Catholic News Service

Catholic News Service

WASHINGTON – After publication of his letter to Pope Francis questioning the pontiff's teachings, Father Thomas Weinandy has resigned from his position as consultant to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Committee on Doctrine.

VATICAN – Like stained glass windows, the saints allow the light of God to permeate the darkness of sin in the world, Pope Francis said on the feast of All Saints.

WASHINGTON – The "horrendous act" by a driver in a pickup truck who mowed down pedestrians and bicyclists in New York late in the afternoon Oct. 31 "weighs on all of our hearts," said the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
WASHINGTON – Pope Francis has appointed Auxiliary Bishop Bawai Soro of the Chaldean Catholic Eparchy of St. Peter the Apostle in San Diego as bishop of the Chaldean Catholic Eparchy of Mar Addai of Toronto.

Bishop Soro, 63, has been an auxiliary bishop of the San Diego-based eparchy since the pope named him to the post in January 2014. He was ordained as a bishop in 1984, two years after his ordination to the priesthood.

The appointment was announced Oct. 31 in Washington by Archbishop Christophe Pierre, apostolic nuncio to the United States.

The bishop, a native of Iraq who came to the United States as a refugee in 1976, has spoken about the plight of displaced Iraqi Christians for years.

This past summer, at a news conference in Washington, he said the current situation for Christians in the Middle East remains fragile, as they suffer at the hands of radical Islamic groups.

"It is very unfortunate that Iraq as a country still lacks the certain constitutional amendments that guarantee liberty and equality to all Iraqis," he said. "It remains our dream that the Christians will not be second-class citizens in their own native homeland, Iraq. But instead, they will hopefully soon have equal social, economic, political, lives and statuses just as all Iraqis have."

In an interview with Catholic News Service in 1992, he lamented the plight of more than 50,00 Iraqi Christian refugees who fled their country along with hundreds of thousands of Kurds to escape the destruction unleashed by the Gulf War and Iraqi military operations against Kurdish rebels that followed.

"The future is unknown for these people," he said. "Mainly, they sit down and wait; they don't know what to do with their lives."

And in a 2004 interview, he told CNS that Christians and ethnic minorities have always played a "significant and civilized role" in the progress of Iraq, and sees the unification of Christians as even more crucial today. But he noted that the number of Christians in Iraq is dwindling.

VATICAN – Clericalism is a path taken by those who, unlike the good shepherd, concern themselves with money and power and not with people who are suffering and neglected, Pope Francis said.

LAS MARIAS, Puerto Rico – By joining forces to create coalitions on behalf of those who are suffering in the wake of Hurricane Maria, the Catholic Church in Puerto Rico has been fulfilling Pope Francis' expressed wish to see "a church that walks with the poor."
YANGON, MYANMAR – When Pope Francis visits Myanmar in late November, Church leaders will be listening nervously to his every word, specifically hoping they don’t hear the R-word.
QUEBEC CITY – The new Quebec law on state neutrality on religion is under fire, as many deem it "discriminatory" against some Muslim women.

STEVENSON, WASHINGTON – Travelers who happen upon a regional museum in Washington state are frequently surprised to find there the largest collection of rosaries in the world – according to no less an authority than "Ripley's Believe It or Not."

WASHINGTON – A 40-foot-tall cross memorializing soldiers who died in World War I that sits at a busy intersection in the Washington suburb of Bladensburg, Maryland, is unconstitutional, a federal appeals court ruled Oct. 18.