OKLAHOMA CITY — Even after the initial death toll was cut by more than half, the human and material devastation of a string of tornadoes that buffeted areas of the Archdiocese of Oklahoma City May 19-20 was incalculable.
"Our first concern is for the victims who have lost their lives or loved ones and suffered injury or loss of property," said a May 21 statement by Archbishop Paul S. Coakley of Oklahoma City.
PHILADELPHIA -- Dr. Kermit Gosnell may have been convicted May 13 of murder at his Philadelphia abortion clinic, but "nothing can bring back the innocent children he killed, or make up for the vulnerable women he exploited," said Archbishop Charles J. Chaput.
And, he added, "the repugnance of his clinic conditions" must be remembered.
In a May 14 statement, the Philadelphia archbishop said, "Gosnell is not an exception. Others just like him run abortion mills throughout our country."
WASHINGTON -- Human trafficking is so widespread that congregations of women religious are uniting in a nationwide effort to limit its reach.
The effort will focus on broader education about sex and labor trafficking, legislative advocacy for stricter laws and penalties for traffickers and wider support for victims through much-needed social services and employment.
ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The "full social and legal effects" of state lawmakers' decision to legalize same-sex marriage "will begin to manifest themselves in the years ahead," said the Minnesota Catholic Conference.
"Today the Minnesota Senate voted to redefine marriage in Minnesota. The outcome, though expected, is no less disappointing," the conference said in a statement.
The state Senate in a 37-30 vote gave final approval May 13 to a same-sex marriage bill. The state House passed the measure May 9. Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton signed it May 14.
CHAMPION, Wis. -- At the end of the inaugural Walk to Mary pilgrimage May 4, the approximately 500 participants were sore and tired, yet invigorated.
"My legs are starting to tighten up," said Jim Gillis of Seymour while resting on the grass at the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help in Champion with his wife, Jeannie. Both joined the pilgrimage at UW-Green Bay, completing the final nine miles. "It was just a perfect day for the first Walk to Mary. With any luck, we'll do it again next year."
ROME -- The Vatican-ordered revision of the statutes of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious will continue, but it must be accompanied with a real dialogue, which has been missing from the process, said Brazilian Cardinal Joao Braz de Aviz, prefect of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life.