Priest formerly of Newark agrees to seek laicization

Newark, N.J., Nov 14, 2013 / 02:05 am (CNA).- A priest formerly of the Newark archdiocese, accused of sexual abuse, will apply to be removed from the priesthood instead of facing criminal prosecution after breaking an agreement to avoid youth ministry. Father Michael Fugee, 52, entered a new agreement with the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office that included laicization, the New Jersey Star-Ledger said. The agreement was announced Nov. 8. Fr. Fugee was accused of sexually abusing a … [Read more...]

Cardinal Bertone: Vatican secretary of state has pastoral task

Vatican City, Nov 14, 2013 / 12:54 am (CNA/EWTN News).- As the Vatican's Secretary of State is also a bishop, his diplomatic action must take into consideration pastoral and missionary concerns, the secretary of state emeritus has said. “During those seven years, I worked as secretary of state with the certain conviction that I needed to imbue my post with pastorality and a missionary spirit,” Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, who was secretary of state from 2006 until Oct. 15 of this … [Read more...]

US bishops’ new leaders commit to protecting human dignity

Baltimore, Md., Nov 13, 2013 / 05:43 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The incoming leaders of the U.S. bishops’ conference voiced a commitment to reaching out in love to defend human life and dignity wherever it is threatened in the modern culture. “We’re responding to where the need is,” said Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., the president-elect of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. At a Nov. 12 press conference during the U.S. bishops’ annual fall … [Read more...]

Church’s poverty work merits recognition, cardinal says

Baltimore, Md., Nov 13, 2013 / 04:56 pm (CNA).- Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston has said that the Catholic Church’s work in addressing poverty in the United States needs to be made “front and center” in people’s minds. “The U.S. bishops’ conference is very engaged in all of these issues, in Catholic Relief Services, immigration, Catholic Charities, but unfortunately those kinds of things fade into the background,” the cardinal told the Boston … [Read more...]

Pope thanks boy for entrusting him to guardian angel

Buenos Aires, Argentina, Nov 13, 2013 / 02:43 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A 16 year-old Argentine boy who suffers from chronic encephalopathy – a brain disorder – was moved by a letter from Pope Francis responding to a note that he had sent the pontiff a few days earlier. The boy, Nicolas Marasco, is unable to speak, but was able to send a letter to Pope Francis, with the help of his parents, saying that he asks his guardian angel every night to watch over the Holy Father and assist him … [Read more...]

Pope Francis most popular name online, survey says

Rome, Italy, Nov 13, 2013 / 11:42 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A new global survey has revealed that Pope Francis has topped the list of names most mentioned on the internet so far this year, with his twitter account also receiving a high ranking on a list of most mentioned words. “It’s official: Pope Francis is the most talked about person on the planet,” CNN’s “Belief Blog” co-editor Daniel Burke wrote in a Nov. 12 post. “More folks have been chatting … [Read more...]

Baptism is a ‘bath of regeneration,’ says Pope

Vatican City, Nov 13, 2013 / 07:09 am (CNA/EWTN News).- During his general audience, Pope Francis devoted his reflections to the sacrament of Baptism, stating that it opens the door to a journey of faith, and helps to sustain us along the way. “This sacrament constitutes a true immersion in the death of Christ to rise with him in a new life. It is a bath of regeneration by water and the Spirit and that illuminates us with the grace of Christ,” the Pope expressed in his Nov. 13 … [Read more...]