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Ugandan bishops reserve judgment on new anti-gay law

Uganda's Catholic bishops reaffirmed their opposition to homosexuality, but reserved judgment on a recently ratified bill imposing harsh punishment for homosexual acts in the East African nation.

"Our reaction from the church is very clear, we don't support homosexuality," Msgr. John Baptist Kauta, secretary-general of the Uganda Episcopal Conference, told Catholic News Service by phone Feb. 26.

He said that when the anti-gay bill was first discussed, the country's bishops had been against the harsh penalties it involved for homosexual acts, including the death penalty.

Al-Azhar officials hoping to restart stalled talks with Vatican

Officials at Egypt's Al-Azhar University said they are eagerly awaiting a message from the Vatican that could jump-start their stalled talks.

Their dialogue faltered and was eventually suspended altogether by Al-Azhar in 2011 after a series of remarks made by now-retired Pope Benedict XVI.

Mahmoud Azab, adviser on dialogue to Al-Azhar's grand imam, Sheik Ahmad el-Tayeb, told Catholic News Service that Fr. Rafic Greiche, spokesman for Egypt's Catholic church, informed them a Vatican envoy would visit Dec. 3.

An antidote to religious strife in Egypt: nationalism

After decades of polarization along religious lines, Christians and Muslims in Egypt are coming together to rally behind their flag.

The country is in the midst of a swell of nationalism that began during the revolution in 2011 and intensified when citizens took to the streets in June of this year to call for the removal of President Mohammed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood.

Canadian nun: Egyptian Muslims protected church buildings after threats

Churches and other Christian properties around Egypt had already been looted, so when Catholics in Berba were tipped off that their southern village could be next, they acted fast.

They and other Christian leaders got on their phones and called their Muslim friends, neighbors and colleagues who all had the same message:

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October 10-23, 2014

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