involvement in them.

The color purple
National Catholic Register
With Democrats taking control of Congress this month, the National Catholic Register examines whether “blue state” Democrats can add “red state,” pro-family values to make what one observer describes as the purple mixture of the “pro-life, pro-family and pro-poor” majority of American voters.

A Franciscan voice at the U.N.
St. Anthony Messenger
In its January edition, St. Anthony Messenger magazine offers a feature on how Franciscans International is trying to shut down the thriving worldwide business of human trafficking, along with background on Franciscan International’s origin and growth.

‘Gotcha’ has special meaning for Tomski family
Catholic Herald
“Gotcha days” mean something special for a Wisconsin family — they are the days when the family celebrates when each of their four adopted sons from the Philippines arrived. How the family has grown over the years is told by the Catholic Herald in Milwaukee.

Volunteers tend the dying, are transformed by the vigils
Catholic Sentinel
The Catholic Sentinel in Portland, Ore., tells the story of the “compassionate companions” who make sure the dying have someone by their side at all times, especially when a family member can’t keep a vigil around the clock. As the story explains, the “No One Dies Alone” movement began three years ago.

Bishops: Consider farmworkers in daily decisions
Florida Catholic
Florida’s bishops issued a pastoral letter titled “Honoring the Dignity of Work: A Call for Solidarity with Florida’s Farmworkers and Other Vulnerable Workers.” The Florida Catholic summarizes key points of the letter, shares ideas for what Catholics can do to show solidarity with farmworkers, and provides a link to the full text.

Catholic author/publisher explores women’s worth
The Tidings
The Tidings in Los Angeles interviews a woman who has started a new Catholic book imprint to address what she feels is the dearth of women’s Catholic fiction, especially when compared to what’s available for Protestants or evangelicals.

Response to terrorism can be taken from holy books
The Catholic Register
A Muslim cleric and scholar told Toronto high school students that terrorism sometimes is associated with Islam because of the willingness of a few young Muslims to adopt medieval Islamic theology without updating it to the 21st century, reports The Catholic Register in Toronto.

They made Jay Leno munch his broccoli
Catholic Sentinel
Here’s a fun little story: A group of Catholic second-grade students were appalled when they learned that “Tonight Show” host Jay Leno had claimed going more than 30 years with no vegetables. The resulting letters of protest from the class led to a recent appearance on Leno’s show, according to the Catholic Sentinel in Portland, Ore.

Bishop to visit Philippine dioceses that send priests to Hawaii
Hawaii Catholic Herald
A reminder of how U.S. Catholicism is connected with the church worldwide is contained in this story from the Hawaii Catholic Herald about Bishop Larry Silva’s planned trip to the Philippines. The story points out that “more than 60 priests, brothers and sisters with Philippine ties work in Hawaii.”

Christmas makes a comeback
National Catholic Register
The National Catholic Register offers a roundup on how “Merry Christmas” made a comeback this season and how ingrained Christianity actually is in our national culture.

Documentation for Cardinal Cooke’s cause set to be sent to Rome
Catholic New York
Catholic New York reports that the canonization cause for a former archbishop of New York, Cardinal Terence Cooke, took a long step forward in December. A ceremony in New York marked the official close of the diocesan phase of Cardinal Cooke’s cause.

Canonization of Indiana’s first saint tops local news in 2006
The Criterion
This is the time for year-in-review stories (including our own), but one paper with a unique local angle this year is The Criterion in Indianapolis because of the canonization in October of Indiana’s Mother Theodore Guerin.

Defibrillator comes in handy
The Compass
A decision a Wisconsin parish made two years earlier ended up saving the life of a member. The story is told by The Compass of Green Bay.

Is there a Christian way to celebrate Hanukkah?
Catholic Explorer
The Catholic Explorer in Joliet, Ill., published remarks from two priests for this article on Hanukkah, and while one said he lights his own menorah during the Jewish festival, another said there are good reasons why Christians should not imitate it.

Executions must stop
Florida Catholic
“Clearly, the application of the death penalty has problems,” says an editorial in the Florida Catholic on the “botched” execution of a Florida inmate whose lethal injection took two to three times longer than usual to carry out. “Justice has certainly not been served in this case, and in fact, another injustice occurred,” the editorial says.

Students pack presents for kids in Darfur
The Tidings
A Catholic school and a Jewish school teamed up recently to pack boxes bound for Darfur, according to The Tidings in Los Angeles, which quoted one participant as saying it was “amazing” that Catholic and Jewish kids were helping a Muslim country.

Congress gets it right on Haiti
National Catholic Reporter
You may not have heard much about the last-minute victory in Congress to give trade preference for textiles produced in Haiti, but this editorial in the National Catholic Reporter calls the measure an unexpected victory for the Haitian people and fills readers in on how it happened.

2006 Christmas art contest: Download ‘em, print ‘em, e-mail ‘em
The Catholic Sun
Here’s a unique way to show off the results of a children’s Christmas art contest: The Catholic Sun in Phoenix displays thumbnails of more than two dozen favorite entries and then invites readers to save them on their computers or e-mail them to family and friends.

Theology on Tap: Quenching a spiritual thirst
St. Anthony Messenger
If you’ve heard of the popular “Theology on Tap” program for young adults but wondered about its history and about how the sessions are organized, this story in St. Anthony Messenger magazine will answer your questions.

Cathedral stenciling a wonder to behold
Arkansas Catholic
An ongoing renovation project for Little Rock’s Cathedral of St. Andrew has reached another milestone with the completion of a stenciling project. You can read in the Arkansas Catholic what some of the symbolized stenciling means and how planners tried to be as authentic as they could.

Priesthood should be viewed as realistic choice, priest says
The Record
A priest in the Archdiocese of Louisville, Ky., says one way of addressing the priest shortage is by changing the “culture of vocations” to make young men seriously consider religious life as they plan for the future. He explains how he thinks that could work in an interview with The Record of Louisville.

Ana Maria Ravines de Schur: An artist without a country
Intermountain Catholic
The Intermountain Catholic in Salt Lake City tells the story of a Catholic artist whose political asylum case brought her to America but whose beautiful art is bypassed at times in favor of more commercially appealing works. Her struggles here are forcing her to consider leaving her adopted homeland. If nothing else, this page is worth a visit to see examples of this woman’s fine art.

Bishops’ letter urges vote on marriage amendment
The Pilot
The bishops of Massachusetts are again urging action on a marriage amendment in the state, especially now that the next meeting of the constitutional convention is fast approaching, according to The Pilot in Boston. The paper also provides the full text of the bishops’ letter.

Oh, Christmas tree!
The Leaven
A retired Catholic school guidance counselor has played a key role in making Christmas merry since 1984 by running a Christmas tree farm. According to this story in The Leaven in Kansas City, the tree farmer feel like he’s part of family Christmas celebrations when he sees kids laughing because they’re happy picking their trees.

Children give loving presents to Jesus
Western Catholic Reporter
Who can resist a story about what elementary-school students would give to baby Jesus if they had the chance to offer him a present? The Western Catholic Reporter in Edmonton, Alberta, did such a story and got some cute replies.

Catholic woman speaking out about autism
Arkansas Catholic
The Arkansas Catholic tells the story of a Little Rock parishioner who could find no local support group after her son was diagnosed with an autism-spectrum disorder, so she and others founded their own group, which meets monthly at a Catholic church.

Christmas wristbands remind of season’s true meaning
The Catholic Telegraph
You may have seen them advertised this Christmas season: red and green wristbands aimed at reminding Christians to “just say ‘Merry Christmas.'” The Catholic Telegraph in Cincinnati tells the story behind the campaign, which began at a store in the Cincinnati Archdiocese.

Imagining the unimaginable
National Catholic Reporter
Former Georgetown University president Jesuit Father Leo O’Donovan, in a Christmas essay for the National Catholic Reporter, reflects on how this feast is, in his words, totally unrealistic because of the meaning of Christ becoming one of us.

