World News

Wed

01

May

2019

Relics Rescued as Notre Dame Cathedral Burns

by David O'Neill

 

On April 15, the world watched as the Cathedral of Notre Dame burned. The Cathedral—whose construction began in 1260­­—caught fire at 6:20 P.M. Security guards could not locate a fire at the time, but the evening Mass for the Monday of Holy Week was called off and the church was evacuated. Twenty-three minutes later, the fire was seen­­­­ burning between the stone vault ceiling and the lead roof. The flames had invaded a lattice of over 1,300 extremely flammable wood beams, which dated back to the Middle Ages. The fire burned for five hours as 400 firefighters attempted to quell the flames and rescue sacred artifacts from within the church. French authorities have yet to determine the cause of the fire.

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Wed

01

May

2019

Conservative Supreme Court Sparks Pro-life Legislation

by Patrick Stallwood

 

 

With a conservative majority in the Supreme Court, a series of pro-life legislation has emerged, with pro-choice proposals to counter. Here is a summary of abortion bills currently being debated and laws that have recently been passed.

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Wed

01

May

2019

Pope Emeritus Releases Essay on Scandals

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI prays the Rosary at Fatima in 2010
Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI prays the Rosary at Fatima in 2010

by Mathieu Ronayne

 

On April 11, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI published an essay analyzing the Catholic sex abuse scandal and the resulting impact upon the Church. He prefaced the work with an outline of its three parts. He writes, “In the first part, I aim to present briefly the wider social context of the question, without which the problem cannot be understood.…In the second part, I aim to point out the effects of this situation on the formation of priests and on the lives of priests.…Finally, in the third part, I would like to develop some perspectives for a proper response on the part of the Church.”

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Mon

22

Apr

2019

Boston Cathedral Reopens to Public

Séan Cardinal O'Malley, O.F.M. Cap., preaches in the newly renovated Cathedral on Tuesday of Holy Week. (OLIVIA COLOMBO | THE TORCH)
Séan Cardinal O'Malley, O.F.M. Cap., preaches in the newly renovated Cathedral on Tuesday of Holy Week. (OLIVIA COLOMBO | THE TORCH)

by Olivia Colombo

 

On April 11, for Palm Sunday Mass, the Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston opened to the public for the first time after two years of renovation. The site is the seat of the cardinal archbishop of Boston and the largest cathedral in New England, and has undergone major upgrades, most notably to the flooring, pews, and sanctuary. With a budget of $26 million provided by private philanthropy, the renovation benefits not only the worship space for the “mother church” of Boston, but also its many ministries, which aid the homeless, hungry, and sick in the area. 

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Wed

17

Apr

2019

“Christ is Alive”: Pope Francis Releases Exhortation to Young People

Pope Francis meets youth in the Pope Paul VI Audience Hall
Pope Francis meets youth in the Pope Paul VI Audience Hall

by Tess Daniels

 

On March 25, Pope Francis promulgated an apostolic exhortation entitled Christus Vivit, or “Christ is Alive.” The nine-chapter document is dedicated “to young people and to the entire people of God.” Francis explains that the document was inspired by the “wealth of reflections and conversations of the Synod” on Young People, which was celebrated in the Vatican in October 2018.

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Sat

06

Apr

2019

Pope Francis Refuses Cardinal Barbarin’s Resignation Offer

Phillipe Cardinal Barbarin pictured at World Youth Day 2011.
Phillipe Cardinal Barbarin pictured at World Youth Day 2011.

by Patrick Stallwood


On March 18, Philippe Cardinal Barbarin, Archbishop of Lyon, France, met with Pope Francis to hand in his resignation. Word emerged the next day that the pontiff had refused to accept this decision. The news comes after a March 7 verdict that found Barbarin guilty of failing to report accusations of sexual abuse against priest Rev. Bernard Preynat. Barbarin has been given a six-month suspended sentence, but claims he is being unjustly accused. Following the conviction, Barbarin’s lawyers have appealed the court decision.

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Wed

27

Mar

2019

Pope Francis to Unseal Archives on Pius XII in 2020

by Patrick Stallwood and Mathieu Ronayne

 

On March 4, Pope Francis announced that the Vatican will unseal the archives on Pope Pius XII, the Pontiff who reigned during World War II. Many Jewish groups have condemned Pope Pius XII for not taking action to help Jews during the Holocaust, sometimes going as far to say that he was completely silent. Pope Francis acknowledged that Pius XII’s papacy contains “moments of grave difficulties, tormented decisions of human and Christian prudence, that to some could appear as reticence.”

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Wed

27

Mar

2019

Perspective: The Church and the Humanitarian Crisis in Haiti

by Tess Daniels

 

Over the past few decades, the world has watched Haiti go through cycles of violence, corruption, and insurrection. In 2008, food riots led to emergency plans and the dismissal of the president. A cholera outbreak, gang violence, and political protests all contributed to an atmosphere of turmoil in the country. Former presidents were put on trial for corruption and human rights abuses charges. Haiti’s army was disbanded from 1995-2012 for its role in past coups and its history of crime. As recently as February 2019, at least four people were killed and dozens injured in nationwide anti-corruption protests against President Moise and other officials.

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