Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- In a meeting yesterday with Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Angelo Sodano, Hoshyar Zebari, minister of Foreign Affairs of Iraq, “confirmed his government's commitment to promote religious freedom and, in particular, to defend Christian communities,” stated Joaquin Navarro-Valls, director of the Holy See Press Office.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- Gov. Kathleen Blanco of Louisiana, a Democrat, responded to charges by the American Civil Liberties Union that Louisiana’s abstinence program is promoting religion in violation of a 2002 court settlement, saying that images of a man and woman being married by a priest are simply reflective of the vision of marriage held by the majority of Louisiana’s citizens.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- Oral arguments were presented yesterday in a case over whether the Nativity scene can be displayed in New York City schools. At issue is whether it is legal to display Jewish and Muslim religious symbols, but not Christian ones.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- The cause for sainthood for the most popular TV bishop in the United States – whose program led many to God – got a significant push yesterday. Hundreds gathered for a memorial mass for Archbishop Fulton Sheen at News York’s St. Patrick’s cathedral on the 25th anniversary of his death. According to a report in the New York Times, the people gathered hoping to jump-start the process that will lead to Archbishop Sheen’s canonization.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- Police are investigating a disturbing case of vandalism that struck the Chancery Office of the Diocese of Knoxville.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- Teachers in a rural school in northern France returned 1,300 packages of chocolates intended for their kindergarten students last week because they were shaped like St. Nicholas and his cross, reported The Associated Press.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- While French public schools are battling to implement a new ban on all religious symbols, the former finance minister is lobbying to amend a law and allow state subsidies for religious groups, reported The Associated Press.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- The Bishops Conference of Spain has announced that December 26 it will dedicate the traditional “Family and Life” Day to the defense of marriage between one man and one woman.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- The Bishops Conference of Brazil has published a statement calling on the government not to expand the legal justifications for abortion in the country and to defend human life in all of its stages.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- As the controversy surrounding abortion in Argentina widens, the director of the feminist organization “Women on the Waves,” Rebecca Gomperts of Holland, arrived in Buenos Aires last week to begin a campaign promoting the arrival of the organization’s abortion boat.
Dec 14, 2004 - 12:00 am .- The Archdiocese of Valencia, Spain, said last week more than a million people in the province of Valencia alone have signed a petition to support religion classes in public schools.