Foreign priests adjusting well in U.S., but see differences
The Catholic Virginian
Different customs, different attitudes toward time and schedules, even differences in the Sunday liturgy — all are issues facing foreign priests serving in the United States. The Diocese of Richmond, Va., held a weeklong seminar for its foreign priests, and The Catholic Virginian reports that they were told, among other things, not to lose their need to be grounded in prayer and contemplation.

Save the trees
Florida Catholic
If you’ve not heard the story about a rabbi who sued to have an airport authority include a menorah in a public holiday display, only to have the airport instead remove nine Christmas trees — which was certainly not the rabbi’s intent — then this Florida Catholic editorial will catch you up on the tale. It’s a reminder, the editorial says, of a “false secularism” recently denounced by Pope Benedict XVI.

Parish welcomes the inactive ‘home’ for Christmas
The Leaven
Welcoming inactive or “fallen away” Catholics back to the church at Christmas is a popular activity. What one parish in Kansas is doing this year is told by The Leaven in Kansas City, which also reprints a list of the top reasons Catholics become inactive.

‘Apocalypto’ is important, says L.A. deacon of Mayan descent
The Tidings
Mel Gibson’s new film “Apocalypto,” though violent and “very extreme,” also reminds people “Mayans still exist,” a deacon who is a Mayan native told The Tidings in Los Angeles. Deacon Felix Rac told the paper he often encounters people who believe the Mayan civilization died out a long time ago.

The tragedy of Darfur
National Catholic Reporter
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Nicholas Kristof of The New York Times is interviewed by the National Catholic Reporter about his experience covering the Sudanese genocide and what can be done to stop the killing.

People of faith: Called to peacemaking
Florida Catholic
Archbishop John C. Favalora of Miami writes in the Florida Catholic that for a variety of reasons “it makes no sense for people of different religions to fight with one another.” He says a good New Year’s resolution would be “to sow some faith-based peace in our little corner of the world and pray that it spreads to places where ancient grudges and new political conflicts are giving religion a bad name.”

Student raises funds to help children maimed by land mines
Catholic Standard
A Catholic school student in Bethesda, Md., described by the Catholic Standard in Washington as an articulate sixth-grader, decided to help children hurt by land mines by raising money for a center in Colombia that aids land-mine victims. Next year the student hopes to visit the center herself.

A Christmas movie worth viewing
Catholic Sentinel
Here’s another endorsement of “The Nativity Story,” this time by Archbishop John Vlazny of Portland, Ore., who writes in the Catholic Sentinel that he hopes it becomes a Christmas classis for years to come.

The Advent spirit, sans candles
The Catholic Spirit
Helen Osman, editor of The Catholic Spirit in Austin, Texas, writes about an experience many parents can relate to (and many parents should prepare for): What happens to the family Advent wreath tradition as the kids grow up?

Kelly Foundation not exempt from property taxes
The Catholic Telegraph
Matthew Kelly is a popular Catholic author and motivational speaker, but an Ohio tax board has ruled against his foundation, which argued that it should be exempt from property taxes because it operates exclusively for charitable purposes. Details are in The Catholic Telegraph of Cincinnati, where’s Kelly’s foundation is based.

Expectant mothers await arrival with help
Catholic Explorer
Relating the Christmas story to modern-day issues, the Catholic Explorer of the Diocese of Joliet, Ill., reports on today’s expectant parents seeking adequate shelter, clothing and nourishment like Mary and Joseph 2,000 years ago.

‘Maybe Christmas doesn’t come from a store …’
The Michigan Catholic
Ideas for “a simpler, richer, true-to-the-spirit of Christmas” are offered in The Michigan Catholic in a column by the Detroit Archdiocese’s associate director for adult faith formation.

My (Catholic) Space
Florida Catholic
The promise of and problems on the Internet are often featured in the Catholic press, and here are two more examples from Florida: The Florida Catholic has a story on CatholicTeens.com, billed as an alternative to the popular MySpace site, and Bishop Thomas Wenski of Orlando offers some suggestions for parents in a column titled “Providing safer Web access this Christmas for tech-savvy children.”

Nuns’ food drive rebuffed
National Catholic Reporter
Three nuns who were convicted of obstructing national defense and damaging government property during a protest rally in 2002 wanted to donate food to Air Force families rather than pay restitution to the Air Force because they felt restitution would violate their vows of nonviolence. The National Catholic Reporter explains what happened.

Parish rallies in generous support of teenager
The Catholic Transcript
In just two months, a Connecticut parish raised more than $85,000 for a teenage member with a rare neurological disorder. The Catholic Transcript in Hartford tells the story of courage and faith and finding just the right doctor.

Is it time to fine-tune your Advent?
The Leaven
If you’re still looking for ideas for properly balancing the spirituality of Advent with all the secular demands on your Christmas season — cookies, cards, shopping — this early Advent column by Father Mark Goldasich, editor of The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., might still help get you through the hubbub that leads to Christmas Day.

Full-time priest is Christmas gift to sister diocese
Florida Catholic
A Florida diocese sent an unusual gift to its sister diocese in the Dominican Republic: a priest. Details are in the Florida Catholic.

Thousands honor ‘La Virgen’ at archdiocesan celebration
The Tidings, The Catholic Sun
In Los Angeles, The Tidings reports that close to 30,000 people participated in a mile-long procession marking the anniversary of when the Virgin Mary appeared to St. Juan Diego and left her image on his cloak in 1531. Meanwhile, The Catholic Sun in Phoenix has an analysis of the history and meaning of devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe.

Fill the room with Christmas crèches
The Compass
Earlier we pointed you to a story in The Michigan Catholic on Christmas crèches. Here’s another one, from The Compass in Green Bay, Wis., on the St. Norbert College librarian who displays 80 to 90 crèches from her personal collection at the school and others at home. Unwrapping them piece by piece “gives me that sense of anticipation of the birth of Christ,” she says.

Commentaries on the pope’s trip to Turkey
Florida Catholic, National Catholic Register
In an editorial in the Florida Catholic, associate publisher Christopher Gunty says the voice of Pope Benedict XVI during his trip to Turkey might have been best heard when he was speaking only to God, while in the National Catholic Register, Legionary of Christ Father Jonathan Morris says the trip showed how Pope Benedict “instinctively reverts to principles” even as the world thinks mostly in terms of public perception.

A trip … a journey … a pilgrimage of faith
The Catholic Voice
If you’ve never made a pilgrimage to Rome, this story in The Catholic Voice of Omaha, Neb., on the pilgrimage it sponsored in November and the experiences of the participants might make you want to consider one.

Keeping Christ in Christmas
The Pilot
The effort to have national retailers replace a generic “Happy Holidays” with “Merry Christmas” and other more meaningful greetings has roots in three boyhood pals in Massachusetts, according to this feature story in The Pilot in Boston.

‘Away in (300-plus) mangers’
The Michigan Catholic
A Michigan man, Michael Whalen, has collected Christmas creches for more than 30 years and from countries all over the world. The Michigan Catholic tells how he got started and has a photo of Whalen with one of his favorites.

New priest begins service to Maronite community
Intermountain Catholic
The Intermountain Catholic in Salt Lake City tells a story of twists and turns: How does an Irish Catholic end up being ordained a Maronite Catholic priest when most Maronites are descended from the Lebanese, and then how does he end up in Utah? The priest — and the paper — are glad to explain.

Additional perspectives on ‘The Nativity Story’
(Various publications)
“The Nativity Story” opened in theaters Dec. 1. Some coverage around the Catholic press: St. Anthony Messenger magazine has a comprehensive “making of …” story in its December issue; the National Catholic Register, in a story headlined “Joseph Gets His Due,” says it’s the “first big-screen biblical film to focus on a character who is often a secondary player”; and The Tidings in Los Angeles (remember, that’s where Hollywood is) announces that it will publish a weekly study guide based on the movie for Advent and the Christmas seasons.

And, just for fun, check out the CNS story from Italy during filming last spring on the difficulties in getting animals — goats, donkeys, camels, oxen — to follow the script.

Franciscan way of Advent goes mainstream
The Catholic Register
According to The Catholic Register in Toronto, the Franciscan manner of celebrating Advent may seem so ordinary to us only because “the Franciscan way has infiltrated the mainstream,” starting with the invention of the Christmas creche by Francis of Assisi.

