Vatican office to launch Pope smartphone app

Vatican City, Dec 5, 2012 / 12:03 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The president of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications, Archbishop Claudio Maria Celli, announced that his office is designing a new app on Pope Benedict for smartphones. Called “The Pope,” the new app for iPhones and iPads will be sent to Apple for approval next week, said Gustavo Entrala of the Spanish communications firm 101.   The app will allow users to follow the Pope's speeches and homilies live … [Read more...]

Pope: Advent is time to focus on God’s loving plan

Vatican City, Dec 5, 2012 / 10:31 am (CNA/EWTN News).- As the Church celebrates the season of Advent, Pope Benedict said that Catholics should remember “God is present” and recall his “plan of loving goodness.”"Advent invites us, in the midst of many difficulties, to renew the assurance that God is present," he told thousands in his general audience at the Vatican on Dec. 5.Pope Benedict XVI called Advent the time which prepares us for the coming of … [Read more...]

Judge blocks Calif. ‘gay therapy’ law over free speech concerns

Sacramento, Calif., Dec 5, 2012 / 04:02 am (CNA).- A federal judge has temporarily blocked a California law that bars therapy to change the behaviors or orientations of those with same-sex attractions under 18, ruling that a lawsuit against it will likely succeed on free speech grounds.Opponents of the law praised Monday’s ruling.Brad Dacus, President of the Sacramento-based Pacific Justice Institute, said Dec. 3 that the decision “sends a clear signal to all those who feel … [Read more...]

Duchess of Cambridge’s illness could save lives, author says

Denver, Colo., Dec 5, 2012 / 02:19 am (CNA).- The Duchess of Cambridge’s stay in the hospital for severe morning sickness could help other women avoid aborting their children, according to author Ashli McCall, who has experience with the condition.In a Dec. 3 announcement, a representative for the Royal Family confirmed the pregnancy of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, but also said that Kate Middleton has been hospitalized with Hyperemesis Gravidarum.The illness, which is a severe … [Read more...]

Archbishop Flynn says retired religious ‘need our help’

Washington D.C., Dec 5, 2012 / 12:30 am (CNA).- Archbishop Harry J. Flynn has called on U.S. Catholics to help support retired religious brothers and sisters, voicing his deep appreciation for “the sacrifices that they have made in order to serve God’s people in our country.”“I have thought, and thought often, as to where the Church would be if it were not for the women religious and the men religious,” said Archbishop Flynn, the archbishop emeritus of St. … [Read more...]

Lila Rose spreading her US pro-life work to Europe

Rome, Italy, Dec 4, 2012 / 06:08 pm (CNA).- A young pro-life American activist is expanding her work overseas after speaking at her first international conference in France.Lila Rose, who spoke at the International Symposium for Life, held in the southwestern town of Biarritz from Nov. 30 to Dec. 1, is planning on more work abroad.The conference, drew doctors, pro-life advocates and bishops from the United States, Russia, Spain, France, Canada and the Holy See, and was aimed at raising … [Read more...]

CNA journalist in Peru loses battle with illness

Lima, Peru, Dec 4, 2012 / 04:04 pm (CNA).- Catholic journalist Maria del Rosario Loyola Hilario, one of the most beloved members of CNA's sister news agency ACI-Prensa in Lima, died on Dec. 1 from complications after surgery. “Charito” was born on Oct. 7, 1978, the feast of Our Lady of the Rosary, to whom her mother dedicated her with great devotion. The 34-year-old began her work as a journalist with ACI-Prensa last year. She passed away Saturday after contracting … [Read more...]