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Theologian thinks papal trip to Brazil critical for younger generations

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Look for strong turnout, robust media interest and unscripted moments when Jorge Mario Bergoglio makes his first trip abroad as Pope Francis when he arrives in Brazil in late July, according to a Brazilian writer and academic.

In the archdiocese of Rio de Janeiro, final preparations are underway for the 2013 World Youth Day with Pope Francis July 23-28 around the sprawling Brazilian city.

Jesuit criticizes Western support of Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt

A priest who directs the Jesuit Cultural Center in Alexandria, Egypt, blasted Western support of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt during a visit to Parliament Hill.

Jesuit Fr. Henri Boulad, 82, a Melkite Catholic, singled out the United States, France and Great Britain for their support of the Islamist group, which he said has created a regime far worse than the military dictatorship of Hosni Mubarak that preceded it. He warned of looming catastrophe.

Bishop, doctor say Sudan food crisis provoked by aerial bombing

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The people of the Nuba Mountains, a disputed region in Sudan that shares a border and ethnic ties with South Sudan, are starving. They have no food and the armed conflict that has prevented them from growing their own is stymieing relief efforts.

A Catholic bishop and Catholic medical missioner visited the United States earlier this year to speak for the Nuba people and seek an international intervention to halt the aerial bombings, to open roads to allow food relief to be brought in, and to require the parties in conflict to sit down and negotiate a lasting peace.

Ireland at tipping point with abortion laws

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After 30 years, five constitutional referendums and multiple headline-grabbing cases, Ireland’s blanket ban on abortion remains one of the most restrictive in the world, admired and abhorred by activists on alternate sides of the issue.

But after Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny introduced in April legislation to activate a latent 1992 Supreme Court ruling that authorized termination in cases where a woman’s life is at risk, 2013 could prove a tipping point in the decades-long standoff.

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