Spiritual storm leads priest away from church, back again
National Catholic Reporter
The faith journey of an Iowa priest who left the church and then quickly was welcomed back by his bishop as a prodigal son is warmly detailed in this story in the National Catholic Reporter.

Raising the minimum wage called ‘moral issue’
The Record
The Catholic Conference of Kentucky is part of a broad coalition in the state targeting the minimum wage as a priority for the next state legislative session, reports The Record in Louisville.

Author of new book finds God in great outdoors
Pittsburgh Catholic
A priest, author of “Hunting for God, Fishing for the Lord,” says his spiritual insights and love of God are inseparable from his passion for being outdoors and enjoying God’s creation, according to this Pittsburgh Catholic story.

Holy Hill celebrates elevation to basilica
Catholic Herald
As this story in the Catholic Herald in Milwaukee notes, Midwesterners know the place simply as Holy Hill, but now it’s officially the Basilica of the National Shrine of Mary, Help of Christians following an elevation ceremony earlier in November.

Samaritan House at 20: gratitude fills hearts of those who minister and those served
Denver Catholic Register
The Denver Catholic Register calls Denver’s Samaritan House “the first facility in the United States constructed as a place dedicated to eliminating homelessness.” The story tells of the evolution of Samaritan House and of homelessness itself in the last 20 years.

Loyal alumnus
Catholic New York
A Catholic high school in the Bronx was the beneficiary when its famed alumnus appeared on a celebrity episode of the TV game show “Jeopardy.” Catholic New York gives the answer and, more importantly, in true “Jeopardy” style, the question.

Province bishops send Congress immigration letter
The Georgia Bulletin
Bishops in the province of Atlanta (the church jurisdiction made up of the states of Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina) sent a letter to Congress seeking “comprehensive and fair” immigration reform. The Georgia Bulletin has the story and a link to the full text.

Boston religious leaders issue statement on papal visit to Turkey
The Pilot
Orthodox and Catholic leaders in Boston issued a “joint statement of fraternal understanding and prayer” for the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to Turkey, according to The Pilot of Boston.

Boy has dream of becoming the pope
The Catholic Key
Boys often want to grow up to be priests, but a 7-year-old Missouri boy has loftier goals — to be pope, according to The Catholic Key in Kansas City-St. Joseph.

Milwaukee Archdiocese marks anniversary with parish in Dominican Republic
Catholic Herald
In recent weeks, the Catholic Herald in Milwaukee has been running a series of articles on the archdiocese’s 25-year partnership with a parish in the Dominican Republic. Part one gives a history of the relationship, part two tells about efforts to fight poverty in the region, and a third story says that archdiocesan support for the parish comes in many shapes and sizes.

Catholic community marks 25 years of AIDS virus, ministry
The Michigan Catholic
“What would Jesus do if he encountered an incurable disease with such a stigma attached that no one wanted to be around the people who contracted it?” That’s the lead sentence in this story in The Michigan Catholic, which says that in Christ’s time it was leprosy, and today it’s AIDS.

Immigration reform at last?
America
Dramatic changes in the U.S. Congress could open the way for family-based immigration reforms favored by the U.S. bishops instead of the enforcement-only approach symbolized by a 700-mile fence between the U.S. and Mexico, according to an editorial in America magazine.

Dire warnings, but also hope
The Leaven
Our food is killing us! That was one message at this month’s annual meeting of the National Catholic Rural Life Conference, reports The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., but there’s also hope because of the church’s commitment to justice in agriculture and food production.

Come back to the faith: Here’s how you do it
Pittsburgh Catholic
You don’t necessarily have to live in the Diocese of Pittsburgh to take advantage of the suggestions in this story in the Pittsburgh Catholic on how to return to the church.

Loved ones remembered at annual AIDS Mass
Denver Catholic Register
Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Denver was the main celebrant for an annual archdiocesan Mass earlier this month in Denver for people living with HIV/AIDS and hepatitis C. Details are in the Denver Catholic Register.

The politics of advertising
The U.P. Catholic
Many Catholic press editors can identify with this: readers expressing outrage over political ads appearing in their diocesan newspaper. Joseph Zyble, editor of The U.P. Catholic in Marquette, Mich., explains in an editorial that the paper accepts political advertising because, if it didn’t, pro-life candidates would have one less way to get their message across to sympathetic voters.

Local artist shares talent with university parish
Intermountain Catholic
The Intermountain Catholic in Salt Lake City tells a fascinating story about self-taught Utah artist Ed Braak, whose bas relief of St. Catherine of Siena for the Salt Lake City parish of the same name led to a matching sculpture of St. Dominic for the same church. Braak thought after he had done the first relief that one would be more than enough, but changed his mind.

Being thankful at Thanksgiving
Florida Catholic, Michigan Catholic
For Thanksgiving reflection, there’s an editorial in the Florida Catholic on how we should be thankful more than one day a year, and a story in The Michigan Catholic tells how a fine Italian restaurant in Detroit switches gears at Thanksgiving — and why.

Fort Worth native instrumental in bringing religious movie to life
The Texas Catholic
You’ve heard of “The Nativity Story,” this year’s feature-length Christian movie which opens Dec. 1, and now The Texas Catholic in Dallas writes about co-producer Marty Bowen, whose career change from Hollywood agent to a producer was a leap of faith in more ways than one.

Pornography and sex addiction: From shame to healing
The Colorado Catholic Herald
In Colorado Springs, The Colorado Catholic Herald published a 12-page section on the effects of pornography and sex addiction on families, along with recommendations on dealing with and healing from the problem. The entire section can be downloaded from the paper’s Web site.

A bountiful harvest
Faith
A rural ministry founded eight years ago by two Benedictine sisters in a corner of the Diocese of Erie, Pa., has grown into a successful effort that’s appreciated by the people they minister to, according to Erie’s Faith magazine.

Bishops urge care for creation
Florida Catholic
A new document released by the Environmental Justice Committee of the Florida bishops’ conference offers guidance for all Catholics on pressing environmental issues. The Florida Catholic has a story and also links to the new document and an action guide for parishes.

The people’s business
America
More than a referendum on the policies of George W. Bush, the 2006 elections also can be seen as a “a victory of the American people over the political consultants” and a rejection of the politics of polarization, says the latest editorial in America magazine.

Teens hold a summit on sportsmanship
Catholic Standard
Students from schools which are members of the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference, one of the premier Catholic high school sports leagues in the country, left their rivalries at the door to discuss problems that have cropped up at recent games, according to the Catholic Standard in Washington.

First diocesan Spanish-language vocation retreat is offered
North Texas Catholic
A retreat participant quoted in this story in the North Texas Catholic in Fort Worth notes that even as a teenager the spiritual retreats she attended “focused on family issues and parenting kids.” That’s changed in the Fort Worth Diocese in an effort to reach out to potential vocations in the Hispanic community.

Faithful farmers called ‘heroes’
The Catholic Post
The Diocese of Peoria, Ill., holds an annual Diocesan Harvest Mass for Catholic farmers and their families. The Catholic Post covers this year’s Mass.

Analyzing the midterm elections
National Catholic Reporter, National Catholic Register
Two national Catholic newspapers have analyses of the results of this month’s midterm elections. The National Catholic Reporter’s is headlined “God gap narrows as Democrats take majority of Catholic vote,” while the National Catholic Register says “Catholic voters abandon Republicans.”

Cardinal stresses precision in language of Latin Mass
St. Louis Review
Cardinal Francis Arinze, head of the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, spoke recently in St. Louis about translations of the Mass. Read the St. Louis Review’s account of the cardinal’s visit.

Bishops ‘disturbed’ by thwarted marriage vote
The Pilot
The decision by Massachusetts legislators to not vote on a citizen’s initiative petition aimed at allowing voters to decide the definition of marriage was decried by the state’s bishops, according to this article in The Pilot.

Holocaust survivor wonders how much humanity has learned
Catholic Universe Bulletin
A Holocaust survivor interviewed by the Catholic Universe Bulletin in Cleveland worries that recent events in Bosnia, Darfur and Rwanda may mean the world hasn’t learned from its World War II experiences, but she’s also optimistic that young people today are more aware of the seriousness of what’s happening in the world today.

