Holy Spirit’s gift of understanding enlightens minds, Pope says

Vatican City, Apr 30, 2014 / 11:49 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis explained that the Holy Spirit’s gift of understanding allows Christians to obtain “intimacy with God” and helps them understand things “as God understands them.” “When the Holy Spirit dwells in our hearts and enlightens our minds, he makes us grow day by day in the understanding of what the Lord has said and accomplished,” the Pope said at the Wednesday General Audience April … [Read more...]

Argentine nun heads to Syria after Pope’s call to peripheries

Gaza City, Apr 30, 2014 / 04:19 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A religious sister from Argentina, who has been serving for four years in the Gaza Strip, is preparing to go to the Syrian city of Aleppo, in response to Pope Francis’ call to aid those who are “forgotten.” At his first General Audience after being elected, Pope Francis on March 27, 2013, called on Catholics to learn “to come out of ourselves … in order to go to meet others, to go toward the outskirts of … [Read more...]

Google called on to be neutral in pregnancy center ad policy

Mountain View, Calif., Apr 30, 2014 / 02:18 am (CNA).- Google is being asked to maintain neutrality and fairness in implementing its advertising policy after an abortion advocacy group convinced it to remove a number of ads from pro-life pregnancy centers. “This represents the next round of NARAL’s attacks on the work of grassroots organizations offering life-affirming alternatives to abortion,” said Joe Young, vice president of operations and strategic initiatives for … [Read more...]

Interreligious Thai leaders pray for peace during crisis

Bangkok, Thailand, Apr 30, 2014 / 12:03 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Catholics and representatives of four other religious traditions in Thailand have prayed in union with another for peace, in light of tensions and political unrest that have threatened the nation's progress. “Prayer has power and plays an important role in the life of the person; every religion acknowledges this fact and believes it with deep conviction in their hearts,” Archbishop Francis Xavier Kriengsak … [Read more...]

Catholic Charities aids victims of powerful Ark. storm

Little Rock, Ark., Apr 29, 2014 / 05:35 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- At least 35 people have been killed in deadly storms and tornadoes in the South, and Catholic agencies are preparing long-term support for the storm’s victims. “The storm was really powerful,” Patrick Gallaher, executive director of Catholic Charities of Arkansas, told CNA April 28. “They’re not finding many damaged homes. They’re either untouched or they’re completely blown away, just … [Read more...]

Service to poor will be focus of 2014 Fortnight for Freedom

Washington D.C., Apr 29, 2014 / 04:01 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The U.S. bishops have announced a third Fortnight for Freedom to encourage prayer and awareness of religious liberty, with a particular focus on how it enables service to the poor and vulnerable. “This is a time when Catholics can unite themselves in prayer to the men and women throughout history who spread the Gospel and lived out Jesus’ call to serve the ‘least of these’ in even the direst of … [Read more...]

JPII statue finds home in largest poor neighborhood in Chile

Santiago, Chile, Apr 29, 2014 / 12:10 pm (CNA).- A statue of St. John Paul II donated by the University of San Sebastian in Chile has been moved to the Puente Alto neighborhood, five years after authorities refused to install it in a prominent area in the Chilean capital. Cardinal Ricardo Ezzati of Santiago blessed the statue during a Mass at the St. John Paul II Park to celebrate the canonization of the late pontiff. “It was suggested to me that I go to Rome that day, but I wanted … [Read more...]