Browsing News Entries

Viganò announces on X he is being tried for schism

Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the former Apostollic Nuncio to the United States, publishes a copy of a decree summoning him to appear before the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith to answer charges of schism.

Read all

 

World Refugee Day 2024: Hope Emerges from Human Tragedy

WASHINGTON - On World Refugee Day (June 20), the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) joins with others around the world in honoring refugees and the communities that welcome them. This annual observation serves as a poignant reminder of the millions of individuals and families forcibly displaced from their homes and the importance of durable protection mechanisms, such as the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program (USRAP). Bishop Mark J. Seitz of El Paso, chairman of the USCCB’s Committee on Migration, underscored the importance of refugee protection for the Catholic Church:

“On World Refugee Day, we reflect on the urgent need to promote the dignity and rights of refugees, as well as the positive contributions they make to our communities. As Catholics, we are called by the Gospel and Church teaching to embrace our brothers and sisters fleeing for their lives, offering them compassion, support, and solidarity. For generations, Catholics across the United States have embodied this through their commitment to refugee resettlement. In these efforts, we witness the resiliency of refugees, and we recognize in them a hope for new life, which resonates in the heart of every Christian. May this work of welcome continue to inspire within us a deeper awareness of our own journey toward everlasting life.”

Through its Department of Migration and Refugee Services (MRS), the USCCB is one of ten national resettlement agencies partnering with the federal government on USRAP. This is one of the ways in which the Catholic community in the United States answers Christ’s call to welcome the stranger and advances the Church’s concern for human life and dignity.

For more information on World Refugee Day, please visit the Justice for Immigrants website.

For more information on the USCCB’s work related to migration and refugee resettlement, visit www.usccb.org/migration.

###

Bishop Burbidge Reflects on Anniversary of Dobbs Decision and the Impact of the Eucharistic Revival on the Pro-Life Movement

WASHINGTON - On June 24, 2022, the Supreme Court of the United States issued its ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization, which overturned the Roe v. Wade decision that had legalized abortion in all 50 states. In advance of the anniversary of the Court’s landmark decision, Bishop Michael F. Burbidge of Arlington, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, urged the faithful to engage elected officials on life issues, and reflected on the power of the Eucharist to transform hearts and culture:

“This anniversary calls us to reflect on where we have been and where we are going,” Bishop Burbidge stated. “This fall, as many as ten additional states will have abortion referenda on their ballots, allowing voters to enshrine ‘abortion rights’ and override existing pro-life safeguards. At the same time, Congress has been promoting many pro-abortion policies while largely ignoring our calls to prioritize maternal health and support for children and families in need.”

“In the spirit of faithful citizenship, I urge Catholics to engage their elected officials on all issues endangering life,” he said. “As we navigate this shifting political landscape, I cannot help but think the Holy Spirit has inspired our National Eucharistic Revival for such a time as this. Christ’s Real Presence in the Eucharist has the power to transform our own hearts and the heart of our culture.”

Read Bishop Burbidge’s full statement here.

###

US church needs culturally sensitive safeguarding training, expert says

ROME (CNS) -- The diversity of the Catholic Church in the United States requires that it develop a culturally sensitive approach to preventing abuse, a safeguarding expert said.

Although the U.S. church, like the church in Europe, has structures in place to promote safeguarding to a higher degree than churches with less resources, "there are cultural aspects that need to be taken into account," Jesuit Father Hans Zollner, president of the Pontifical Gregorian University's Institute of Anthropology: Interdisciplinary Studies on Human Dignity and Care, said.

"The more diverse a society is and a local church is, the more it needs to respect the different cultures, languages, habits, mentalities that are represented," he told Catholic News Service June 18 on the sidelines of an international safeguarding conference hosted by the institute.

Given the diversity within the U.S. church, it must "be aware that there are different types of (ways) how you establish relationships, how you interact and express yourself, in different parts of the world," Father Zollner said.

