Fr. Tony Flannery dealt with a dilemma that too often faces faithful, but reform-minded priests, nuns and sometimes lay Catholics.
"The purpose of the synod is to ... develop pastoral practices that reach out to Catholics who have not felt welcomed because they do not entirely conform to current teaching."
Grace on the Margins: In her 26 years of life, Kayla Mueller was able to grasp a deeper understanding of God than most people do during their lifetimes.
Religious Life: Hermit meets parish priest and becomes his secretary. Together, the pair nurtures a platonic friendship that develops into romantic love.
In a hermitage overlooking Ohio's Jefferson County, five men spend the majority of their days in silence, solitude and fasting.
Members of a semi-eremitic religious community that came into being as Europe emerged from the Dark Ages, the Camaldolese Hermits of Montecorona are the product of a 16th-century reform movement. Unlike their Camaldolese Benedictine brothers, the Camaldolese Hermits do not have monasteries. The congregation of Montecorona has around 60 members living in nine hermitages around the world, according to its website.
The risk of foreign aid work, especially for young people, has again been thrust into the national spotlight after the death of 26-year-old Kayla Mueller.
Mueller, a foreign aid worker, was confirmed dead Tuesday after being taken hostage by Islamic extremists in 2013 in Syria.
Even as aid organizations have improved security protocols over the past several years, workers can be placed in war-torn areas where safety cannot be guaranteed, said Abby Stoddard of Humanitarian Outcomes, a research and policy group for humanitarian agencies.
THE STORY OF PAIN: FROM PRAYER TO PAINKILLERS
By Joanna Bourke
Published by Oxford University Press, $34.95
NCR Today: A California lawmaker wants to replace a bronze statue of Serra with a monument honoring the late Sally Ride, the nation's first female astronaut.
Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst has been given a new position in the Roman Curia working to help prepare catechism for national bishops' conferences.
"I have come to believe that we must trust women and families -- not politicians -- to make the best decision for their lives."