Catholic News Service

Catholic News Service

VATICAN CITY -- While the COVID-19 pandemic has put the brakes on most foreign travel and many in-person meetings, Pope Francis still has some major events on his fall 2020 agenda.

BRISBANE, Australia -- A new law requires priests in the state of Queensland to break the seal of confession to report child sex abuse to police or face three years in jail.

LAHORE, Pakistan -- Human rights activists were shocked after Asia Bibi dissociated herself from her autobiography, due out later in September.

LAKE CHARLES, La. -- Hurricane Laura destroyed six churches in the Diocese of Lake Charles, left a dozen others "highly compromised" and did heavy damage to chancery offices.

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.

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.

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.

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

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.