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Bill de Blasio, New York's new 'spiritual but not religious' mayor

From its historic black churches to large Jewish enclaves to landmark Catholic and Protestant churches, New York City is the ultimate religious melting pot. And now, overseeing it all is a new mayor whose only religious identity seems to be "spiritual but not religious."

Mayor Bill de Blasio, who took office Jan. 1, is now perhaps the nation's most visible "none," an icon of one of the nation's fastest-growing religious groups -- those without any formal religious identification.

Volunteers bring vitality

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What organization in its right mind wouldn't love to add excitement, energy and inspiration to its work and its mission? What would it be like to have people who contribute time, experience, passion and energy to your goals and dreams? Invite some volunteers to join you and they will do all that by bringing ideas, commitment and vitality along with service. That's what volunteers have done for us at National Catholic Reporter Publishing Company.

'Great misunderstanding' seen on church's teachings on end of life

There is "great misunderstanding" among Catholics and others about the church's teachings on whether and when life-sustaining medical treatment can be withdrawn when death is near, according to a leading Catholic bioethicist.

Marie T. Hilliard, director of bioethics and public policy and a staff ethicist at the National Catholic Bioethics Center, said the Philadelphia-based center conducts about 2,000 consultations a year with "families in distress" who want to talk with an ethicist "about the church's teaching in light of their (family) situation."

Ethicists criticize treatment of brain-dead patients

The cases of two young women -- a California teen and a pregnant Texas mother -- have generated sympathy for their families, but also have left some doctors and bioethicists upset about their treatment.

Many doctors are questioning continued medical procedures on a 13-year-old girl declared brain-dead nearly a month ago, calling interventions to provide nutrition to a dead body wrong and unethical.

'Citizen-scholar' and former Ambassador to Vatican Thomas Melady dies

Former U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican Thomas P. Melady, who served in several diplomatic posts and continued to play a role as "citizen-scholar" long past the age when most people would have retired, died Monday. He was 86.

Melady died at his Washington home of a brain tumor, which doctors only recently diagnosed.

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In This Issue

September 12-25, 2014

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