National Catholic Reporter

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United Nations

Vatican to UN: Don’t equate sexual abuse of minors with torture

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As Vatican representatives prepare to testify before a United Nations inquiry into torture next week, a senior official warned investigators that it would be "deceptive" to link torture with the pedophilia scandals that have swept the Catholic church.

The Vatican's chief spokesman, Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi, said Friday that the Convention Against Torture, endorsed by the Vatican in 2002, was one of the most important in the U.N.'s ambit.

Indian sisters nurture hope, reconciliation in teeming South Sudan camp

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The Daughters of Mary Immaculate from India are helping the thousands of Nuer people in South Sudan who have been living in U.N. refugee camps since December. The sisters provide trauma counseling, food support and activities for children who otherwise have nothing educational to do.

Vietnamese women urged to discover their own value

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The place of women in Vietnamese society is complex. Due to long-standing cultural traditions, most women still face a difficult time in terms of achieving gender equality. Since the adoption of the Gender Equality Law, effective July 2007, some progress has been made, and the Catholic church is playing a role in helping women gain confidence and respect.

U.N. official lauds church support of migrants, asks for continued help

The role of the Catholic church is invaluable in keeping refugees safe, said the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres, but his agency and others working with migrants need much, much more.

Speaking to a meeting of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Migration and staff members of church agencies that deal with migrants, Guterres said the church is vital to helping victims of situations such as the volatile upheaval in the Central African Republic.

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