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Pope to canonize Blessed John Henry Newman in Rome Oct. 13

Pope to canonize Blessed John Henry Newman in Rome Oct. 13 VATICAN CITY (CNS) – Pope Francis will declare Blessed John Henry Newman, the 19th-century British cardinal, a saint Oct. 13. The British theologian will be canonized during a Mass at the Vatican along with a Swiss laywoman, an Indian nun, an Italian nun and a nun known as the "Mother Teresa...
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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Plan for beatification of Archbishop Sheen begins

Plan for beatification of Archbishop Sheen begins PEORIA, Ill. (CNS) – With "overwhelming joy," Bishop Daniel R. Jenky of Peoria has announced that Pope Francis has approved a miracle attributed to the intercession of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. "Now that the miracle has been confirmed by Pope Francis, the Diocese of Peoria can formally begi...
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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Holy days of obligation; Catholic-Jewish wedding

Holy days of obligation; Catholic-Jewish wedding Q. I am puzzled that the Ascension is no longer observed on Thursday (40 days after Easter) as a holy day of obligation, while the feasts of the Assumption and of the Immaculate Conception are considered to be obligatory. The Ascension surely has a scriptural basis, while there are no direct s...
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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Challenges to seal of confession attributed to clergy sex abuse scandals

Challenges to seal of confession attributed to clergy sex abuse scandals Editor’s note: Today, some states are challenging the seal of confession in reaction to the Catholic Church's clerical sexual abuse crisis. Unfortunately, many Americans – including Catholics – do not understand why the Church defends the inviolability of the seal. This article is...
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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Existence of purgatory - Should some politicians be excommunicated?

Existence of purgatory - Should some politicians be excommunicated? Q. I am a cradle Catholic and have always believed in purgatory. Now I am hearing from some people (including from some priests) who deny its existence. Can you clarify this for me? (City and state of origin withheld) A. The Catholic Church does indeed believe in the existence of purgatory. The Cat...
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Thursday, July 11, 2019

Vatican says secrecy of confession must never be violated

Vatican says secrecy of confession must never be violated VATICAN CITY (CNS) – In the light of "a worrying negative prejudice" against the Catholic Church, Pope Francis ordered the publication of a document affirming the absolute secrecy of everything said in confession and calling on priests to defend it at all costs – even at the cost of the...
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Wednesday, July 03, 2019

'Lord of the dance'

'Lord of the dance' If it's Thursday night, it's a free outdoor concert at a local mall. It's a pretty spot – a courtyard right next to an Italian restaurant with outdoor seating, lots of flowers, a small stage and a few iron benches.             There's a d...
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Wednesday, July 03, 2019

Correction on Virgin Mary/ Church change on death penalty?

Correction on Virgin Mary/ Church change on death penalty? Q. Several weeks ago in your column, you stated that Mary remained a virgin after Jesus' birth and for the rest of her life. The Bible states otherwise. Matthew 1:24-25 says that Joseph "did not know her until she had brought forth her firstborn Son." Other passages reveal that Jesus had other sibl...
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Wednesday, July 03, 2019

Receive Communion every time as if it were the first time, pope says

Receive Communion every time as if it were the first time, pope says VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Every time a Catholic receives Communion, it should be like his or her first Communion, Pope Francis said. Marking the feast of the Body and Blood of Christ June 23, the pope spoke about the gift of the Eucharist during his midday Angelus address at the Vatican and at the Rome...
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Thursday, June 27, 2019

Pope announces themes for upcoming WYD celebrations

VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Announcing the themes for the next three World Youth Day celebrations, Pope Francis called on young men and women to meditate on the path of Christian life that God has called them to walk. Meeting with 280 young people from 109 countries who took part in a postsynod Youth For...
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Thursday, June 27, 2019