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Syrian refugees' reactions mixed to airstrikes against Islamic State

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Ask Syrian refugees sheltering in neighboring Jordan about the advent of U.S.-led strikes against Islamic State militants in their homeland, and the reactions will be mixed.

Some welcome the surprise military intervention, saying it could lead to ending the nearly 4-year-old war in Syria and diminish the power of Islamic State fighters and other terrorist groups operating in the country.

Details on 2015 World Meeting of Families emerge as countdown begins

Sept. 22 marked exactly one year before the start of the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia, so organizers for the event took the occasion to brief staff of the Philadelphia archdiocese on the latest details.

Registration for the Sept. 22-25 event will begin within several weeks as agreements with speakers for the program are finalized. That part of the planning is ahead of schedule, as registration for the meetings held every three years in a different city typically begins only eight to nine months before the event.

All nations need to respond to terrorism, Vatican official tells U.N.

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Addressing the U.N. Security Council on Wednesday, the Vatican's secretary of state said "terrorism represents a fundamental threat to our common humanity" and its escalation requires the response of a "shared commitment" from all nations.

"Nations must come together in order to fulfill our primary responsibility to protect people threatened by violence and direct assaults on their human dignity," Cardinal Pietro Parolin said.

How superstition may thwart Ebola's eradication in Guinea

Church leaders in West Africa are raising concerns over sporadic violence that has killed one of their own and frustrated efforts to stem the Ebola epidemic.

The violence took a dangerous turn last week in a remote village in southeast Guinea, when fearful villagers killed eight members of a disinfection and awareness team, including an evangelical church pastor.

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