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Haitian bishop in 'stable' condition after explosion in Port-au-Prince

Bishop Pierre André Dumas is vice president of the Haitian Bishops' Conference. / Credit: Wikimedia CommonsRome Newsroom, Feb 20, 2024 / 12:00 pm (CNA).Bishop Pierre-André Dumas of the Diocese of Anse-à-Veau/Miragoâneis and vice president of the Haitian Bishops' Conference is reportedly in stable condition after being caught in an explosion in the Haitian capital of Port-au-Prince on Sunday evening. A communiqué sent out by the Conference of Catholics Bishops of Haiti on Monday announced that Dumas "was affected yesterday evening by an explosion which reached the house where he is accommodated during his stay in Port-au-Prince." The press release noted that the bishop is "stable" but did not provide additional details on the explosion or the bishop's condition. In a sign of solidarity with the bishop and the Church in Haiti, the Bishops Conference of Mexico (CEM), wrote on X: "We join in prayer and solidarity with the Episcopal Conference of H...

Pro-life scholars challenge study that claims abortion pills are 'safe' and 'effective'

A pro-abortion activist displays abortion pills as she counter-protests during an anti-abortion demonstration on March 25, 2023, in New York City. / Credit: Kena Betancur/AFP via Getty ImagesCNA Newsroom, Feb 20, 2024 / 13:00 pm (CNA).Several pro-life scholars are pushing back on a recently published study that claims abortion pills are "safe" and "effective" when prescribed without an in-person meeting and distributed through the mail.The referenced study, which was published by pro-abortion academics in the peer-reviewed medical journal Nature Medicine, claimed that telehealth chemical abortion "is effective, safe, and comparable to published rates of in-person medication abortion care." The study evaluated risks and potential complications related to the drugs mifepristone and misoprostol.According to the study, nearly 98% of chemical abortions procured via telehealth effectively aborted the preborn child. The study also claimed there was a very low likelihood of "serious ab...

Catholic prison ministry makes good use of large donation of Bible study materials

null / Credit: OFFSTOCK/ShutterstockCNA Staff, Feb 20, 2024 / 08:00 am (CNA).Jerry Trzeciak leads a lot of Catholic retreats. But the participants aren't your typical parishioners, and they live in a place where not many people have the courage to go. For the past several years, Trzeciak has worked with the Texas Department of Corrections as a volunteer chaplain in the Jim Ferguson Unit, located in Midway, Texas, which has a maximum capacity of over 2,000 men and mainly houses those who are violent and gang-affiliated.Working with a Catholic lay group called Kolbe Prison Ministries (KPM), Trzeciak and his fellow volunteers are admitted to the prisons to lead three-day retreats for the inmates, usually about 66 at a time. The volunteers share their faith in talks, pray with the incarcerated men or women, and give them opportunities to attend Mass or Communion services. After the face-to-face retreat ends, the volunteers are able to provide the inmates with follow-up educati...

Rome to host 7th Day of the Catacombs, opportunity to reflect on early Christians

An archaeological guide provided historical information and answered questions during a visit to the catacombs by delegates of the Synod on Synodality. Early Christians gathered within the catacombs for funeral rites and to honor the martyrs. Rome, Italy. Oct. 12, 2023. / Credit: Vatican MediaRome Newsroom, Feb 19, 2024 / 13:50 pm (CNA).Rome's catacombs will open to the public for free guided tours and moments of prayer and reflection on Saturday, March 2, as part of the 7th edition of Day of the Catacombs. A press release circulated by the Pontifical Commission for Sacred Archaeology, the event's sponsor, announced that the theme for this year's edition of the Day of the Catacombs is "from remembrance to prayer." Observing that "the pope wanted this year to be dedicated to prayer," the press release went on to note that this event fits "into the preparatory journey to the Jubilee of 2025." The press release emphasized that visiting the catacombs is an opportunit...

Texas priest arrested over allegation of sexual misconduct with minor

Father Fernando Gonzalez, / Credit: Cameron County Sheriff's DepartmentCNA Staff, Feb 19, 2024 / 14:51 pm (CNA).A priest in the Diocese of Brownsville, Texas, has been arrested after being accused of sexual misconduct with a minor victim. Brownsville Bishop Daniel Flores said in a statement last week that diocesan officials had "received an allegation of sexual misconduct with a minor by Father Fernando Gonzalez."Flores had received the report in early February from the diocesan victim's assistance coordinator. The following day he "removed [Gonzalez] from active ministry" and "prohibited him from exercising any priestly ministry anywhere." "The individual who came forward, who is now an adult, spoke to the Diocesan Victim's Assistance Coordinator and was advised to report the allegation to the police," the bishop said. "The investigation is in the hands of law enforcement and is ongoing. The diocese will fully cooperate with the investigation."Law enforcement reporte...