Chaplains called to provide comfort in times of tragedy, loss
The Criterion
If you’ve ever wondered about the stressful lives of police chaplains, The Criterion in Indianapolis profiles two chaplains who regularly help people during their darkest moments of despair.

Beginning to look a lot like merchandise
Florida Catholic
An editorial in the Florida Catholic bemoans how stores continue to push the Christmas shopping season further and further back and concludes by reminding us that the best gift is the one we’ve already received, wrapped in swaddling clothes …

Schools work to keep students from getting tangled in the Web
The Catholic New Workd
A nice roundup of what one archdiocese is doing to promote Internet safety in its schools and elsewhere is in The Catholic New World of Chicago.

Diocese launches new outreach effort to victims of abuse
Pittsburgh Catholic
Dioceses across the country have programs for victims of clergy sex abuse, but what makes the effort described in the Pittsburgh Catholic different is that it was developed at the suggestion of an abuse victim and goes beyond psychological counseling to provide spiritual healing as well.

Christian names recommended, but not required for Catholics
The Catholic Voice
A story in the The Catholic Voice of Omaha, Neb., explains that giving a Christian name to a newborn is no longer a church requirement but also gives reasons why it is still a good idea.

Violence grows against Christians in Iraq
Florida Catholic
Bishop Thomas Wenski of Orlando, Fla., who is also chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on International Policy, writes in the Florida Catholic that securing a just peace in Iraq means more than gaining a truce between the Shia and Sunni communities, but guaranteeing religious freedom for all. “The rapidly deteriorating situation of Christians and other religious minorities in Iraq is truly alarming,” he writes.

Schools: Safe but ‘something can still happen’
Arkansas Catholic
In light of recent school violence, the Arkansas Catholic asked school officials in the Diocese of Little Rock about safety measures in schools there past, present and future.

Making a life-giving decision
The Catholic Spirit
What should teens do when faced with a crisis pregnancy? The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul, Minn., explores one alternative: open adoption, in which the birth parents place their newborn with adoptive parents and then regularly keep in touch with them. In the real-life example told here, there’s joy all around.

Pro-lifers proud of anti-cloning fight
St. Louis Review
Missouri voters approved a constitutional amendment to protect human cloning and embryonic stem-cell research, but the St. Louis Review quotes Catholic leaders and other pro-life officials as saying the effort to protect human life there is far from finished.

Priests from other countries bringing unique charisms
The Texas Catholic
The Texas Catholic in Dallas explores the work of extern priests — priests from another diocese approved to work locally. Many foreign priests have stories that are unique to American audiences, it says, and contribute a new sense of piety and devotion to their new parishes.

Serving shoulder to shoulder
The Tidings
The Archdiocese of Los Angeles is laying out a comprehensive plan for the appointment of parish life directors, which the archdiocese calls “a blessing in the face of a diminishing number of priestly and religious vocations.” The Tidings in Los Angeles published a letter from Cardinal Roger M. Mahony of Los Angeles and major portions of the plan, called “Serving Shoulder to Shoulder: Parish Life Directors in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles.”

Land mines: a new threat
America
An America magazine editorial notes that the United States has not used anti-personnel land mines for 15 years, but, instead of leading the way toward a total ban, it is poised to develop a new mine. Passage of a Senate proposal to ban the new mine, the editorial says, would do much to restore U.S. standing in the world.

Cardinal celebrates annual White Mass
The Pilot
You’ve probably heard of the Red Mass (for lawyers and public officials) and the Blue Mass (for police officers and first responders), but you may not be as familiar with the White Mass. The Pilot in Boston covered the archdiocese’s recent White Mass celebrated by Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley.

Parish starts health ministry
Catholic Courier
Parishes thinking of introducing a health ministry might find some ideas in this story in the Catholic Courier in Rochester, N.Y. The aim of the new parish ministry, according to the story, is to provide parishioners with the education, information and support they need in order to live physically, emotionally and spiritually fulfilling lives.

‘The perfect storm’
The Leaven
That’s what The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., calls pornography today — a combination of the ‘information age’ and cultural permissiveness that has led to a perfect storm with gargantuan revenues and untold devastation. Also included in the package is a separate story on how porn corrodes marriage and family life.

‘It’s time for men to stand up,’ speaker says at conference
The Catholic Key
In an effort to foster grass-roots spiritual support for men, the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, Mo., sponsored a daylong conference at which men were told they can turn the culture around, according to this story in The Catholic Key.

Pyramids and stadiums: Outstanding in their fields
The Catholic Spirit
The editor of The Catholic Spirit in Austin, Texas, Helen Osman, reflects on a recent museum visit and wonders what people will say about our society 5,000 years from now. Just as pyramids were great pieces of architecture in the past, will people remember us primarily for our magnificent sports stadiums?

Diocesan priests remember war time
The Catholic Sun
In time for Veterans Day, The Catholic Sun in Syracuse, N.Y., interviewed three priests in the Syracuse Diocese who served during war and how images of war aren’t easily forgotten.

Six-year-old flies to New York to help priest
Florida Catholic
When Florida first-grader Brandon Rodriguez heard about a New York priest who received a parking ticket while the priest was giving the sacraments to a woman who was dying, the boy decided he had to do something. The Florida Catholic has the story. A second story tells how this isn’t the first time that Brandon has helped others.

Pittsburgh’s mayor credits Catholic upbringing
Pittsburgh Catholic
He’s only 26 and he’s not shy about saying that he “would not be where I’m at without my Catholic upbringing and my Catholic education.” Read about Luke Ravenstahl in the Pittsburgh Catholic.

Inmates talk about making choices
Intermountain Catholic
Four inmates from the Utah State Prison addressed a parish youth group in the Salt Lake City Diocese about the bad choices they made and how those choices spiraled into even more bad choices. “Make the wrong choice and your life can change in five minutes,” said one, according to the Intermountain Catholic.

‘One tough guy': Iwo Jima priest loved being a military chaplain
The Catholic Northwest Progress
A Washington State priest celebrated Mass before the famed flag-raising at Iwo Jima, and in fact the plan to plant the flag atop Mount Suribachi was hatched six days earlier in the priest’s shipboard cabin, according to The Catholic Northwest Progress, which recalls the effect the battle for Iwo Jima had on the chaplains who were there.

‘Took my breath away’
The Michigan Catholic
The Michigan Catholic tells the story of the Detroit Archdiocese’s first Hispanic bishop, even providing .mp3 and podcast files of the historic appointment.

Two perspectives on the sacrament of reconciliation
The Catholic Spirit, Catholic Sentinel
The headline in The Catholic Spirit of Austin, Texas, reads “Confession’s gotten a bad rap, priest says” and describes a seminar where priests were reminded they need to stress the healing aspects of penance. Meanwhile, Bishop Robert F. Vasa of Baker, Ore., writes a column in the statewide Catholic Sentinel headlined, “Theological distortions aside, we still need confession” in which he urges frequent utilization of the sacrament.

A glad witness to God’s work
Catholic Sentinel
Many Catholic papers have profiles on local priests, but this highly readable profile in the Catholic Sentinel in Portland, Ore., is interesting not just for the subject and the writing style but for the journey that led this particular cleric, Father George Wolf, to the priesthood.

Uninsured’s lament: ‘I’m hoping that I’ll be healthy’
The Tidings
In Los Angeles, The Tidings paints a grim picture of one family’s struggle to live without health insurance. The article also seeks answers for the lack of moral outrage over the health insurance crisis.

“What I Have Seen and Heard”
The Georgia Bulletin
What happens when a bishop gets a jury summons? Archbishop Wilton D. Gregory of Atlanta writes in his regular “What I Have Seen and Heard” column in The Georgia Bulletin that the choices he might have had to make as a juror are similar to the choices all Catholics have to make when they vote.

You know it’s a slow news day when…
The Criterion
Your CNS News Hub editor can’t resist linking to this entry in the blog of The Criterion in Indianapolis. Self-promotion? Nah, we’re just trying to send some traffic to our Indiana friends.

