Catholic News - Catholic Telecommunications, a devision of Catholic Resources
 

NEWS ARCHIVE FOR APRIL 2003

   
Feature - Five years on, Guatemalans demand truth about bishop's murder
Five years after the murder of Auxiliary Bishop Juan Gerardi Conedera of Guatemala City, Catholics are still seeking answers to the bishop's killing. During a memorial Mass on Saturday, Archbishop Rodolfo Quezada Toruno of Guatemala City said he would "spare no effort to achieve justice for Bishop Gerardi".
30 Apr 2003

Opinion - International Dominican leader sees fundamentalism in Bush's rhetoric
The United States' political position of "you are either with me or against me" has hidden religious implications that Bin Laden also makes use of as does Saddam Hussein when they call for a religious war. - Fr Carlos Azpiroz, Master General, Order of Preachers
30 Apr 2003

Politicians to reveal links between politics and family
Two Howard Government Ministers are part of a team of four prominent politicians who will speak on marriage, the family and life issues in a forthcoming study unit at the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family in Melbourne.
30 Apr 2003

Placido Domingo embraces Pope's Song of Peace
Earlier this week, world-renowned tenor Placido Domingo performed Song of Peace, a work containing lyrics written by Pope John Paul II.
30 Apr 2003

Pope regrets that modern society has overlooked Bible
In a meeting yesterday with the members of the Pontifical Biblical Commission, Pope John Paul II stressed the need to go back to the Scriptural foundations of Judaeo-Christian morality.
30 Apr 2003

Indonesian bishop distances Church from separatists
People arrested for celebrating a separatist movement's anniversary in the troubled Maluku region acted on their own and were not supported by the Church, according to the local bishop.
30 Apr 2003

Iraqi bishop tells US troops: Help us but leave quickly
An Iraqi archbishop said his advice to US troops is to leave the country as soon as they can help Iraqis form their own government.
30 Apr 2003

Commission warns on Howard Govt plans to gut human rights watchdog
Melbourne's Catholic Commission for Justice Development and Peace has warned that a new Government bill would gut the independence of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission (HREOC), Australia's independent human rights watchdog.
30 Apr 2003

Feature - Teach your children well
James Lee, currently completing a Commerce and Information Systems degree was the Victorian finalist for the 2003 Young Australian of the Year Award. He founded and coordinates the St Vincent de Paul Wednesday Night Tutoring Program.
29 Apr 2003

Opinion - Why a rainbow can take your breath away
A rainbow bends light so as to refract it and show what it looks like on the inside, its colours, its mystery, its spectacular beauty. Light has a beautiful inside that we can't always see. - Fr Ron Rolheiser OMI
29 Apr 2003

Russian minister claims icon in Vatican is copy
Russia's culture minister has said that the revered icon of the Mother of God of Kazan, which Pope John Paul II would like to return to Russia, is an 18th-century copy of the 16th-century original.
29 Apr 2003

Vatican official encourages deepening of Catholic-Muslim dialogue
A top Vatican official and an internationally renowned Muslim scholar said last week that the quest for peace in the world calls for efforts to advance Catholic-Muslim dialogue at all levels.
29 Apr 2003

Toronto pilgrims not welcome at US shrine
The SARS outbreak caused the National Shrine of the Divine Mercy to request pilgrims from Canada not to come to the past weekend's celebration of Divine Mercy Sunday.
29 Apr 2003

Brisbane to commence historic Diocesan Synod
The Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane is about to begin its first Diocesan Synod in over a century, with around 730 members gathering for the Synod Assembly from Thursday to Sunday.
29 Apr 2003

Adelaide Archbishop urges MPs not to change law on embryos
Research on human embryos will create an "expendable class of human life", according to Archbishop Philip Wilson of Adelaide.
29 Apr 2003

Catholic Health says Medicare package ignores low paid and families
The Federal Government's Medicare reform package announced yesterday "disproportionately hits the hard up and the sick and erodes the value of the Medicare entitlement for people without concession cards", according to Catholic Health Australia CEO Francis Sullivan.
29 Apr 2003

Feature - Behind the throne: Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger
Whatever one's views of Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, one point is indisputable: no man is professionally and intellectually closer to Pope John Paul II than the German-born theologian whose job is to defend the doctrinal unity of the Catholic church.
28 Apr 2003

Opinion - Vatican has its say on sustainable use of water
The Holy See has stated its strong support for water as a common good of humanity, in the face of increasing privatisation of control of water supplies.
28 Apr 2003

