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Keep vigilant says Boston cardinal on abuse scandal

BOSTON (CNS): “Our Church will never forget the clergy sexual abuse crisis,” said Sean Cardinal O’Malley of Boston, in a document marking the 10th anniversary of the scandal that first rocked the archdiocese in January 2002, the reverberations of which continue to be felt. 

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Vatican issues recommendations for celebrating Year of Faith

VATICAN CITY (CNS): The Vatican issued a list of pastoral recommendations for celebrating the Year of Faith in an effort to help Catholics have a better and correct understanding of their faith and become authentic witnesses to Christ. 

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith released a note on January 7 outlining the aims of the special year and ways in which bishops, dioceses, parishes and communities can promote “the truth of the faith.” 

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Monks brawl at Bethlehem basilica

BETHLEHEM (CWNews.com): An ugly brawl broke out between Greek Orthodox and Armenian Apostolic monks at the Basilica of the Nativity in Bethlehem on December 28.

Police were called in to separate the angry monks. No major injuries were reported.

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Woman named new secretary-general to South African bishops’ conference

CAPE TOWN (CNS): “I see my appointment as recognition from the bishops of the work that women are doing in this part of the world,” said Sister Hermenegild Makoro, the new secretary-general of the Southern African Catholic Bishops’ Conference on December 12. 

She pointed out that “in parishes, women are talking the lead” and her appointment is natural extension of the many tasks performed by women in the Church. 

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Ordinariate set up for former Anglicans in the United States

WASHINGTON (CNS): The Vatican announced on January 1 that Pope Benedict XVI has established an ordinariate in the United States of America (US) for former Anglicans who wish to become Catholics and named a married, former bishop of the Episcopal Church to head it. 

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Cuba to free 2,900 political prisoners ahead of papal visit

HAVANA (CNS): In a speech to Cuba’s National Assembly on December 23, the country’s president, Raul Castro, announced that 2,900 political prisoners would be freed in the spring, a move he partially attributed to Pope Benedict XVI’s upcoming visit.

The pope has said he will visit Cuba and Mexico before Easter, although the official dates have not yet been announced.

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Archbishop remembers Havel as friend and fellow prisoner

PRAGUE (CNS): “He knew the loss of freedom, the denial of human dignity, oppression and imprisonment,” Archbishop Dominik Duka, of Prague in Czechoslovakia, said of the former president of the country, Vaclav Havel, on the day of his death.

The archbishop called him a “friend and fellow prisoner.”

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At least 26 Church pastoral workers killed in 2011

VATICAN CITY (CNS): According to Fides, the news agency of the Congregation for the Evangelisation of Peoples, at least 26 Catholic pastoral workers were killed in mission lands or among society’s most disadvantaged communities in 2011. More often than not, they were victims of violent crimes rather than religious persecution. 

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New cardinals on the horizon as Pope Benedict faces a busy 2012

 

VATICAN CITY (CNS/Agencies): A trip to Latin America, a synod of bishops on new evangelisation, the start of the Year of Faith, creation of new cardinals and proclamations of new saints are all on Pope Benedict XVI’s calendar for 2012. 

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Pope connects moral education with justice in World Day of Peace message

VATICAN (CWNews.com): In his annual message for the World Day of Peace, Pope Benedict XVI highlights the role that idealistic young people can play in building peace in the future, stressing the importance of education in realising this goal. 

“Young people today are frustrated by the injustices they see in the world,” the pope writes. They need guidance as they mobilise to remedy problems.

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