Despite decline in Catholicism, millions turn out for Brazilian celebration of Mary

RNS reports:  More than 2 million worshippers, pilgrims and onlookers poured around an 11-inch wooden figure of the Virgin Mary as it made its way through the streets. A crush of the faithful heaved and hauled away at a rope that stretched over a thousand feet from the cart that bore the beloved statue, dragging [Read More...]

Charlotte ordains its largest group of Hispanic deacons

Colombian-born Guillermo Anzola responds when his name is called during the election of candidates portion of the diaconate ordination Mass at St. Mark Church on May 31. (Rico De Silva | Catholic News Herald) I’ve just arrived in sunny (and very warm) Charlotte, North Carolina for the 2014 Catholic Media Conference and Catholic Press Association [Read More...]

Romero beatification announcement?

Maybe: The Salvadoran Church says that it will have a major announcement about the canonization process of slain Salvadoran Archbishop Óscar A. Romero next Sunday, May 18.  In describing the upcoming announcement, Auxiliary Bishop of San Salvador Msgr. Gregorio Rosa Chávez would only say that it will be  “very good news” and that “all indications are that we are on the [Read More...]

Why Latinos are leaving the Catholic Church

From First Things, here’s an essay that looks at the recent Pew Study about Hispanic Catholics, and comes to some notable conclusions: Perhaps given Catholicism’s relatively deep roots in Spanish-speaking countries and its close links to many cultural practices, some Hispanic Americans experience the faith less as a relationship with God and more as an [Read More...]

Shift: nearly one-in-four Latinos in U.S. are former Catholics

From the Pew Research Center:  Most Hispanics in the United States continue to belong to the Roman Catholic Church. But the Catholic share of the Hispanic population is declining, while rising numbers of Hispanics are Protestant or unaffiliated with any religion. Indeed, nearly one-in-four Hispanic adults (24%) are now former Catholics, according to a major, nationwide survey [Read More...]

Boom: young Texas diocese has grown nearly 70% in a decade

Details:  Whether it’s the charitable acts of Pope Francis, the church’s emphasis on family or the promotion of worldwide unity, Bishop Plácido Rodriguez of the Lubbock Diocese believes there’s a lot to love about the Roman Catholic faith. A recent study released by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University revealed [Read More...]

The Church faces a worrisome trend among Hispanic Catholics

Details, from The Arlington Catholic Herald:  Even though data show that 38 percent of U.S. Catholics are Hispanic, ministers face a worrying trend: The vast majority of Hispanics are married by a justice of the peace or not married at all. The reasons range from fear of compromising their legal status, to notions of “machismo” [Read More...]

Study: multicultural parishes growing in U.S.; Hispanic membership booming

Details: The percentage of multicultural Catholic parishes in the U.S. is on the increase, according to research by the Georgetown University-based Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate (CARA). The report also indicates that some 29.7 million U.S. residents who self-identify as Hispanic or Latino are estimated to be Catholic, representing about 59 percent of [Read More...]

Quote of the day

“In Catholic belief, all human life, no matter how wounded, flawed, young or old, is sacred because it comes from God.  And we have an obligation to defend it.  The dignity of a human life and its right to exist are guaranteed by God.  Catholic teaching on abortion and sexuality is part of the same integral vision [Read More...]

In Texas, Baptists seek to “address the spiritual questions of current and former Catholics”

From the Baptist Press via the Biblical Recorder:  As Hispanic populations across the United States, many of which are traditionally Catholic, continue to increase, so do opportunities for Southern Baptist churches to address the spiritual questions of current and former Catholics. Hispanics made up 38.1 percent of the population of Texas in 2011, the U.S. [Read More...]