Youngest bishop to attend Vatican II dies at 84

Lima, Peru, Jun 22, 2012 / 12:03 pm (CNA).- Archbishop Emeritus Alcides Mendoza Castro of Cusco, Peru, who at 34 was the youngest bishop to attend the Second Vatican Council, has died at the age of 84. According to the Archdiocese of Lima, he passed away on June 20 after suffering “a painful bout with cancer with heroic strength.” The wake and funeral Mass for Archbishop Mendoza were held at Sacred Heart Parish in Lima and his remains will be transported to the city of Cusco, … [Read more...]

Catholic group launches ‘virtual vigil’ for religious freedom

Washington D.C., Jun 22, 2012 / 04:05 am (CNA).- A Catholic grassroots organization in the nation’s capital is organizing a virtual march for religious freedom to accompany the Fortnight for Freedom that is currently underway throughout the country. “Our goal is to unite those standing for our liberties in a national way by their attendance at the virtual vigil in Washington, D.C.,” said Matt Smith, president of Catholic Advocate.   He explained on June 20 that the … [Read more...]

Scholars defend findings of difficulties among same-sex parented children

Waco, Texas, Jun 22, 2012 / 02:21 am (CNA).- A group of social scientists has lamented the “sustained and sensational criticism” from news media about a study that showed  increased difficulties and negative outcomes among young adult children of parents who have had same-sex relationships.The 18 social scientists said that the research of University of Texas sociology professor Mark Regnerus is “not without limitations” but much of the criticism he has received … [Read more...]

Legal experts say HHS dispute pits government against God

Indianapolis, Ind., Jun 22, 2012 / 12:05 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The HHS contraception mandate shows the federal government asserting its own authority as a “rival” to God, legal scholars warned, as the U.S. Church began two weeks of action for religious freedom. “Power hates a rival, and allegiance to an all-embracing, monotheistic God poses a significant threat to power,” University of Oklahoma law professor Michael Scaperlanda said during a June 21 panel discussion on … [Read more...]

Pope prays for Syria as worries of larger conflict loom

Vatican City, Jun 21, 2012 / 04:18 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Benedict XVI is praying that Syria ends its internal conflict, which he believes could have very serious consequences for the entire Middle East.“May God give wisdom of heart to those in positions of responsibility, that all violence and bloodshed may cease,” he said at the Vatican on June 21.He also called on the international community to “spare no effort to help Syria emerge from its current situation of … [Read more...]

Emotional goodbye for young Italian mother who died for unborn child

Rome, Italy, Jun 21, 2012 / 04:01 pm (CNA).- Hundreds of Italians gathered at the Church of St. Francisca Romana in Rome on June 16 for the funeral Mass of Chiara Corbella, a young Catholic woman who died after postponing her cancer treatments in order to protect her unborn child. At 28 years of age, Chiara was happily married to Enrico Petrillo. They had already suffered the loss of two children in recent years who died from birth defects. The couple became popular speakers at pro-life … [Read more...]

Archbishop Gomez rejects ‘capitulation’ to HHS mandate

Los Angeles, Calif., Jun 21, 2012 / 03:26 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- With the nationwide Fortnight for Freedom event beginning today, Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles said that any compromise that means Catholic institutions provide birth control insurance to employees is “capitulation” and “the temptation to serve the government instead of God.”The Catholic Church “doesn’t serve the poor to please the government,” he said.Rather, Catholics … [Read more...]