The National Catholic Review

Signs Of the Times

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  • May 23-30, 2016

    As heavy fighting continues across the Nineveh Plain, some Christians displaced by the Islamic State have given up the dream of returning home and joined the stream of refugees leaving the war-torn country. Others remain in Iraqi Kurdistan, clinging to the hope that they can someday go back to their villages.

    “When we fled our convent in Qaraqosh in 2014, we thought we’d be gone just a few days; then we could go home. But now it’s been almost two years, and the future is uncertain....

  • May 23-30, 2016

    Bishop Donal McKeown of Derry told hundreds of mourners at the funeral of Sister Clare Crockett , killed in Ecuador during an earthquake on April 17, that “a life given in loving sacrifice is never wasted.” • Twenty-three new Swiss Guard recruits pledged during a ceremony on May 6 to “faithfully, loyally and honorably” serve and protect the pope and, if necessary, sacrifice their lives for him. • The Vatican announced on May 5 that Pope Francis has appointed...

  • May 23-30, 2016

    Pope Francis, accepting a prize for promoting European unity, on May 6 bemoaned that the continent’s people “are tempted to yield to our own selfish interests and to consider putting up fences.”

    “I dream of a Europe where being a migrant is not a crime but a summons to a greater commitment on behalf of the dignity of every human being,” he told an audience that included Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, Premier Matteo...

  • May 23-30, 2016

    As wildfires continue to blaze in northern Alberta, churches of all denominations across Canada have been offering prayers and helping relief efforts. More than 100,000 residents of Fort McMurray have fled the inferno—most have lost their homes completely. Bishop Paul Terrio, bishop of St. Paul, said: “Even as we still are all in shock with the wildfire destruction and damage in Fort McMurray, let us give thanks to our Lord and God that, with some 60 to 70,...

  • May 23-30, 2016

    Something developed countries take for granted—electricity—could go a long way to stem violence often attributed to religion, said Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah of Sokoto, Nigeria, in the country’s northwest. Only major cities, like state capitals, have reliable electricity, the bishop said on April 29 during a visit to Washington. Because of the lack of electricity, people cannot do ordinary work without a generator, and generators are expensive. The problem...

  • May 23-30, 2016

    Daniel J. Berrigan, S.J., was remembered during his funeral Mass as a “fierce, mischievous visionary,” a “Beatnik Jesuit friend,” a priest who “taught the sacrament of resistance” and a loving uncle ruled by faith, not fear. More than 800 people packed the Church of St. Francis Xavier in New York to cheer the life of the Jesuit at a festive service on May 6. Berrigan, a poet, author and longtime peace activist, died on April 30 at age 94. Stephen M. Kelly, S...

  • May 23-30, 2016

    They are filmmakers and coders, journalists and communications experts. Their portfolios include transforming the sleepy Facebook page of a radio station into a site followed by 3.6 million people; working on major marketing campaigns for Hyundai and Warner Brothers and films for Michael Bay and Janusz Kaminski; and serving as press secretary for a recent mayor of Los Angeles. Their average age is 28.

    No, this isn’t the staff...

  • May 9, 2016

    A canonical inquiry into the life of Dorothy Day, co-founder of the Catholic Worker Movement, will begin soon and extend to the end of the year, according to the Archdiocese of New York, which is sponsoring her sainthood cause. The names of 256 people had been submitted as potential eyewitnesses to Day’s life. Of those, 52 have been chosen for interviews. “Because many of the eyewitnesses still live in voluntary poverty, caring for the poor, the archdiocese...

  • May 9, 2016

    When ISIS extremists rolled across Iraq’s Nineveh Plain in 2014, tens of thousands of Christians fled to Kurdish-controlled areas of Iraq. They still wait in limbo in crowded camps. Their only certainty is that whatever happens to them, a group of Dominican nuns will be at their side. “We will not leave our people. Wherever they go, we will go with them,” said Sister Luma Khudher, a member of the Dominican Sisters of St. Catherine of Siena. The Iraqi...

  • May 9, 2016

    One day after Planned Parenthood’s president, Cecile Richards, spoke at Georgetown University, Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl of Washington celebrated a University Mass for Life for college students at a nearby Catholic church, encouraging them to stand up for God’s gift of human life. A Georgetown student group’s invitation to Richards, the head of the nation’s largest abortion provider, to speak on April 20 at the country’s oldest Catholic university drew...