Cardinal Dolan severs ties with Fr. Frank Pavone’s Priests for Life

From Religion News Service:   In the latest clash between the Catholic hierarchy and one of the church’s leading anti-abortion crusaders, New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan accused the Rev. Frank Pavone of continuing to stonewall on financial reforms, and Dolan said he is cutting ties with his group, Priests for Life. In a Nov. 20 letter to other U.S. bishops, [Read More…]

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CDC: Abortions decline to historic low

Some heartening news from a report released Friday:  From 2010 to 2011, the total number and rate of reported abortions decreased 5% and the abortion ratio decreased 4%, and from 2002 to 2011, the total number, rate, and ratio of reported abortions decreased 13%, 14%, and 12%, respectively. In 2011, all three measures reached their [Read More…]

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Incredible: Man freed from death row after 39 years for wrongful conviction

This should give all of us pause. Details: Ricky Jackson walked out of jail in Cleveland, Ohio today after spending 39 years on death row, making him the longest-held prisoner to be exonerated in the United States. Ricky Jackson was just 18 years old when he and two others, Wiley and Ronnie Bridgeman, were convicted [Read More…]

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Pope Francis calls for abolition of death penalty, life sentences

From VIS:  Today, the Holy Father received delegates from the International Association of Penal Law (AIDP), addressing them with a speech focusing on the issues in their subject area that have recourse to the Church in her mission of evangelization and the promotion of the human person. The Pope began by recalling the need for [Read More…]

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Seminarian with brain cancer writes to Brittany Maynard: “Our lives are worth living”

Remarkable and moving witness, from the Diocese of Raleigh website: Philip Johnson, a 30-year-old Catholic seminarian from the Diocese of Raleigh who has terminal brain cancer, has written an article responding to Brittany Maynard, the 29-year-old woman who has publicly stated her plan to commit suicide due to the fact that she has a terminal [Read More…]

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Possible treatment for paralysis? “This is more impressive than a man walking on the moon”

A remarkable development that appears to show great promise—and, not insignificantly, involves using adult cells: Darek Fidyka, who was paralyzed from the chest down in a knife attack, can walk again after doctors used a new technique to construct a “nerve bridge” between two stumps of his damaged spinal column. The technique, described in the [Read More…]

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When was the last time you heard a homily that mentioned mental illness?

A new survey looks at how this subject is treated in Protestant churches. But I can’t say it gets much attention in the Catholic Church, either. Details: Protestant clergy rarely preach about mental illness to their congregations and only one-quarter of congregations have a plan in place to assist members who have a mental health crisis, a [Read More…]

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Elderly husband and wife plan first “couple” euthanasia, despite not being terminally ill

Details:  An elderly husband and wife have announced their plans to die in the world’s first ‘couple’ euthanasia – despite neither of them being terminally ill. Instead the pair fear loneliness if the other one dies first from natural causes. Identified only by their first names, Francis, 89, and Anne, 86, they have the support [Read More…]

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There she is: Miss America, bully?

This is what we have come to. Details:  Miss America Kira Kazantsev was reportedly kicked out of her Long Island college sorority for abusive hazing. According to Jezebel.com, the newly crowned pageant queen was kicked out of Hofstra University’s Alpha Phi sorority last year after allegedly hazing pledges. The report maintains that pledges were called names, criticized [Read More…]

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Belgium to execute rapist-murderer—at his request

From the BBC: A Belgian man serving a life sentence for rape and murder will be allowed to have doctors end his life, after a landmark ruling. Unable to control his violent sexual urges, Frank Van Den Bleeken, who is 50, argued he would never be freed. The decision follows a three-year legal battle by [Read More…]

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