Archbishop Lawrence Saldanha of Lahore has written to Pakistan’s president expressing concern over a regulation that allows Islamic law to be implemented in northwestern Pakistan. “We note with sorrow that your government has failed to take stock of the concerns of civil society,” he said. • By proposing to allow the use of federal funds for stem-cell research on embryos, the National Institutes of Health opens “a new chapter in divorcing biomedical research from its necessary ethical foundation,” said Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia on April 21. • The Catholic bishops of New York State called for the defeat of legislation proposed by New York Gov. David A. Paterson on April 16 that would permit same-sex marriages. • U.S. Catholics are generally optimistic about their church, according to the 2009 LeMoyne-Zogby Contemporary Catholic Trends survey released in April. Close to three-fourths of those responding said they were at least somewhat optimistic about the church’s future: 36 percent said they were very optimistic; and 37 percent were somewhat optimistic. • The Benedictine priest Stanley L. Jaki (right), a Hungarian-born author, physicist, philosopher and theologian, died on April 7 in Madrid. He was 84.