Eco Catholic: While the encyclical has fanned optimistic flames for environmentalists in and outside the church, it hasn't raised temperatures evenly for all.
We say: The agreement with Iran is a practical, common-sense approach with the right kinds of carrots and sticks to keep all sides motivated and engaged.
Pope Francis is considering making a stop in Cuba during his upcoming trip to the United States in September, but nothing has been confirmed, the Vatican announced Friday.
Francis -- who was credited by both the U.S. and Cuba in December for helping facilitate the landmark beginning of normalization of relations between the two countries -- "has taken into consideration the idea" of visiting the island nation, the Vatican said.
Canada's Supreme Court has ruled that a small town in Quebec may not open its council meetings with prayer.
In a unanimous ruling Wednesday, Canada's highest court ruled that the town of Saguenay can no longer publicly recite a Catholic prayer because it infringes on freedom of conscience and religion.
The case dates back to 2007, when a resident of Saguenay complained about public prayer at City Hall.
As some in the United States consider whether religious and civil marriages should be separated, they might look to practices in Europe, where most countries have long distinguished between the two.
"Whereas the Catholic church has a clear vision of the special meaning of marriage, it's viewed in the civil context as a contract between two people -- and it's a fact of modern society that such contracts vary," Thierry Bonaventura, spokesman for the 34-country Council of European Bishops' Conferences, told Catholic News Service on Monday.
With months to go before October's synod on the family, bishops from around the world are already discussing some of the main topics.
An hourlong meeting Saturday between U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuban President Raul Castro marked the first such personal encounter between the leaders of the two neighboring countries since 1958.
The session held during the Summit on the Americas, in which Cuba participated for the first time, was the most visible step toward ending a half century of strained relations dating back to the Cuban revolution.
Pope Francis is expected to arrive July 6 in Ecuador, starting a three-country tour of his home continent, The Associated Press reported from Quito.
The trip, the pope's second to South America since being elected in March 2013, also would include stops in Bolivia and Paraguay, two fast-growing countries in recent years, but still among the poorest on the continent.
The adoption of a framework related to Iran's nuclear program by the United States and other countries is an important step in "advancing a peaceful resolution" to the questions surrounding the program, the chairman of the U.S. bishop's Committee on International Justice and Peace.
Bishop Oscar Cantu of Las Cruces, N.M., said April 8 in a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry and Monday in letters to every member of Congress that the framework was a milestone in the long-standing negotiations to curb the "unacceptable prospect of Iran developing nuclear weapons."
Though the United States may have taken the lead in the international diplomatic initiative against Iran's nuclear program, the Obama administration has also taken the lead in undermining the United Nations' efforts to promote nuclear arms control and disarmament elsewhere.