Uruguayan doctors say abortion norms fail to respect conscience rights

Montevideo, Uruguay, Dec 11, 2012 / 04:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Nearly one hundred doctors in Uruguay filed a lawsuit on Dec. 7, arguing that the country's new abortion norms to not allow for conscientious objection. According to the newspaper El Observador, the doctors state that because they are directly responsible for implementing and administering the regulations, they feel obliged to denounce “several grave illegalities” they contain. The abortion law took effect on … [Read more...]

Vatican spokesman calls China’s suspension of bishop ‘serious’

Vatican City, Dec 11, 2012 / 03:56 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The Chinese government has suspended a Catholic bishop who resigned from the government-run Catholic association, leading the Vatican's spokesman to describe the Holy See as deeply concerned. The controversy comes after the government-run Bishops' Conference of the Catholic Church of China  – which is not recognized by the Vatican – revoked auxiliary  Bishop Thaddeus Ma Daqin’s appointment as coadjutor … [Read more...]

Vatican official warns of mediocrity in American Christianity

Vatican City, Dec 11, 2012 / 12:03 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- An official for the Vatican's Latin America commission has warned against a “gray pragmatism and mediocrity” that he believes has infiltrated Christianity in America. Professor Guzman Carriquiry, secretary for the Pontifical Commission for Latin America, made his remarks on Dec. 8, the first day of the International Congress Ecclesial in America taking place at the Vatican's Synod Hall. During his speech, … [Read more...]

New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity

Orange, Calif., Dec 11, 2012 / 11:39 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In his first homily as head of the Orange diocese, Bishop Kevin Vann urged Catholics to help build up the Body of Christ and to shape the culture, not be shaped by it.“We are gathered here in this God-given moment ... as the Body of Christ, as the family of God, in our common mission to bring once again the good news of Jesus Christ in the world,” he said Dec. 10.“By the hand of God, I believe, we have been brought … [Read more...]

Advent is a ‘season of Mary,’ Archbishop Gomez says

Los Angeles, Calif., Dec 11, 2012 / 04:16 am (CNA).- Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles is describing Advent as “a season of Mary” and a time for Catholics to “turn to Mary in a new way.”“We have to take Mary into our homes. Into our lives. We need to love her and learn from her as our mother. She was a perfect daughter of God, so we can learn from her how to act as God’s sons and daughters,” the archbishop said in his Dec. 7 column for … [Read more...]

New project allows Congress members to adopt conscience prisoners

Washington D.C., Dec 11, 2012 / 02:06 am (CNA).- A new initiative in the nation’s capital invites members of Congress to “adopt” international prisoners of conscience to advocate for their release and to highlight the importance of human rights and religious liberty.“We must shine a light on these prisoners of conscience until they are free,” said Dr. Katrina Lantos Swett, who chairs the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.At a Dec. 6 press … [Read more...]

Papal nuncio to Ivory Coast killed in car accident

Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Dec 11, 2012 / 12:10 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Archbishop Ambrose Madtha, the papal nuncio to the Ivory Coast, died on Saturday evening in a serious car accident on his way to an ordination in the West African country.President Alassane Ouattara read a statement on national television expressing his “deep regret” at the nuncio’s death. He offered his condolences to the Catholic Church and to the archbishop’s family, Agence France Presse reports.The … [Read more...]