National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Peace & Justice

At Bolivian prison, pope calls himself man 'saved from his many sins'

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Pope Francis visited one of Latin America's most notorious prisons, calling himself "a man who was and is saved from his many sins."

"I couldn't leave Bolivia without seeing you, without sharing the hope and faith given in the cross," he told people at Palmasola prison in Santa Cruz.

Speaking on the final morning of his less than 48-hour visit to Bolivia, the pope called for conversion and a changing of attitudes among inmates in their relations among each other and the broader society, which often views such populations with suspicions.

Boston Marathon bomber prayerfully apologizes to victims; judge orders death penalty

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Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev apologized in court Wednesday for "the suffering that I've caused" in the April 2013 attack that killed three people and wounded hundreds.

Tsarnaev said in a shaky voice that he was guilty and that he prays for the victims.

"I am sorry for the lives that I've taken, for the suffering that I've caused you, for the damage that I've done -- irreparable damage," he said, breaking more than two years of public silence.

"I pray for your relief, for your healing," he added.

Faith impels us

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Kurt Vonnegut is quoted as saying, "People say there are no atheists in foxholes. A lot of people think this is a good argument against atheism. Personally, I think it's a much better argument against foxholes."

That thought might offer a good start for us as we meditate on the question of a good God and suffering, an underlying theme of today's readings.

Juneteenth celebration resonates in wake of Charleston, S.C., tragedy

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Two days after Dylann Roof allegedly opened fire inside an historic black church in a city with deep black historical roots, the country is poised Friday to celebrate black empowerment and freedom from slavery.

Based on comments floating through social media and on editorials from news organizations, Juneteenth will have particular significance in Charleston, S.C., the community where nine people died after being shot during a prayer meeting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, a house of worship founded by slave revolt organizer Denmark Vesey and others.

Senate adopts anti-torture amendment backed by Catholics, evangelicals

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The U.S. Senate in a bipartisan vote Tuesday approved a measure that would prohibit all U.S. government agencies and their agents from using torture as an interrogation technique.

Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-California, sponsored the anti-torture amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2016.

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In This Issue

August 28-September 10, 2015

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