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May 4, 2015   •   VOL. 53, NO. 9   •   Oakland, CA
News in Brief

People scuffle to return from Nepal
People scuffle as they wait in line for an aircraft back to their country outside Nepal's Tribhuvan International Airport April 26. Thousands were known to have been killed and more than 6,500 others injured after a magnitude-7.8 earthquake hit a mountainous region near Kathmandu the previous day. Catholic Relief Services has deployed emergency staff from neighboring India and elsewhere, who are supporting Caritas Nepal as relief efforts expand to meet the needs on the ground. See the CRS website for more information: www.crs.org.
Athit Perawongmetha
/Reuters, cns

Marriage supporters gather
Supporters of traditional marriage hold signs near Capitol Hill in Washington during the third annual March for Marriage April 25. The Supreme Court is beginning to hear cases for states to honor the constitutionality of same-sex marriage.
Tyler Orsburn/cns

Cardinal George dies
CHICAGO — Cardinal Francis E. George, who retired as archbishop of Chicago in 2014, died April 17 after a gallant fight against cancer. He was 78. Two days of public visitation and prayer vigils led up to his April 23 funeral Mass.
courtesy of Chicago Archdiocese/cns

Masters champion

DALLAS — Even after becoming the toast of the sports world, golfer Jordan Spieth, a 21-year-old Dallas Jesuit graduate, remained humble and down-to-earth as he worked the crowds at Augusta, handled the media, and bantered with morning and late night talk show hosts after his historic win. That's no surprise to those who know the new Masters champion, who set course records at Augusta, Georgia, from April 9-12 on his way to the coveted prize and the iconic green blazer. They say he has kept family first, especially his younger sister, Ellie, who is autistic. "He is just very genuine," said Steve Koch, athletic director at Jesuit College Preparatory School in Dallas, which claims Spieth as a graduate of its class of 2011. "He says what he believes. He believes in supporting others, taking care of others before he takes care of himself." Michael Earsing, the president of the Jesuit school, said that the foundation of family, balance and caring for others has no doubt created a different perspective for Spieth, one that will serve him well after winning the Masters. "We talk about Ignatian balance in everything we do and I think Jordan and his family are a really good example of that balance," Earsing told The Texas Catholic, newspaper of the Diocese of Dallas. "When we talk about balance, we talk about love. We talk about how much he loves his sister, someone he loves and who has kept him grounded. We talk about how important life is to all of us as Catholics. What a wonderful thing."

Bishops change

WASHINGTON — Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Bishop Lawrence E. Brandt of Greensburg, Pennsylvania, and appointed as his successor Father Edward C. Malesic, judicial vicar of the Diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Bishop Brandt, who has headed the Greensburg diocese since 2004, is 76, one year past the age that bishops are required by canon law to turn in their resignation to the pope. Bishop-designate Malesic, 54, has been judicial vicar and secretary of canonical services in Harrisburg since 2006.
And Bishop David E. Fellhauer, 75, of Victoria, Texas, retired and Father Brendan Cahill, a priest of the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, was named to succeed him. Bishop-designate Cahill, 51, is a native of Florida who was ordained in 1990.

Serra sainthood

WASHINGTON — Although the upcoming canonization of Blessed Junipero Serra has stirred mixed reaction, a group of panelists April 22 said the ambiguities around the friar should not discount the good work he did or the positive dialogue and reconciliation that could result from his sainthood. "He made a lot of mistakes, but he was a man of his time. He was flawed but heroic," said Franciscan Father Joe Nangle about Blessed Serra, the 18th-century Spanish Franciscan who established missionaries in the U.S. Father Nangle, associate pastor of Our Lady Queen of Peace Parish in Arlington, Virginia, was a panelist in the "Founding Padres" discussion held at The Catholic University of America.

Courage conference

DETROIT — The Archdiocese of Detroit will host an international conference this summer dedicated to exploring some of the complex challenges the Catholic Church faces in ministering to those with same-sex attraction. The Aug. 10-12 conference at the Inn at St. John's in Plymouth is titled "'Love One Another as I Have Loved You' — Welcoming and Accompanying Our Brothers and Sisters With Same-Sex Attraction." It will be sponsored by Courage International, an apostolate that supports those with same-sex attraction in living and better understanding the church's teachings on chastity, as well as Our Sunday Visitor and the Archdiocese of Detroit.

Racial divide

WASHINGTON — Building a public address around his pastoral letter on the racial divide in the United States, Bishop Edward K. Braxton of Belleville, Illinois, asked his audience to imagine themselves in a world where the Catholic Church's imagery and culture is Afro-centric. In a program at Georgetown University April 20, Bishop Braxton framed challenges to the American public, and to Catholics in particular, to broaden their thinking about race to try to better understand the everyday issues faced by nonwhites.

Vigilance against abuse

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Catholic Church spent a total of $150.7 million on child protection efforts and to address allegations of clergy sexual abuse of minors in dioceses and religious orders between July 2013 and June 2014. The total includes about $31.7 million for safe environment training programs, background checks and other protective efforts, and about $119 million for settlements paid to victims, therapy for victims, attorneys' fees and other costs related to allegations, including those reported in previous years. The figures are among results of an annual survey conducted by Georgetown University's Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate that is part of an annual audit report on the response of the U.S. church to clergy sexual abuse.

'Beloved' video series

SAN FRANCISCO — A new 12-part video series on marriage from Ignatius Press will provide ongoing formation that many couples need "to help us to live the art of marriage well," said a theology professor who is content director of the series. "Everybody knows that there's a great crisis in marriage in the culture today," said Edward Sri, who teaches at Augustine Institute in suburban Denver. "We all know of various legal battles that are being fought related to marriage and various pundits making their case for marriage in the media and the public square," he said in a teleconference about the series, called "Beloved: Finding Happiness in Marriage." Ignatius Press in San Francisco collaborated on the series with Augustine Institute and Lighthouse Catholic Media in Sycamore, Illinois.

Catholic News Service


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