Laos Govt accused of persecuting Christians
Authorities in southern Laos have evicted three Christian families from their homes for refusing to renounce their religious beliefs, according to Radio Free Asia (RFA), in a move condemned by the US government.
28 Apr 2003

Perth Virgin 'weeps' once more
The statue of the Virgin Mary, which became the centre of world attention last year when it appeared to be "weeping" rose-scented tears, began crying again on Good Friday.
28 Apr 2003

Filipino Cardinal's anti-SARS request to avoid kissing icons
On Saturday, Manila's Cardinal Jaime Sin urged Catholics to stop kissing religious icons, revised the practice of communion and ordered "emergency" prayers to ward off the advent of the deadly SARS virus.
28 Apr 2003

Pope beatifies cappuccino friar
Pope John Paul II yesterday beatified a 17th-century friar credited with halting a Muslim invasion of Europe and in the process discovering the frothy coffee drink cappuccino.
28 Apr 2003

Cuba crackdown disappoints Pope
Deeply dismayed by Cuba's crackdown, Pope John Paul II has decried harsh sentences against dissidents and implored Fidel Castro to show leniency.
28 Apr 2003

Baghdad bishop defends captured Aziz
Captured former Iraq deputy prime minister Tariq Aziz was only doing what Sadaam told him to do, according to Bishop Emmanuel Delly, Baghdad leader of the Chaldean Catholic faith, to which Aziz belongs.
28 Apr 2003

Feature - Olive tree grove dates back to biblical garden of Gethsemane
A NSW country town's grove of olive trees can be traced to a pioneering priest and army chaplain who brought them from the biblical Garden of Gethsemane after World War I.
24 Apr 2003

Opinion - The Anzac myth is alive and well
The Last Post died into the cold darkness of the Hobart Cenotaph and I looked around at the composition of the crowd who'd gathered. Like many a teacher I found myself counting heads, comparing this congregation with those at the Easter ceremonies some days earlier. - Br Peter Flint CFC
24 Apr 2003

Mother Teresa and the Pope are role models for young Italians
A survey of young people in Italy found their heroes are not pop stars or footballers but Mother Teresa and the Pope.
24 Apr 2003

Mongolian Catholic Church enjoys 25% growth after Easter baptisms
The number of Catholics in Mongolia increased by a quarter to 177 after 40 people were baptised on Easter Sunday in the three parishes in the capital Ulaanbaatar.
24 Apr 2003

Cuban Catholic activist victim of Govt clampdown
In a step which has drawn widespread condemnation, Cuban officials have requested the death penalty for Catholic human rights activist Jose Daniel Ferrer Garcia.
24 Apr 2003

First Holy Week in 40 years for remote Vietnam Catholics
Catholics in four remote parishes in northern Vietnam were overjoyed to be able to celebrate Holy Week and Easter liturgies locally for the first time in 40 years.
24 Apr 2003

Pope says peace means more than international accords
At yesterday's regular Wednesday audience, Pope John Paul II remarked that peace is not merely the result of international accords, but a gift that must be carefully preserved.
24 Apr 2003

Catholic Health welcomes funding boost but urges transparency
Catholic Health Australia (CHA) has welcomed the Federal Government's announcement of a 17% increase in real terms in health funding, and called on all Federal and State governments to meet the real costs of care to sustain the benefits of Medicare.
24 Apr 2003

Feature - Ur talks renew debate about Abraham's birthplace
Reporters attending the Washington-sponsored coalition talks in the Iraqi city of Ur last week noted that the summit took place in the "birthplace of Abraham". This idea is understandably appealing because Abraham, through his sons Ishmael and Isaac, is considered the spiritual father of Jews, Christians, and Muslims.
23 Apr 2003

Opinion - Why not try forgiveness instead of tolerance?
If you confused tolerance and forgiveness, you could be forgiven (excuse the pun). Forgiveness means "cessation of resentment, pardoning", while tolerance means "the capacity to endure". One leads to healing and reconciliation, the other to resentment and revenge. - Stephen Peterson, University of Sydney Catholic Chaplaincy
23 Apr 2003

'Morality pact' to boost Catholic influence in Slovakia
Slovakia has brokered an agreement with the Vatican on conscientious objection, increasing the influence of the Church in the country's schools, hospitals, courts, and security structures.
23 Apr 2003

Putin attempting to arrange papal visit to Russia
Russian government is working to organise a historic visit by Pope John Paul II "in the near future", Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov said yesterday.
23 Apr 2003

Military bishop to celebrate farewell Anzac Day Mass
Friday's Anzac Day commemoration will mark the end of an era when Australia's Military Bishop Geoffrey Mayne celebrates what is likely to be his last Anzac Mass before retirement.
23 Apr 2003