Businessman sees opportunities, not obstacles
Florida Catholic
The Florida Catholic in Orlando profiles Louis Fazio Jr., a businessman with cerebral palsy who faces multiple challenges and has undergone multiple surgeries but who says his biggest challenge is helping others realize a disability doesn’t necessarily affect them personally or professionally.

Former Arkansan provides healing as a priest and doctor
Arkansas Catholic
File this under local boy makes good: The Arkansas Catholic tells the story of Scott Binet, who first heard the call of the Lord when he was 16 but whose spiritual journey went through several phases, including acting and modeling in New York, until he found his calling in both the priesthood and in medicine.

Mass. bishops urge grassroots effort on marriage vote
The Pilot
At first glance you might think this is another ballot question for the Nov. 7 election. Instead, it’s a plea by the Massachusetts bishops that citizens contact their state legislators before a Nov. 9 constitutional convention session urging them to vote to “let the people vote” on the initiative petition on marriage. The Pilot in Boston explains.

Mass celebrates diverse cultures of Catholicism
The Georgia Bulletin
The Archdiocese of Atlanta holds an annual multicultural Mass to celebrate the growth of the church in northern Georgia into a microcosm of the universal church, according to The Georgia Bulletin, which provides all the colorful details from this year’s celebration.

Recent executions worry pro-life supporters
Florida Catholic
The Respect Life chairman for the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee, Fla., has a unique perspective on the issues surrounding capital punishment, according to the Florida Catholic, where the state recently executed three men in just six weeks.

‘Theology on Tap’ sessions feature Boston, D.C. prelates
The Pilot, Catholic Standard
Two papers have stories on their archbishops’ appearance at “Theology on Tap” sessions: In Boston, The Pilot offers both a story and an audio clip of Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley’s appearance kicking off the 2006 season of “Theology on Tap” in the Boston Archdiocese, while in Washington, the Catholic Standard says Archbishop Donald W. Wuerl spoke at his first “Theology on Tap” in front of a standing-room-only crowd.

Unlikely activist promotes unconditional giving
The Leaven
The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., puts a face on homelessness in this story but also on a gruff, former corporate executive who’s doing something about it.

Cardinal says poverty is greatest threat to world peace
The Catholic Spirit
The greatest worldwide threat is not North Korea’s nuclear testing, the war in Iraq or terrorism, Cardinal Renato Martino, president of the Pontifical Council of Justice and Peace, said in an interview with The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul-Minneapolis. The greatest threat, he said, is poverty, and its prominence in the world, he added, is often forgotten.

Taking the new U.S. catechism to heart
St. Anthony Messenger
An editorial in the November edition of St. Anthony Messenger has nothing but praise for the new United States Catholic Catechism for Adults, saying it especially responds to the challenges of the 21st century. The November issue also offers articles on a new handwritten and illuminated Bible and on the newest U.S. saint.

Hitting a wall on immigration reform
Florida Catholic
Bishop Thomas Wenski of Orlando, Fla., in a column in the Florida Catholic, writes that Congress missed an opportunity for comprehensive immigration reform and instead “left U.S. citizens with piecemeal enforcement proposals which will only increase human suffering.”

‘And the greatest of these is love’
The Leaven
The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., reports an inspirational story of a couple who has cared for their bedridden son for 52 years. Their pastor says he comes away humbled from visits with the family because of all they do.

Pastor, deacon evangelize through radio show
FaithLife
FaithLife, the biweekly bulletin of the Diocese of Erie, Pa., reports on a local pastor-deacon team’s radio program — also available as a podcast — whose underlying philosophy is current affairs from a Christian perspective.

Hands of Christ lift up church
Catholic Courier
In the Diocese of Rochester, N.Y., high school seniors are honored for outstanding service in their parish, school and/or community. This year, more than 700 Hands of Christ awards were given. The Catholic Courier in Rochester details some of the activities for which the youths were honored.

Merton enthusiast hopes to establish online discussion community
Tennessee Register
A Tennessee devotee of famed Trappist monk Thomas Merton wants to establish a new Tennessee chapter of the International Thomas Merton Society but with one difference: he wants to do it online. Read about the effort in the Tennessee Register in Nashville.

Friendship with death-row inmate tranforms priest
Texas Catholic
Not only was Father Arthur Mallinson changed by the inmate he befriended, but so was the inmate, according to this story in the Texas Catholic of Dallas.

Local Catholic-Muslim dialogue discusses terrorism, ‘soul of Islam’
The Colorado Catholic Herald
A Muslim community leader in Colorado Springs, Colo., said killing innocent people in the name of Islam is forbidden by the religion. According to The Colorado Catholic Herald the Muslim leader also said that St. Francis of Assisi was “born ahead of his time” because of his desire to understand more about the Islamic faith.

Young adults start religious discernment journey later
The Catholic New World
Prompted by the announcement last month that Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary in Chicago will close, ending a tradition of high school seminary formation, The Catholic New World examined the changing ways that young people discern whether they want to be a brother, sister or priest these days. Many are simply considering religious life in a different style and timeline, the story says.

Tigers success is ‘good for the soul’
The Michigan Catholic
What does baseball — or, more specifically, this year’s World Series — have to do with faith? Well, The Michigan Catholic says that local pastors, and even Detroit Cardinal Adam Maida himself, see great benefits to the atmosphere the Detroit Tigers have created with their stunning championship run.

When ‘Catholic’ isn’t Catholic
Catholic Herald
The Milwaukee Archdiocese is warning local Catholics about seven churches within its boundaries that use the word “Catholic” in their names but are not in full communion with the church. The Milwaukee Catholic Herald provides the details.

Parish group ministers to women with high-risk pregnancies
The Catholic Sun
In Phoenix, The Catholic Sun offers a feature on the birth (no pun intended) of a new parish-based ministry to women in high-risk pregnancies, such as total bed rest.

Congress needs to pass telecommunications bill that safeguards net neutrality on Web
The Compass
An editorial in The Compass in Green Bay, Wis., compares the current push in Congress for “net neutrality” to broadcast deregulation, which led to a sharp drop in the amount of religious content on radio and television.

Spiritual journey to Africa
Pittsburgh Catholic
A group of 22 people made a diocesan religious pilgrimage to Ghana, according to this story in the Pittsburgh Catholic. Ghana was chosen, the story says, because of its historical connection to African-Americans and its large Catholic population.

Catholic candidates for governor square off in debate
Denver Catholic Register
The local chapter of Legatus, the Catholic business leaders organization, sponsored a debate between the two main candidates for Colorado governor. The Denver Catholic Register reports that both are practicing Catholics who want education and health care reforms, but says their similarities stop there.

Politics and faith: Being Catholic in the public square
The Tidings
What is the role of the church in discussing the faith implications of political issues? The Tidings in Los Angeles offers a column by Vincentian Father Richard Benson, academic dean and professor of moral theology at St. John’s Seminary, Camarillo, Calif.

Remembering JPII
The Leaven
The publication of “The Life of Pope John Paul II … in Comics!” prompted Father Mark Goldasich, editor of The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., to reminisce about the evening in St. Peter’s Square 28 years ago when he saw the new pope for the first time.

Catholic candidates battle for votes in Pennsylvania Senate race
National Catholic Register, National Catholic Reporter
Pennsylvania’s Senate race between incumbent Rick Santorum and challenger Bob Casey is the subject of articles in two national Catholic newspapers. The National Catholic Reporter says Catholic voters are a special target for both campaigns, while the National Catholic Register says there are a number of differences in the two candidates’ positions on key life and family issues.

