Catholic News Agency: US News

Supreme Court ruling blasted for pro-abortion bias in Texas ruling

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 27, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 27, 2016 / 04:35 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In striking down Texas’ regulations of abortion clinics, the Supreme Court showed favoritism toward the supposed “right to abortion” over states’ interests in the health of women and normal court proceedings, critics said Monday. “The Court has rejected a common-sense law protecting women from abortion facilities that put profits above patient safety,” said Deirdre McQuade, assistant director for pro-life communications at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities. In a 5-3 vote, the Supreme Court struck down a Texas law that included two key regulations of abortion clinics – abortionists had to have admitting privileges at a local hospital, and clinics had to meet the standards of ambulatory surgical centers. The court ruled that the law put an “undue burden” on a women’s right to an abortion, saying that it posed a “subs

Supreme Court strikes down Texas abortion clinic regulations

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 27, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 27, 2016 / 08:06 am (CNA/EWTN News).- This story is developing. Check back soon for updates. On Monday, the Supreme Court struck down a 2013 Texas law regulating the safety of abortion clinics, saying in a 5-3 decision that it put an undue burden on a women’s right to an abortion. The case had challenged two Texas regulations of abortion clinics: abortionists must have admitting privileges at a local hospital in case of a medical emergency at their clinic, and clinic buildings must meet the standards of ambulatory surgery centers. They must have proper sanitation, staffing, and medical experts on hand to deal with medical emergencies. The law was passed in the wake of the Kermit Gosnell scandal. Gosnell, a Philadelphia abortionist, was convicted in May 2013 on three counts of first-degree murder for babies born alive who were killed at his clinic, and he was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter after a woman died from an anesthesia overdose at his clin

How to not be a 'beige Catholic,' according to Bishop Barron

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 26, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 26, 2016 / 05:19 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Catholics in America today need to find ways to engage the culture with truth, and avoid “beige Catholicism” that seeks to be dominated by the culture, Bishop Robert Barron said Thursday. “Beige Catholicism,” the bishop said, is the “dominance of the prevailing culture over Catholicism,” where Catholics are “too culturally accommodating” and “excessively apologetic.” Bishop Barron is an auxiliary bishop of Los Angeles and the founder of Word on Fire Catholic Ministries. He delivered the keynote address at a conference on “Catholic Thought and Human Flourishing,” hosted by the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C. on June 23. The conference was part of a series of events studying the influences of religion on the “roots of human flourishing.” The purpose of his address, Bishop Barron said, was to propose a “new model for Chu

Jesuit appointed head of US religious freedom commission

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 23, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 23, 2016 / 05:00 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom has a new chairman, and for the first time, the position will be held by a Catholic priest. Jesuit priest Fr. Thomas Reese was first appointed to a two-year term as a member of the commission by President Barack Obama in 2014, and re-appointed in 2016. Now he will take over as the chair of the organization, an independent, bipartisan commission that monitors and reviews religious freedom violations around the world, and makes policy recommendations to the Secretary of State, Congress and the president. “I am honored to serve as USCIRF's Chair and work with my fellow Commissioners in support of freedom of religion or belief,” said Fr. Reese in a statement. “World events underscore the importance of this fundamental right:  A key factor in many of the United States' foreign policy challenges, religious freedom is under serious and sustained

Divided Supreme Court deals a setback to immigration advocates

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 23, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 23, 2016 / 12:58 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A divided Supreme Court allowed a hold on the Obama administration’s immigration policy to continue, disappointing Catholic advocates of immigration reform. The Court’s decision “shatters the hopes of millions of immigrants who might otherwise have obtained temporary relief from immigration enforcement under two Obama administration programs,” the Catholic Legal Immigration Network stated on Thursday. With a 4-4 tie vote, the Supreme Court let stand the lower courts’ decisions in United States v. Texas. In 2015 the district court, had allowed a temporary block on the Obama administration’s executive actions on immigration. This was upheld by the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court. The executive actions initially came in the form of a 2012 program entitled Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). The program would allow children of undocumented immigrants – children who were born in the U

Trump met with Christians – so how did it go?

