News Briefs

Criticizing a federal judge's ruling in two Massachusetts cases that a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional, Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Ky., chairman of the U.S. bishops' Ad Hoc Committee for the Defense of Marriage, said July 12: "To claim that defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman is somehow irrational, prejudiced or even bigoted is a great disservice not only to truth but the good of the nation." • Former seminarian Zhang Wenping was arrested in Hohhot, the regional capital of Inner Mongolia, July 8 and is being questioned in the murder of Father Joseph Zhang Shulai and Sister Mary Wei Yanhui, who were found dead on July 6. • Paul Leo Locatelli, S.J. 71, who served for 20 years as president of Santa Clara University and has been serving as its chancellor, died July 12 in Santa Clara of complications from pancreatic cancer. • Rev. William R. Callahan, a leading activist for peace and social justice, died July 5 at Community Hospice in Washington of complications from Parkinson's disease. He was 78. • More than 400 people packed the chapel of a La Salle Brothers' school near downtown Lima, Peru for a July 8 vigil in support of British Brother Paul McAuley, who has been threatened with expulsion from the country. For the past decade, Brother Paul has worked with indigenous youths and an environmental network in the Amazonian lowlands. • Pope Benedict XVI named Italian Archbishop Velasio De Paolis, an expert in church law who specializes in religious institutes, to be his personal delegate with authority over the Legionaries of Christ on July 9. • U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon reiterated his call for an end to the building of settlements in Jerusalem July 1, stressing that the construction damages trust and stokes unrest in the region.

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An explosive device was detonated outside the offices of the Mexican bishops' conference, directly across the street from the country's most visited religious site, the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. walks from the Senate Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, July 25, 2017, as he steers the Senate toward a crucial vote on the Republican health care bill. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Republican proposals “exclude too many people, including immigrants,” Bishop Frank J. Dewane said in a statement.
Without quite knowing it, I had begun to rely on the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church.
Elizabeth BruenigJuly 25, 2017
A demonstration for affordable health care in New York City on July 13. Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Fla., chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, called on the Senate July 21 to fix problems with the Affordable Care Act in a more narrow way, rather than repeal it without an adequate replacement. (CNS photo/Andrew Gombert, EPA)
The sisters say that they are “most troubled by the cuts it would make to Medicaid by ending the Medicaid expansion and instituting a per capita cap [on spending].”