Celebrating St. Francis of Assisi
(Various publications)
It’s time to catch up with some stories on pets, since this is the month for celebrating the feast of St. Francis of Assisi: Atlanta priests ‘warmed’ by joys of pet ownership, The Georgia Bulletin; Pets of all sizes get a special blessing, The Michigan Catholic; Pets are blessed in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, The Catholic Key; Animals blessed in honor of St. Francis, Intermountain Catholic.St. Mother Theodore Guerin
The Criterion
Scroll around this page in The Criterion of Indianapolis and click on the numerous links to see this archdiocesan newspaper’s extensive coverage of the Oct. 15 canonization of Mother Theodore Guerin, founder of the Sisters of Providence of St. Mary-of-the-Woods, Ind.
Tigers coach and brother priest serve as shepherds
The Michigan Catholic
How is managing a baseball team similar to managing a parish? No, that’s not a riddle, it’s just one of the topics The Michigan Catholic discussed with Father Thomas J. Leyland, whose brother happens to be Detroit Tigers’ manager Jim Leyland.
Pedaling to raise funds and awareness
North Texas Catholic
John Britton knew he’d have to face the unexpected when he decided to bicycle 870 miles across Texas to raise money for autism, but he also knew his problems would be nothing compared to the challenges his 24-year-old sister faces every day, according to this story in the North Texas Catholic in Fort Worth.
Florida bishops: Stay pending executions
Florida Catholic
The bishops of Florida jointly signed a statement saying they were “saddened at the prospect of two executions scheduled for October.” The full statement is in the Florida Catholic.
Predators do not have ideology
The Pilot
As recent cases have shown, abusers do not belong to a particular ideology or religious creed, according to this editorial in The Pilot, newspaper of the Boston Archdiocese.
Little film wins big in Toronto
National Catholic Register
The National Catholic Register reports that the family-friendly movie “Bella” won an important award at the Toronto Film Festival last month.
Artist, admirer unite to save overlooked church mural
Arkansas Catholic
For more than 35 years, parishioners in Helena, Ark., debated what to do with the highly stylized artwork covering the wall behind their altar. The Arkansas Catholic tells the story behind the painting, the artist who created it, and how the parish finally decided to have it restored.
Pharmacist says God’s the boss
Florida Catholic
David and Carmen Cartaya run a pharmacy in Tampa, Fla., where they don’t sell birth control pills or other contraceptives and have stressed pro-life principles for 30 years, according to the Florida Catholic.
Police officers blessed, honored at Blue Mass
FaithLife Online
Seventy-two years to the day after the first Blue Mass for police officers was celebrated in Baltimore, a similar Mass was celebrated for law enforcement officials in one part of the Diocese of Erie, Pa. FaithLife Online in Erie has the story.
Passionist nun moves from corporate world to life of contemplation
Tennessee Register
Carole Beauchemin loved her job with the Saturn automobile company in Tennessee, but she traded it all in for a life as a contemplative nun. The Tennessee Register in Nashville traces her life from corporate executive with a “great salary” to her decision to enter the convent.
After centuries of decades, devotion to rosary remains strong
The Catholic Northwest Progress
In the month devoted to the rosary, The Catholic Northwest Progress in Seattle offers a feature on how local Catholics feel about its power.
Priest from Poland becomes an American citizen
West River Catholic
Janusz Korban was a Polish seminarian when he decided to come to the United States because of its priest shortage. He applied for citizenship and became an American this year, according to this story in the West River Catholic in Rapid City, S.D.
Couple plan ‘Pray for a Cure’ Mass
The Tidings
A deacon-candidate couple in the Los Angeles Archdiocese — he’s a fourth-year candidate in the archdiocesan permanent diaconate program — hopes to make the slogan “Pray for a Cure” just as famous as “Walk for a Cure” is for breast cancer walkathons. Read how they’re doing it, and why, in this story in The Tidings in Los Angeles.
A booster shot
The Catholic Virginian
“If the Christian community ever needed a booster shot about being strengthened in faith, it certainly got one this week from the small Amish community in Lancaster County, Pa.” That’s the lead sentence in an editorial in The Catholic Virginian in Richmond, Va.
Bap Akol Deng Bap, man of faith, buried from cathedral
Intermountain Catholic
In Salt Lake City, the Intermountain Catholic says 36-year-old Bap Akol Deng Bap “suffered plenty in his short life,” first as one of Sudan’s “lost boys,” and then in his untimely death, allegedly because of a hit-and-run driver. He attended Mass daily at the Cathedral of the Madeleine, from which he was buried.
A new saint for America
Catholic Sentinel
Portland, Ore., is a long way from the Indiana farmlands where Mother Theodore Guerin based her ministry, but Archbishop John Vlazny of Portland tells in a column in Portland’s Catholic Sentinel why he’s glad that Mother Theodore is being made a saint this month.
Top Vatican official makes U.S. visit
(Various publications)
Cardinal Francis Arinze, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Sacraments, recently made several stops in the United States. Among the diocesan newspapers covering his activities were The Michigan Catholic in Detroit, the Pittsburgh Catholic in Pittsburgh, and The Pilot in Boston.
Arizona bishops offer position on ballot initiatives
The Catholic Sun
The three bishops whose dioceses include parts of Arizona have announced support for two statewide ballot initiatives and opposition to a third. Details are in The Catholic Sun of Phoenix, which also carried the full text of the bishops’ statement.
Legislation aims to protect religious from same-sex challenges
The Catholic Register
In Canada, where debate over the definition of marriage continues after last year’s legalization of same-sex marriages, The Catholic Register in Toronto reports on an effort to protect the rights of religious groups who object to the practice. One example cited in the story is a Knights of Columbus council that was fined $2,000 after it refused to rent its hall to a same-sex couple for a wedding.
Canadian bishops will discuss Catholic politician’s role
Western Catholic Reporter
At its annual assembly Oct. 16-20, the Canadian Catholic bishops’ conference plans to address the issue of Catholic politicians who take positions contrary to church teachings, according to this story in the Western Catholic Reporter in Edmonton, Alberta. Speaking at the meeting will be Cardinal Theodore E. McCarrick, retired archbishop of Washington.

True stem-cell success
Catholic Courier
A woman in the Diocese of Rochester, N.Y., has benefited from adult stem cells and now dedicates herself to promoting awareness of the therapy, according to this story in the Catholic Courier. While public attention focuses on the issue of embryonic stem cells, few hear about adult stem cell successes, the story says.

Disenfranchised Americans
America
With November’s midterm elections fast approaching, an editorial in America magazine decries the fact that millions of current or prior felony offenders are denied their constitutionally guaranteed right to vote. Many have completed their sentences and paid their debt to society, but still can’t vote, the editorial notes.

Mayo Clinic: The Franciscan connection
St. Anthony Messenger
Few know that the internationally famous Mayo Clinic in Minnesota started with three talented Protestant doctors and one very determined Franciscan sister. St. Anthony Messenger magazine has the story.

The Priest Band: Their fame exceeds their talent
The Leaven
The lead sentences in this story in The Leaven in Kansas City, Kan., say it all: “If that pulsing beat and those screaming guitars are driving you crazy at night, think twice before calling the cops on those rock star wannabes jammin’ down the street. You might just find your pastor singing lead!” There’s also a video of the band rehearsing available in PC format.

The spirit of Catholic high school football
The Criterion
John Shaughnessy in The Criterion in Indianapolis captures in words the flavor of traditions found in many U.S. cities this time of year: “Catholic high school football rivalries in the archdiocese are the equivalent of one-on-one backyard basketball games between brothers.”

Workshop arms clergy with information to battle domestic violence
Catholic Explorer
A Chicago priest told an audience in the neighboring Diocese of Joliet, Ill., that it’s high time that the clergy stand up to protect victims of domestic violence, according to a report in the Catholic Explorer.

Our nation bears an unhealed wound
The Florida Catholic
An editorial in The Florida Catholic reflects on a recent visit to the World Trade Center site in New York City and on what’s needed and what’s not needed to heal the wound of 9/11.

Pro-life prayers issued to build a ‘culture of life’
The Record
The Catholic Conference of Kentucky has published 10 different “Pro-Life Prayer Services for Times of Transition” for parishes, schools, home and other gatherings that want to celebrate life across the spectrum, according to The Record in Louisville. The services emphasize the “essential place for prayer and worship in living the Gospel of life,” the state’s four bishops said in a letter to Catholics in the state.

Parishes vie for sacred objects from closed churches
The Michigan Catholic
Ever wonder what happens to the statues, sacred vessels and other such items when a parish closes? The Michigan Catholic tells the procedures used in the Archdiocese of Detroit and has photos of some of the available items.

