Rice bowl app aims to engage Catholics in Lent, fight hunger

Baltimore, Md., Feb 6, 2014 / 04:19 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Catholic Relief Services’ annual Rice Bowl Program has added a new mobile app and a social media-based photo challenge to help Catholics observe Lent and to boost participation in efforts to fight hunger. Eric Clayton, a rice bowl program officer with Catholic Relief Services, told CNA that the app will “give people a new way to experience Lent in a more immediate sense and in a more interactive … [Read more...]

Women’s rights activist among ‘Top 10′ of Vatican magazine

Vatican City, Feb 6, 2014 / 03:59 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Reggie Littlejohn, known for her work opposing forced abortion and gendercide in China, has been named as one of “Inside the Vatican’s” “Top 10 People of 2013” for her heroic efforts in helping women. “This honor came as a complete shock to me.  I did not even know that I was being considered for this,” Littlejohn told CNA in a Feb. 5 interview, adding that “It’s a bit … [Read more...]

Catholic ‘Mass mobs’ boost attendance at Buffalo parishes

Buffalo, N.Y., Feb 6, 2014 / 02:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Buffalo-area Catholics have created a new twist on the “flash mob”: a “Mass mob” inspiring dozens to attend a Mass at older parishes to spread “awareness and appreciation” of the communities. The Buffalo Mass Mob helps participants “support and experience some of Buffalo’s wonderful churches in need of a boost,” the project said on its website. The churches are selected through an … [Read more...]

UN versus Holy See on human sexuality, gender theory

Vatican City, Feb 6, 2014 / 12:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- More than an indictment of the Church’s handling of child sex abuse, the report of the U.N. child rights committee on the Holy See seems meant to pressure the Church to change its teaching on human sexuality. The U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child issues periodic reports on the implementation of the organization's Convention on the Rights of the Child in signatory countries. On Wednesday it made available its Jan. 31 … [Read more...]

Lower abortion rate credited to culture shift, not contraception

Washington D.C., Feb 5, 2014 / 05:37 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Despite claims that contraception is responsible for record-low abortion rates in the U.S., one researcher says pro-life laws and a growing ‘culture of life’ could be playing a significant role. “It is unlikely contraceptive use has anything to do with the decline,” said Michael New, research associate for the Reproductive Research Audit. Attributing the abortion decline to contraception, he argued, fails to … [Read more...]

Four-year-old asks Belgian king to block euthanasia of children

Montreal, Canada, Feb 5, 2014 / 01:59 pm (CNA).- As Belgium legislators move forward with a proposed law to allow euthanasia for children, a 4-year-old girl from Canada is asking the King of Belgium to refuse to sign the legislation. “Please do not sign the Euthanasia Law, for the sake of the children,” Jessica Saba says in a video posted to YouTube Feb. 1. Within four days, the video has received more than 12,000 views. Saba was born in Montreal in May 2009 with a severe heart … [Read more...]

Vatican official slams ‘negative approach’ of UN report

Vatican City, Feb 5, 2014 / 11:14 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In wake of the U.N. Child Protection Committee criticizing Vatican policies and calling for the Church to change its doctrine, a leading archbishop countered that the committee's analysis fails to be objective. “The concluding recommendations…point out a rather negative approach to what the Holy See has been doing and has already achieved in the area of the protection of children,” Archbishop Silvano Tomasi told … [Read more...]