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The Catholic Register offers its readers dependable information and opinion as a joyful servant of God's pilgrim church.

As traumatized civilians in war-torn Syria face little near-term hope of returning to their homes, Canada’s refugee resettlement program is running on low battery and needs to be re-charged.

Speak up on intolerance

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Fall temperatures will empty beaches in southern France and bring a natural end to the burkini furor and ugly confrontations that have triggered a worldwide debate. But the underlying tension won’t be folded away with the beach blankets. And that is unsettling.

Words to live by

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Only a handful of Catholics are quoted more often than Mother Teresa. Even today, 19 years after her death, the words of the saintly sister still resonate whenever the topic is mercy and compassion.

Break the silence

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Is the West’s tepid response to the religious cleansing of Syrian and Iraqi Christians a sign of naivety, greed or maybe cowardice? Or is there a Machiavellian strategy to ease religious tension in the region by silently watching a 2,000-year-old Christian presence simply fade away?

Relieving pain

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Widespread abuse of prescription painkillers is a major problem that governments are right to address. But Ontario’s recent move to become the first Canadian jurisdiction to eliminate high-dosage opioid medications from its provincial drug plan goes a step too far.

The Pope gets it

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Next to the Pope, the Vatican’s most quoted person is probably the papal spokesman. In an often thankless job, the spokesman makes official announcements, corrects misinformation, fields reporters’ queries and, generally, is the public face of a Church that is frequently misunderstood.

Heed Brexit lesson

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British bishops were quick to condemn a surge in racist and xenophobic incidents that followed the divisive vote that saw Great Britain bid adieu to the European Union. In the aftermath of the Brexit referendum, police reported a 57-per-cent spike in verbal and physical assaults on visible minorities, immigrants and even on some long-time residents born abroad.

Protection for all

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Give credit to the federal government for recently acknowledging that the systematic murder, rape and enslavement of the Yazidi people of Iraq and Syria constitutes genocide. But why stop there? 

Get it done

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The prevailing legal vacuum around assisted suicide is unacceptable and begs a speedy end to the head-butting between the elected House of Commons and the unelected Senate — even if that means politicians forgoing summer vacations.

It’s about time

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Change comes slowly at the Vatican. On the issue of clerical sexual abuse of children, Rome’s methodical approach has caused Pope Francis to endure barbs for dallying on a pledge to get tough on abusers within the Church.

Women in the Church

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Much ado followed a recent impromptu promise by Pope Francis to study the role of women deacons in Church history. His  simple pledge to convene a commission to look into what Francis called an “obscure” historical question was widely — and wildly — interpreted as a thumbs up for a female diaconate.