The complicated relationship between the U.S. and the Holy See

"The Vatican has sources of information that the CIA would kill to get"

The significance of a global network of priests sank in for Thomas Reese on the day the president of Rwanda's plane was shot down. The Catholic analyst and author had been interviewing a church leader at the Vatican when his source's phone rang. The call about the plane crash had been made to notify the headquarters of the Catholic Church that trouble was brewing. "That was … [Read more...]

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NY Times: President to nominate Callista Gingrich as Vatican ambassador

Wife of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said to have played critical role in her husband's conversion to Catholicism

Less than two weeks before a potentially tense and diplomatically delicate meeting with Pope Francis at the Vatican, President Trump has apparently settled on nominating Callista Gingrich, the wife of Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker, as the United States ambassador to the Holy See, according to two people close to the president. The idea of nominating Ms. Gingrich … [Read more...]

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California bishops: “payment of taxes is morally obligatory”

Even when the state uses taxes for unjust purposes, we are still required to pay them

During the next few weeks, the California legislature will focus on the state budget.  With a supermajority, California Democrats will be in full control of the process but it is unlikely to be smooth sailing for them. State tax revenue is coming in significantly below projections.  A recently enacted gas tax increase has put some Democrats on the hot seat.  Even within the … [Read more...]

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US bishops sign petition to end death penalty

Sacramento Bishop Jaime Soto was among prelates who were first to sign ‘National Catholic Pledge to End the Death Penalty’ at US bishops’ headquarters building on May 9

Bishops were among the first to sign the ‘National Catholic Pledge to End the Death Penalty’ at the US bishops’ headquarters building on May 9. Each person taking the pledge promises to educate, advocate and pray for an end to capital punishment. “All Christians and people of goodwill are thus called today to fight not only for the abolition of the death penalty, whether … [Read more...]

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President Trump to meet with Pope Francis

Pope will receive the president for a private audience on May 24

After months of the kind of hemming and hawing normally reserved for a courtship, it's finally official – the Pope will receive President Trump for a private audience at 8.30 am on Wednesday, 24 May. Five days after Francis told the traveling press en route from Egypt that no request for a meeting had yet been received from the White House, late-morning leaks from … [Read more...]

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Evan Minton sues Mercy hospital in Carmichael for refusing hysterectomy

“It devastated me"

The following comes from an Apr. 20 story in the Sacramento Bee. More than seven months after a Dignity Health hospital refused a hysterectomy to a Sacramento-area transgender patient, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit Wednesday on his behalf. The lawsuit, filed in San Francisco Superior Court, alleges that Dignity discriminated against Evan … [Read more...]

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“Don’t hold your breath”

President Trump won't meet with Pope Francis during May trip to Sicily, choice of Vatican ambassador unlikely to come soon

Up until recently, the assumption had been that the first opportunity to gauge the Trump administration’s approach to the Vatican under Pope Francis would come in late May, when Trump is scheduled to travel to Sicily for a G7 summit. Expectations were that Trump, like most American presidents visiting Italy, would also stop in Rome for a tête-à-tête with the pontiff. However, … [Read more...]

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