1. Persecuted Christians: A #WeAreN2016 congress calling for the end to Christian persecution throughout the world was held in New York this week, where Christians  from Syria, Iraq, Nigeria and elsewhere spoke about their experiences and the need for action. The hosts of the event, CitizenGo and the Spain-based religious liberty advocacy group MasLibres, petitioned the UN at the end of the week to declare Christian persecution in the Middle East a Genocide. Also this week, in a sign of increasing persecution against Christians in China, a pastor’s wife was bulldozed to death in Beijing. On Friday evening, in a sign of prayer and solidarity, the Trevi fountain in Rome was lit in red to honor persecuted Christians throughout the world.

The Trevi fountain in #Rome in red today in honor of persecuted Christians. Please join us in prayer for them. #Catholic #pray Video: Martha Calderon/CNA

A video posted by Catholic News Agency (@catholicnewsagency) on


2. For the cure: A Vatican adult stem cell summit brought U.S. Vice President Joe Biden to Rome this week, where he advocated for a global push to find a cure for cancer. Pope Francis spoke at the conference about the need for a “globalization of empathy” that is required to find the cure for complex and rare diseases throughout the world.

3. Those Target bathrooms:Anyone who’s been following CNA’s Mama Needs Coffee knows that Mama usually has a lot of love for the big red Bullseye. In her latest post, she carefully explains why as a mother she finds the new bathroom policies, and the silencing of the concerns of those like her, troubling. Because there’s more at stake than what may be immediately apparent.

4. Victimhood, microaggressions and trigger warnings, oh my: Have you heard the one about the mini sombreros? Or the unsafe chalk messages? A relatively new culture on college campuses that values hyper-sensitivity and “victimhood” is noticeably absent on many Catholic liberal arts campuses, Catholic educators say. Here’s why.

Briefs: Ever wondered what the life of a medal-winning military chaplain is like? This Philly priest explains life as a military pastor in the desert of Afghanistan. Issues with the SSPX? They may soon be over. A German theologian offers a critique of Amoris Laetitia. Now you can bring the taste of the Vatican to your kitchen. And the sound of a beloved Benedictine abbey to your living room. Or your chapel. Or anywhere that needs unbelievably beautiful adoration music:

Have a blessed (still Easter!) weekend everyone!