Catholic News


  • New cardinal source of pride, hope, say local Black Catholics
    by Gina Christian (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    The appointment of Cardinal Wilton Gregory, the first African American member of the College of the Cardinals, is "a moment to celebrate" that promises a bright future for the church.

  • Pell surprised by ‘Technicolor criminality’ of Vatican financial scandals
    on November 30, 2020

    CNA Staff, Nov 30, 2020 / 04:00 pm (CNA).- Cardinal George Pell has spoken of his surprise at the apparent extent of “criminality” involved in recent Vatican financial scandals. Speaking in an interview with Associated Press Monday, the cardinal, who led the Vatican’s Secretariat for the Economy from 2014-2017, said that he regretted that his efforts to bring tough mechanisms for financial transparency and accountability had been vindicated by the details of recent scandals. Pell told AP that he knew, from the time Pope Francis put him in charge of a key part of his curial reform agenda, that the Vatican finances were “a bit of a mess.” But, the cardinal said, he “never, […]

  • March for Life gears up for pandemic conditions
    on November 30, 2020

    CNA Staff, Nov 30, 2020 / 03:05 pm (CNA).- With the annual March for Life scheduled to occur in January, how different might it look from previous years due to the ongoing pandemic? The 48th annual March for Life is scheduled to take place on Jan. 29, 2021, on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. Normally attended by tens of thousands of pro-life demonstrators from all over the country, the 2021 March will be significantly affected by the coronavirus pandemic. CNA learned that the March for Life is working with the National Park Service and local officials to ensure a safe protest that will conform with “necessary guidelines.” While the D.C. government does not have a special set of […]

  • Philadelphia Catholics join #iGiveCatholic effort Dec. 1
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    The nationwide Catholic stewardship initiative encourages Catholics to support local parishes, schools and organizations on #GivingTuesday -- learn how you can get involved.

  • Court dubious of Trump’s plan to exclude immigrants in census
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    Justice Amy Coney Barrett told the lawyer representing the Trump administration position that "the historical evidence and long-standing practice really cuts against your position."

  • Black Catholics express joy at elevation of first African American cardinal
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    The elevation of Cardinal Wilton Gregory "says that the faith, the contributions, the experience of Black Catholics truly do matter," said one leader, echoing the voices of many in the Washington area.

  • Pope appeals for peace as violence increases in Ethiopia
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    Pope Francis renewed his call for the Ethiopian government and opposition leaders to "reject the temptation of armed conflict." He appealed for prayer and "the peaceful resolution of discord."

  • Religious leaders must offer example of respect, cooperation, pope says
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    Christian churches and other religious traditions have the duty of dialogue to help people understand their responsibility to each other as members of one human family, Pope Francis wrote to the Orthodox patriarch.

  • Pandemic, economy worsen situation for Syria’s minority Christians
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    As poverty and hardships deepen for Kurdish and Yazidi Christians, they also find themselves trapped in a political stalemate -- rejected by the Muslim regime and other Christians.

  • Trump administration in Supreme Court over Census policy
    on November 30, 2020

    Washington D.C., Nov 30, 2020 / 01:00 pm (CNA).- The Supreme Court heard oral arguments Monday on whether the Trump administration can exclude undocumented immigrants when apportioning congressional representatives based on a state’s population.   The case of Trump v. New York is based on a July memorandum of President Trump to the Commerce Secretary, noting that undocumented immigrants were to be excluded from the apportionment of representatives to states, based on the 2020 Census. According to the Constitution, the number of congressional representatives from a particular state depends upon the state’s population, which is tabulated by the Census. According to Article I, Sec. 2, […]

  • Statue of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal begins pilgrimage around Italy
    on November 30, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 30, 2020 / 01:00 pm (CNA).- A statue of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal began Friday a pilgrimage to parishes throughout Italy, marking the 190th anniversary of the Blessed Virgin Mary’s appearance to St. Catherine Labouré in France. After Mass at the regional seminary Collegio Leoniano in Rome, the statue was carried in procession to the nearby Church of San Gioacchino in Prati on the evening of Nov. 27. Throughout December, the statue will go from parish to parish in Rome, stopping at 15 different churches. Afterward, if coronavirus restrictions permit, it will be brought to parishes throughout Italy, ending on Nov. 22, 2021, on the island of Sardinia. One of […]

