Archive of November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving: acknowledging our dependence on God

Nov 21, 2007 - 07:30 pm .- The Roman statesman Cicero once said that, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.”  Gratitude expresses our dependence on others.  By its nature, it leads to humility and wisdom, because a grateful heart understands than none of us is really independent.  We have obligations to each other.  We also have needs from each other.  We’re designed to depend on each other as a family; and to depend as a family on God.   Probably no other holiday speaks to the soul of the American experience like Thanksgiving.  The origin of Thanksgiving is thoroughly religious.  It’s also very specifically Christian.  The Protestant Christians who began this tradition nearly 400 years ago practiced their gratitude in the midst of scarcity, disease, high mortality and a harsh new land.  Precisely because of their suffering, they understood their own limitations...

Controversy over sale of Catholic high school in California

Nov 21, 2007 - 06:02 pm .- The pending closure of a Catholic high school in Los Angeles has driven parents to fundraising activity and has raised allegations that the school is only being sold to cover lawsuit settlements in child abuse cases, the California Catholic reports.

Provincial representatives in Granada organize film festival offensive to Catholics

Nov 21, 2007 - 04:25 pm .- The NOS association and local officials in Granada, Spain, have organized a film festival featuring movies that are openly offensive to Catholics.The fourth edition of the festival “Understanding Each Other,” has as its theme this year “Homosexuality and Christianity.”  The festival begins this week and will continue through December 12. It includes full-length features as well as short films.  

Morning-after pill is not medicine and does not cure illness, says Chilean cardinal

Nov 21, 2007 - 01:32 pm .- The former prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Cardinal Jorge Medina Estevez, said this week the morning-after pill “is not medicine because it does not cure any illness,” since “pregnancy is not a disease.”In a recent seminar on public policy and the defense of life in Chile, the cardinal criticized the decision of that government to punish pharmacies that refuse to sell the pill.  “To force a company to sell a product is a highly undemocratic act, especially when we are not talking about medicine,” as “the pill is not medicine, because it does not cure any illness,” he said.  

African and European bishops denounce “new slaveries” that plague Africa

Nov 21, 2007 - 12:41 pm .- In a press release issued Tuesday, the bishops of Africa and Europe have called for more attention to be paid “to the new forms of slavery that are sometimes worse than the old treatment of slaves.”

Nuncio joins in condemnation of attacks on Cathedral in Mexico City

Nov 21, 2007 - 12:39 pm .- The Apostolic Nuncio in Mexico, Archbishop Christophe Pierre, has joined in condemning the attack on the Cathedral of Mexico City led by sympathizers of the Democratic Revolution Party (PRD), saying that all churches and people should be respected.

Filipino bishop resigns before retirement age

Nov 21, 2007 - 12:35 pm .-  A second bishop in the Philippines has resigned this year before the retirement age of 75. Pope Benedict XVI accepted the resignation of Bishop Nestor Carino of Legazpi on November 7.

Indian adoption rights expanded to non-Hindu parents

Nov 21, 2007 - 12:26 pm .- Indian law has now been changed to allow non-Hindus to adopt children, the Times of India reports.

India: 190 attacks on Christians so far in 2007

Nov 21, 2007 - 12:22 pm .- The All India Catholic Union published a report recently denouncing the 190 attacks that have taken place against Christians in India during 2007. 

Stem cell breakthrough praised by bishops

Nov 21, 2007 - 12:08 pm .- Prelates across the United States are lauding the Japanese research team of Dr. Shinya Yamanaka and the University of Wisconsin-Madison team of Dr. James Thomson for their efforts in advancing stem-cell research.

Three new Chinese bishops to be ordained with papal approval

Nov 21, 2007 - 11:57 am .- China is preparing to ordain three priests for the state-recognized church but with the approval of Pope Benedict XVI. The new bishops are for the dioceses of Guangzhou, Ningxia and Yichang.

Archbishop at UN calls for "steady commitment" to disaster relief

Nov 21, 2007 - 11:57 am .- In a Monday speech to the United Nations, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, the head of the Holy See's mission to the United Nations, addressed the General Assembly on the topic of responding to disasters. Notable among his proposals were enrolling the help of faith-based organizations and his mention of the need for long-term aid.

Pope appeals for peaceful solution to crisis in Somalia

Nov 21, 2007 - 11:20 am .- "Distressing news is reaching us, concerning the precarious humanitarian situation in Somalia,” Pope Benedict said today following his general audience in St. Peter’s Square.The Holy Father expressed his concern that “especially in Mogadishu, ever more profoundly afflicted by social insecurity and poverty,” the situation is continuing to worsen.   

Following Christ requires humility first, teaches Pope Benedict

Nov 21, 2007 - 11:17 am .- Imitate Aphraates “the Sage”, who believed that “Christian life is focused on the imitation of Christ" and grounded in humility, Pope Benedict XVI told the crowd of pilgrims gathered in St. Peter’s Square for his general audience. Aphraates, known as "the Sage," an important Christian figure from 4th century Syria came from a Christian community that was “essentially part of the Semitic world from which the Bible itself emerged," the Pope explained.

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