Print edition of 6/26/2020
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  • Communication, teamwork key to pandemic response, say archdiocesan leaders

    BRAINTREE -- When the coronavirus began to spread in Massachusetts, the leaders of various departments and ministries of the archdiocese came together to discuss its potential impact. This group, which expanded from 10 to about 30 individuals, would continue meeting throughout the shutdown and oversee the archdiocese's response to the pandemic.

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This week's edition » Local News

Multiple parishes in merger process


BRAINTREE -- Financial stress resulting from the coronavirus pandemic has caused several parishes in the archdiocese to announce plans to merge in the coming months. In a June 19 interview, Father Paul Soper, secretary of evangelization and discipleship, said greater financial stability is one of the principal reasons parishes seek to merge.

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Communication, teamwork key to pandemic response, say archdiocesan leaders


BRAINTREE -- When the coronavirus began to spread in Massachusetts, the leaders of various departments and ministries of the archdiocese came together to discuss its potential impact. This group, which expanded from 10 to about 30 individuals, would continue meeting throughout the shutdown and oversee the archdiocese's response to the pandemic.

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From Cardinal Seán's blog


On Saturday, June 13, I went to Castle Island in South Boston to celebrate a special Mass for racial justice and healing. I was gratified to be part of that celebration at the very place that the parishioners from St. Brigid's and Gate of Heaven usually have their sunrise service on Easter. I thought it was very significant for us to have this Mass there, particularly considering there has been a difficult history around the issue in South Boston.

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Ordination Class of 2020: Deacon Denis Nakkeeran


ROME -- Deacon Denis Nakkeeran thought he had his life figured out. Having grown up in a Catholic family in Brooklyn, New York, he planned to study medicine and become a doctor. He moved to Boston to study human physiology at Boston University. There, he was invited to go on a retreat, during which he had a "very powerful conversion experience" and began to better understand his faith.

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This week's edition » National News

Racism needs 'honest discussion,' not destruction, says archbishop


SAN FRANCISCO (CNS) -- San Francisco's archbishop said June 20 the "toppling and defacing" of a statue of St. Junipero Serra and other statues in the city's Golden Gate Park is the latest example of some people using the current movement against racial injustice as a reason for violence, looting and vandalism.

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Supreme Court says asylum-seekers can't challenge deportations


WASHINGTON (CNS) -- In a 7-2 decision June 25, the Supreme Court said the Trump administration can deport some asylum-seekers without granting them a federal court hearing. The opinion, written by Justice Samuel Alito, said asylum-seekers on track for expedited removal from the U.S. are not entitled to seek habeas corpus -- or the right to challenge government detention. The court also ruled that a 1996 law allowing for fast-tracked deportations is constitutional.

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Annual audit shows more than 4,400 allegations of clergy abuse reported


WASHINGTON (CNS) -- More than 4,400 allegations of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy were reported during the year ending June 30, 2019, a significant jump from the previous auditing period, according to a report on diocesan and eparchial compliance with the U.S. bishops' "Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People."

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Panelists: With police abolition come added corrective societal measures


WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The calls to "abolish the police" did not begin with the May 25 killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Instead, they simply picked up steam. Yet other corrective measures are needed within society that go hand in hand with abolishing police, said panelists during a June 24 forum, "Police Abolition: What Does It Mean?" It is sponsored by Georgetown University Law School.

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Asylum at the border is 'effectively over,' El Paso bishop says


WASHINGTON (CNS) -- After visiting a group of pregnant migrant women on the Mexico side of the border, Bishop Mark J. Seitz of El Paso Texas, issued strong words June 25 about the Trump administration's "Remain in Mexico" program and other restrictive immigration measures, saying that turning away those seek asylum in the U.S. amounts to sending them to their death.

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Court says tax credit program can't exclude religious schools


WASHINGTON (CNS) -- In a 5-4 ruling June 30, the Supreme Court said the exclusion of religious schools in Montana's state scholarship aid program violated the federal Constitution. In the opinion, written by Chief Justice John Roberts, the court ruled that if a state offers financial assistance to private schools, it has to allow religious schools to also take part. Separate dissents were written by Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer and Sonia Sotomayor.

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Catholics urged to pray, reflect, act to safeguard religious freedom


ARLINGTON, Va. (CNS) -- The U.S. bishops are urging Catholics to "pray, reflect and take action" on religious liberty in the United States and abroad during Religious Freedom Week June 22-29. The first day of the observance is the feast of Sts. Thomas More and John Fisher, both martyred for their Catholic faith.

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Turkish bishops won't contest plan to turn ancient cathedral into a mosque


OXFORD, England (CNS) -- Catholic bishops in Turkey pledged not to contest plans to turn Istanbul's ancient Hagia Sophia cathedral that now serves as a museum into a Muslim place of worship. In announcing their decision June 18, the bishops backed government claims that the monument's future is a question of national sovereignty.

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Black Catholic spirituality a force in fight against racism, say pastors


PHILADELPHIA (CNS) -- Two Black Catholic pastors in Philadelphia say their parishes are drawing strength from the Eucharist, prayer and a rich spiritual heritage in the fight against racism. "St. Katharine Drexel used to say, 'We go in to go out,'" said Father Stephen Thorne, pastor of St. Martin de Porres in North Philadelphia. "What she meant was that (our time with) the Blessed Sacrament gives us the energy to go forth and do justice."

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Jean Kennedy Smith, last sibling of President Kennedy, dies at age 92


NEW YORK (CNS) -- Jean Kennedy Smith, a diplomat, humanitarian and author and the last surviving sibling of the late President John F. Kennedy, died June 17 at her home in Manhattan. She was 92. President Bill Clinton nominated her to serve as ambassador to Ireland in 1993, and she held the post until 1998.

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This week's edition » International News

God listens to everybody -- sinner, saint, victim, killer, pope says


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Everyone lives a life that is often inconsistent or a "contradiction" because people can be both a sinner and a saint, a victim and a tormentor, Pope Francis said. No matter what one's situation is, people can put themselves back in God's hands through prayer, he said June 24 during his weekly general audience.

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Rome diocese to resume pilgrimage schedule, starting with Lourdes


ROME (CNS) -- Cardinal Angelo De Donatis, the papal vicar of Rome who spent 10 days in a hospital with COVID-19, will lead a diocesan pilgrimage to Lourdes, France, in August. The trip, Aug. 24-27, is scheduled to mark the resumption of diocesan-sponsored pilgrimages, which were halted because of the pandemic and its travel restrictions. With some exceptions and many precautions, travel among European countries resumed June 15.

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Retired pope returns to Vatican after visiting his brother in Germany


VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- Retired Pope Benedict XVI returned to the Vatican June 22, five days after flying to Germany to spend time with his ailing, 96-year-old brother. During his last morning in Regensburg, the 93-year-old retired pope visited his brother, Msgr. Georg Ratzinger, one last time before being driven to the airport in Munich. Msgr. Ratzinger was director of the renowned Regensburg boys' choir from 1964 to 1994, when he retired.

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