From bad to worse – religious persecution growing in China

Washington D.C., Oct 17, 2014 / 02:09 am (CNA/EWTN News).- The state of religious freedom in China is moving from bad to worse, said U.S. Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), responding to a new report by the Congressional-Executive Commission on China. “There’s a huge gulf now” between China and the Catholic Church, Smith stated during an Oct. 9 conference call with reporters. He acknowledged that “the underground church has been brutally persecuted in China, both Protestant … [Read more...]

Latvia turns heads in synod with strong witness of marriage

Vatican City, Oct 17, 2014 / 12:03 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In synod discussions last week, the Baltic nation of Latvia caught the attention many synod fathers, who were keen to hear why the number of divorces among their Catholic population is so low. “In Latvia, it is a pity, but we have the highest number of divorces: 86 percent of marriages are divorced civil marriages. But when our civil mass media started to check how it is in the Church, they discovered that we just have 16 percent, … [Read more...]

Asia Bibi’s death sentence sparks outrage from Pakistan’s Christians

Rawalpindi, Pakistan, Oct 16, 2014 / 05:29 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The Lahore High Court's rejection on Thursday of Asia Bibi's appeal against her death sentence, passed by a lower court, has dismayed Christians and others in Pakistan.Bishop Rufin Anthony of Islamabad-Rawalpindi said Oct. 16 that the decision was “heartbreaking.” Bibi, a Christian, was convicted under Pakistan's strict blasphemy laws in 2010. She allegedly made derogatory comments against Muhammad … [Read more...]

Priest returning to Iraq: ISIS threatens the whole world

Rome, Italy, Oct 16, 2014 / 04:59 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- An Iraqi priest who has chosen to return to his city, which lies just six miles from ISIS-controlled territory, said that in the midst of an increasingly desperate situation, the help of world powers is greatly needed.“The only solution is to return the people to their homes. This is the only solution. How to do it, this depends on the great international powers, because the world needs to intervene,” Fr. Ghazwan Yousif Baho … [Read more...]

African cardinal: Pressure groups behind push to change Church teaching

Vatican City, Oct 16, 2014 / 04:21 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Innacurate media reports about Church teaching on homosexuality published after the synod's midterm relatio are an attempt to pressure the Church to change its perennial teaching, a cardinal who is also a synod father has affirmed. Cardinal Robert Sarah, president of the Pontifical Council Cor Unum, emphasized to CNA Oct. 16 that “what has been published by the media about homosexual unions is an attempt to push the Church (to … [Read more...]

Cardinal Kasper denies statement against African bishops, journalist insists

Vatican City, Oct 16, 2014 / 03:34 pm (CNA).- The president emeritus of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, Cardinal Walter Kasper, denied on Thursday afternoon that he made any statements against African bishops, but audio to that effect was soon produced. On Wednesday, Zenit had run an article by Edward Pentin which included an interview with the cardinal in which he had said that Catholics in Africa “should not tell us too much what we have to … [Read more...]

Synod’s small group reports released by Vatican

Vatican City, Oct 16, 2014 / 02:28 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- After the synod’s small groups released their reports Thursday asking for a substantial rewriting of the meeting's mid-term report, the Vatican has said the synod's final report will be prepared, and voted upon on Saturday morning. Fr. Federico Lombardi, director of the Holy See press office, added that it is unlikely the synod's final relatio will be released Saturday evening. “We are in a work in progress, … [Read more...]


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