  • Immaculate Conception: Pope Francis cancels traditional act of veneration due to pandemic
    on November 30, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 30, 2020 / 12:00 pm (CNA).- The Vatican has announced that Pope Francis will not visit Rome’s Piazza di Spagna this year for the traditional veneration of Mary on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception due to the pandemic. Instead, Francis will mark the feast day with “an act of private devotion, entrusting the city of Rome, its inhabitants and the many sick people in every part of the world to Our Lady,” Holy See press office director Matteo Bruni said. It will be the first time since 1953 that the pope has not offered the traditional veneration of the statue of the Immaculate Conception on the Dec. 8 feast. Bruni said that Francis would not go to the […]

  • What is Advent, anyway? A CNA Explainer
    on November 30, 2020

    Denver, Colo., Nov 30, 2020 / 11:35 am (CNA).- Advent began this year on Sunday, Nov. 30. Most Catholics, even those who don’t often go to Mass, know that Advent involves a wreath with some candles, possibly a “calendar” of hidden chocolates, and untangling strings of Christmas lights. But Advent is more than that. Here are a few points that might help you have a great Advent this year: What is Advent? The people of Israel waited generations for the promised Messiah to arrive. Their poetry, their songs and stories, and their religious worship focused on an awaited savior, whom God had promised, over and over, would come to them to set them free from captivity, and to lead them to […]

  • Knights’ mission to serve parish thrives during pandemic
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    While some groups have curtailed activities, the Knights of Columbus council at Holy Trinity Parish in Morrisville, Bucks County has stepped up its service to keep the church clean and safe.

  • St. Philip Neri Parish raises $100,000, makes grants to community groups
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 30, 2020

    Members of the parish in Pennsburg, Montgomery County raised the funds as part of their centennial year and made awards of between $10,000 and $50,000 to several social service agencies.

  • Canadian Catholic bishop resigns at age of 64 ‘for the good of the Church’
    on November 30, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 30, 2020 / 09:00 am (CNA).- Pope Francis accepted Sunday the resignation of a Canadian Catholic bishop at the age of 64. The Holy See press office said that the pope accepted the resignation of Bishop Robert Bourgon of Hearst-Moosonee on Nov. 29. It added that the pope had named Archbishop Terrence Prendergast of Ottawa-Cornwall as apostolic administrator of the diocese in Northern Ontario, which was formed after two dioceses merged in 2018. Bourgon announced the pope’s acceptance of his resignation in a Nov. 29 letter to his flock.  Recalling his ordination as the bishop of the Diocese of Hearst in 2016, he said that for the past four years he had “tried to be […]

  • Pope Francis briefed on Lebanon’s ‘bitter economic crisis’ by Maronite patriarch
    on November 30, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 30, 2020 / 07:30 am (CNA).- Pope Francis met with Lebanon’s Maronite patriarch at the Vatican this weekend and told the pope of the challenges facing Lebanon as it experiences political instability and a “bitter economic crisis.” During the Nov. 28 meeting, Cardinal Bechara Boutros Rai, the leader of Lebanon’s Maronite Catholics, invited Pope Francis to visit Lebanon and briefed him on the local Church’s efforts to respond to growing humanitarian needs due to the economic and political crisis that preceded the devastating explosion in Beirut on Aug. 4. A statement from the Maronite Patriarchate said that Cardinal Rai “presented the risks and challenges […]

  • Pope Francis tells Orthodox leader: I am confident we will achieve full unity
    on November 30, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 30, 2020 / 06:30 am (CNA).- Pope Francis told the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople Monday that he is confident that Catholics and Orthodox Christians will attain full communion. In a message to Bartholomew I on the Feast of St. Andrew, Pope Francis praised the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s efforts to promote Christian unity. “We can thank God that relations between the Catholic Church and the Ecumenical Patriarchate have grown much over the past century, even as we continue to yearn for the goal of the restoration of full communion expressed through participation at the same Eucharistic altar,” he wrote.  “Although obstacles remain, I am confident that by […]

