WASHINGTON - Readers of the Bible may recall the passage in Chapter 4 of Luke that presages the start of Jesus' public ministry, in which Jesus said, in part: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives."

Published in International

NEW ORLEANS - While the annual number of abortions in the U.S. has dropped from a high of 1.6 million in 1990 to about 1.06 million today, the number of chemical abortions through the use of RU-486 has increased and now represents about 25 per cent of all abortions.

Published in International

The early evening was warm and the sun had brought out the convertibles with their roofs down and music blaring. I was walking down Jarvis Street and passing Allan Gardens.

Published in Guest Columns

Once, across a crowded meeting room, I recognized a face. Our eyes locked. Weeks earlier, this person and I had attended the same retreat. We both knew we needed to steal away and talk, as soon as possible.

When the opportunity came, each of us took it immediately. We found a quiet place. We talked as though we’d known each other for years. “I had to speak to you,” said my new old friend. “I feel as though we met in Narnia, and back here in the regular world I have to touch you to know it was real.” I understood instantly.  

Published in Mary Marrocco

OTTAWA - As the federal government prepares to begin consultations in order to draft euthanasia and assisted suicide legislation, the archbishop of Ottawa issued a pastoral letter that called on people to support a culture of life.

Published in Canada

KATHMANDU, Nepal - When a 7.8-magnitude earthquake roared through this Himalayan nation April 25, leaving an estimated 5,500 dead and more than 11,000 injured, shrines and temples were sent crashing to the ground, many of them centuries old and irreplaceable cultural treasures.

Published in International

Sr. Susan Kidd said the need for consecrated life in the world hasn’t changed, but she admits there was a time when the religious were more visible and it was easier to connect with a sister.

Published in Call to Service

BOSTON - The parents of Martin Richard, the youngest victim killed in the Boston Marathon bombings two years ago, are asking that the death penalty be taken "off the table" for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.

Published in International

VATICAN CITY - The poor, migrants in search of a better life and the unemployed want what all human beings want: life, dignity and a chance to earn a decent living, Pope Francis said in several speeches urging compassion and assistance by both governments and individuals.

Published in Vatican

When you are about to turn 100 there’s a tendency for people to fuss over you and ask silly questions.

When people began asking 99.9-year-old Fr. Michael Lapierre what it felt like to turn 100, he told them “I don’t have a choice.” On May 2, Canada’s oldest Jesuit will take his 100th birthday in stride.

Published in Faith

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande (Doubleday, hard cover, 304 pages, $20).

We don’t die the way we used to. At the turn of the 20th century, the primary causes of death in the United States were pneumonia, influenza and tuberculosis. Today, heart disease and cancer are by far the major causes of death. In 2010, pneumonia and influenza combined accounted for a slightly higher number of deaths than suicide, but less than Alzheimer’s and diabetes. Tuberculosis was virtually eradicated in the United States by the 1950s.

Published in Book News

Twenty years ago, on the Feast of the Annunciation 1995, St. John Paul II published one of his signature encyclicals, Evangelium Vitae (The Gospel of Life). It’s important to return to the richness of that teaching, as many who oppose the Church’s pro-life witness having been making mischief with Pope Francis’ remark that Catholics should not be obsessed with abortion.

Published in Fr. Raymond de Souza

OTTAWA - Margaret Somerville has called on Parliamentarians to "have a backbone" in dealing with euthanasia in Canada.

Published in Canada

VATICAN CITY - The Catholic Church firmly opposes the death penalty and urges all states to move toward its abolition, said the Vatican's permanent observer to United Nations agencies in Geneva.

Published in International

VATICAN CITY - The most serious ailment the aged face and the greatest injustice they suffer is abandonment, Pope Francis said.

Published in Vatican