News/International

AMMAN, Jordan -- Parts of Syria's north where Kurds, Christians and Yazidis have practiced religious freedom in recent years are reportedly again under attack by mainly Turkish military and their allied Syrian Islamist fighters.

Compassion drives exiled Belarus leader

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Some small part of the revolution now on display in the streets of Minsk and other Belarusian cities may have begun in Catholic, rural Ireland in the 1990s. It was there that Belarus’ likely-elected president who is currently in exile visited for a month each summer for 10 years, when she was between the ages of 12 and 22.

Australian, English bishops discuss morality of possible COVID-19 vaccine

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ROME -- More bishops are pleading with their governments to give priority to ethically developed coronavirus vaccines, but many also are telling Catholics that not getting vaccinated is a more serious moral problem than using the problematic vaccines.

Parish reform talks must include laity, say bishops

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WURZBURG, Germany -- The German bishops plan to seek talks with the Vatican about its instruction on parish reforms in the Catholic Church, and want lay Catholics to take part in the discussions, according to the German Catholic news agency KNA.

At least 12 dead as tropical storm lashes Haiti, Dominican Republic

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CLEVELAND -- Officials reported that at least 12 people had died as Tropical Storm Laura lashed Haiti and the Dominican Republic with strong winds and torrential rains, causing widespread flooding in low-lying communities.

Lector assaulted during Mass in Philadelphia

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PHILADELPHIA -- A lector at the Cathedral Basilica of Sts. Peter and Paul in Philadelphia was punched in the face by an assailant after reading Scripture during an Aug. 23 Mass.

Detroit priest's invalid baptism had ripple effect, archdiocese says

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DETROIT -- The Archdiocese of Detroit is seeking to contact anyone who may have received invalid sacraments after a priest of the archdiocese learned his own baptism as an infant 30 years ago was invalid.

Normalization of relations between Israel, UAE can bring peace

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WASHINGTON -- The normalization of diplomatic relations between Israel and the United Arab Emirates can be a step for peace in the Middle East, said the chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on International Justice and Peace.

Toledo diocesan priest on leave after arrest on sex trafficking charges

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TOLEDO, Ohio -- A priest of the Diocese of Toledo is on administrative leave as he faces federal sex trafficking charges.

Body of missing parishioner found in Detroit River; search continues for priest

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GROSSE ILE, Mich. -- Authorities found the body of Robert Chiles, 52, a member of St. Joseph Parish in Trenton, late Aug. 18 after a search of the Detroit River where he and Father Stephen Rooney, St. Joseph's pastor, went missing Aug. 16 after their boat capsized.

Church social worker shot dead in Philippines

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MANILA, Philippines -- A human rights activist and church social worker was shot dead in the Philippines Aug. 17 in what colleagues say was most probably an extrajudicial killing carried out by state agents.