  • Pope Francis asks for prayer for Ethiopia’s embattled Tigray region
    on November 29, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 29, 2020 / 08:30 am (CNA).- Pope Francis has asked people to pray for Ethiopia’s Tigray region, where the United Nations has said that “a full-scale humanitarian crisis is unfolding.” A communique from the Holy See Press Office Nov. 27 stated that the pope was following the news coming from Ethiopia and asked for prayer for this country. Weeks of violence in the Tigray region have led to the deaths of hundreds of civilians and forced tens of thousands of people to flee from their homes toward Sudan. “The Holy Father, in inviting prayer for this country, makes an appeal to the parties in conflict to stop the violence, to safeguard the life, especially of […]

  • At Mass with new cardinals, pope warns against worldliness
    by CatholicPhilly MG (Catholic Philly) on November 29, 2020

    In his homily, Pope Francis said the two key phrases for the Advent season were God's closeness and people's vigilance against indifference and mediocrity.

  • Pope Francis: 'Advent is the season for remembering the closeness of God'
    on November 29, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 29, 2020 / 05:40 am (CNA).- On the first Sunday of Advent, Pope Francis recommended a traditional Advent prayer to invite God to draw close during this new liturgical year. “Advent is the season for remembering the closeness of God who came down to dwell in our midst,” Pope Francis said in St. Peter’s Basilica  Nov. 29. “Let us make the traditional Advent prayer our own: ‘Come, Lord Jesus.’ … We can say it at the beginning of each day and repeat it often, before our meetings, our studies and our work, before making decisions, in every important or difficult moment of our lives: ‘Come, Lord Jesus,’” the pope said in his homily. Pope Francis stressed […]

  • Archbishop Cordileone: New COVID church closures violate right to worship
    on November 29, 2020

    CNA Staff, Nov 28, 2020 / 09:07 pm (CNA).- As surging COVID-19 cases lead to new restrictions in the San Francisco area, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone said the treatment of churches is discriminatory and violates the right to worship. “[W]orship is both a natural and a Constitutional right. My people want to receive the Body and Blood of Christ; they need it, and have every right to be free to do so,” the archbishop said in a November 28 statement. He criticized a new health order from the state of California placing San Francisco and San Mateo Counties into a more restrictive tier of coronavirus restrictions, resulting in a ban on indoor worship services. The health order treats […]

  • Advent at Home: How Catholics are preparing for a season of joy - even in 2020 
    on November 28, 2020

    Denver Newsroom, Nov 28, 2020 / 04:35 pm (CNA).- Wry jokes and memes about the decided awfulness of the year 2020 - with the pandemic, ensuing lockdowns and economic distress, as well as civil unrest in a turbulent election year - are well known to just about anyone on social media. Now, Christians find themselves entering into Advent, a season that is supposed to be one of joyful preparation for the celebration of Christmas, as well as preparation for the eventual Second Coming of Christ. Much like Easter 2020, which landed almost exactly one month after the country shut down in March, this Advent and Christmas season will likely look quite different than normal. With coronavirus cases […]

  • Pope Francis to new cardinals: May the cross and resurrection always be your goal
    on November 28, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 28, 2020 / 10:30 am (CNA).- Pope Francis created 13 new cardinals Saturday, urging them to remain vigilant lest they lose sight of their goal of the cross and resurrection. “All of us love Jesus, all of us want to follow him, yet we must always be vigilant to remain on the road,” Pope Francis said at the consistory Nov. 28. “Jerusalem always lies ahead of us. The cross and the resurrection are … always the goal of our journey,” he said in his homily in St. Peter’s Basilica. In the seventh consistory of his pontificate, Pope Francis created cardinals from Africa, Europe, North and South America, and Asia. Among them is Cardinal Wilton Gregory, archbishop of […]

  • Swiss court orders full access to records for Vatican financial investigation
    on November 27, 2020

    Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Nov 27, 2020 / 11:30 am (CNA).- Vatican investigators have been granted full access to Swiss banking documentation related to long-time Vatican investment manager Enrico Crasso. The newly announced decision by a Swiss federal court is the latest development in the ongoing financial scandal surrounding the purchase of a London building by the Secretariat of State in 2018. According to Huffington Post, the decision was issued on Oct. 13 but only published this week. The documents to be turned over to the Vatican include financial records of the company to Az Swiss & Partners. Az Swiss owns Sogenel Capital Holding, the company Crasso founded after leaving Credit […]

  • Pope Francis: Avoid the temptation of seeking ‘utopia’ in this world
    on November 27, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 27, 2020 / 07:00 am (CNA).- In a video message to a Catholic social doctrine conference on Thursday, Pope Francis said that remembering our baptism and the promise of eternal life can help us avoid the temptation to seek “utopia” in this world. In the message released Nov. 26, he described a positive attitude in which believers are immersed in society yet live their baptism in the light of a future life with God. “This attitude helps us to overcome the temptation of utopia, to reduce the proclamation of the Gospel to a simple sociological horizon or to get involved in the ‘marketing’ of various economic theories or political factions,” the pope said. […]

  • Vatican dicastery urges youngsters to share wisdom of elderly people facing Christmas alone
    on November 27, 2020

    Vatican City, Nov 27, 2020 / 05:00 am (CNA).- A Vatican dicastery launched a new campaign Friday urging young people to share wisdom gleaned from the elderly facing Christmas alone because of the pandemic. In a press statement released Nov. 27, the Dicastery for Laity, Family, and Life said that Christmas presented youngsters with the chance to “receive a special gift” from elderly people. “Today, in the difficult circumstances of a Christmas still overshadowed by the pandemic, we are proposing that young people post on social media a memory, a piece of advice, or a ‘gift of wisdom’ they have received from one of the elderly people with whom they have formed a bond in recent […]

  • 'Tolton' play in spotlight as Church addresses racial division
    on November 27, 2020

    Denver Newsroom, Nov 27, 2020 / 04:00 am (CNA).-   During the U.S. bishops' meeting last week, Bishop Jaime Soto of Sacramento said his diocese had hosted a one-man play honoring the first African-American slave to become a Catholic priest, as part of its efforts to address racism. The play is “Tolton: From Slave to Priest,” the work of St. Luke Productions. It has been performed in front of thousands of people since it was released three years ago. Leonardo Defilippis, director and president of St. Luke Production, told CNA that the witness of Fr. Agustus Tolton is important at a moment of racial division, especially Tolton gives witness to Christian unity beyond racial barriers. […]

  • Supreme Court overturns NY church restrictions, Brooklyn bishop says religion 'essential' during pandemic
    on November 26, 2020

    CNA Staff, Nov 26, 2020 / 01:23 pm (CNA).-   The Supreme Court said Wednesday night that NY state restrictions during the coronavirus pandemic are a violation of the First Amendment’s protection of free religious exercise. After the ruling the Bishop of Brooklyn, whose diocese was a plaintiff in the suit, said that religious worship should be considered an essential during the coronavirus pandemic. “It is time — past time — to make plain that, while the pandemic poses many grave challenges, there is no world in which the Constitution tolerates color-coded executive edicts that reopen liquor stores and bike shops but shutter churches, synagogues and mosques,” Justice Neil […]

  • Warning of donor harassment, Trump administration backs foes of Calif. disclosure rule
    on November 26, 2020

    CNA Staff, Nov 26, 2020 / 11:01 am (CNA).- The Trump administration has asked the Supreme Court to review a challenge to a California requirement that charitable organizations disclose their major donors to the state attorney general, siding with groups like the Thomas More Law Center that say the requirement will make their donors vulnerable to retaliation, harassment, and violence. The move from the U.S. Solicitor General’s Office drew praise from John Bursch, senior counsel and vice president of appellate advocacy at the Alliance Defending Freedom legal group. “Charitable entities shouldn’t be required to disclose confidential donor information to state officials who do not need […]