WCR This Week

Jay's Articles

In holy days, pope's heart turns to refugees

Pope Francis

April 4, 2016
CINDY WOODEN and
JUNNO AROCHO ESTEVES
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Easter is a feast of hope and mercy which should enable us to see suffering people with God's love and compassion, Pope Francis said on Easter Sunday March 27. Before giving his blessing urbi et orbi (to the city and the world), the pope said Easter should give people the courage to "blaze trails of reconciliation with God and with all our brothers and sisters." The pope pointed to "those who hunger and thirst, strangers and prisoners, the marginalized and the outcast, the victims of oppression and violence" as those in most need of compassion.

Mercy is only response to cruelty

April 4, 2016
CINDY WOODEN
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Although he lives a relatively hidden life in a villa in the Vatican Gardens, retired Pope Benedict XVI continues to study modern theological questions and, occasionally, to comment on them publicly. The attention Pope Francis and many Christians are giving to the theme of divine mercy is a "sign of the times" that shows how, deep down, people still experience a need for God, the retired pope told Belgian Jesuit Father Jacques Servais in a written interview.

Pope bows before refugees to wash feet

April 4, 2016
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

ROME - In a moving gesture of brotherhood and peace, Pope Francis washed the feet of several refugees, including Muslims, Hindus and Copts. Gestures, like Jesus washing the feet of his disciples, "speak louder than words," he said during the Holy Thursday Mass of the Lord's Supper. The pope celebrated the March 24 Mass in the courtyard of the Centre for Asylum Seekers at Castelnuovo di Porto, about 25 kms north of Rome.

Maternal health means medical care, not abortion

April 4, 2016
DEBORAH GYAPONG
CANADIAN CATHOLIC NEWS

Canada's Dr. Robert Walley, founder of MaterCare International, made a passionate plea for better maternal health care for African women March 17 at the United Nations. Walley, an obstetrician who first encountered the shocking level of maternal mortality in Africa in Nigeria in 1982, told a UN side event sponsored by the Holy See, Africa needs "a Marshall Plan" to save the lives of women who die in childbirth or shortly afterwards.

Failure to supervise online use leaves children in danger

April 4, 2016
TOM TRACY
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Parents who don't supervise their children's online activity and mobile device usage might as well be dropping off their kids at an adult bookstore filled with dangerous strangers. "Keep the computer use in a public area of the home - you never leave a child alone with the Internet," said licensed clinical therapist and family therapist Peter Kleponis.

Marriage prep must confront porn addictions, says therapist

April 4, 2016
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. - Therapist Peter Kleponis believes it's time for Church-based marriage preparation programs to address pornography addiction and to urge assistance for addicted individuals before proceeding with marriage. "Given the severe harm caused by pornography in marriage, pre-marriage programs have to address this issue," Kleponis said during a talk.

Film recounts major, minor miracles

April 4, 2016
JEAN KO DIN
THE CATHOLIC REGISTER

Nine-year-old Annabel Beam suffered from an incurable digestive disorder that put her in constant pain. But when she fell 10 metres, headfirst, into a hollowed tree, she came out of her ordeal unharmed and healed of her disorder. Oh yes, and she also had an encounter with Jesus in heaven. It's a miraculous story that has been turned into a film, Miracles From Heaven, with Jennifer Garner playing Annabel's mother Christy. Kylie Rogers plays the role of young Annabel.

'Non-religious' artist painted works of power, intensity

March 21, 2016
NANCY WIECHEC
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Arizona Artist Ted DeGrazia left behind a huge body of work, with religious and spiritual paintings that have been inspiring people for decades. Yet he was not a churchgoing man and thought he was not holy enough to paint for the Church. "His artwork has its own unique style," said George Maki, who was visiting DeGrazia's gallery in Tucson for the first time. Maki, and his son, Chris, both of Durango, Colo., sat in the room with the DeGrazia Way of the Cross series for half an hour.

Lebanese group counsels refugees to end civil strife

Hussein Itani

March 21, 2016
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

After his entire family was killed in Syria, a young man ended up as a refugee in Lebanon. His middle class family used to have resources back home. Now he was alone in a new country with no money, no food and no clothes. His first thought was to avenge his family so he decided to join the so-called Islamic State. He thought ISIS would be the ideal group to join because they are "very religious" and were already fighting the Syrian regime.

K of C report presents evidence for declaration of genocide against Christians

March 21, 2016
DENNIS SADOWSKI
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Washington - Christians in Libya, Iraq and Syria are victims of genocide carried out by the Islamic State, says a report completed for the Knights of Columbus and In Defence of Christians. Carl Anderson, Knights of Columbus CEO, introduced the 278-page report during a March 10 news conference. The report details dozens of atrocities, Anderson said, adding that those "may only be the tip of the iceberg."