News Briefs

The highest court in Britain has ordered a clarification of the law on assisted suicide after hearing a plea from a multiple sclerosis sufferer who wanted to know if her husband would be prosecuted if he helped her to travel to a euthanasia clinic in Switzerland. More than 100 British citizens have killed themselves in the clinic. • Seven Catholics who were detained after a violent police raid at a disputed Vietnamese church site will face criminal charges, a Vietnamese official announced July 28. The group was taken into custody on July 20 after trying to erect a cross at the ruins of a parish church that had been destroyed by U.S. bombers during the Vietnam War. The bishop’s office of the Vinh Diocese immediately denounced the decision. • The Mexican Catholic bishops’ conference has criticized federal police for bursting into a Mass in Mexico’s western Michoacan State to apprehend an alleged drug-cartel lieutenant. “We make an energetic protest against the lack of respect and the violence,” the bishops said on Aug. 3. • Despite a personal request from Pope Benedict XVI and repeated requests by Christian leaders in Turkey, the Turkish government has decided that the only church in Tarsus, the city of St. Paul’s birth, will remain a government museum. The Church of St. Paul, built as a Catholic church in the 1800s, was confiscated by the government in 1943.

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In a video, His Holiness Pope Francis speaks at TED2017, April 25, 2017, Vancouver, BC, Canada. Photo: Ryan Lash / TED
Pope Francis asked all people to work toward a future that lifts up society’s most marginalized, including migrants, the sick, the unemployed and prisoners.
Michael J. O'LoughlinApril 26, 2017
Edward Lally (center) is joined by his schola, Sarah Coffman, Katherine Keberlein, Ngaire Bull and Sarah Beatty, at St. Edward's Catholic Church in Chicago on April 8, 2017. Photo courtesy of Sarah Beatty.
With chant “you’re expressing something in pure melody."
Judith ValenteApril 25, 2017
Vivian Tuttle holds a photo of her daughter Yvonne, who was murdered during a 2002 bank robbery in Norfolk, Neb., as she testifies in favor of the death penalty at a public hearing in Omaha, Neb. in October 2016 (AP Photo/Nati Harnik, file).
The fight against the death penalty lays bare the strengths and weaknesses of the Catholic approach to pro-life issues.
Joseph P. HooverApril 25, 2017
Bill Nye's gags are every bit as goofy as they were in the ’90s. But his new show on Netflix is weighed down by a condescending attitude.
Eric Sundrup, S.J.April 25, 2017