News & Views
Check in each week to read interesting articles from Catholic writers, discover what Catholics are talking about in the wider world, find out what's happening in the lives of Catholic leaders, and keep up with the latest news from the Sisters of Bon Secours!


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Sunday Scripture Reading: Oct. 11, Twenty-eighth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Cycle B. Readings:
1) Wisdom 7:7-11
Psalm 90:12-17
2) Hebrews 4:12-13
Gospel) Mark 10:17-30 or Mark 10:17-27

By Jean Denton, Catholic News Service | October 9, 2015

Throughout the 15 years I’ve been visiting a rural community in Haiti with my parish twinning program, I’ve witnessed among the people a fundamental awareness that everything and anything they have is a gift from God.

They are so poor that they take nothing for granted other than that it’s granted by God. Whatever it is — the day’s portion of rice, their house, a child, a pretty singing voice, a day without sickness — they believe it came straight from the Father’s generosity.  (more…)

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Joyce Meyer, International Liaison, Global Sisters Report | October 6, 2015

Haiti is not a usual tourist destination but since I was there in 2009 there have been many changes that make it more inviting. The airport is sparkling new, even though the lines are still long with missionaries from the U.S. evangelical churches. There are new hotels far from the wealthy area of the old city nestled among ancient, dilapidated shops making me wonder if they were built with the motto “Build it and they will come.” Perhaps new buildings will inspire other investors. Who knows! The main streets are better, but driving is still hectic and the road up the mountainside to the Little Sisters of St. Therese of the Child Jesus is still steep and rocky. My companions and I saw families sitting outside post-2010-earthquake temporary structures and washing clothes in the river down in the valley. Trucks frequently blocked our way selling water to the mountain dwellers.  (more…)

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National Catholic Reporter Staff,  Pope Quote,  October 2, 2015

“From our feet, we can tell how the rest of our body is doing. The way we follow the Lord reveals how our heart is faring. The wounds on our feet, our sprains and our weariness, are signs of how we have followed Him, of the paths we have taken in seeking the lost sheep and in leading the flock to green pastures and still waters. The Lord washes us and cleanses us of all the dirt our feet have accumulated in following Him. This is something holy. Do not let your feet remain dirty. Like battle wounds, the Lord kisses them and washes away the grime of our labors.

Our discipleship itself is cleansed by Jesus, so that we can rightly feel ‘joyful,’ ‘fulfilled,’ ‘free of fear and guilt,’ and impelled to go out ‘even to the ends of the earth, to every periphery.’ In this way we can bring the good news to the most abandoned, knowing that ‘He is with us always, even to the end of the world.’ And please, let us ask for the grace to learn how to be weary, but weary in the best of ways!”

Pope Francis,  — Holy Thursday Mass, St. Peter’s Basilica, April 2, 2015


Laura Ieraci, Catholic News Service | September 27, 2015

PHILADELPHIA (CNS) — Pope Francis threw away a prepared text and, to the delight of tens of thousands of people on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, spoke from the heart about the challenges and love that come with being part of a family.

After listening to testimony from six families from various continents Sept. 26, he thanked them for sharing their stories.

“A witness given in order to serve is thoroughly good, it makes us good persons, because God is goodness,” he began, continuing to increase in speed and emphasis to the delight of the crowd. He smiled, gestured with his hands and the crowd cheered as he said it was “worth being a family.”

God sent his son into a family, he said, “and he could do this because it was a family that had a truly open heart,” he said  (more…)

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Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service | September 25, 2015

UNITED NATIONS (CNS) — Dealing with war, development, the economy or environmental concerns, bureaucrats and diplomats always must remember that the lives of real children, women and men are at stake, Pope Francis told the United Nations.

Helping to celebrate the organization’s 70th anniversary, Pope Francis visited its headquarters Sept. 25 and pleaded with government leaders and U.N. officials to keep the dignity and sacredness of every human life and the value of all creatures at the center of their concern. (more…)

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Joshua J. McElwee, National Catholic Reporter |  September 23, 2015

WASHINGTON, D.C. Pope Francis has gently but firmly reminded U.S. political leaders they have a responsibility to work for the common good of humanity, citing a president, a minister, and two Catholics radically dedicated to social justice and peace-building as examples for their work.

In the first papal address to a joint meeting of the House of Representatives and the Senate on Thursday, Francis made his main message clear almost immediately.


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Joshua J. McElwee, National Catholic Reporter| September 23, 2015


Pope Francis met with U.S. President Barack Obama in an extraordinarily crowded public encounter outside the White House Wednesday morning, and praised the president for his work fighting climate change but also asked that he protect religious liberty in the country.In the presence of a record-breaking crowd of some 15,000 invited guests, many of whom had arrived before dawn to glimpse the pope, Francis first thanked Obama for welcoming him — a “son of an immigrant family” — to the U.S.

The pope then expressed hope that the president would be “vigilant” in respecting religious liberty, but also said he and U.S. Catholics do not seek to practice any sort of discrimination.

“Together with their fellow citizens, American Catholics are committed to building a society which is truly tolerant and inclusive, to safeguarding the rights of individuals and communities, and to rejecting every form of unjust discrimination,” the pontiff told the president.


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Rosemary Nassif, Global Sisters Report| September 17, 2015

St. Teresa of Avila, a Carmelite Sister who lived from 1515 to 1582, describes prayer as “looking at God looking at me.” I believe this is the goal of all spirituality — whether Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu or Buddhist — to see others, our world and ourselves with the eyes of God.

There are a few extraordinary people who inspire us to see as God sees. I had the opportunity to look into the eyes of Pope Francis for the first time in May 2014 in St. Peter’s Square. As I watched him address the crowd and warmly, even intimately, greet so many, I realized that he was seeing them with the eyes of God, unconditionally loving the reality and mystery of each and every one. Perhaps this is why one man aligned to so many specific moral and theological beliefs can have such universal attraction and appeal. His very person inspires one to reach beyond religions and issues and connect to the God within.

This coming week Pope Francis will be among us.  (more…)

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If the Vatican were looking for someone who models the kind of church Pope Francis envisions, it would be difficult to do better than Mercy Sr. Mary Scullion, a North Philadelphia icon, founder of Project HOME and fierce, if jovial, advocate for the city’s poor and homeless for the past 40 years.

The mention of Francis recently brought a huge smile to Scullion, who was asked by Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput to head up the Committee on Hunger and Homelessness for the Sept. 22-25 World Meeting of Families. Pope Francis speaks a language — about the margins, about the need for the church to get out of the sanctuary, about the art of accompaniment — that has defined Scullion’s life and ministry since 1976.   (more…)

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Thomas Reese, National Catholic Reporter | September 5, 2015

The pope’s visit to the United States is going to be a whirlwind affair with scores of events and activities. In the midst of this papal storm, here are five things to focus on.

First, Francis the man.

This will be America’s first opportunity to see the pope up-close and personal. He is going to be treated like a rock star, but he is no ordinary celebrity. What people will notice is that, for the pope, the visit is not all about himself. It is about the Gospel message of God’s love and compassion and our responsibility to respond to that love by loving our brothers and sisters, especially the poor.

In other words, he is not selling himself; he is selling the Gospel message of Jesus.


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