According to a 2023 report by the Pew Research Center, 57% of U.S. Catholics are white, non-Hispanic, while 33% are Hispanic, 4% are Asian, 2% are Black and 3% are of another race.

Jesuit Father Hans Zollner sits for an interview.
Jesuit Father Hans Zollner, president of the Pontifical Gregorian University's Institute of Anthropology: Interdisciplinary Studies on Human Dignity and Care, is interviewed by Catholic News Service Reporter Justin McLellan during a safeguarding conference at the university in Rome June 18, 2024. (CNS photo/Courtesy Pontifical Gregorian University)

Racial, ethnic and cultural diversity in U.S. churches presents the challenge of communicating the sensitivity around safeguarding in ways that cut through cultural differences, he said.

"When we talk with people from a different background do we really talk the same language in regard to sexuality, to harassment? How do we approach people, how you relate to people, talk about difficult issues?" Father Zollner asked.

He said the church in the United States must make significant effort "so that these ethnicities are more likely to come on board, and so that people don't get the impression of a sort of ‘neo-colonialism’ by just applying the same type of structure, language, or educational programs to people who have a different outlook."

"Law and guidelines are important," he said, "but law does not change the heart. It does not automatically change mentality."

Father Zollner stressed the need for the church "to learn to tell the intention of guidelines in a narrative way. And the narration needs to come in symbols, in language, that can be understood on the ground. "

In many cultures, for example, sexuality is "a complete taboo in the public debate," and, as a result, "people don't have the courage to talk about this and are not educated in family, schools, or religions to do so."

Still, he maintained that the Catholic Church is still a leader in safeguarding, since "no religion and no denomination have made the same strides in safeguarding activity, which means setting up guidelines for all types of institutions, (and) the training of personnel, full-time or volunteers."

But still, the church's implementation of safeguarding practices are "far from perfect and far from consistent," Father Zollner said.

"In many places, we don't implement our own law," for example in addressing cover up of abuse,, he said, which is "an institutional failure of great importance because it undermines the credibility of the Gospel message."

Additionally, he noted that the church often fails to collaborate on safeguarding with other religions, denominations, the state and non-government organizations.

While Father Zollner praised the extensive work already done by the Catholic Church to prevent abuse, "we are the biggest player in this field, so we have a special obligation."

Pope to university students: 'Stay true to your convictions and faith'

Via livestream, Pope Francis dialogues with students in the "Building Bridges Across Asia Pacific initiative" organized by Loyola University Chicago together with the Pontifical Commission for Latin America.

Read all

 

Zambia: Solwezi Diocese trains 52 Holy Childhood animators

Holy Childhood animators should cultivate the vital role of the Eucharist in the lives of children during missionary animation and as they go about forming children under their care in their respective parishes. This is the message given to the Catholic Diocese of Solwezi Holy Childhood animators, recently.

Read all

 

Elena Beccalli is the new Rector of Milan's Catholic University of the Sacred Heart

Elena Beccalli, who once studied at the university herself, if the new Rector of Milan's Catholic Univerity of the Sacred Heart

Read all

 

Lutheran World Federation meets with Pope: Already ‘so much' in common

After the Federation’s leadership met with the Pope, Vatican News spoke to its General Secretary about the state of Catholic-Lutheran dialogue today.

Read all

 

Daughters of St Paul celebrate 109 years with a digital twist

The Daughters of St. Paul mark their 109th anniversary with a celebration of the digital age.

Read all

 

St. Vincent Kaun: Saint of the Day for Thursday, June 20, 2024

Martyr of Japan. A native of Korea, he was brought to Japan in 1591 as a prisoner of war and was subsequently converted to Christianity. Entering the Jesuits, he studied at the Jesuit seminary of Arima and worked for three decades as a catechist in both Japan and China. Seized during the persecution of the Church, he was burned alive at Nagasaki with Blessed Francis Pacheco. He was beatified in 1867.