Catholic Health says Medicare overhaul will only benefit doctors
The Federal Government's proposed changes to Australia's Medicare health funding system will result in the health dollar being stretched to improve doctors' incomes, not health outcomes per se, according to Catholic Health Australia CEO Francis Sullivan.
23 Apr 2003

Justice Centre worried at prospect of Vietnamese boatpeople 'scare tactics'
The Uniya Jesuit Social Centre has criticised the use of the SARS virus "red herring" to avoid responsibilities towards two boatloads of Vietnamese asylum seekers understood to be heading towards Australia.
23 Apr 2003

Iraqi archbishop says people experiencing "anguished emptiness"
The war in Iraq was like a "punch" to the country's people and could lead to greater influence by extremist groups, says Latin-rite Archbishop Jean Sleiman of Baghdad.
23 Apr 2003

Feature - Faithful raise their voices in call for reform
Lay Catholics around the world are forming strong links in a growing movement to reform the church. In Melbourne, Catalyst for Renewal has cemented its ties with the Boston-based Voice of the Faithful.
22 Apr 2003

Opinion - The blanket of resentment is lifted
The resurrection is also good news for those who see themselves as victims. When we become fixed in blaming others for what they have done to hurt us we cannot allow our wounds to be healed. - Fr Greg Burke ocd
22 Apr 2003

Pope plans reconciliation with schismatic bishops
Pope John Paul II reportedly intends to end a major breach within the Church, welcoming breakaway traditionalists back into full communion with the Holy See after a 15-year split.
22 Apr 2003

Lobbyist regrets lack of policy to support released detainees
Independent Catholic lobby group PolMin has welcomed the Federal Government's release of six immigration following a Federal Court ruling last week, but has raised "the real and specific concern that there exists no policy that actively supports [them] when they are released into the general community".
22 Apr 2003

Iraqis Christians observe sombre Easter
Iraqi Christians observed a sombre Easter Sunday, praying for an end to postwar chaos and uncertainty, as a first convoy of food aid reached Baghdad.
22 Apr 2003

Australian bishops welcome Papal Encyclical on Eucharist
Australian Catholic Bishops' Conference President Archbishop Francis Carroll has welcomed Pope John Paul II's encyclical letter in which he reaffirms the Eucharist as the "wellspring of the Catholic faith".
22 Apr 2003

Archbishop says world strife draws more to church
World events seemed to have drawn more people to Easter services, according Brisbane Archbishop John Bathersby, who told the St Stephen's Cathedral congregation that increasing numbers are turning to religion to try to explain recent world events.
22 Apr 2003

Pope's Easter Sunday plea to avoid clash between cultures and religions
Pope John Paul II appealed in his Easter Sunday message for peace in Iraq and in the world's forgotten confllicts which he said threaten "a tragic clash between cultures and religions".
22 Apr 2003

Feature - Medical aspects of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ
"And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground" (Lk 22:44). The medical term for this, "hemohidrosis" or "hematidrosis" has been seen in patients who have experienced, extreme stress or shock to their systems.
17 Apr 2003

Opinion - When the moon is full
Looking at the moon, which can seem both serene and sinister, we're reminded of both the joy and the sorrow of Holy Thursday. In the time of Jesus it was of course a sign of great joy, of the Feast of the Passover. - Fr Neil Ferguson OP
17 Apr 2003

SARS causes Canada to curtail religious services
The emergence of SARS in a close-knit prayer group has resulted in restrictions on Easter services for thousands of Toronto's Catholics.
17 Apr 2003

Church in Tasmania buys TV time to spread Easter message
The Archdiocese of Hobart has commissioned a prime-time television advertisement which began screening on WIN Television and Southern Cross yesterday.
17 Apr 2003

Pope to sign Eucharist encyclical tonight
Describing it as the "fulcrum of the entire liturgical year", Pope John Paul II is to begin this year's Holy Week Triduum this evening by signing his 14th encyclical letter.
17 Apr 2003

Council says Easter is a time to pray for world peace
Australian Catholic Social Justice Council chairman Bishop William Morris has urged Catholics to take the opportunity at Easter to "enter into the anguish of [Iraqis] and pray that a new Iraq will emerge from this chaos".
17 Apr 2003

Religious groups tell UN that war violates rights of Iraqi children
The most basic rights of Iraqi children have been violated repeatedly by 12 years of economic sanctions and by the US-led war, mainline Christian organisations have told the UN Commission on Human Rights.
17 Apr 2003

