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British theologian (again) disinvited from lecture

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"Professor [Tina] Beattie is known to have frequently called into question the Church's teaching. I would therefore ask [the Edinburgh Circle of the Newman Association] to cancel this event, as it may not proceed or be publicised on any Church property in this archdiocese," reads a letter from Archbishop Leo Cushley of St. Andrews and Edinburgh, Scotland, according to a report in The Tablet of London.

Building a culture of audacious nonviolence

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The violence continues to pile up, with one searing headline rapidly succeeding the next: Gaza; Ferguson, Mo.; Ukraine; the horrifying rampage of the Islamic State militant group; and now, a long-term U.S. war to destroy our new enemy. This dizzying, violent surge, one bloody wave after the next, gives us no time to think. Violence is the answer, we're told, so get with the program.

A call to resist mass incarceration

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Despite some sentencing changes, prison populations are creeping up. California released a number of inmates under court order to cease overcrowding. Federal and state law has reduced the sentencing guidelines for possession of crack cocaine to a number closer to powder cocaine possession (from 75 to 1 down to 17 to 1, though the two kinds of cocaine are about the same). Marijuana possession isn't being prosecuted in a lot of places.

There's too much hype about Cupich's appointment to the Chicago archdiocese

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Yes, I agree. It is incredible that the competent and capable bishop from Spokane, Wash., diocese was named archbishop-designate of the great Chicago archdiocese. No question about it. Archbishop-designate Blase Cupich is prayerful, intellectually sharp, humble, humorous, balanced, respectful and fearless. Terrific qualities for a bishop and an authentic churchman.

O'Malley: Trend of workers fired for LGBT issues 'needs to be rectified'

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In a one-on-one conversation following a public speaking engagement, Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley said that the firing of church workers because of LGBT issues is a situation that "needs to be rectified."

Earlier in the evening, the cardinal spoke of the need to include and minister to the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in light of Pope Francis' new vision for the church.

Paul Ryan's recent discovery of poverty has eyes rolling

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House Republican Congressman Paul Ryan, a Catholic, has recently discovered poverty and has vowed to do something about it. He reintroduced a couple of modest ideas that might help the poor. Some progressive Catholics did their best to applaud Ryan's nascent initiatives. Others just rolled our eyes at the hollowness and political expediency of Ryan's actions.

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