News/Canada

TORONTO - Catholic Missions In Canada is holding its annual fundraising dinner, Tastes of Heaven, on April 22 with the goal of raising $100,000.

The dinner will help support 12 parishes and 21 missions throughout the diocese of Whitehorse. Whitehorse Bishop Gary Gordon will be the guest speaker. 

“This is a very unique event. People can meet the heroes of our dioceses and recognize the work they do,” said Kathleen Ancker, the National Director of Development for Catholic Missions In Canada.

Liberal MP John McKay tries to woo Catholics

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{mosimage}OTTAWA - Liberal MP John McKay is reaching out to Catholic and Christian voters on behalf of the federal party.

He hopes to “redress” the relationship with faith communities — a relationship that has been hurt by Liberal tactics that have at times demonized Christian voters as “scary” or “anti-charter.”

“I am hoping that this initiative will free up some political space for faith leaders to speak into the marketplace of ideas and not feel that they will end up battered and bruised and run out of town on a rail,” said McKay.

Bishops join team investigating Development and Peace

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{mosimage}OTTAWA - Two bishops from eastern Canada will lead an inquiry into allegations that funds from the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace have gone to Mexican groups that have ties to abortion advocacy.

Archbishop Martin W. Currie of St. John’s, Nfld., and Bishop François Lapierre, P.M.É., of Saint-Hyacinthe, Que., were to go to Mexico April 15-18 to meet with local bishops, announced the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Romance in the pews

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{mosimage}TORONTO - Spring and a young man’s fancy turns exactly where you think it does, and so does a young woman’s. Anything wrong with that?

Canadian government less than honest about Columbian free trade deal

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{mosimage}TORONTO - The ecumenical social justice coalition KAIROS claims the Conservative government has been less than honest with a delegation of Colombians who came to Canada to lobby against a free trade deal.

KAIROS sponsored a delegation of Colombian church and civil society leaders on a visit to Canada in February. The group received assurances Canada wouldn’t proceed with an already negotiated free trade agreement between Canada and Colombia until concerns about the South American nation’s human rights record have been investigated.

Canadian Nurses for Life seeks leader

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{mosimage}Canadian Nurses for Life may retire along with its national director on June 1 if no volunteers step forward to take her place.

Mary-Lynn McPherson, a retiring nurse and busy grandmother, has led the volunteer organization dedicated to fighting for nurses’ conscience rights in the workplace for about 20 years. She has set aside time in the past two decades to advocate on behalf of patients and nurses in the defence of human life from conception to natural death. This has included lobbying government, supporting membership with information and encouraging other nurses to be involved in standing up for their rights.

Voluntary guidelines for Canadian oversees mine companies

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{mosimage}The federal government has opted for a voluntary code of conduct for Canadian mining companies abroad, with no sanctions for those that fail to comply.

The 200,000 Catholics who have sent postcards to Ottawa asking Parliament to set rules for Canadian mining companies operating in smaller and poorer nations around the world have been answered with a set of voluntary guidelines, an office that will investigate complaints only if the mining company agrees and an industry-run “centre of excellence” to encourage mining companies to be more open when it comes to the environment, labour rights and corporate governance.

For ecumenical social justice organization KAIROS , the voluntary guidelines are a step backward.

Early induction of labour likely to be deemed ethical for some high-risk pregnancies

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{mosimage}TORONTO - An upcoming revision of the Catholic Health Association of Canada ’s ethics guide will likely specify that early induction of labour is morally and ethically justified in certain cases of high-risk pregnancy, said the president of the Ottawa-based organization.

James Roche told The Catholic Register that a team of ethicists has not finalized its recommendations on the precise circumstances in which early labour can be induced, but the report is expected to include provisions for early induction in some acute-care cases.

Catholics urged to keep giving to Development and Peace

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{mosimage}As an investigation proceeds into Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace's funding policies, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops is urging Catholics to continue to give to the development and humanitarian assistance arm of the Canadian church.

In the first statement from the bishops since an Internet site accused the Development and Peace of funding "pro-abortion groups" in Mexico, conference president Archbishop James Weisgerber invoked Pope Benedict XVI's mission to Africa and the worldwide financial crisis as reasons to continue to give generously.

Bishops to intervene in human reproduction case

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{mosimage}OTTAWA - The Supreme Court of Canada has granted leave to the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops and the Evangelical Fellowship of Canada to intervene in a case that challenges whether Canada’s Assisted Human Reproduction Act will apply to all provinces.

The bishops want to ensure the act will protect human dignity surrounding procreation and related genetic research for the sake of the common good.

The act prohibits or limits such activities as human cloning, surrogacy, sex selection, the sale of human eggs or sperm, animal-human hybrids and in vitro fertilization while promoting health, safety and human dignity.

Religious, CWL join to fight human trafficking

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{mosimage}OTTAWA - The Canadian Religious Conference and the Catholic Women’s League are supporting MP Joy Smith’s anti-human trafficking private member’s bill.

Bill C-268 would change the Criminal Code so those convicted of trafficking children under 18 would receive a mandatory minimum sentence of five years.