News Briefs

Opponents of capital punishment praised the decision by Oregon’s Gov. John Kitzhaber, right, on Nov. 22 to maintain a moratorium on the death penalty for the rest of his term. • The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops approved $1.35 million in grants to aid pastoral work in 14 countries across Africa. • Indonesian police were able to head off an attempt by Islamic extremists in Bekasi, a suburb of Jakarta, to raze six Christian churches in the area. • Hundreds marched in Arakan Valley in Mindanao, Philippines, to demand an end to human rights abuses and call for justice for the Rev. Fausto Tentorio, whose murder in October may have been related to a struggle against powerful mining interests. • The New Jersey Catholic Conference plans four anti-poverty task forces that will “identify pragmatic recommendations to help strengthen families, improve schools, reduce unemployment, assure living wages and increase affordable housing.” • Church leaders in Kerala State, India, have expressed shock and outrage over the killing of Sister Valsa John of the Sisters of Charity of Jesus and Mary, a campaigner for tribal rights in eastern India who was hacked to death in her home.

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In this photo taken May 19, 2017, a GPO worker stacks copies of "Analytical Perspectives Budget of the U.S. Government Fiscal Year 2018" onto a pallet at the U.S. Government Publishing Office's (GPO) plant in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
The budget’s moral measure will be assessed by “how well it promotes the common good of all,” the bishops write.
Kevin ClarkeMay 22, 2017
A veteran activist provides a blueprint for creating a movement in the moment of Trump.
Nathan SchneiderMay 22, 2017
Given the number of those in the California legal system today who are Latino, “you can guess a large percentage of them are Catholic.”
Jim McDermottMay 22, 2017
Pope Francis waves during a visit to give an Easter blessing to homes in a public housing complex in Ostia, a Rome suburb on the Mediterranean Sea, May 19 (CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano).
Vatican leaders seem quietly confident that the meeting will go well.
Gerard O'ConnellMay 22, 2017