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Something - or something less - for everyone in new farm bill?

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The farm bill, already one year late, could be even later if the House-Senate conference committee working on the compromise version takes its sweet time.

According to Bob Gronski, a policy analyst with the National Catholic Rural Life Conference, the lawmakers are taking the bill one "title" at a time until the conference committee is satisfied with the result.

The most contentious issue is likely to be the nutrition title, which includes the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, once known as food stamps.

47 Catholic leaders urge bishops to support CCHD's anti-poverty work

The Catholic Campaign for Human Development deserves the full support of the U.S. bishops because of its success in fighting poverty, said a group of Catholics on the eve of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' fall general assembly Nov. 11-14 in Baltimore.

In a letter addressed to all of the bishops, 47 Catholic leaders, including three retired bishops and former USCCB staff members, urged the prelates to "redouble your commitment to social ministries that lift people out of poverty," especially CCHD.

Keeping status quo for undocumented called 'stain on soul of nation'

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Passing comprehensive immigration reform is "a matter of great moral urgency that cannot wait any longer for action," New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan told House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, in a letter Thursday.

Keeping undocumented immigrants "as a permanent underclass of workers who are unable to assert their rights or enjoy the fruits of their labor is a stain on the soul of the nation," said the cardinal, who will step down as president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops at the group's meeting next week.

Pope names Bishop Matano of Vermont to head diocese of Rochester, N.Y.

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Pope Francis has named Bishop Salvatore Matano of Burlington, Vt., to head the diocese of Rochester, N.Y.

He succeeds Bishop Matthew Clark, who retired in September 2012.

The appointment was announced Wednesday in Washington by Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, apostolic nuncio to the United States.

Matano's installation Mass will be Jan. 3.

He was introduced as Rochester's ninth bishop at a news conference, where he said one of his first priorities will be "to bring people back to Mass."

U.S. bishops say employment bill goes beyond barring discrimination

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In a letter to the U.S. senators, the chairmen of three U.S. bishops' committees outlined their opposition to the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, emphasizing the bill to protect gay and lesbian workers goes beyond the scope of prohibiting unjust discrimination and "poses several problems."

The bishops stressed that "all people are created in the image and likeness of God" and have "human dignity that must be acknowledged and respected by other persons and by law."

Panelists recall lessons from last effort to fix immigration problems

The last time Congress attempted a full-blown fix of immigration law in 1986, the major accomplishments were that a few million people won legal status and some employment verification systems were created, but the legislation proved inadequate to repair systemic problems, according to panelists at a migration law and policy conference.

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August 15-28, 2014

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