News Briefs

As France continues its campaign to expel foreign-born Roma, Pope Benedict XVI called on Aug. 22 for greater acceptance of cultural differences and urged parents to teach their children “universal fraternity.” • Opposition to September’s papal visit to Scotland is dramatically smaller than some had predicted, with one survey reporting that as few as 2 percent of Scots are “strongly opposed” to the visit. • Catholic Charities USA, one of the nation’s largest social service networks, will celebrate its 100th anniversary on Sept. 25 to 28 in Washington, D.C. • The Rev. Raimon Panikkar, a great scholar of comparative religion, theology and interreligious dialogue, died at his home in Tavertet, near Barcelona, Spain, on Aug. 26. He was 91. • Citing the abundant blessings that have followed the suffering and deaths caused by Hurricane Katrina, Archbishop Gregory M. Aymond of New Orleans marked the fifth anniversary of the nation’s worst natural disaster on Aug. 29 with a Mass and an interfaith prayer service at St. Louis Cathedral. • The German Catholic Church will require all employees who work with young people to obtain police checks and undergo psychiatric tests when necessary, under new guidelines published Aug. 31.

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