Nation and World News

Doctrinal chief dismisses idea of ‘fraternal correction’ of pope

VATICAN CITY — The Catholic Church is "very far" from a situation in which the pope is in need of "fraternal correction" because he hasn't put the faith and Church teaching in danger, according to Cardinal Gerhard Muller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

Interviewed Jan. 9 on the Italian all-news channel, TGCom24, Cardinal Muller said Pope Francis' document on the family, "Amoris Laetitia," was "very clear" in its teaching.

SEEK 2017 inspires college students to evangelize on campuses

Young adults prayed at Mass as part of the Jan. 3-7 biennial SEEK conference in San Antonio, Texas. The event was designed to bring evangelization efforts to college campuses.

SAN ANTONIO — In need of reigniting the fire for his Catholic faith, Jeremy Martins found the flame he needed at SEEK 2017.

"SEEK is the log I was waiting for," said Martins, a junior at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kan. "It has been two years since a real encounter with Christ."

Faith on pointe: Dancer stays grounded in God

“In dance, there are those rare moments that I feel something greater that I can’t explain” said Katherine Monogue, who dances for the Oregon Ballet Company.

PORTLAND, Ore. — A burst of power from her legs carries Katherine Monogue across the dance floor while her arms become a blur of precise movements.

Under a black leotard worn during a rehearsal for a recent performance, the ballerina's stomach muscles flex, keeping the center of her body relatively still as her limbs rapidly extend and retract with control.

Monogue, the youngest professional dancer and only Catholic dancer in the Oregon Ballet Theatre, has a faith that similarly stabilizes the core of her life amid a rewarding but intense career.

Catholics in Congress: one-third of House, one-quarter of Senate

WASHINGTON — The religious makeup of the 115th Congress is significantly Christian — 91 percent — with Catholics comprising one-third of the House of Representatives and about a quarter of the Senate.

Overall, there are six fewer Christians in the new Congress, at 485 members. But there are four more Catholics, who now total 168.

The high percentage of Christians in Congress is similar to the 87th Congress in 1961, the first year such information was collected. At the time, 95 percent of Congress members were Christian.

Federal judge blocks HHS transgender services regulation

AUSTIN, Texas — A federal judge in Texas blocked a regulation by the Department of Health and Human Services requiring Catholic hospitals and health care providers to perform or provide gender transition services, saying it would place "substantial pressure" on the plaintiffs — a coalition of religious medical organizations who said the ruling was contrary to their religious beliefs.

Pope: Have courage, hope in 2017

Pope Francis greeted people in St. Peter’s Square after leading vespers on New Year’s Eve at the Vatican Dec. 31.

VATICAN CITY — Whether the new year will be good or not depends on us choosing to do good each day, Pope Francis said.

"That is how one builds peace, saying 'no' to hatred and violence — with action — and 'yes' to fraternity and reconciliation," he said Jan. 1, which the Church marks as the feast of Mary, Mother of God and as World Peace Day.

Speaking to the some 50,000 pilgrims gathered in St. Peter's Square for the first noon Angelus of 2017, the pope referred to his peace day message in which he asked people to adopt the "style" of nonviolence for building a politics for peace.

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