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It was a busy day on ncronline.org yesterday. Here are some of the top headlines: 

New Jersey: Priest asks judge to go easy on mobster Carmine "Papa Smurf" Franco. The wiseguy is the ringleader of a multi-family operation to control the waste-hauling industry.

Remember the singing priest in Ireland? Well, he's been offered a major record deal.

A priest in Spain shocked the congregation during a sermon when he brought up wife beating.

Jerusalem: A Lebanese priest traveling with Pope Francis to the Holy Land will not meet with Israeli officials. 

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Opinion: The collapse of John Kerry's effort to resolve Israeli-Palestinian conflict has provoked much handwringing. 

A German priest has asked Pope Francis to waive his vow of celibacy. The priest fathered a child after taking his vows and now insists he has "human right to partnership."

South Carolina: Five bishops from four faiths are urging reform of the state's public education system.

Supreme Court: The court ruled Monday that legislative bodies such as city councils can begin their meetings with prayer, even if it plainly favors a specific religion.

Opinion: Why Protestants are more popular than Catholics in China. The church's strengths are a weakness there.

 

PP-header_with-outline.jpgLooking for a little inspiration to begin your day? NCR's sister publication, Celebration, gives you two options, both based on the Scripture readings of the day:

Pencil Preaching is blog in which Celebration editor Pat Marrin combines Scripture and sketching to reflect on the Word.

DailyBreadBanner.jpgDaily Bread is a series of short reflections written by four authors who meet regularly to share the readings. Daily Bread is intended to help daily preachers and others who pray from the assigned Scriptures each day to orient themselves to the Living Word addressed to the church in the world. It's a great way to begin the day.

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In This Issue

July 17-30, 2015

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