An European Court of Human Rights ruling may force the Irish government to provide education outside of schools run by the Roman Catholic Church.
Pope Francis accepted the resignation of Melkite Archbishop Elias Chacour of Haifa.
Canon 210 of the Eastern Code of Canon Law allows for resignation for health reasons or at the age of 75. Chacour is 74.
Last October, the well-known archbishop was called in for questioning for suspected sexual harassment of a woman who works in the community; the allegations concerned an incident that allegedly took place five years ago. Following several hours of questioning, the archbishop was released on bail under restricting conditions.
Quebec's euthanasia Bill 52 will come to a vote in February, and the province's bishops say it "goes against the most basic human values and contradicts the very purpose of medicine."
"Bringing about a patient's death is not a medical act," the bishops said in a Jan. 23 statement.
"To cause death to a sick person is not to care for him," the bishops said. "A lethal injection is not a treatment. Euthanasia is not a form of care."
The former secretary of Pope John Paul II has approved publication of the late pontiff's private notebooks despite a request in his will that they should be burned.
Zambian Catholic bishops urged the government to stop using state security institutions to intimidate people and warned that changes in tax legislation could lead to severe cutbacks in services that the church offers the poor.
Zambia's political environment "is characterized by manipulation, patronage and intimidation of perceived government opponents," the bishops said in a statement issued at a Jan. 23 news conference at their Lusaka headquarters.
For Christians living in predominantly Muslim Sudan, travel restrictions are making life more difficult each day, a Roman Catholic cardinal said.
Sudanese Cardinal Gabriel Zubeir Wako highlighted the challenges at a Catholic Bishops Conference in Juba, the Republic of South Sudan's capital. His auxiliary bishop could not attend the Jan. 21-30 meeting because his passport was seized by security agents, along with those of eight priests.
The ongoing strife in Ukraine is a citizen reaction to an "ideology of control and repressiveness, of control and domination," according to the archbishop of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia, who has been monitoring events in his ancestral homeland.
Honduran Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, coordinator of the Council of Cardinals, is confident the council will bring the church up to date.
Opinion: The tragic upsurge of violence in Iraq is a direct consequence of the repression of peaceful dissent by the U.S.-backed government in Baghdad
French President Francois Hollande, embroiled in a controversy surrounding an alleged affair with an actress, met Friday with Pope Francis, who was unusually somber in his public appearance with the scandal-scarred French leader.
There was no official comment about what the two men discussed in their private 35-minute meeting, but the pontiff -- known for his friendly and informal style -- appeared more stern and serious than usual as he sat across an ornate desk from Hollande.