WCR This Week

Religious vocation a call to live in the Promised Land – Pope Francis

May 4, 2015
CAROL GLATZ
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

VATICAN CITY – Following a vocation to the priesthood or religious life is to live an experience of “exodus,” Pope Francis said. That exodus involves joyfully leaving behind all that enslaves and journeying to a Promised Land of love, service and mission, the pope said in his message for the 2015 World Day of Prayer for Vocations April 26.

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U.S. women religious, Vatican iron out their differences

Representatives of the U.S. Leadership Conference of Women Religious
May 4, 2015
CINDY WOODEN
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

The Vatican approved new statutes and bylaws for the United States Leadership Conference of Women Religious, ending a seven-year process of dialogue with and investigation of the group. Conference officers met April 16 with Pope Francis, the same day the Vatican announced the conclusion of the process, which included oversight for three years by a committee of three bishops. The membership of the LCWR represents more than 80 per cent of the 57,000 women religious in the U.S.

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Parish celebrates Divine Mercy Sunday

Reliquary
May 4, 2015
PETRONILA JASA
SPECIAL TO THE WCR

For St. Albert's Holy Family Parish, Divine Mercy Sunday April 12 was the occasion for more than the usual Sunday celebrations. The possessor of a first class relic of St. Faustina Kowalska, who gave the world the message of divine mercy prior to her death in 1938, the parish held a special afternoon period of Eucharistic Adoration, veneration of the relic and Benediction. Since 2007, the parish has had a special commemoration of Divine Mercy Sunday, an event whose prominence was highlighted when it obtained the relic from the Congregation of Our Lady of Mercy in Cracow, Poland in 2012.

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Religious orders must be ready to say 'no' to unsuitable candidates, says pope

May 4, 2015
LAURA IERACI
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

VATICAN CITY – Despite fewer vocations to consecrated life, those responsible for formation in religious institutes must know how to say no to unsuitable candidates, said Pope Francis. Turning away unsuitable candidates will help religious congregations avoid a "graver crisis of quality" down the road, the pope said. He made his comments during an audience with about 1,300 novice directors and other formation ministers at the Vatican April 11.

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Public outcry forces Prentice to restore full tax credit for charitable donations

May 4, 2015
THANDIWE KONGUAVI
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

EDMONTON – Public outcry over the provincial government's decision to reduce its tax credit for charitable donations has been heard, loud and clear. Premier Jim Prentice announced April 21 that his government has reversed its spring budget plan to cut the credit to 12.75 per cent from 21 per cent for donations of more than $200. Prentice said he has reconsidered the budget reduction to the charitable donation tax credit and a Progressive Conservative government will maintain the previous rate, after hearing directly from Albertans during the campaign for the May 5 election.

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Supreme Court rejects prayer by city councils

Mayor Jean Tremblay
May 4, 2015
PHILIPPE VAILLANCOURT
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

Canadian cities must put an end to prayers during council meetings, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled April 15. The court said such prayers go against freedom of religion and conscience. In a unanimous decision and in the name of neutrality of state, all nine judges agreed that prayers should not be allowed anymore. The case submitted to the highest Canadian court pitted the mayor of Saguenay, a town 200 km north of Quebec City, against Alain Simoneau and the Quebec Lay Movement.

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Remember when you first met Jesus

May 4, 2015
CINDY WOODEN
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

VATICAN CITY – In every relationship, including one's relationship with Jesus, it is important to remember the "first encounter," that initial, life-changing moment of love, Pope Francis said. Celebrating Mass April 24 in the chapel of the Domus Sanctae Marthae, Pope Francis used the First Reading's account of the conversion of St. Paul to begin a homily about a whole list of encounters Jesus had with individuals in the Gospels:

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Euthanasia will increase suffering, says Regina theologian

Brett Salkeld
May 4, 2015
FRANK FLEGEL
PRAIRIE MESSENGER

REGINA – Assisted suicide as an end-of-life option may end the suffering of an individual but that choice has social and ethical consequences for society, says a local theologian. Dr. Brett Salkeld, Regina archdiocesan theologian, said, "First, it is our duty to limit suffering as much as possible, and second, eliminating suffering is impossible. "If our legitimate zeal to limit suffering fails to recognize suffering cannot be limited, we will cause a

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God made men, women different, says Pope Francis

May 4, 2015
CAROL GLATZ
CATHOLIC NEWS SERVICE

VATICAN CITY – Eradicating male and female identities does nothing to solve the problem of unfair or disrespectful treatment based on people’s gender, Pope Francis said. “Getting rid of the difference is the problem, not the solution,” he said during his general audience in St. Peter’s Square. The right way to solve the problems and conflicts in male-female relations is to have men and women “talk to each other more, listen to each other more, know each other better, care more for each other,” he said.

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Archbishop sets off to visit 182 schools

April 20, 2015
RAMON GONZALEZ
WESTERN CATHOLIC REPORTER

The heart of a Catholic school is Jesus, the archbishop of Edmonton told Catholic elementary students in St. Albert April 13. Speaking to students at J.J. Nearing School, Archbishop Richard Smith said the Catholic school system is all about Jesus – knowing him, loving him and following him. "In a Catholic school, you learn all kinds of wonderful things, but at the heart of it all is learning about Jesus." Smith spent all morning at the school, speaking to different grades separately in the library. The visit was part of his plan to visit all 182 Catholic schools in the archdiocese.

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