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 23, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 23, 2016 / 10:07 am (CNA).- A meeting with Donald Trump in New York City on Tuesday was intended to answer the questions that some Christian leaders have about the presumptive Republican nominee. But after the event, those in attendance had mixed reactions, with some saying it only raised further concerns. “Donald Trump definitely won over the room, but the bigger story to me was why weren’t the big leaders there?” asked Christopher Hale, senior fellow at Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, who attended the meeting. “I think it’s important that a lot of the leaders within the Christian community are refusing to support [Trump],” he told CNA, noting the absence of Christian leaders like Dr. Russell Moore, and adding that “I think they have the same concerns I do.” The billionaire-turned-politician has run a presidential campaign brimming with controversy. He has drawn criticism for what many consider inflamm

In 'shocking' move, California churches forced to cover abortions

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 22, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 22, 2016 / 04:54 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The Obama administration has rejected a challenge to the State of California’s requirement that health care plans include abortion coverage. A major federal budget amendment intended to protect abortion foes does not apply, it ruled. Leaders with the U.S. bishops’ conference said it was “shocking” that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services allowed the State of California to force all employers, including churches, to fund and facilitate elective abortions. “Even those who disagree on the issue of life should be able to respect the conscience rights of those who wish not to be involved in supporting abortion,” Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York and Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore said June 21. The cardinal chairs the U.S. bishops’ pro-life committee, while the archbishop chairs the conference’s ad hoc religious freedom committee. California’s mandatory

The Catholic Church has something to say about your paycheck

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 22, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 22, 2016 / 03:51 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- “To defraud anyone of wages that are his due is a great crime which cries to the avenging anger of Heaven.” This statement from Pope Leo XII's 1891 encyclical “Rerum Novarum” is jarring, especially in an economy that appears to have as much to do with Church teaching as spiders do with spelling bees. But the Church's view on wages and compensation has a long history reaching back centuries – and remains relevant today to employers and employees alike – say businesspeople and theologians seeking to find a moral response to today's changing economic landscape. “The Church starts really from the perspective of the human person, and wants to see why the relationship between the employer and the employee is more than just an exchange of money for a certain part of time,” said Fr. Dominic Legge, OP, who teaches systematic theology at the Pontifical Faculty of the Immacula

Beware 'polite persecution,' archbishop warns

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 22, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 22, 2016 / 11:54 am (CNA/EWTN News).- With relics of two English martyrs currently touring the U.S., the Archbishop of Baltimore implored Catholics to follow their example by defending religious freedom. Speaking at the opening Mass of the annual “Fortnight for Freedom,” Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore, chair of the U.S. bishops’ ad hoc Committee on Religious Liberty, clarified that “we are not here tonight to argue a point of constitutional law nor are we here to re-argue what has already been persuasively argued in our courts.” “No, we are here to honor the martyrs, to celebrate the freedom to bear witness, beginning with Jesus Christ, ‘the faithful witness’ of the Father’s love, for Christ and his sacrificial love are the very heart of the Eucharist we celebrate.” The “Fortnight for Freedom” is an annual two-week period of prayer, fasting, and education for religious freedom, called

Now touring America: two English saints who died for their faith

By: CNA Daily News - US
Source: Catholic News Agency: US
Date: June 21, 2016
Washington D.C., Jun 21, 2016 / 05:04 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A relic tour currently taking place in the United States highlights the virtues of two English saints who stood up for conscience and paid the ultimate price. The “Witness to Freedom” relic tour is being held in conjunction with the U.S. bishops’ Fortnight for Freedom, which take place across the nation June 21-July 4. The fortnight aims to stress the importance of defending religious freedom in the U.S. and to raise awareness of religious persecution around the world. The relics come from two English saints executed in the year 1535. St. Thomas More, a renowned author and philosopher who had held the position of Chancellor, and St. John Fisher, the Bishop of Rochester, refused to sign the Act of Supremacy that purported to recognize King Henry VIII as the supreme head of the Church of England. “Both More and Fisher were patriots. They never rose up to incite rebellion or foment revolution. They were