'Love Saves Lives' theme for 2018 March for Life
WASHINGTON — The theme for the 45th annual March for Life will be "Love Saves Lives: Life Is the Loving, Empowering and Self-Sacrificial Option." The March for Life Education and Defense Fund announced the theme for the 2018 rally and march at a briefing on Capitol Hill Oct. 3 with Jeanne Mancini, president of the March for Life organization and other pro-life leaders in Washington. She moderated a panel discussion on "how the pro-life movement continues to empower women." The March for Life will take place Jan. 19, which is a Friday and comes ahead of the Jan. 22 anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court's 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade.
Catholics voice concern about EPA efforts to dismantle Clean Power Plan
WASHINGTON — An Environmental Protection Agency decision to roll back an Obama-era regulation to curb carbon dioxide emissions from power plants was met with disapproval and pledges to work to keep key components of the plan in place from Catholic organizations. Advocates said that rescinding the Clean Power Plan, President Barack Obama's policy to meet U.S. commitments under the Paris climate accord to limit global warming, would adversely affect the health of people around the country, especially in low-income communities, and would harm the environment. The concern is that if greenhouse gas emissions are not limited, thousands of people will become sickened or even die from increased air pollution in communities located near coal-fired power plants. Faith-based environmental advocates expressed apprehension that not cutting power plant emissions would hasten climate change and negatively impact the planet.
Pope names new auxiliary bishop for Orange, Calif.
WASHINGTON — Pope Francis has appointed Father Thanh Thai Nguyen, a priest of the Diocese of St. Augustine, Fla., to be an auxiliary bishop in the Diocese of Orange, Calif. The appointment was announced in Washington Oct. 6 by Msgr. Walter Erbi, charge d'affaires at the Vatican's nunciature in Washington. Born in Vietnam, Bishop-designate Nguyen, 64, fled the country in 1979 by boat with his family and spent 10 months in a refugee camp in the Philippines before arriving in Hartford, Connecticut, in 1980. In 1984, he joined the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette, studying at Merrimack College and the Weston School of Theology, both in Massachusetts. He was ordained to the priesthood May 11, 1991. For the next eight years, he worked in parishes in Georgia and Florida. In 1999, he was incardinated into the Diocese of St. Augustine.
Pope pledges Church commitment to fight child abuse online, offline
VATICAN CITY — Acknowledging how often the Catholic Church failed to protect children from sexual abuse, Pope Francis pledged "to work strenuously and with foresight for the protection of minors and their dignity," including online. "As all of us know, in recent years the Church has come to acknowledge her own failures in providing for the protection of children: extremely grave facts have come to light, for which we have to accept our responsibility before God, before the victims and before public opinion," the pope said Oct. 6. Participants at an international congress on protecting children appealed to governments, Church leaders and tech companies to do everything possible to remove online images of children and young people being sexually abused, identify and help those children, and end cyberbullying and "sextortion," which is using sexual images to blackmail someone.
Anti-nuclear coalition wins 2017 Nobel Peace Prize
VATICAN CITY — Emphasizing the hope for a nuclear-free world, the Nobel committee announced its decision to award the 2017 Nobel Peace Prize to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons. The organization, also known by the acronym ICAN, was commended for its work in drawing attention "to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons," the committee said, announcing the prize Oct. 6. "It is the firm conviction of the Norwegian Nobel committee that ICAN, more than anyone else, has in the past year given the efforts to achieve a world without nuclear weapons a new direction and new vigor," it said. Launched in 2007, the organization is a coalition of nongovernmental organizations in 101 countries aimed at promoting global nuclear disarmament.
Spanish Church leaders seek unity as Catalonia considers independence
MADRID — A Spanish cardinal defended his country's unity as a "moral good" and condemned "sedition and fraud" by secessionists, as politicians in Catalonia prepared to debate independence at an Oct. 10 regional parliamentary session. Cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera of Valencia said, "What has happened is very serious — an act of sedition, fraud and betrayal, a coup against the rule of law and a violation of the nation's constitutional order and the coexistence in freedom of all Spaniards." The cardinal's comments appeared in a newsletter circulated Oct. 7-8, as hundreds of thousands of Spaniards in Madrid, Barcelona and other cities rallied against Catalan independence.
— Catholic News Service