A round-up of recent stories in the Church and the world.
The major stories this week have included the papal prayer summit at the Vatican, the murder of a young priest in Arizona, and the advances of Islamic militants in Iraq.
But here are a few items you may have missed:
Melinda Gates, of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, has announced that her international family planning foundation will no longer fund abortion because she believes abortion and family planning have become “conflated."
The 52nd session of the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) was critical and judgmental of El Salvador’s protection of preborn children from the destruction of abortion. The treaty body is supposed to monitor compliance of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) which recognizes that “the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world” and that “these rights derive from the inherent dignity of the human person”, says the Parliamentary Network for Critical Issues.
Addressing the U.S. bishops’ spring meeting in New Orelans, June 11, Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput invited Catholics to the 2015 World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia.
The president of the bishops’ conference, Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky, at the meeting read out a letter to be sent to Pope Francis, inviting him to the Philadelphia summit. The letter said that the Pope’s presence would “add significance” to the gathering and “deepen the bonds of affection” many Catholics feel for the Holy Father.
The American public has become more tolerant on a number of moral issues, including premarital sex, embryonic stem cell research, and euthanasia, according to a new Gallup poll. On a list of 19 major moral issues of the day, Americans express levels of moral acceptance that are as high or higher than in the past on 12 of them, a group that also encompasses social mores such as polygamy, having a child out of wedlock, and divorce.
Finally, a new study finds that fasting for as little as three days can regenerate the entire immune system.
But save that one til Monday, Dads. Happy Fathers Day!
John Burgeris News Editor for Aleteia.org’s English edition.