News Briefs

Marcello Di Finizio, a 49-year-old Italian, scaled the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica to protest Italian and European economic policy on Oct. 2 and remained there unobserved until the next day, when thousands assembled for Pope Benedict XVI’s weekly general audience. • The Vatican on Sept. 29 appointed Roza Pati, a professor of law at Miami’s St. Thomas University School of Law, to the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and named Msgr. Martin Schlag, a professor at Rome’s Pontifical University of the Holy Cross, as a consultant to the council. • On Oct. 20 the Joseph Ratzinger (Benedict XVI) Vatican Foundation will honor the American Jesuit Brian E. Daley, a professor of theology at the University of Notre Dame. • Coptic families are fleeing the city of Rafah in northern Egypt after Islamist militants distributed leaflets warning Christians to leave and then opened fire on a Coptic-owned shop on Sept. 26. • The appeal of blasphemy charges against Rimsha Masih, a 14-year-old Pakistani Christian girl, has been postponed, alarming supporters already worried after three of four witnesses who accused an imam of planting evidence against her retracted their testimonies.

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