News/International

PITTSBURGH – A class-action lawsuit was filed Sept. 17 against eight Catholic dioceses in Pennsylvania demanding the dioceses provide proof that they submitted the names of all suspected predators.

Apostolic visitor outlines plans to expand Medjugorje shrine for young pilgrims

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WARSAW, Poland – The Polish archbishop tasked with overseeing Bosnia-Herzegovina's Medjugorje shrine has outlined plans for expansion, including more Masses in different languages and facilities for young pilgrims who flock to the site of the alleged Marian apparitions.

In letters to Cardinal Brandmuller, pope emeritus defends his retirement

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VATICAN – Retired Pope Benedict XVI expressed his displeasure with the way a German cardinal publicly criticized his stepping down as pontiff, and he defended taking the title "pope emeritus."

U.S. bishops plan third-party abuse reporting system, code of conduct

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WASHINGTON – Pledging to "heal and protect with every bit of the strength God provides us," the U.S. bishops' Administrative Committee Sept. 19 outlined actions to address the abuse crisis, including approving the establishment of a third-party confidential reporting system for claims of any abuse by bishops.

U2's Bono meets Pope Francis to sign charity agreement

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VATICAN – Bono, the lead singer of the Irish band U2, said he told Pope Francis that in Ireland "it looks as though the abusers are being more protected than the victims. And you could see the pain in his face."

Vatican-China deal could be signed in late September, media reports say

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HONG KONG – The long-awaited Sino-Vatican agreement on the nomination of bishops is expected to be signed in September, reported several media outlets.

Church isn't above the law when it comes to abuse, Chilean bishop says

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VATICAN – As revelations of the sexual abuse of minors and vulnerable adults by clergy continue in Chile, an archbishop said that the church can no longer ignore the suffering of victims.

Cardinal Marx says mistakes were made in handling abuse, calls for change in German church

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Cardinal Reinhard Marx, head of the German bishops' conference, admitted that mistakes were made in the German church's handling of sex abuse of minors and said he anticipates change in the church.

Pope Francis gives new vision for Synod of Bishops

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VATICAN – The Synod of Bishops increasingly should be a structure for listening to the Catholic faithful, demonstrating a local bishop's concern for the entire church and a means of expressing all the bishops' unity with the pope, Pope Francis said.

U.S. aid cuts to Palestinians could be disastrous, Catholic workers say

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JERUSALEM – The U.S. budgetary cuts to humanitarian aid institutions helping Palestinians could lead to long-term disastrous consequences, said Catholic aid workers in the region.

Idlib civilians fear offensive by Syrian forces, Christian aid group says

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AMMAN, Jordan – Christians and other civilians inside Idlib, Syria, are fearful of an impending, all-out offensive by their government and its Russian and Iranian backers on the northwestern province, the last rebel stronghold and presumed endgame in Syria's more than seven-year-old war.