Synod seeks input from young people
Vatican (SE): The office of the Synod of Bishops has launched a new website titled, The youth, faith and vocational discernment, in preparation for its October 2018 meeting which will discuss youth and vocation.
Designed to encourage input from young people, the site features a questionnaire, the results of which will help guide the preparation of a working document for the synod's discussion.
The website - http://youth.synod2018.va  - went live online on June 14 in English, Italian, French, Spanish, and Portuguese.
Archbishop gives his apartment to refugees
Rome (SE): Archbishop Konrad Krajewski, the papal almoner, has moved out of his apartment in Rome and made it available to a family of refugees from Syria—a couple and their young child.
The Polish archbishop, who coordinates the charitable activities of the pope, told La Repubblica that he was not doing anything exceptional noting, "I do not have a family; I'm a simple priest. Offering my apartment doesn't cost me anything."
Archbishop Krajewski has made his temporary sleeping quarters in an office on the top floor of the same building.
Mayor of Rome calls for moratorium on immigration
Rome (SE): Virginia Raggi, the mayor of Rome, asked Italy's Ministry of the Interior for a moratorium on new immigrants coming into the country's capital.
In a June 13 statement, Raggi said that it is now impossible as well as risky to accommodate more people.
The Italian news website, local.it, reported figures published by the government as putting the number of foreign residents in Rome at 364,632, or 12.7 per cent of the city's population.
Raggi points out that the sprawling refugee camps around Rome have become a fertile feeding ground for Italy's infamous Mafia.
Vatican bank shows healthy profit
VATICAN (SE): The Institute for Religious Works, more commonly known as the Vatican Bank, has released its financial report for 2016, showing a net profit of €36 million ($312.3 million).
Profit for 2016 doubled the previous year and the healthy increase is attributed to a prudent approach in managing investments in a year characterised by high volatility, global political uncertainty due to electoral events and low interest rates.
After years of operating under a cloud, it made the white list of trusted institutions put out by Italian authorities in March this year.
Papal check on cardinals
VATICAN (SE): Pope Francis has asked the cardinals who live in Rome to inform him when they travel overseas.
They have been reminded of the noble tradition of informing the pope about where they are.
It applies to both travel and activities, including speaking engagements, of all cardinals who work in the Roman Curia and those who are retired in the city.
Abortion in multiple pregnancies on up
LONDON (SE): Selective reduction abortions are likely to increase, the Catholic Herald reported on June 13.
Government figures for last year show 141 women in England and Wales opted for selective reduction of twins, triplets or in five cases, quadruplets—up nearly 100 per cent from 2015. About one-third involving triplets had two children aborted.
The mothers are mostly of mature age, married and had an abortion previously. Statistics show 190,406 abortions last year.
Anne Scanlan, the director of Life, said, "The abortion rate in this country is a national tragedy… Each one… represents a personal crisis for a woman and the loss of her child."
Day of prayer and penance for sexual abuse
INDIANAPOLIS (SE): The bishops of the United States of America gathered in the Indianapolis cathedral on June 14 to offer a day of prayer and penance for victims of sexual abuse within the Church.
A Mass was offered as a response to the Pope Francis' invitation to bishops' conferences to dedicate a day of prayer and penance for the healing of abuse victims.
Politics and faith collide
LONDON (SE): The leader of the Liberal Democrat Party in Britain, Tim Farron, has resigned, saying the party platform is no longer compatible with his Christian faith.
Farron said, "We are kidding ourselves if we think we yet live in a tolerant, liberal society."
He was attacked over his views on homosexuality and abortion during the campaign.