Jesuit group backs Iraqi assertion on Australian treatment of Iraqis
The Uniya Jesuit Social Justice Centre has said that liberation of Iraqis should "begin at home" in Australia's detention centres.
17 Apr 2003

Feature - Easter helps us see the big picture of hope
"In a few months we've seen that vision of flood, fire and famine move across our land in one long season of hardship," said incoming ACLRI Executive Director, Dr Kristin Johnston RSJ. "As resurrection people, we religious know there's much more to this life than one bad season."
16 Apr 2003

Opinion - Easter rollercoaster
Did we really believe that his way would give us life? Were we so naďve to hope that together we could make a difference to people's lives? Now it is all over and we feel so disappointed! As we approach the tomb someone says: "Who will roll away the stone for us?" - An Easter Message from Bishop Michael Malone of Maitland-Newcastle
16 Apr 2003

New book includes papal texts on human rights
The Vatican Press has just published a book titled Human Rights in the Teachings of the Church, from John XXIII to John Paul II, which includes papal texts on the rights and duties of the human person.
16 Apr 2003

Malaysian Catholics avoid kissing cross to prevent SARS
In a bid to prevent the spread of the deadly SARS virus, Malaysian Catholics have been told they do not need to kiss the cross in Easter ceremonies.
16 Apr 2003

Sydney seminary head claims vocations "worst is over"
Responding to a "depressing view" of priest numbers proposed by the Sydney Morning Herald last week, Fr Julian Porteous of Good Shepherd Seminary said "positive and hopeful signs" suggest "it is not a time to be pessimistic about the future of the priesthood".
16 Apr 2003

Iraqi Catholics seeking to observe normal Holy Week
The looting and fires still raging in war-torn Iraq are making it difficult for the country's Catholics to observe Holy Week in peace.
16 Apr 2003

Tasmanian archbishop welcomes gambling cap
Archbishop of Hobart Adrian Doyle yesterday congratulated the State Government on its decision to cap the number of gaming machines in Tasmania.
16 Apr 2003

Lobby challenges Govt to bring asylum seeker policy into line with court ruling
Independent Catholic lobbyist PolMin has said yesterday's Federal Court ruling that the Government has no power to detain asylum seekers indefinitely prior to deportation requires urgent Government policy amendment.
16 Apr 2003

Feature - Making the move back to Church
After making the phone call to Our Lady of the Way Parish at Petrie to check the weekend Mass times, reconciliation was the only hurdle left. "It was so terrifying. I rang some friends who I knew were practising Catholics".
15 Apr 2003

Opinion - Diary of a Catholic aid worker
Caritas Iraq, our sister agency, is running emergency health clinics across the country. Our job is to support our Iraqi partners by ensuring that they have access to the resources they need.
15 Apr 2003

Indian women attack nun over school admission
Women members of a ruling party in the western Indian state of Maharashtra blackened a Catholic nun with paint and powder for ignoring political pressure to admit some children into her school.
15 Apr 2003

Zimbabwe church steps up criticism of Mugabe
Zimbabwe's Catholic Church unleashed a stinging criticism of President Robert Mugabe's regime in a pastoral letter yesterday, accusing it of "frightening" abuses of human rights, misrule and corruption.
15 Apr 2003

Pope could meet with Russian Patriarch to return icon
Pope John Paul II might hold a long-anticipated meeting with Russian Orthodox Patriarch Alexei II in August, according to Vatican sources.
15 Apr 2003

Canadians hand World Youth Day Cross to Germans
Pope John Paul II and 40,000 pilgrims watched Canadian youths hand over the World Youth Day cross to their German counterparts, who are preparing for WYD 2005 in Cologne.
15 Apr 2003

Archbishop says Iraqi war has further radicalised southern Philippines
The war in Iraq has further "radicalised" Islamic separatists in the southern Philippines, including Muslim youths who may decide to join or even start terrorist groups, said a Philippine archbishop.
15 Apr 2003

Iraqi Christians look ahead to uncertain future
Christians at the cathedral in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk said on Sunday their prayers for peace had been answered, but what comes after the fall of Saddam Hussein is what worries them now.
15 Apr 2003

Feature - Vatican wants equal time for world's simmering wars
Now that unprecedented news coverage has brought the war in Iraq into living rooms around the globe, the Vatican wants equal time for many of the "off-screen" wars simmering in more than 30 other countries.
14 Apr 2003

Opinion - We will not be silenced
Never before in the history of the world have average people been able to be mobilized to this extent, with this kind of clarity, toward this kind of goal. Let the people who plan wars beware. - Sr Joan Chittister, OSB
14 Apr 2003

