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Happy birthday, Mother Teresa

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While the controversy continues about whether or not to light the Empire State Building in Mother Teresa's honor in New York City, what would have been the nun's 100th birthday is being celebrated with less vitrol (we can only hope) around the world.

The Missionaries of Charity, the order she founded, have already celebrated with Mass in Kolkota, India.

In New Haven, Connecticut, the Knights of Columbus will be celebrating with cake and an unveiling of the new stamp honoring her. The daylong event also will include a talk by Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle, who knew Mother Teresa, on "Finding Calcutta in Our Midst." The Knights' museum has hosted a special Mother Teresa exhibit, which will continue until October.

U.S. bomb unearthed in central Vietam

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A 250-pound bomb was safely removed from the garden of a local man's house in Cam Lo District, Quang Tri Province Wednesday morning by a Project RENEW team after a couple days of excavation work, the team reported.

Last Friday, when Tran Van Deo operated a tractor to plough land for growing rubber trees on his garden, a couple of scrap scavengers dug and saw the tail part of a big bomb pointing its head downward. It was just about 20 meters away from the man's house.

Hypocrisy and Federally Funded Embryonic Research

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Are opponents of embryonic stem cell research hypocritical? Michael Kinsley makes a strong case that they are. Of course, opponents of the research make a pretty strong case against the intellectual coherence of those who support the practice. It’s that kind of angel-on-the-head-of-a-pin issue.

Perhaps this is an issue, like abortion, that will not be settled by intellectuals, but by voters and judges who have other considerations than who makes the best argument.

Meanwhile, a Federal court has ruled against Kinsley and other supporters of federally-funded embryonic stem cell research. This issue is not going away.

Confronting abusers

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I met Ken and Diane Plocher in line for a burrito at the food court during a the national convention of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP) earlier this month. I was really just looking for someone to have lunch with and they were friendly Midwesterners. But when I met their son, Shawn, and heard his story, I could hardly finish my food.

This family has suffered so much as a result of their now-adult son's victimization by a priest. Shawn was brave enough to share his story with NCR for the record, and I included it in my coverage of the convention here.

I wasn't surprised to see my story reprinted on the Great Plains chapter of SNAP's website, but I was surprised at the accompanying video.

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February 27- March 12, 2015

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