Hot cross bums: cold church tries pew warmers

As one reader noted, on sending this to me, “Leave it to the Anglicans.” Check it out: The prayers of parishioners at two cold and damp churches have been answered after the Diocese of Exeter agreed to trial re-heatable cushions on the pews. One hundred cushions are being trialled in Broadclyst and South Tawton’s Anglican [Read More...]

Catholic ministry reaches out to porn addicts

From the Columbus Dispatch: Responding to concerns arising in prayer groups and confessionals, some central Ohio Catholics have started a ministry aimed at helping prevent and treat pornography addiction. The My House Initiative offers a confidential help line, support groups and referrals to counseling. It’s a collaboration of the Columbus Catholic Men’s Ministry, the Columbus [Read More...]

The Francis Effect in Nebraska

From the World-Herald in Omaha: At his sister’s wedding reception, Taylor Leffler sat down for a friendly chat with friends of hers who are gay. For Leffler, a 22-year-old Nebraska native studying for the priesthood, the conversation was spurred by a powerful reason: Pope Francis’ call for Catholics to reach out to others, rather than [Read More...]

Church confronts the “silent schism” of divorced and remarried Catholics

From Vatican Insider:  Shock declarations, such as the ones contained in the document issued by the Diocese of Freiburg which offers recommendations on communion for remarried divorcees end up complicating rather than facilitating reflection on the issue. Pope Francis’ intention is for this issue to be discussed at an Extraordinary Synod in October 2014. The Synod [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...]

Poll: most Catholics who attend Mass weekly support gay marriage, women priests

Details: American Catholics agree 68 – 23 percent, with little difference between more observant and less observant Catholics, with Pope Francis’ recent observation that the Church has become too focused on issues such as homosexuality, abortion and contraceptives, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released today (October 4). Support for the Pope’s observation is [Read More...]

“You can make a difference”: a terrific stewardship video

We’re just launched a new stewardship drive at my parish. The video below, produced and edited by one of our parishioners, Roger Aguinaldo, was shown at all the Masses this morning. It gives a great glimpse at life in my corner of the world—and features a poignant cameo appearance by my late former pastor.  Take a [Read More...]

Move over “nones” and make room for “nominals”

A trend worth noting, from Religion News Service:  They’re rarely at worship services and indifferent to doctrine. And they’re surprisingly fuzzy on Jesus. These are the Jewish Americans sketched in a new Pew Research Center survey, 62 percent of whom said Jewishness is largely about culture or ancestry and just 15 percent who said it’s [Read More...]

Hispanics becoming less Catholic

From the Washington Post:  A new poll finds that major changes in religious affiliation are underway among Hispanic Americans, who are becoming less Catholic and more evangelical and unaffiliated. The poll released Friday by the Public Religion Research Institute shows 53 percent of Hispanics identify as Catholic, compared with 69 percent who say they were raised [Read More...]

New Orleans archbishop orders school calendars changed to keep Sundays free

Details:  After months of nudging Catholics to reclaim Sunday as a day to attend Mass and spend time with family, New Orleans Archbishop Gregory Aymond is mandating that Catholic schools clear their calendars that day each week. Aymond began asking schools last year to tweak practice schedules and reschedule social events so harried families could [Read More...]


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