Catholic Health highlights Govt shame on mental health
Catholic Health Australia CEO Francis Sullivan has told a Mental Health Council gathering that Commonwealth, State and Territory governments have "become complacent" and "not held their side of the bargain" on "real" mental health reform.
14 Apr 2003

Catholic Welfare says national strategy is way to tackle poverty
Catholic Welfare Australia has described as "lukewarm" the State and Federal Governments' collective commitment to fighting poverty in Australia.
14 Apr 2003

Govt accused of failing Aboriginies on reconciliation
Religious and Church organisations have unleashed a damning wave of criticism of the Federal Government for its lack of leadership on Aboriginal reconciliation, according to The Catholic Leader.
14 Apr 2003

Australian Catholic women set to create "culture of peace"
Three bodies in the Australian Church are combining forces in an attempt to foster a "culture of peace" through various activities taking place in the wake of the project's launch on Easter Sunday.
14 Apr 2003

Palm Sunday peace marches include many first-timers
Many thousands of people took to the streets around the country yesterday to march against the war in Iraq and for world peace.
14 Apr 2003

Martino says UN's role needed now more than ever
In the wake of the military intervention in Iraq, Vatican Archbishop Renato Martino says a world authority that will ensure peace and promote the development of peoples is more necessary than ever.
14 Apr 2003

Feature - All that heaven holds
The Benedictine community of New Norcia, Western Australia, has played midwife to the European Space Agency's first deep space ground station, a 40 metre high, 600 tonne antenn built on a property 10 km outside the monastic town.
11 Apr 2003

Opinion - Pope gets credit for averting anti-Christian backlash
Although John Paul II's opposition did not fail to stop the war in Iraq, it may have succeeded in brokering a separate peace between Christians and Muslims in the Islamic world. - John Allen
11 Apr 2003

Thousands rush for Vatican collector's coins
Scuffles broke out outside the Vatican's gates yesterday as thousands of people, many of them having queued for more than 24 hours, waited to buy a limited edition of Vatican coins.
11 Apr 2003

Fall in clergy sex abuse complaints
The Church is getting on top of the sexual abuse problem, according to the national director of Australian Catholic Bishops' Towards Healing strategy Sr Angela Ryan.
11 Apr 2003

John XXIII's peace message maintains relevance after 40 years
The Australian Catholic Social Justice Council (ACSJC) says today's 40th anniversary of Pope John XXIII's landmark encyclical Pacem in Terris provides us with an opportunity to reflect on the powerful document that still contributes to the Church's understanding of peace.
11 Apr 2003

Kimberley bishop warns Govt on cannibis tolerance
Bishop Christopher Saunders of Broome says the Western Australian Government's cannabis control legislation will increase use of the drug in Aboriginal communities where it is already causing dysfunction.
11 Apr 2003

Caritas sending medical supplies to Baghdad
Caritas Australia national director Jack de Goot has said the disaster preparedness program, organised over many months, is "working well", although we must now look to respond to the changing environment inside Iraq, where many families have been left destitute.
11 Apr 2003

Carroll says "successful" war is still an immoral war
Australian Catholic Bishops Conference president Archbishop Francis Carroll has said the apparent "successful" outcome of the war does not alter the Bishops' doubts about its morality.
11 Apr 2003

Feature - Man on a mission
Dr Chris Millar's mother Monika, believes that life unfolds in a zigzag fashion. His desire to study Medicine was realised, however he was successful rather than satisfied, so he resigned to pursue a longheld dream of missionary work in the Solomons
10 Apr 2003

Opinion - Merton learned meditation conquers restlessness but not overnight
Thomas Merton's restlessness and bad habits made it difficult for him to commit himself to anything in a consistent way. Later, as a Trappist monk he discovered restlessness, cannot be turned on and off like a water tap. - Ronald Rolheiser OMI
10 Apr 2003

Australians head to Rome for World Youth Day conference
Two young Australians have left for Rome to join 230 leaders of youth ministry from all over the world in laying plans for the next World Youth Day celebration, to be held in Cologne, Germany in 2005.
10 Apr 2003

Martino says development must benefit all
If world development is to be complete, it must reach everyone, says the president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, Archbishop Renato Martino.
10 Apr 2003

General Absolution latest anti-SARS measure in Singapore
Archbishop Nicholas Chia of Singapore has issued a series of new directives as further steps to contain a virulent pneumonia that has killed nine people in the country.
10 Apr 2003

Pope appeals for end to massacres in Africa
In a week dominated by the war in Iraq, the Holy Father turned his mind to Africa and decried the violence happening in several countries.
10 Apr 2003

