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Maria de Lourdes Ruiz Scaperlanda, a writer and author in the Catholic press since 1982, received the 2016 St. Francis de Sales Award from the Catholic Press Association during its annual conference in St. Louis, Mo., on June 3. • The treacherous Mediterranean Sea crossing from Libya to Italy claimed the lives of over 1,030 migrants in the last week of May, as overloaded and barely seaworthy smuggling boats foundered and sank despite calm seas and clear skies. • India, with more than 18.5 million people trapped in modern slavery—40 percent of the total of 45.8 million—topped a global slavery index released by the Walk Free Foundation on June 3. • “Nothing unites us to God more than an act of mercy,” Pope Francis said at a Vatican retreat for priests on June 2, adding, “for it is by mercy that the Lord forgives our sins and gives us the grace to practice acts of mercy in his name.” • European funding for Catholic aid agencies based in the United Kingdom could be withdrawn if the British people vote on June 23 to leave the European Union, Auxiliary Bishop William Kenney of Birmingham warned on May 28.

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Native American protestors hold hands with parishioner Nathanial Hall, right, during a group prayer outside the Catholic Diocese of Covington on Jan. 22, 2019, in Covington, Ky. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
The furor over a chance meeting between Catholic high school students and Native American protesters underscores the need to listen and learn from indigenous voices.
Marlene LangJanuary 23, 2019
The staggering parliamentary defeat for Prime Minister Theresa May, seen here leaving 10 Downing Street on Jan. 23, pushed the country even further from safe dry land. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)
After the stunning defeat of Theresa May's exit deal, Scotland is looking anew at independence, and the U.K. government fears economic disaster.
David StewartJanuary 23, 2019
Michael Osborne, a film director, documents the damage from a mud slide next to his home in Los Angeles on Jan. 18, after three days of heavy rain. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)
The conceit of California-as-disaster-movie is ridiculous. But maybe watching our fires and mudslides helps other states consider both their own fragility and their underlying strength.
Jim McDermottJanuary 23, 2019
A commitment to religious liberty demands that effort be devoted to resolving, rather than exacerbating, any real or apparent tension between religious obligation and civil duty.
The EditorsJanuary 23, 2019