Fr. Benedict Groeschel passes away at 81

New York City, N.Y., Oct 4, 2014 / 08:06 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Fr. Benedict J. Groeschel, author, former EWTN host, and one of the founders of the Community of Franciscan Friars of the Renewal, passed away at 11:00 p.m. on Oct. 3. He was 81 years old. “The Catholic Church and the Franciscan family lost a giant today,” the friars said in an Oct. 4 statement, expressing deep sadness at Fr. Groeschel’s loss as well as relief “that God has set him free from the physical and … [Read more...]

Taking Gospel seriously on marriage is not ‘rigid’ – it’s love

Rome, Italy, Oct 4, 2014 / 05:58 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The editor of a high-profile book on marriage said that adhering to Christ’s Gospel teachings on divorce is not harsh and mean-spirited, but rather a form of tough love aimed at the salvation of souls. “Mercy and truth and justice have to accord with one another,” said Fr. Robert Dodaro OSA, president of Rome’s Patristic Institute, the “Augustinianum,” as well as a specialist in patristics and a … [Read more...]

Cardinal Kasper: Adultery language is offensive, insulting

Rome, Italy, Oct 3, 2014 / 08:02 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In recent interviews, German Cardinal Walter Kasper suggested that while Church doctrine cannot change, it can be adapted and interpreted in different ways, and language can be softened when it is deemed offensive. If an individual divorces their spouse and enters a new civil marriage without an annulment, the second union is “not a sacramental one,” Cardinal Kasper acknowledged. “That’s clear. It’s not of … [Read more...]

NYC, DC prayer breakfasts geared at New Evangelization

New York City, N.Y., Oct 3, 2014 / 07:40 pm (CNA).- Upcoming prayer breakfasts in New York City and Washington, D.C., seek to inform and equip attendees to be active participants in the New Evangelization. “REACH is an opportunity for local community members to gather in prayer and fellowship, to encounter Jesus Christ in the Eucharist, to hear the words of inspirational speakers, and to learn more about how they can live out the evangelical mission of the Church in their families, … [Read more...]

Young men at ordination: ‘I can’t imagine a better way to live’

Rome, Italy, Oct 3, 2014 / 05:03 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Transitional deacons ordained this week in St. Peter’s Basilica shared their experience of overwhelming joy in serving God, which stems from a life of sacrifice that’s worth giving everything to live. “I went to George Washington University in D.C. and met great priests, friends and mentors, and they taught me that priesthood is something joyful, and wonderful and worth giving your life for,” Deacon Conrad Murphy of … [Read more...]

Calif. abortion mandate deemed a ‘flagrant violation’ of civil rights

Los Angeles, Calif., Oct 3, 2014 / 04:30 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The California government “directly targeted” two Catholic universities and violated federally guaranteed civil rights by ordering their health insurance plans to cover abortions, the California Catholic Conference has charged. “This is a coercive and discriminatory action by the State of California,” Bishop Robert McElroy, an auxiliary bishop of San Francisco, said Oct. 1. On Aug. 22, Michelle Rouillard, … [Read more...]

Leading US bishop: Synod to help faithful embrace Church teaching

Louisville, Ky., Oct 3, 2014 / 03:49 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The upcoming Synod on the Family is a chance to support and accompany Catholic families as they learn to appreciate the Church’s Scripture-based teachings on marriage and family, said the head of the U.S. bishops’ conference. “This is the week of preparation for the Synod on the Family,” Archbishop Kurtz stated in a blog post on Sept. 30, saying that he has “come to Rome with great support and insights … [Read more...]