Seattle archbishop is stonewalling push for more transparency of church sex-abuse cases, group contends
SEATTLE — Their ranks include ex-federal prosecutors, a retired judge, a one-time assistant police chief, even a former priest. But a group of prominent Catholics say they still can’t get an audience with Seattle’s new archbishop in their push to address the fallout of a lingering scandal. Members of Heal Our Church, a Seattle-based alliance of practicing Catholics who seek a public review of how the Roman Catholic Church’s worldwide sexual abuse scandal secretly festered within the parishes of Western Washington, contend they’re being stonewalled by Archbishop Paul Etienne. Since requesting a...
The Seattle Times
Sexual misconduct allegations against late Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias confirmed
ATLANTA — Less than a year after his death, the Alpharetta-based organization founded by Christian apologist Ravi Zacharias has released a statement confirming allegations of sexual misconduct made against the influential spiritual leader. Ravi Zacharias International Ministries, most commonly known as RZIM, said in a Dec. 23 statement from the executive committee of the RZIM board of directors on its website that preliminary results from an investigation have confirmed allegations that Zacharias had abused workers at two spas that he co-owned. The abuse spanned years and may go beyond those s...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
No one can stop conversion therapy in Florida — for now. How LGBTQ advocates are rethinking their battle strategy
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Gay rights and mental health advocates in South Florida are trying to come up with new ways to fight conversion therapy, the practice of mental health counseling aimed at “curing” teenagers with unwanted feelings of homosexuality or questions about their gender identity. Reeling from a recent federal ruling that cleared the way for psychologists in the southeastern U.S. to offer the counseling, opponents are openly questioning whether the legal momentum has shifted so far to the right that court battles are doomed to fail. Critics of conversion therapy and counseling sa...
Biden's faith made history without much fanfare. His Catholic supporters say that's a good thing.
PHILADELPHIA — When Joe Biden takes the oath of office in January, he will be only the second Catholic president of the United States since John F. Kennedy was elected 60 years ago.Kennedy’s victory in 1960 was a historic moment for Catholics, partly because his religion was at the forefront of the political conversation. Kennedy had to dispel fears he would have divided loyalties, famously telling a group of Southern ministers in a speech three months before the general election, “I am not the Catholic candidate for president. I am the Democratic Party’s candidate for president, who happens a...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
'He came back from the dead': Lost Mount Rainier hiker starts to recover after rescue in whiteout conditions
SEATTLE — It took dozens of park rangers, searchers, doctors and nurses, but Michael Knapinski, who became lost amid freezing, whiteout conditions in Mount Rainier National Park last weekend, was brought back to life in what his medical team is calling a miraculous recovery.The 45-year-old from Woodinville left for a snowy hike with a friend on the morning of Nov. 7. His friend planned to ski down the mountain to Camp Muir, while Knapinski was going to snowshoe to Paradise.“I was pretty close to the end (of the trail). … Then it turned to whiteout conditions, and I couldn’t see anything,” Knap...
The Seattle Times
'He never forgot where he came from': Before Wilton Gregory was named the first Black cardinal in the US, he got his start in the Chicago suburbs
CHICAGO — Wilton Gregory wasn’t raised Catholic and didn’t come to the faith until he was in sixth grade attending a Catholic grammar school. Now, he’ll serve as one of the top leaders of the global Catholic church community after being named a cardinal by Pope Francis.The Chicago native was one of 13 church leaders around the world to be named to the role by Pope Francis Oct. 25. With this appointment, Gregory also becomes the first Black American cardinal.Gregory, 72, began his religious career in the Chicago suburbs. He attended and later returned to teach at a seminary in Mundelein, served...
A Philly fight over faith and foster parents heads to the Supreme Court, pitting religious freedom against LGBTQ rights
PHILADELPHIA — A clash over whether the City of Philadelphia can require Catholic foster care agencies to consider placing children with same-sex couples heads to the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday, providing the court’s newly expanded conservative majority its first opportunity to signal how it will interpret questions of religious liberty and LGBTQ rights moving forward.Set to be heard just a day after an election in which President Donald Trump has appealed to religious voters in part by touting his record of appointing conservative judges, the case pits the city against a charitable arm o...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
Melinda Henneberger: How could bloodthirsty execution of Kansas woman ever amount to justice?
The selectively pro-life Trump administration has brought back the federal death penalty with what I think we can safely call a vengeance during this tough-on-crime campaign season. Did Attorney General William Barr, only recently honored at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast for his “Christlike behavior,” even flinch when ordering that a Kansas woman will be murdered in our name on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception?Most of those who suffer great cruelty as children do not go on to brutalize others as adults. But Lisa Montgomery, the woman we’re killing by lethal injection on Dec. 8, ...
The Kansas City Star
Editorial: Pope Francis leads change for same-sex couples
Pope Francis appears ready to lead Catholics worldwide to a greater recognition of same-sex unions, declaring in a new documentary that same-sex couples are “children of God and have a right to a family. Nobody should be thrown out, or be made miserable because of it.”While stopping well short of endorsing actual same-sex marriage, the pope said that such couples should be legally recognized. “What we have to create is a civil union law,” he said.As modest as such a statement may seem by contemporary standards, it could be the start of a dramatic shift in that attitude of the Catholic Church t...
Star Tribune (Minneapolis)
Pope Francis calls for civil union laws for same-sex couples: 'They are children of God and have a right to a family'
Pope Francis says same-sex unions need to be legally protected in a stunning departure from the Vatican on the issue.“Homosexuals have a right to be a part of the family. They’re children of God and have a right to a family,” Francis said in a new documentary that premiered in Rome Wednesday.“Nobody should be thrown out, or be made miserable because of it,” he added.According to the Catholic News Agency, the remarks came as the documentary, “Francesco,” touched on how the church should care for LGBTQ people.“What we have to create is a civil union law. That way they are legally covered,” the 8...
New York Daily News