Bishop Gilmore pays visit to Catholic schools
The Southwest Kansas Register
This irresistible photo of Bishop Ronald M. Gilmore in The Southwest Kansas Register having lunch with elementary school students is part of a feature story in the paper on a series of school visits the bishop is making in his diocese this fall.

New seminary building an environmental standout
Catholic Sentinel
The new Annunciation Hall at Mount Angel Seminary “is 25,000 square feet of clever design meant to save energy and enhance learning,” reports the Catholic Sentinel. Read why the newspaper calls the building “Oregon’s most environmentally sound.”

Bishop celebrates Mass for Royals players, staff
The Catholic Key
The Kansas City Royals didn’t qualify for baseball’s post-season, but that’s no reason to not read the story in The Catholic Key on the Mass that Bishop Robert W. Finn celebrated recently at Kauffmann Stadium for several Royals players and staff members.

Cardinal George reflects on health, life and eternity
The Catholic New World
Nearly two months after having his cancerous bladder removed, Cardinal Francis E. George acknowledged that at one point he believed he was dying, a thought that did not frighten him. The Catholic New World in Chicago reports on why he felt that way.

Bishops support marriage amendments in Tennessee, Virginia
Tennessee Register, The Catholic Virginian
Bishops in Tennessee and Virginia have urged their people to support separate amendments in the two states defining marriage as between only a man and a woman. The Tennessee Register reports on the Tennessee statement and provides the Tennessee bishops’ text, while The Catholic Virginian published the text of the Virginia bishops’ statement.

Diocese officials hold prayer vigil after school shooting
The Colorado Catholic Herald
Following the Sept. 27 school shooting in Bailey, Colo., Colorado Springs Bishop Michael Sheridan and other officials led a prayer service at a Bailey parish. “This is another encounter with the mystery of evil, with the mystery of inequity. That’s part of the human condition; we live in a broken world,” said Bishop Sheridan. Details are in The Colorado Catholic Herald.

Ave Maria construction well under way
The Florida Catholic
Dominos Pizza founder Tom Monaghan’s dream to build a major Catholic university is making significant progress, according to this story and photo in The Florida Catholic.

Keeping the Cuban connection
The Tidings
The Tidings in Los Angeles profiles retired Auxiliary Bishop Agustin A. Roman of Miami, who recalls his expulsion from his native Cuba in 1961 and his strong bonds that exist today for the Cuban people.

Dawson College student tries to make sense of shooting
The Catholic Register
In Toronto, The Catholic Register published a first-person account of a student at Dawson College in Montreal who was heading for class when a gunman opened fire and, as the writer says, “traumatized a city.”

George and Nick Clooney: ‘Stop the Genocide in Darfur’
St. Anthony Messenger
The October issue of St. Anthony Messenger magazine features an article by journalist Nick Clooney — father of actor George Clooney — on the genocide in the Darfur region of Sudan and what readers can do to help.

Homeschooling gives parents flexibility, control they want
Arkansas Catholic
Parents interviewed by the Arkansas Catholic in Little Rock cite several advantages to homeschooling their children, including handing on the faith.

The pope and Islam
(Various publications)
In the wake of Pope Benedict XVI’s remarks on Islam, several Catholic newspapers weighed in with local stories, editorials or columns. Among them:

A parish demonstrates lots of affection ‘for Jake’s sake’
The Record
Eight-year-old Jake Taylor lost his hair to chemotherapy, and more than 90 of his friends at Mother of Good Counsel parish decided to lose their hair, too, according to The Record in Louisville, Ky.

Cards hurler gives kids straight pitch
St. Louis Review
St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jeff Suppan spoke to more than 400 Catholic school students on living out his Catholic faith. The St. Louis Review covered the story.

Priest with disability opposes stem-cell initiative
St. Louis Review
With Missouri voters facing a November ballot measure on human cloning and embryonic stem-cell research, a quadriplegic priest who has lived with a spinal cord injury for 14 years tells the St. Louis Review why he objects to the initiative.

JustFaith program empowers others to do God’s work
The Catholic Key
The 30-week-long adult formation program known as JustFaith and designed to empower Catholics who have a thirst and passion for social justice is featured in an article in The Catholic Key in Kansas City, Mo.

Pfc. Daniel G. Dolan: Baptism of desire
Intermountain Catholic
After a Utah soldier died in Iraq, his parents brought his body to a Catholic parish for funeral rites even though the soldier wasn’t Catholic. The Intermountain Catholic of Salt Lake City tells why.

Faith under fire
The Leaven
Also related to the Iraq war, the life of a Catholic Army chaplain in Iraq is far from easy, as this feature in The Leaven on a Kansas City, Kan., priest shows. Included is a Q-and-A interview with the priest in which he talks about how chaplains are making a difference there.

Faith, family, friends give Sydney Smith life
Catholic Herald
Jillian and Shannon Smith feel an especially close bond with Pope John Paul II: As he lay dying from septic shock and heart failure brought on by a urinary tract infection, their 14-month-old daughter was in a Wisconsin hospital battling the same illness. The Catholic Herald in Milwaukee tells how the Smiths credit the medical team, thousands of prayers around the country — and maybe Pope John Paul — for their daughter’s survival.

A light in Africa: Brother and sister keep the faith in fighting health crisis
The Criterion
Sibling doctors who grew up in Indianapolis now live their faith fighting the AIDS pandemic in Africa one patient at a time. That daunting task and the doubts these doctors sometimes face are detailed in this story in The Criterion of Indianapolis.

Cardinal shares memories of JPII, life in Detroit and future plans
The Michigan Catholic
Cardinal Edmund C. Szoka, former archbishop of Detroit who just completed 16 years of service at the Vatican, reflects on his experiences both in Rome and in Detroit in an interview with The Michigan Catholic.

Archbishop’s pastoral addresses immigration
St. Louis Review
Archbishop Raymond Burke of St. Louis wrote in a pastoral letter to his archdiocese that church teaching requires Catholics “to receive the stranger into our midst as one of our own.” A story on the letter is in the St. Louis Review.

‘Inspiring little girl’
Catholic New York
A 10-year-old girl who has battled a tumor and a stroke said the thing she wanted most in the world was to meet the pope. That’s when the Make-A-Wish Foundation got involved. Details are in Catholic New York, newspaper of the Archdiocese of New York.

Vatican official praises role of Jesuits in higher education
The Catholic Voice
After speaking in Boston (see below), the secretary of the Vatican’s Congregation for Catholic Education visited Omaha, Neb., for a lecture at Creighton University. He also stopped at an Omaha all-girls Catholic academy. The Catholic Voice in Omaha covered both appearances.

Priest reflects on 50 years of service to Latin America
St. Louis Review
As part of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the St. Louis Archdiocese’s Latin America Apostolate, the St. Louis Review interviewed one of the three priests who established the apostolate in Bolivia in 1956 about what his experience has taught him.

Vatican secretary speaks on Catholic higher education
The Pilot
The secretary of the Vatican’s Congregation for Catholic Education told a Boston audience that one of the greatest contributions that institutions of Catholic education can offer society is their “uncompromising Catholicity,” according to this story in The Pilot, Boston archdiocesan newspaper.

Military widows seek to help others cope with grief
The Catholic Virginian
Two women in the Diocese of Richmond, Va., share a passion for what they see as an obvious need: guiding widows dealing with emotional and spiritual issues that are unique to military families. The Catholic Virginian tells their story and how what they call a God-given coincidence brought them together.

Community rallies for seminarian fighting cancer
The Catholic Sun
A 20-year-old seminarian for the Diocese of Phoenix was diagnosed this summer with a rare form of leukemia. The Catholic Sun reports on his battle and the effort to find a suitable bone marrow donor for him.

You’re not alone
The Florida Catholic
Commenting on the theme for Pope Benedict XVI’s just-concluded pastoral visit to Germany, The Florida Catholic says in an editorial that many people need to hear that God is with them at a time when a cacophony of conflicting messages makes it difficult to hear his voice.

