Catholic News Service

Catholic News Service

LOS ANGELES -- Decrying the acts of religious violence that have taken place during the Christmas season, the president of the U.S. bishops declared: "Violence in the name of God is blasphemy."

LOS ANGELES -- An attorney who specializes in lawsuits for victims of clergy sexual abuse has announced plans to file 12 suits in nine California dioceses under California's new Child Victims Act, which takes effect Jan. 1, extending the state's statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse survivors.

WASHINGTON -- A host of voices from throughout the religious spectrum condemned the Dec. 28 knife attack at the suburban New York City home of a Hasidic rabbi that wounded five, one of them critically.

WASHINGTON -- Two Texas Catholic bishops offered words of condolence and prayers to the members and families of the victims of a church shooting in which two worshippers were killed.

BETHLEHEM, West Bank -- Brothers Peter and Eli Hosh grew up knowing that their hometown was not only the place where they went to school and ran down to the corner market for their mother, but the town where Jesus was born.

SHREWSBURY, England -- A former chaplain to Queen Elizabeth II is to be received into the Catholic Church.

VATICAN CITY -- Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Archbishop Luigi Ventura, the nuncio to France, who has been under investigation for sexual misconduct in France and in Canada.

CANBERRA, Australia -- The Australian government has released its second "exposure draft" of its religious discrimination legislation, winning widespread praise from faith groups, including the Catholic bishops, following changes to the original legislation released in October.

FRANKLIN LAKES, N.J. -- After a fire destroyed Most Blessed Sacrament Church in Franklin Lakes in the early hours of Dec. 11, the suspected arsonist was arrested. He was receiving burn treatment at a local hospital prior to his court hearing.

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (CNS) -- Sacred Heart Catholic School in Jersey City reopened Dec. 12, with a heavy police presence outside, two days after deadly gun battle took place at a kosher supermarket across the street from the school.