Catholic clergy drain ahead of others
The Catholic Church in Australia has experienced the fastest clergy attrition rate of all religious affiliations - 18.2% - since 1996.
10 Apr 2003

US official says Vatican offers 'concrete proposals' on Iraqi aid
As US troops consolidated their control over the Iraqi capital, the Vatican offered "concrete proposals" to the United States on how church groups can help distribute humanitarian aid in the war-scarred country, a US official said.
10 Apr 2003

Feature - Catholic boys jump the Muslim fence to play
As wars raged around the world, cross-cultural peace existed in Melbourne yesterday. More than 50 grade 6 boys from Xavier College visited King Khalid Islamic College for a harmony workshop with a class of their peers.
9 Apr 2003

Opinion - Good news on the liturgy
On Holy Thursday, Pope John Paul II will release a new encyclical dealing with the centrality of the Mass and Holy Communion in the life of the Church. "It is necessary to purify worship of deformations, of careless forms of expression, of ill-prepared music and texts, which are not very suited to the grandeur of the act being celebrated," he said in a weekly audience.
9 Apr 2003

First Catholic named vice chairman of Chinese National People's Congress
The election of a government-recognised bishop as the first Catholic in the leadership of China's top legislative body has drawn varying reactions from mainland Church leaders and Church-in-China observers.
9 Apr 2003

Church scandal nets award for Boston newspaper
The Boston Globe won the 2003 Pulitzer Prize for journalism in public service on Monday for "courageous, comprehensive coverage" of the clergy sex abuse scandal that led to sweeping changes in the US Catholic church.
9 Apr 2003

Nuns found guilty in missile break-in
Three nuns were found guilty on Monday of sabotage and malicious destruction of property for breaking into a US missile silo in northern Colorado last year in a peace protest.
9 Apr 2003

New bishop for Melbourne Archdiocese
Pope John Paul II has appointed Vicar-General of the Archdiocese of Melbourne, Monsignor Bishop Prowse, as an auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese.
9 Apr 2003

Holy Land military incursions block Catholic aid delivery
Caritas Jerusalem was prevented from delivering equipment to children in the town of Zababdeh north of Ramallah last week.
9 Apr 2003

Caritas fears medical equipment lost in hospital blast
Caritas Internationalis is worried that the vital medical equipment it recently donated to the Iraq Red Crescent Society hospital on the edge of Baghdad may not have survived the bombing of the compound last Wednesday.
9 Apr 2003

Feature - Brisbane priest joins historic expedition to Mt Everest
Fr Morgan Batt set off at the weekend as part of an expedition to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the ascent of Mt Everest. He said: "Mountains teach me about life because they always present different scenarios to you and you have to rely on your whole accumulated life experience of body, mind and soul to survive them."
8 Apr 2003

Opinion - Less money adds up to more freedom
Until we can define what "enough" is for us in terms of money, we will never be truly free - free, that is, to define our real purpose in life. We will, instead, be volunteer slaves to our employer or profession, subordinate to the priorities of others. - Charles Handy, former British oil executive and economist.
8 Apr 2003

Pope gets lift at altar from electric seat
The Pope is now using a special throne at public events that can be raised at the push of a button to enable him to celebrate mass as though he was standing up.
8 Apr 2003

Clergy sex scandals called threat to free worship
Litigation associated with with clergy sex abuse threatens religious liberty more than a tyrannical government, according to prominent legal scholars at a conference at the weekend at Boston College law school.
8 Apr 2003

Korean Church acts to curb teen Net addiction
A survey revealing that one in five teenagers in South Korea is "addicted" to the Internet has prompted Church media officials to call for pastoral programs to give relevant guidance to Catholic youth.
8 Apr 2003

Shorter Catechism in preparation for Papua New Guinea
A new "inculturated" adaption of the Catechism of the Catholic Church will serve as the basis for preparing future catechisms in English and pidgin English for various age groups.
8 Apr 2003

Vatican observer warns against "lawless" sex tourism
Archbishop Pietro Monni is worried about the sex tourism "legal vacuum", and has called for an appreciation of the efforts by religious institutions to combat pedophilia.
8 Apr 2003

Pope prays for civilians in Iraq
Pope John Paul, one of the main voices opposed to the US-led war in Iraq, prayed on Sunday for the "defenceless" civilians caught in the crossfire in Iraq and urged a quick end to the fighting.
8 Apr 2003

Feature - War brings suffering to places of Old Testament
In Iraq, the US military advance toward Baghdad cut a swath through biblical sites where some of the earliest chapters of the Old Testament were written.
7 Apr 2003

