BALTIMORE -- On the eve of this year’s Catholic Campaign for Human Development collection in U.S. parishes, the bishop in charge of overseeing the campaign publicly defended it against a new round of “outrageous claims that the bishops are funding abortion, attacks on the family and other untruths.”
Peace & Justice
WASHINGTON -- “Families are struggling. Faith is calling” is the theme for this year’s national collection for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, which was planned for most U.S. Catholic churches the weekend of Nov. 21-22.
“This year, our call as Catholics to bring glad tidings to the poor ... to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free is more important than ever before,” said Bishop Roger P. Morin of Biloxi, Miss., who is chairman of the U.S. bishops’ subcommittee for the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.
With the fateful date of Nov. 16 approaching, the United States’ 28 Jesuit colleges and universities are preparing to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the killing of six Jesuits and their coworkers in El Salvador. Lectures, films, liturgies and various other forms of commemorative events are scheduled.
Some students, faculty and staff members will be going to El Salvador for the anniversary events there; others will be headed to Fort Benning, Ga., for the 12th Ignatian Family Teach-in for Justice. The teach-in has been held in conjunction with the annual gathering of the School of the Americas Watch, which advocates the closing of the U.S. Army school where 19 of the 26 soldiers who participated in the Nov. 16, 1989, killings had received training shortly before the murders.
Clearly, the memory of the murders remains strong on our campuses today. Looking even further back over the past 35 years, three major events have led to this point.
More than 40 leaders of major faith groups sent a letter to Congress on Thursday (Nov. 12) urging the closing of the prison at Guantanamo Bay.
"Guantanamo is the symbol of our country's violation of our deepest values," the letter says. "Our government must close the detention center at Guantanamo Bay now to help us heal spiritually and to put an end to this dark and errant chapter in our history."
President Obama signed into law Oct. 28 the $680 billion 2010 National Defense Authorization Act, the largest military spending bill of its kind. The bill includes $130 billion in funding for the occupations of Iraq and Afghanistan and only modifies the military commissions system at Guantánamo Bay, rather than abolish it.
Religion News Service
DURHAM, N.C. -- Duke University ethicist Stanley Hauerwas, a self-described Christian pacifist, is an expert on just war theory. As Hauerwas sees it, not only did Iraq and Afghanistan fail to meet the criteria of a just war, but neither did World War II. Now, as the Obama administration weighs its options in Afghanistan, Hauerwas, 69, remains decidedly pessimistic not only about American prospects, but also American morality. Some answers have been edited for length and clarity.
LONDON -- The bishop who heads the Military Diocese of Great Britain has urged the British government to adequately equip the armed forces serving in Afghanistan and to use diplomacy to bring a swift end to the 8-year-old conflict.
SINSINAWA, Wis. -- Dominican Sr. Donna Quinn received a reprimand from her order for serving as a volunteer escort at an abortion clinic in suburban Chicago.
Her order, the Sinsinawa Dominicans of Wisconsin, said in a Nov. 2 statement it regrets that "her actions have created controversy and resulted in public scandal."
WASHINGTON -- A proposed revision to the directives that guide Catholic heath care facilities would clarify that patients with chronic conditions who are not imminently dying should receive food and water by "medically assisted" means if they cannot take them normally.
"As a general rule, there is an obligation to provide patients with food and water, including medically assisted nutrition and hydration for those who cannot take food orally," says the revised text of the "Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services" proposed by the U.S. bishops' Committee on Doctrine.
"This obligation extends to patients in chronic conditions (e.g., the 'persistent vegetative state') who can reasonably be expected to live indefinitely if given such care," the new text adds.
Deleted from the directives would be a reference to "the necessary distinctions between questions already resolved by the magisterium and those requiring further reflection, as, for example, the morality of withdrawing medically assisted hydration and nutrition from a person who is in the condition that is recognized by physicians as the 'persistent vegetative state.'"
The Richmond, Va., diocese rejected a request by the founders of a Pax Christi chapter to hold their kickoff event at a local parish. One of the keynote speakers for the Oct. 2 event was Bishop Walter Sullivan, the retired bishop of Richmond and a past bishop-president of Pax Christi International, the Catholic peace group.