Vatican insiders criticize Italian premier for invoking Catholic faith (AP) Italy’s Prime Minister Matteo Salvini flourished a rosary, and invoked the protection of the Virgin Mary on Italy, at a rally of nationalist leaders in Milan on May 18. His statements drew a caution from Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, who said that invoking God for political causes “is always very dangerous.” Father Antonio Spadaro, a close adviser to Pope Francis, was less subtle, saying: “The exploitation of religion seems to know no decency.”
Pope scolds Italian bishops for delay on annulment reforms (Crux) Speaking on May 20 to the Italian bishops’ conference, Pope Francis lamented that reform to the annulment procedure, which he instituted four years ago, “remains far from being applied in the great majority of Italian dioceses.” He called for “full and immediate application” of the new norms.
Cardinal Sarah praises former Pope's letter on Church crisis, raps Benedict's critics (L'Espresso) At an event in Rome, anticipated as a launch for his new book The Day is Now Far Spent, Cardinal Robert Sarah instead spoke at length about the letter of Pope-emeritus Benedict on the sex-abuse crisis, saying that the letter “demonstrated brilliantly” his argument about the crisis of the Catholic faith. Cardinal Sarah regretted that the former Pope’s letter “has prompted reactions that at times have bordered on intellectual hysteria.”
US bishops 'gravely disappointed' by House passage of Equality Act (USCCB) The House of Representatives passed the Equality Act (H.R.5) in a 236-173 vote. Five bishops who chair USCCB committees warned that “the Act’s unsound definitions of ‘sex’ and ’gender identity’ would ... end women’s shelters and many single-sex schools, ...close faith-based foster care and adoption agencies that honor children’s rights to a mother and father ... [and] even act as an abortion mandate.” The USCCB explained its opposition to the Act in greater detail in a March 20 letter.
Vast majority of couples who carry a terminally ill baby to term do not regret it (Iona Institute) When women carry a pregnancy to term even after learning that the baby will not survive after birth, the vast majority have no regrets, according to a study of 400 cases by the Duke University Medical Center. The study, finding that 97% of the parents had no regrets, suggested “a psychological benefit to women to continue th pregnancy following prenatal diagnosis of a lethal fetal defect.”