Opinion - 'Terror alert' appropriate warning for TV war coverage
Both for our children's sake and our own, we should be questioning the things we are being told and the images we are being shown. Is it any wonder that Pope John Paul has said that war "is always a defeat for humanity"?
7 Apr 2003

Journal says Eucharist fundamental to definition of 'Church'
The authoritative Italian journal Civilta Cattolica has argued that only a community that celebrates the Eucharist can be accurately described as a "church".
7 Apr 2003

Indian bishop warns on GM as crop fails
Thousands of farmers have been left in the lurch in eastern India after the failure of a crop of genetically modified maize.
7 Apr 2003

Franciscans request Jakarta to halt Papua paramilitary training
Franciscans International (FI) is petitioning the Indonesian Government to call a halt to its attempts to create paramilitary forces in the Indonesian provinces that make up West Papua.
7 Apr 2003

Vatican hosts scientific seminar on paedophilia
The Vatican, rocked by priestly sexual abuse scandals in several countries, has hosted a closed-door seminar of top officials and international medical experts on the problem of paedophilia.
7 Apr 2003

Proposed changes signal end of Medicare
A move by the Federal Government to introduce gap insurance for doctors' fees would threaten the universality of Medicare, Catholic Health Australia CEO Francis Sullivan said on Friday.
7 Apr 2003

Baghdad bishops plead for end of 'atrocious' bombing
The Catholic and Orthodox bishops of Baghdad have appealed for a ceasefire as the United States-led invasion of Iraq entered its second week.
7 Apr 2003

Feature - Needy children worse off than ever
Children in under-developed countries across the globe are worse off than ever and the situation is deteriorating, according to Fr Patrick Byrne, a Vatican-based priest who champions the cause of the world's poorest children.
4 Apr 2003

Opinion - Waning devotions may be sign of liturgical health
Private devotions flourish when the church's liturgical life is poorly understood or when it does not satisfy the spiritual needs of ordinary people. - Fr Richard P. McBrien
4 Apr 2003

Lutherans on board for Pius XII smear reversal
Lutheran church historian Gerhard Besier has jumped to Pope Pius XII's defence by chiding writer Daniel Goldhagen, one of the participants of a perceived campaign to discredit the wartime Pope.
4 Apr 2003

Charismatic Renewal leader dies
The Church is mourning the death of Brian Smith, a leading figure in the Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR) nationally and internationally.
4 Apr 2003

Family and friends farewell Fr John Brosnan
More than 2000 packed Melbourne's St Patrick's Cathedral yesterday morning for the state funeral of Fr John Brosnan who died last week aged 83.
4 Apr 2003

One diocese sues another over sex abuse
The Diocese of San Bernardino, California, has sued the Archdiocese of Boston, alleging that Boston officials hid the history of sexual molestation by former priest Paul Shanley when he moved to California.
4 Apr 2003

Hong Kong, Singapore church activities curtailed due to SARS
Catholic Church services during Holy Week in Hong Kong will be curtailed as an increasing number of people are infected with a deadly pneumonia virus.
4 Apr 2003

Vatican warning on new reign of terror
The Vatican's foreign affairs expert, Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran, warned the war on Iraq would generate terrorism and seriously wound Christian-Muslim dialogue.
4 Apr 2003

Feature - Aborigines turning to Islam
A growing number of young Aborigines in Australia are converting to Islam. Many have embraced the religion for spiritual reasons, while others insist it gives them a way to escape the oppression suffered by the country's indigenous population.
3 Apr 2003

Opinion - Disposing of blessed items
As Catholics, we are accustomed to having religious objects blessed. However, blessed religious objects break or wear from use. The basic rule for the disposition of these items is to burn or to bury them.
3 Apr 2003

California parish broadcasts broadcasts on low-powered radio
A parish priest in the US is broadcasting the Message of the Gospel from his parish's own small-scale FM radio station.
3 Apr 2003

Media priest to be beatified
"Media priest" Fr James Alberione will be beatified by the Pope later this month, much to the joy of the Pauline family Catholic movement he founded.
3 Apr 2003

Brosnan Centre farewells Fr Brosnan
On the day of the State Funeral recognising the life and work of former prison chaplain Fr John Brosnan, the youth and the staff of the Brosnan Centre in Melbourne said their own humble farewell.
3 Apr 2003

Vic rural parishes to hold ritual of apology
Parishes across the Gippsland region in Victoria, will take part in a ritual of apology next week "to redress past hurts".
3 Apr 2003