An alternate voice for turbulent times
Western Catholic Reporter
The need for a strong Catholic press to counter the inaccuracies in the secular media is the theme of this column in the Western Catholic Reporter in Edmonton, Alberta, by editor and general manager Glen Argan, who cites a specific example of bloggers reacting to misinformation on a major daily’s Web site.

Connecting faith with film
The Catholic Register
Lloyd Baugh is a priest who loves movies, but he’s no movie priest, according to this profile in The Catholic Register in Toronto. “A priest who talks, writes and teaches theology about the movies often finds himself wading into some of the most divisive debates in contemporary culture,” it notes.

Deportation fears keep some from the sacraments
Our Sunday Visitor
A number of Catholic leaders fear that recent U.S. immigrants — both legal and illegal — are shying away from the church because of deportation fears and the difficulties of obtaining parish records from their home countries, according to the national newsweekly Our Sunday Visitor (free registration required).

Veterans seek faith’s help in managing tough memories of warfare
Catholic Sentinel
In Oregon, the Catholic Sentinel reports on what it says is one of the first retreats of its kind: Catholic war veterans — from World War II to Iraq — grappling with nightmares from their service overseas.

Mass at the megaplex
Intermountain Catholic
Ever attended Mass at a theater with stadium seating? One new parish in the Diocese of Salt Lake City is doing just that, according to this story in the Intermountain Catholic diocesan newspaper. Joked the pastor: “For a long time the priest looked down on the people. Now the people are looking down on the priest.”

The profile of AIDS in America: 25 years later
Catholic Explorer
A ministry in the Diocese of Joliet, Ill., providing housing for people with HIV/AIDS and one of the home’s residents are profiled in this article in the Catholic Explorer, the Joliet diocesan newspaper.

Two NFL stories of faith: Mike McMahon and Troy Polamalu
The Catholic Spirit, Pittsburgh Catholic
With the pro football season just around the corner, two papers have stories about players’ faith. The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul, Minn., features Minnesota Vikings’ backup quarterback Mike McMahon, who carries a rosary and draws on his faith daily. And in the Pittsburgh Catholic there’s a story on Pittsburgh Steelers strong safety Troy Polamalu, a National Football League superstar who cites instances of divine intervention as proof of God’s presence in his life.

The binding power of words
The Criterion
“Besides the Bible, is there a book that has had a significant impact on your faith life?” That’s the question The Criterion, newspaper of the Indianapolis Archdiocese, asked its readers. The answers, the paper says, “show there are often interesting stories about the ways that books make a difference in our lives and our faith.”

Cistercian nuns seek new monastery
Catholic Herald
In the Milwaukee Archdiocese, the Catholic Herald gives readers an insight into the lives of nuns at a Cistercian monastery, where traditional prayer and modern baking methods for altar bread go hand in hand. The community’s growth means the nuns are also seeking a new home.

Church gets Stanley Cup visit
The Michigan Catholic
No, the Detroit Red Wings did not win the Stanley Cup this year in professional hockey, but the Detroit archdiocesan newspaper, The Michigan Catholic, has a story about a Detroit native who plays for the cup-winning Carolina Hurricanes who brought the historic trophy back to his home parish for a blessing.

‘Da Vinci Code’ author sued for plagiarism
The Catholic Observer
In Springfield, Mass., The Catholic Observer reports on a local writer who has filed a federal lawsuit accusing the author of “The Da Vinci Code” of stealing extensive portions of his earlier book for the popular best-seller.

Officer’s death a catalyst for love
The Catholic Northwest Progress
A Catholic police officer who died in the line of duty in Seattle was honored by family, friends and fellow officers at a funeral in the city’s St. James Cathedral, reports The Catholic Northwest Progress. A second story in the paper covers the remarks of Seattle Archbishop Alex J. Brunett for the occasion.

Hispanics in Anchorage relish visit from Dominican bishop
Catholic Anchor
Mercedes Medina, 79, was born in the Dominican Republic and lived for 50 years in New Jersey, home to hundreds of thousands of Dominican immigrants. But according to the Catholic Anchor, it took moving to Alaska to finally bring her face to face with a bishop from her homeland.

One year after Katrina
Various publications
For the first anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, numerous Catholic newspapers ran follow-up stories on hurricane relief efforts. Some examples: the Catholic Explorer in Joliet, Ill.; the Tennessee Register in Nashville, Tenn.; The Catholic Northwest Progress in Seattle; the Arkansas Catholic in Little Rock; and The Georgia Bulletin in Atlanta.

‘This pope doesn’t need a spokesman’
National Catholic Register
A month after the resignation of Joaquin Navarro-Valls as director of the Vatican press office, the National Catholic Register interviewed his successor, Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi.

Left seeks to revive ‘common good’ as new strategy
National Catholic Reporter
Joe Feuerherd writes in the National Catholic Reporter that promoting the common good is the centerpiece of the church’s social teaching and that liberal Catholic activists hope to use the concept to expand what it means to promote justice. But Catholic conservatives, he reports, see the new push as both disingenuous and a misuse of the philosophy.

Lebanese will work together to build a better society, says priest
Intermountain Catholic
A Utah pastor of the Maronite rite gives the Intermountain Catholic in Salt Lake City his perspective on the situation in his native Lebanon.

Lay orders bridge spiritual, secular worlds
The Catholic Sun
If you’re not familiar with the work of secular orders — groups of laypeople living the spiritual charism of a religious order while remaining part of the laity — The Catholic Sun in Phoenix provides a good primer on what they are and what their members do.

Recovering from Katrina
St. Anthony Messenger
Three assistant editors at St. Anthony Messenger magazine traveled to New Orleans “to provide a snapshot of life after Katrina,” says one of the three, Susan Hines-Brigger. Click here for the table of contents for this special section, or here for Hines-Brigger’s series introduction.

New support for Catholic firefighters
The Leaven
You may never have heard of Catholic Firefighters International, an organization dedicated to uniting Catholic firefighters to promote Christ and the church and to support each other in their daily and spiritual lives. Jill Ragar Esfeld in The Leaven gives more background on the group in a story on efforts to organize a local chapter in the Kansas City area.

Priest kicks off sainthood cause for football star
The Catholic Spirit
Which college football Heisman Trophy winner is being proposed for sainthood? Dave Hrbacek in The Catholic Spirit in St. Paul-Minneapolis has the answer. And click here too for a short update.

Growing immigrant population has priests hearing more confessions in Spanish
The Catholic Sun
J.D. Long-García in The Catholic Sun in Phoenix reports on a trend that’s probably not just in Arizona: With the influx of immigrants from Latin America, priests are hearing more and more confessions in Spanish.

Caring for the soul in the workplace
The Tidings
In a post-Enron world, the national corporate environment is more amenable to workplace spirituality practices than ever before, a Loyola Marymount University professor tells The Tidings in Los Angeles.

In praise of handbells
Tennessee Register
More Catholic parishes should be incorporating handbells into their liturgies, says a parish music director in the Nashville Diocese, reports Ned Andrew Solomon in the Tennessee Register.

Stem-cell veto helps but is not enough
The Florida Catholic
An editorial in The Florida Catholic thanks President Bush for his recent stem-cell veto and explains that Catholics need to be aware there are church-approved forms of stem-cell research that are nondestructive alternatives to destroying a life.

Four-part series on priesthood, ordination, church unity
Pittsburgh Catholic
Prior to the July 31 “ordination” service in Pittsburgh by the group Roman Catholic Womenpriests, the Pittsburgh Catholic published a four-part series on “the importance of unity in the church, what we mean by the priesthood, why men alone are ordained to the priesthood and the call to service for every Catholic.” Click here for Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

Praying for peace
Our Sunday Visitor
“Whatever one may think of Israel’s treatment of its Arab neighbors or the Palestinian communities in its shadow, what cannot be denied is that Israel was not the aggressor this time,” says an editorial in Our Sunday Visitor.

Catholic chaplain spreads ministry at Tyson Foods
Arkansas Catholic
Marilyn Lanford in the Arkansas Catholic explores what she calls the “growing trend in large corporations and smaller businesses to offer a program called workplace chaplaincy.”

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