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November 5, 2007   •   VOL. 45, NO. 19   •   Oakland, CA
News in Brief


CNS PHOTO/REUTERS


CNS PHOTO

Husband is beatified
Franziska Jagerstatter, the 94-year-old widow of Blessed Franz Jagerstatter, attends her husband’s beatification ceremony at St. Mary’s Cathedral in Linz, Austria, Oct. 26. The Austrian farmer (right) was beheaded Aug. 9, 1943, for refusing to serve in the Nazi army. He was beatified as a martyr.

Spanish martyrs
Spanish students hold portraits of clergy members killed during the 1936-39 Spanish Civil War. during the Oct. 28 beatification ceremony at the Vatican for 498 Spanish martyrs.

CNS PHOTO/CHRIS HELGREN/REUTERS

Christmas stamp
At the National Gallery of Art in Washington, Postmaster Yverne Pat Moore unveils the 2007 Christmas stamp, which features Bernardino Luini’s “The Madonna of the Carnation.” The theme of each traditional U.S. Christmas stamp issued since 1978 has been the Madonna and Child.

CNS PHOTO/BOB ROLLER

Miller apologizes for parody of ‘Last Supper’
SAN FRANCISCO (CNS) — Milwaukee-based Miller Brewing Co. has issued a formal apology for “the offense caused by the use of Miller brand logos on a poster promoting the Folsom Street Fair in San Francisco with an irreverent take on Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Last Supper.”
In an Oct. 26 statement the company said it completed “an exhaustive audit of its marketing procedures for approving local marketing and sales sponsorships” and will tighten “compliance procedures” to ensure such an incident will not happen again.

The New York-based Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights and other Christian groups expressed outrage over the poster, which had what critics described as a sadomasochistic theme. It carried the Miller trademark as well as those of other sponsors of the Sept. 30 event.
A center figure in the poster is a muscled, shirtless man flanked by men and women in leather fetishistic garb, some in flowing wigs and in poses echoing da Vinci’s mural. The table is strewn with sex toys.

Pharmacists asked to tell moral implications of drugs
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pharmacists must be teachers who not only instruct patients on the proper use of their medications, but also on the potential moral implications of taking certain drugs, Pope Benedict XVI said during the International Congress of Catholic Pharmacists.
As intermediaries between doctors and patients, pharmacists have an educational role in helping patients take their drugs correctly, “and, especially, in raising awareness about the ethical implications of the use of certain medications,” the pope said.

“In this area, it is not possible to anesthetize consciences, for example, about the effects of (a drug’s) molecules to prevent the implantation of an embryo or to shorten a person’s life,” he said.
Pope Benedict told the pharmacists that they must do their part to protect every individual from the moment of conception to natural death and to ensure that drugs are used only to benefit health.

Giuliani criticized for hiring accused priest
NEW YORK (CNS) — Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani has been criticized by members of the Survivors’ Network of those Abused by Priests for employing on the staff of his consulting firm Msgr. Alan Placa of the Rockville Centre Diocese. Giuliani has said he has “great confidence” in the priest, a friend of his for more than 35 years. Rockville Centre diocesan spokesman Sean Dolan told Catholic News Service that since June 2002 the diocese has asked Msgr. Placa to refrain from exercising his priestly ministry publicly, “pending completion of a canonical investigation of as yet unproven allegations” against him.

Anglicans seek admission to Catholic Church
DUBLIN, Ireland (CNS) — Parishioners from three Church of Ireland parishes have joined traditional Anglicans from 12 other countries in requesting that the Catholic Church receive them into full communion. If approved by the Vatican, the move would allow 400,000 traditional Anglicans worldwide to be admitted into the Catholic Church. . The move, requested in a letter to the Vatican, would see the entire parish communities received into the Catholic Church. At the Vatican, officials would not comment on the letter, although they confirmed the doctrinal congregation had received it.

Shuttle commander is Catholic school grad
IRONDEQUOIT, N.Y. (CNS) — Space shuttle Discovery’s commander, Pam Melroy, is a 1979 graduate of Bishop Kearney High School in Irondequoit. She has also piloted space missions in 2000 and 2002. A retired Air Force colonel, Melroy is the second woman to command a NASA space shuttle: The first was Eileen Collins, an Elmira native who commanded shuttle missions in 1999 and 2005.

Iran’s nuclear program is OK if peaceful
ROME (CNS) — A leading Vatican official expressed support for the development of a nuclear energy program in Iran, as long as it serves peaceful purposes. “Nuclear energy is something that can do good for humanity” — a principle that “is certainly valid for Iran, too,” said Cardinal Renato Martino, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace. His remarks came as Iranian and European officials met in Rome to try and resolve growing tensions over Iran’s nuclear capability.

Nuns form global network to end human trafficking

ROME (CNS) — Women religious from around the world have formed a global network to combat human trafficking. More than 30 nuns from 26 nations launched the initiative called the “International Network of Religious Against Trafficking in Persons” during a U.S. State Department-funded conference on human trafficking Oct. 15-19 in Rome.

Louisiana governor-elect. is convert to Catholicism
BATON ROUGE, La. (CNS) — Bobby Jindal, Louisiana’s Republican governor-elect, will be not only the nation’s youngest governor when he is sworn into office in January, but he’ll be the first Indian-American governor and the first who is a convert from Hinduism to Catholicism. Jindal, 36,was raised a Hindu by his Indian-born parents. He converted to Catholicism when he was a student at Brown University in Providence, R.I.

Two Iraqi priests released after week in captivity
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — The Vatican expressed relief at the release of two Iraqi priests who had been kidnapped and threatened with death. After spending a week in captivity, the Syrian-rite priests were freed near Mosul, Iraq, Oct. 21 and were reported safe at their church inside the city. Their abductors had asked for $1 million in ransom; it was not known if any money was paid for their release. The two priests were apparently on their way to a church service on the outskirts of Mosul when they were seized.

Court maintains sentence of one of U.S. nun’s killers
SAO PAULO, Brazil (CNS) — A court in the Brazilian state of Para upheld the prison sentence of Rayfran das Neves Sales, who was convicted of killing U.S. Sister Dorothy Stang in Brazil in February 2005. Sales was convicted and sentenced to 27 years in prison for the murder of Sister Dorothy, a member of the Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur. Brazil grants an automatic retrial for any sentence longer than 20 years in prison.

Suit dismissed against Mexican cardinal
LOS ANGELES (CNS) — A federal judge Oct. 16 dismissed a lawsuit against Mexico City Cardinal Norberto Rivera Carrera that accused him of conspiring to transfer a priest accused of sexual abuse from Mexico to the United States. Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Elihu M. Berle said there was not enough evidence to hold Cardinal Rivera accountable in a U.S. court.

 

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