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ST. PAUL, ALTA. – As firefighters fought to save Fort McMurray from a wildfire that threatened to destroy the northern Alberta city, a bishop gave thanks that there had been no loss of life. St. Paul Bishop Paul Terrio, whose diocese includes Fort McMurray, also said in a May 4 statement that the city's St. Paul Church is rumoured to have been destroyed in the blaze that forced the evacuation of the city's entire population the previous day.
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For the second year in a row, the Western Catholic Reporter has been named the top regional Church newspaper in Canada. The Canadian Church Press, which gave the general excellence award, as well as eight other awards to the WCR, has honoured the WCR as the first or second best regional newspaper eight out of the last 10 years. The CCP announced its award winners April 30 at its annual conference in Toronto. All the awards were for publications in 2015. The CCP also gave first place awards to the WCR for the best news story and the best opinion article.
OTTAWA – Chaos will be the result of the federal government’s decision to leave protection for the conscience rights of medical professionals and health care institutions to the provinces, says the president of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB). Bishop Douglas Crosby of Hamilton, Ont., said the government should clarify the rights of professionals and institutions who conscientiously object to participating in assisted suicide and not hand the issue off to provincial legislators or professional bodies.
After almost four years of consultation, the Edmonton Archdiocese is releasing new standards for preparing children and youth for the sacraments. The 100-page binder effectively harmonizes sacramental education and preparation across parishes and schools in the archdiocese. One aim of the standards is to ensure no child falls through the cracks when it is time to receive sacramental preparation, says Kathleen Nguyen, sacramental education coordinator for the Edmonton Archdiocese.
Reading Pope Francis' exhortation on the family is like having a discussion at the kitchen table with your grandfather, says Archbishop Richard Smith. The apostolic exhortation - Amoris Laetitia (The Joy of the Family) - is like being able to "talk openly with a man who already understands your problems and your weaknesses," the archbishop said in an interview. "The pope has a beautiful way of expressing in accessible language what is on the mind of the Church," he said.
When Jeri and Chuck Marple's eighth child Mary was born at 22 weeks gestation, the choice of life or death was set before them. Doctors said if Mary survived, she had a 90 per cent chance of having severe cerebral palsy. They suggested disconnecting Mary's lifeline and respirator because she would be a burden to them, and it was not fair to them or to society.
On her way to the Catholic Women's League Archdiocese of Edmonton convention, one of Elsie Paul's favourite songs came up on the radio. "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger," the Métis/Cree elder sang along. "I thought, 'Wow! What a good reminder!" said Paul, who spoke on the topic Be the Face of Mercy: Through our Indigenous Sisters with Archbishop Emeritus Sylvain Lavoie. >"So there's lessons all the time, everywhere," she said.
Jeff Fidelak could hardly describe the joy he was feeling the night his artwork was on display at L'Arche Edmonton's Art From the Heart exhibit. "I feel just . . ." he started, finishing his sentence with a broad smile, "wonderful! Because everybody likes my art pieces. It makes me proud." The celebration of creativity by members of L'Arche Edmonton's day program took place April 22 and 23 at the Nina Haggerty Centre for the Arts.
Not a week goes by that Catholic Social Services' CEO Stephen Carattini doesn't visit one of the homes run by the agency in the Edmonton Archdiocese. During the visits he engages with residents and staff and also pays close attention to the quality of service and the physical condition of the residences. Over the last few years CSS has made a concerted effort to provide not only safe, secure and dignified spaces for its staff but also for the people it cares for.
Jesus opposed a severe interpretation of the Law. He healed people on the Sabbath even when they were not in immediate danger of death. He allowed his disciples to pick and eat corn while walking through a cornfield on the Sabbath. Jesus associated with sinners and others considered impure. He told people to follow him instead of burying their parents. All of this (and more) would have scandalized the Jews of his time, especially their leaders.