Critic says UN risks credibility with Catholic torture charges

Geneva, Switzerland, May 7, 2014 / 04:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Insinuations at a U.N. committee hearing that Catholic teaching against abortion may violate an international anti-torture convention has raised questions about the partiality of the body. “It is outrageous that the U.N. Committee against Torture would challenge the Catholic Church's religious commitment to the sanctity of life at every stage,” Ashley McGuire, an advisory board member for Catholic Voices USA, said … [Read more...]

Ireland’s invite to Pope could signal defrosting relations

Vatican City, May 7, 2014 / 02:02 am (CNA/EWTN News).- After years of tension, news that Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny has invited Pope Francis to visit the country may be a sign that relations between the Holy See and Ireland are returning to normal. Within just months of the re-opening of Ireland's Vatican embassy, Prime Minister Kenny announced the invitation to the Pope at a press conference held at the Irish College in Rome April 27.   According to the Irish times, the Prime … [Read more...]

Pope’s upcoming meeting with UN officials presents opportunity

Vatican City, May 7, 2014 / 12:04 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis will meet with United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon May 9, as well as with the Chief Executives Board for Coordination, marking an opportunity for the Pope to encourage reform of the organization. The board coordinates and directs the U.N., and is comprised of 29 heads of U.N. bodies. The meeting comes against the backdrop of a tense hearing of a Holy See delegation before the U.N.’s Committee on the … [Read more...]

Report shows ‘egregious’ religious freedom violations in Syria

Washington D.C., May 6, 2014 / 04:05 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The U.S. government should designate Syria as a “country of particular concern” due to “particularly severe violations of religious freedom” in its ongoing conflict, a global religious liberty group said. “The existing humanitarian disaster and egregious human rights and religious freedom violations pose a serious danger to Syria’s religious diversity post-conflict,” the U.S. Commission on … [Read more...]

Church bulldozing in China prompts religious freedom worries

Washington D.C., May 6, 2014 / 01:57 pm (CNA).- Chinese authorities’ bulldozing of a large Protestant church shows the need for greater respect for religious freedom in the country, a U.S. congressman has said. “The destruction of church buildings and the detention of religious leaders in Zhejiang Province is a stunning and somber reminder that many hardliners in the Chinese government still want to eradicate the religious freedom of the Chinese people and control all practice of … [Read more...]

New Swiss Guards swear oath to protect Pope Francis

Vatican City, May 6, 2014 / 11:21 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Thirty young men joined the ranks of the Swiss Guards today, taking an oath of allegiance to Pope Francis and promising to serve the Church by protecting him and all of his successors. Addressing the new guards the day before their traditional swearing-in on May 6, the Pope explained that the event commemorates their predecessors, who “offered their lives to defend the Church.” “Your dedication,” he noted, … [Read more...]

Vatican doctrine head: LCWR has moved beyond Church, faith

Rome, Italy, May 6, 2014 / 10:54 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In an address to the presidency of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, Cardinal Gerhard Müller reaffirmed the necessity of reform of the conference, saying it has effectively moved beyond the Christian faith. “We believe the conclusions of the Doctrinal Assessment are accurate and the path of reform it lays before the LCWR remains necessary so that religious life might continue to flourish in the United States,” … [Read more...]