1. If you’re reading this blog, you’ve most likely heard by now that the beloved foundress of EWTN, Mother Mary Angelica of the Annunciation, died on Easter Sunday at the age of 92. Tributes have been pouring in all week for the sassy sister who had humble beginnings in Ohio and then went on to break all kinds of barriers in the world of media. At her funeral on Friday in Hanceville, Alabama, homilist Fr. Joseph Mary Wolfe, MVFA said that Mother Angelica’s life can only be understood by seeing her as a “faithful bride” of Christ.

2. Social media was buzzing during Holy Week and this week that Fr. Tom Uzhannalil, a priest captured in an attack on a Missionaries of Charity house in Yemen, was crucified on Good Friday. We spoke to a local bishop in the area who dismissed the claims as rumor, and said that he has “strong indications” that Fr. Tom is still alive, but could not say more in order to protect the priest’s safety. It has also never been confirmed which group perpetrated the attacks or the kidnapping, so beware the social media rumor mill. Please pray for his safe return!

Fr. Tom Uzhunnalil, who was abducted in Yemen March 4. Credit: ANS Agenzia Info Salesiana.

Fr. Tom Uzhunnalil, who was abducted in Yemen March 4. Credit: ANS Agenzia Info Salesiana.

3. In Pope-y news: The Vatican announced Thursday that Pope Francis’ highly anticipated post-synodal apostolic exhortation on the gifts and challenges of family life will be published April 8, with the title “Amoris Laetitia,” on love in the family. While speculation abounds about the content of the document, the fruit of two years of Synods, the Pope hinted recently in an interview that it will contain nothing earth-shattering in terms of Church teaching or pastoral practice. Pope Francis also announced this week that he’s sending vestments and financial aid to persecuted Christians in Erbil, Iraq.

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4. On Wednesday the FDA announced that it is expanding its recommended use of the abortion drug mifepristone, now permitting women to chemically abort unborn babies up to 10 weeks into pregnancy rather than seven. Among the voices of criticism, Maureen Ferguson, senior policy advisor at The Catholic Association, said: “Anyone who approves of the FDA’s decision to extend at-home medical abortions up to 10 weeks of pregnancy should consult WebMD’s description of the 10 week old baby a woman will encounter as the abortion proceeds.”

5. Some hope for the Little Sisters of the Poor, who have been fighting for their religious freedom in court: The Supreme Court on Tuesday asked for parties in the Little Sisters’ case to submit alternative means, if possible, of ensuring contraceptive coverage while maintaining religious freedom. A decision is expected on the case sometime this summer.

And finally, just for fun: Autotune the Church is back at it again with a great video of Mother Angelica singing her own version of “Hey Ya”:

Happy weekend and Divine Mercy Sunday everybody! St. Faustina and St. John Paul II, pray for us!