'Guadalupe: Mother of Humanity' opens Feb. 22 in U.S. theaters

Credit: Courtney Mares/CNAACI Prensa Staff, Feb 19, 2024 / 06:00 am (CNA).Goya Producciones has announced that the film "Guadalupe: Mother of Humanity" will premiere on Feb. 22 in the United States (with English subtitles), Mexico, Central America, Puerto Rico, Bolivia, and Chile."Shot on location in Mexico, the United States, Spain, and Germany, the feature film opens with powerful fictionalized recreations of the five apparitions of the Virgin Mary in Guadalupe in 1531, inspired by the original true account of St. Juan Diego," said a press release sent to ACI Prensa, CNA's Spanish-language news partner. Spanish filmmaker Pablo Moreno directed the portion of the film that includes powerful testimonies and features actress Karyme Lozano as presenter, Angelica Chong as the Virgin of Guadalupe, and Mario Alberto Hernandez as Juan Diego. Pepe Alonso, popular EWTN host, does the narration.The film debuts in Colombia, Peru, and Uruguay on Feb. 29, in Spain on March 1, and in Br...

Are all religions equal? A Catholic priest responds

Symbols of several of the world's leading religions. / Credit: ShutterstockACI Prensa Staff, Feb 19, 2024 / 07:00 am (CNA).Father Eduardo Hayen Cuarón, director of the weekly newspaper Presencia of the Diocese of Ciudad Juárez in Mexico, recently responded to the question of whether all religions are equal, good, and true.Responding on X Feb. 4, the priest addressed the following question: "I am an open-minded person and I believe that all religions are equal; they are all like rivers that one way or another flow into the sea. As long as religions lead man to do good, any religion is good and true, right?"Hayen responded that "it is good to have an open mind to try to perceive all that is good in religions. Without a doubt, Muslims are very observant in prayer and fasting; Buddhists also mortify the body, and Jehovah's Witnesses are tenacious in promoting their magazine by knocking on doors.""But judging a religion by some good elements it may have is not a valid criterion...

Pope Francis: Lent is a time to 'encounter wild beasts and angels'

Pope Francis addresses pilgrims in St. Peter's Square during his Sunday Angelus on Feb. 18, 2024. / Credit: Vatican MediaVatican City, Feb 18, 2024 / 10:30 am (CNA).On the first Sunday of Lent, Pope Francis focused his Angelus address on the temptation of Jesus in the desert to highlight that it is an invitation for us to enter the proverbial desert to come "in contact with the truth."Observing that during the 40 days in the desert Christ was in the company of both "wild beasts and angels," the pope reflected that when we enter this symbolic "inner wildness," we too "encounter wild beasts and angels."These wild beats assume a deeply symbolic meaning in our "spiritual life," and so "we can think of them as the disordered passions that divide our heart, trying to take possession of it. They entice us, they seem seductive, but if we are not careful, we risk being torn apart by them," the pope said to the nearly 15,000 faithful gathered in St. Peter's Square on Sunday.Expanding upo...

New wilderness program for seminarians promises to 'strengthen faith and brotherhood'

Incoming students at Wyoming Catholic College in Lander, Wyoming, are required to take a three-week wilderness trek that challenges them both body and soul. / Credit: Photo courtesy of Aeja DeKuiperCheyenne, Wyo., Feb 18, 2024 / 07:00 am (CNA).A small Catholic college in Lander, Wyoming, has launched a new program that challenges seminarians with wilderness experiences to strengthen their faith, vocations, and pastoral skills as eventual priests.Wyoming Catholic College (WCC), known for its rigorous academics and COR Expeditions, offers backcountry treks to high school students, families, and undergraduates as well as specific seminaries such Holy Trinity in Irving, Texas, and the New York-based Franciscan Friars of the Renewal. But its new St. Jogues Seminarian Project is open to individual seminarians ages 18+ from dioceses throughout the country. Applications are now being accepted for the 10-week summerlong program, which includes multi-day backcountry hikes in the Roc...

St. Patrick's Cathedral hosts reparation Mass after 'scandalous' funeral for trans activist

St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York City. / Richard Trois via Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0).Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Feb 17, 2024 / 13:56 pm (CNA).The pastor of St. Patrick's Cathedral in New York City says the church has offered a Mass of Reparation after a controversial irreverent funeral service was held there this week for a well-known transgender advocate. The Manhattan cathedral hosted the Feb. 15 funeral service for Cecilia Gentili, an activist who helped to decriminalize sex work in New York, lobbied for "gender identity" to be added as a protected class to the state's human rights laws, and was a major fundraiser for transgender causes. Gentili was a man who identified as a woman. Throughout the liturgy, the presider, Father Edward Dougherty, referred to Gentili with feminine pronouns and described the trans-identifying man as "our sister." Additionally, during the prayers of the faithful, the reader prayed for so-called gender-affirming health care, while attendees fre...

Thought of the Day

Psalm 51:12

A clean heart create for me, O God, and a steadfast spirit renew within me.

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