WASHINGTON -- Church reconstruction in Haiti is moving forward at a faster pace after months of discussions as Haitian and American Church leaders gain confidence in the process they established to oversee the massive rebuilding effort.
Planning for two new projects in the earthquake-damaged capital of Port-au-Prince was approved in mid-March by the PROCHE Joint Steering Committee overseeing the reconstruction, and the first church to be rebuilt with some of the $33 million donated by American parishioners was consecrated in February.
VATICAN CITY -- With Jesus' Resurrection "love has triumphed, mercy has been victorious," Pope Francis said in his first Easter message "urbi et orbi" (to the city and the world).
"Let us become agents of this mercy, channels through which God can water the earth, protect all creation and make justice and peace flourish," the pope said after celebrating Easter morning Mass March 31.
WASHINGTON -- In its second day of oral arguments about aspects of laws related to same-sex marriage March 27, the Supreme Court spent little time discussing the actual definition of marriage, focusing instead on issues of jurisdiction, state's rights, motives behind the federal Defense of Marriage Act and timing.
BISMARCK, N.D. -- North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple's signature on three pro-life bills "affirms our state's commitment to the protection of all human life," Bishop David D. Kagan of Bismarck said March 26.
Protecting life "from the moment of conception to natural death is the primary purpose of government," the bishop said in a statement. "All persons, including our elected officials, are obligated to unceasingly to seek protection of this basic human right."
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The legal question of the constitutionality of California's law banning same-sex marriage may take a back seat to consideration of whether the time is "ripe" for a national-level ruling, suggested the Supreme Court justices' questioning in the first of two major marriage cases being heard the last week of March.
CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy (CNS) -- With a warm embrace, a helping hand, shared prayer, a long discussion and lunch together, Pope Francis spent several hours with retired Pope Benedict XVI March 23 at the papal summer villa.
Pope Francis gave Pope Benedict an icon of Mary and Jesus that the Russian Orthodox delegation to his inauguration had given him just a few days earlier.
"They told me this was Our Lady of Humility. If I may say, I thought of you," Pope Francis said. Pope Benedict, obviously moved, grasped his successor's hands.