Catholic IR body supports Minimum Wage Rates above poverty line
The Australian Catholic Commission for Employment Relations (ACCER) has issued a statement calling for minimum wage rates to be set at levels which ensure low paid workers are not living below the poverty line.
3 Apr 2003

Caritas network provides shelter for refugees in Iraq
The Caritas Internationalis network is working to assess the food needs of displaced civilians in Iraq.
3 Apr 2003

Catholic body calls for Minimum Wage Rates above poverty line
Catholic body calls for Minimum Wage Rates above poverty line
3 Apr 2003

Feature - Lack of priests threatens Newcastle monastery
After a 120-year-long chapter in NSW's spiritual history, the Redemptorist Monastery in the suburb of Mayfield is likely to close as its membership becomes older and fewer. Its rector, Father Bill Goldman said: "We have to restructure, and Mayfield is one we have to possibly let go."
2 Apr 2003

Opinion - Mel's Jesus not everybody's Messiah
Movie makers know that a dose of pre-release controversy can work wonders for their films at the box office. But even such modern marketing techniques don't quite explain the flak Mel Gibson is drawing over the film he is making based on the final hours in the life of Jesus. - Chris McGillion
2 Apr 2003

Pope confirms intention to return Icon of Our Lady of Kazan to Russia
Pope John Paul has confirmed his intention to return the Icon of Our Lady of Kazan to Russia, according to speaker of the Russian Federation Council Sergei Mironov, who was addressing journalists following an audience with the Holy Father.
2 Apr 2003

US nuns go on trial for Military break-in
With anti-war protesters cheering them on, three nuns went on trial on Monday for alleged sabotage and malicious destruction of property related to a break-in at an unmanned missile silo in northern Colorado.
2 Apr 2003

Boston archdiocese refuses contributions
Boston's Catholic archdiocese is refusing donations from a lay reform group, and is telling its social services agency to do the same.
2 Apr 2003

Theologian Küng seeks reconciliation with Rome
The prominent Swiss theologian Fr Hans Küng wants to convince Rome that he is a loyal Catholic despite their disagreements, and believes that he and the Vatican could achieve a "pragmatic reconciliation".
2 Apr 2003

Contact lost with Caritas teams in Baghdad following bombing
A coalition of Catholic aid agencies lost contact with the Caritas team in Baghdad following the bombing of a communications centre, according to a spokesperson for Catholic Relief Services (the US Caritas member agency).
2 Apr 2003

Eucharist Encyclical due out on Holy Thursday
John Paul II plans to sign his forthcoming encyclical on the Eucharist during the Mass of the Lord's Last Supper on Holy Thursday.
2 Apr 2003

Feature - US troops returning to Church in droves
Kuwait-based Catholic chaplain Fr Timothy Hogan considers himself a freedom fighter. But he isn't freeing people from Saddam Hussein. He's freeing people from sin.
32 Apr 2003

Opinion - Extinction of the Just War theory
John Paul's unease over the state's use of force was perhaps first evident in his earlier treatment of the death penalty: that while it may be acceptable in principle, the state now has alternatives that make it all but impossible to justify in practice. In recent interviews, Archbishop Renato Martino, head of the Pontifical Council for Peace and Justice, explicitly says that classic just-war teaching may now be headed the way of the death penalty. - William McGurn
32 Apr 2003

McCartney told let sleeping Pope lie
Ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney, one year into a world tour stretching from the United States to Japan, has been told to keep the volume down when he gets to Rome in May for fear of disturbing the Holy Father.
32 Apr 2003

Manila Cardinal recovering from stroke
Doctors attending to Manila Archbishop Jaime Cardinal Sin said that he will be released from the hospital today or tomorrow, according to an auxililary bishop in his diocese, Bishop Socrates Villegas said yesterday.
32 Apr 2003

Catholic lobbyists welcome review of Medicare
Independent Catholic lobby group PolMin has welcomed the Federal Government's review of Medicare as a step towards giving Australians living in regional areas have the same level of service as those in urban areas.
32 Apr 2003

Catholic Commission supports unions wage claim
The Australian Catholic Commission for Employment Relations (ACCER) has backed the ACTU's annual wage bid on behalf of the nation's lowest paid workers that is due to begin in Melbourne.
32 Apr 2003

Pope tells Indonesian bishops war must not be allowed to divide world's religions
Pope John Paul II stressed the importance of not allowing war to divide religions, warning that a human catastrophe could also become a religious catastrophe.
32 Apr 2003

Pax Christi International urges end to iraq war
The international Catholic peace group Pax Christi has encouraged and endorsed all efforts to bring an end to the "illegal and immoral war" and is "deeply concerned about the emerging humanitarian crisis".
32 Apr 2003