Back-Alley Abortions and the Russian Abortion Poster

Russian abortion poster

Just a little history lesson for the day:  In 1920, Russia became the first nation in the world to allow abortion in all circumstances.From 1936 through 1955, responding to Joseph Stalin's fear of population decline, abortion was made illegal in that country; but the prohibitive legislation was revoked at the end of the Stalin era and by 1965, with 5.5 legal abortions recorded, the abortion rate in the U.S.S.R. was the highest in the world. The nations which were once a part of the Soviet … [Read more...]

Monday, June 29: Opening Day for Vatican’s New Secretariat for Communications


We knew that Pope Francis was planning a reorganization of the Vatican's wide-reaching communications offices. The nine-member Council of Cardinals, which includes Boston's Cardinal Sean O'Malley, had recommended an overhaul. I expressed puzzlement about it here, and I questioned how the reorganization would affect bloggers here; but I have to admit:  the sprawl caused by new media, from television to radio to print media to the new media giants Facebook and Twitter (including the Pope's Twitter … [Read more...]

Pope Francis’ Energetic Schedule for His First U.S. Trip – UPDATED

Pope Francis smiling

Wow, there's a lot happening on September 22-27, when Pope Francis makes his first visit to the United States! The Washington Post offered an exclusive look at the preliminary schedule--with the disclaimer that things could change, this is not the "official" schedule. In fact, even after the Vatican releases the itinerary later this week, there could be last-minute changes. Here it is, though--the itinerary, as of this writing:Wednesday, September 23Breakfast at the White H … [Read more...]