The National Catholic Review

Signs Of the Times

  • August 31-September 7, 2015

    In a statement released on Aug. 11, Archbishop Socrates Villegas of Lingayen-Dagupan, the head of the Philippine bishops’ conference, said helping the poor and getting rid of political dynasties should be the focus of discussion as the nation prepares for elections in May. • Five years after the murder of Bishop Luigi Padovese, Pope Francis named Paolo Bizzeti, S.J., an Italian, on Aug. 14 to succeed the bishop as apostolic vicar of Anatolia,...

  • August 31-September 7, 2015

    In the early days of August 2014, as the summer heat scorched the plains of Nineveh, Islamic State militants began ethnic cleansing around the city of Sinjar, driving thousands among the province’s Yazidi, Christian and other religious and ethnic minority communities from their homes in just a handful of days. A year later survivors remain in northern Iraq, protected by Kurdish peshmerga forces, subsisting in often haphazard shelters around the cities of...

  • August 31-September 7, 2015

    To promote a reflection on the need for a “conversion of mind and heart” open to the needs of others, Pope Francis has chosen “Overcome indifference and win peace” as the theme for the church’s celebration of the next World Day of Peace. Announcing the theme for the celebration on Jan. 1, 2016, the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace said that peace is difficult to achieve when people are indifferent “to the scourges of our time.” The problems everyone...

  • August 31-September 7, 2015

    The Conference of Major Superiors of Men passed a resolution on Aug. 7 committing to “a deeper engagement” to protect the earth and “cherish all creation.” The conference, made up of leaders who represent more than 17,000 Catholic religious brothers and priests in the United States, laid out steps for member congregations to take in solidarity with Pope Francis’ call to action on climate change in his encyclical on the environment. “With this act, C.M.S.M....

  • August 31-September 7, 2015

    The Assembly of the Catholic Ordinaries of the Holy Land filed an official complaint with Israeli police after the leader of a radical Israeli movement offered remarks to the press that seemed to encourage the burning of churches. The Rev. Pietro Felet, the assembly’s secretary general, filed the complaint on Aug. 7 against Rabbi Bentzi Gopstein on behalf of more than 20 patriarchs and bishops.

  • August 31-September 7, 2015

    Cardinal John Tong Hon of Hong Kong has issued “an urgent appeal” to the Chinese authorities in Beijing to halt the demolition of crosses in the province of Zhejiang in eastern China. “The cross is the sign most representative of the Christian faith,” the cardinal reminded Chinese leaders in his public appeal on Aug. 13. The appeal carries a striking title: “The Sufferings of the Cross.”

  • August 31-September 7, 2015

    It was like almost any other Friday evening commute. People filed out of their offices on July 31 in an orderly fashion, headed for Beijing’s subway, its public buses or to try their luck hailing taxis. The only difference was that as the city’s workers were heading home, Beijing was capping a 21-month, come-from-behind campaign to host the 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games with a win!…and no one seemed to care.

  • August 17-24, 2015

    U.S. Catholic leaders have called on Congress to ensure that the federal minimum wage is raised to “improve the financial security of millions of American families.” In a letter, dated July 28, Bishop Thomas Wenski, chair of the U.S.

  • August 17-24, 2015

    As hidden-camera videos of Planned Parenthood staff strategizing to market fetal tissue and organs continued to be released on the Internet, rallies took place in 65 cities across the nation. Pro-life advocates from across the Salt Lake Valley in Utah demonstrated peacefully in front of a Planned Parenthood affiliate on July 28, calling for state and federal officials to investigate and defund Planned Parenthood.

  • August 17-24, 2015

    Concerns about a potential humanitarian emergency were mounting in late July as people of Haitian descent began to be forced out of the Dominican Republic and into tent cities along the border with Haiti. • A decision by the Boy Scouts of America on July 27 to allow gay troop leaders and employees to serve at the national level does not affect local leadership decisions and permits religiously chartered troops to choose leaders whose values are...