National Catholic Reporter

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Politics

Long-term fasters hand over role in pursuit of immigration reform

From the interfaith clergy to the civil rights heroes, from the union activists and community organizers to one of the youngest members of Congress, those involved in an event Tuesday spanned the wide range of people working to keep Washington's attention on comprehensive immigration reform.

Marking the 22nd day of the Fast for Families, a prayer-and-fasting activity being observed around the country as well, four people who had consumed only water for 22 days broke their fast and symbolically handed over the role to others.

White House, farm advocates talk about SNAP; silence from Congress

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As the Thanksgiving holiday neared, both the White House and Catholic Rural Life raised the specter of possible huge cuts in funding for the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

But the silence from the House-Senate conference committee working on the farm bill -- which includes funding for SNAP -- and the abbreviated work schedule for Congress leaving little time in December for lawmakers to arrive at a compromise mean the specter could still be present as Christmas nears. The latest extension of the farm bill expires New Year's Day

Catholic college says contraceptive mandate makes it 'second-class' religious entity

Belmont Abbey College filed a new lawsuit Nov. 20 in its long-running fight against a federal law requiring most employers to provide free contraceptives in their health insurance plans.

In the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the college calls the contraceptive mandate "constitutionally flawed," "arbitrary and capricious," and says it "discriminates against religious organizations because of their religious commitment to promoting the sanctity of life."

'The hungry need to be heard,' Georgia bishops tell Congress

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Atlanta Archbishop Wilton Gregory and Savannah Bishop Gregory Hartmayer called on lawmakers in Washington to listen to the needs of the hungry at home and abroad as they negotiate the 2013 farm bill.

"At stake in this political wrangling are programs that help the hungry here at home and abroad," the two prelates said in an op-ed published Nov. 13 in the Savannah Morning News daily newspaper.

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In This Issue

August 28-September 10, 2015

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