Catholic Church

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Pope Plans to End 1K-Year-Old Russian Rift

Francis will meet with leader of Russian Orthodox Church

(Newser) - Pope Francis and the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church will meet in Cuba next week in a historic step to heal the 1,000-year-old schism that divided Christianity between East and West, both churches announced Friday. The Feb. 12 meeting between Francis and Patriarch Kirill will be the first... More »

Report: 231 Members of German Boys' Choir Abused

The choir was conducted by the brother of former Pope Benedict

(Newser) - At least 231 members of a Catholic boys' choir in Germany were physically abused over four decades—largely while the choir was conducted by the brother of former Pope Benedict XVI, the New York Times reports. That number comes from Ulrich Weber, a lawyer hired by the Regensburger Domspatzen choir... More »

Priest Suspended Over Christmas Eve Hoverboard Stunt

'That was wrong'

(Newser) - A priest rolling around his church on a "hoverboard" while singing May the Good Lord Bless and Keep You on Christmas Eve earned a round of applause from his congregation and a quick suspension from his diocese, NBC News reports. It's unknown how the birthday boy felt about... More »

Pope Signs Off on Mother Teresa's 2nd Miracle

She'll become a saint in 2016

(Newser) - Mother Teresa is set to finish 2016 as one of the Catholic Church's newest saints after a big decision from Pope Francis. The missionary, who spent most of her life working with the poor in India, was beatified in 2003, and the AP reports that Pope Francis has now... More »

Catholic Diocese Finds Utah's 'Bleeding Host' Wasn't a Miracle

It was bread mold

(Newser) - The Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City says a bleeding host reported after a communion wafer turned water red was caused by bread mold, not a miracle. Officials said Wednesday that a scientist found the conclusive natural explanation for the wafer that turned water in an ablution bowl a dark... More »

Pope on Divorce, Gays: 'Today Is a Time of Mercy!'

Closes out bishops' synod with some gains on divorce, homosexuality

(Newser) - Pope Francis closed out a three-week bishops' synod on Sunday with something of a victory lap, appearing to chastise conservative Catholic leaders for excluding swaths of the faithful, including divorced and gay Catholics. "A faith that does not know how to grow roots into the lives of people stays... More »

Man: I Lost Job at Catholic Home Because I'm Gay

He's filed a discrimination claim

(Newser) - A Virginia man says the bishop of a local Catholic diocese forced his removal from the top job at a diocese-owned assisted living home because he's gay and married to his partner of 30 years. John Murphy filed a discrimination claim against the Catholic Diocese of Richmond with the... More »

Vatican Fires Priest Who Announced He's Gay

'I am a happy and proud gay priest'

(Newser) - "I have to say who I am," Krzysztof Charamsa told a Polish newspaper Saturday. "I am a happy and proud gay priest." Reuters reports that admission, also made to an Italian newspaper, cost the 43-year-old monsignor his position at the Vatican's Congregation of the Doctrine... More »

Pope to Huge Philly Crowd: This Is 'a Kind of Miracle'

Pope Francis caps 10-day trip with Mass for huge crowd

(Newser) - Pope Francis led hundreds of thousands of the faithful Sunday at the last and biggest event of his joyful, six-day US visit—a Mass on Philadelphia's grandest boulevard—after consoling victims of the church sex abuse scandal and offering words of hope to jail inmates. Riding through the streets... More »

Pope Carries Out First Canonization on US Soil

But it's quite controversial

(Newser) - In the first canonization on US soil, Pope Francis has elevated to sainthood an 18th-century missionary who brought Catholicism to the American West Coast. Francis canonized Junipero Serra today during a Mass in Washington. Serra was a Franciscan friar who marched north from Baja California with Spanish conquistadors, establishing nine... More »

Vatican Isn't Happy With White House Guest List

Gay Episcopal bishop and activist nun reportedly among the sore points

(Newser) - The Vatican is worried President Obama's guest list for Pope Francis' upcoming visit to the White House is a little too "off-brand," the Wall Street Journal reports. Among the thousands of guests invited to Wednesday's event are the first openly gay Episcopal bishop, a nun dedicated... More »

Is the Pope Facing Open Rebellion?

Conservatives say church is moving away from its 'real teachings'

(Newser) - Pope Francis' statements on everything from abortion to annulment have helped transform the public's view of the Catholic Church. As for actual changes in Church policy, there have been few. Why? The pope is "grappling with a conservative backlash to the liberal momentum building inside the church,"... More »

Getting an Annulment Is Getting Easier

Francis, who has long called for them to be free, issues new reforms tomorrow

(Newser) - Pope Francis tomorrow will release a new streamlined process for annulling marriages after he—and generations of Catholics before him—complained that the church's current system is cumbersome, costly, and often unfair. The Vatican said Francis would release the new rules after a commission of canon lawyers spent the... More »

US Catholics Clash With Vatican Over These 5 'Sins'

Divorce, non-traditional families among them

(Newser) - American Catholics may be fans of Pope Francis—but not necessarily the ideas he represents as head of the Catholic Church. A new Pew Research Center poll of 5,122 adults shows Americans who identify as Catholic are much more accepting and have a very different view on what constitutes... More »

Woman Marries Jesus, Becomes Consecrated Virgin

Indiana resident isn't a nun, will remain in secular society

(Newser) - Well, it should save on honeymoon airfare, anyway. A 38-year-old Indiana woman married Jesus Christ over the weekend, becoming one of his approximately 3,000 living wives worldwide, CBS News reports. The process is known as becoming a consecrated virgin and is relatively rare within the Catholic Church, with only... More »

Pope Francis: Hey, Ease Up on Remarried Catholics

They should be welcomed by the Catholic Church, he says

(Newser) - A Catholic's second marriage after divorce isn't exactly celebrated by the Vatican. But hey, the Catholic Church isn't going to excommunicate you should you choose to tie the knot a second time. That's the word from Pope Francis himself, who spoke about family values during a... More »

Pope's Encyclical Largely Ignored at Sunday Mass

Without guides, few priests take up environmental cause

(Newser) - Many Catholics are applauding Pope Francis' environmental encyclical addressing climate change and global inequality, which made a splash around the world last week. But on the first Sunday since "Praise Be to You" was published, few priests or bishops spoke of its lessons from the pulpit, reports the New ... More »

US Archbishop Quits Amid Sex Abuse Coverup Charges

As Vatican announces former envoy will stand trial on molestation charges

(Newser) - The archbishop of St. Paul, Minn., stepped down this morning over allegations that his deeply troubled archdiocese repeatedly failed to protect children from what the AP is calling "unspeakable harm from a pedophile priest." Out of a job is Archbishop John Nienstedt, as well as Auxiliary Bishop Lee... More »

Archdiocese Charged With Failing to Protect Kids

Prosecutors say Minneapolis church authorities ignored pedophile priest

(Newser) - Criminal charges were filed today against the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis for its handling of a priest who molested children, with a prosecutor saying church leaders "turned a blind eye" to the abuse. Ramsey County prosecutors charged the archdiocese as a corporation with six gross... More »

Vatican OKs Controversial Missionary for Sainthood

Seems like Francis pushed for Junipero Serra, despite Native American complaints

(Newser) - The Vatican's saint-making office has officially given a thumbs-up for the Rev. Junipero Serra to be declared a saint—four months after Pope Francis announced he would canonize the controversial 18th-century missionary during his upcoming visit to the United States. The Vatican said today that the Congregation for the... More »

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