Italian animal rights groups urge Pope to stop wearing animal fur

ROME (CNS) Although Pope Benedict XVI does not wear fur-trimmed accessories in the summer, an Italian animal rights groups launched a summertime petition drive...

Indian diocese, government order separate probes into nun’s suicide

TRIVANDRUM, India (CNS) The Kerala state government and the Kollam Diocese have ordered separate probes into a nun's suicide after her father accused convent...

Pope calls for immediate end to military action in Georgia

BRESSANONE, Italy (CNS) Pope Benedict XVI has appealed for an immediate end to military operations in Georgia and its breakaway province of South Ossetia....

Latin patriarch seeks “new mentality” to bring Middle East peace

QUEBEC CITY (CNS) Nearly six weeks into his new position, Latin Patriarch Fouad Twal of Jerusalem called for a "new mentality" of collaboration among...

Hong Kong bishop says he has mixed feelings about attending Olympics

VATICAN CITY (CNS) A Chinese bishop said he had mixed feelings about attending the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in Beijing because of...

Kerala bishops oppose state family planning bill

BANGALORE, India (CNS) Catholic bishops in the Indian state of Kerala said they would oppose state legislation that they feel penalises large families. ...

Faith-based groups look for unified fight against effects of HIV

MEXICO CITY (CNS) Early in the 1990s, Aids appeared to be ravaging Haiti in the same way the virus was devastating sub-Saharan Africa; almost...

Pope offers best wishes to China, Olympic participants

BRESSANONE, Italy (CNS) Pope Benedict XVI offered his best wishes to China, the International Olympic Committee and all the athletes who will participate in...

Bible reading lax in NZ, even among Christians

WELLINGTON Although 68 per cent of New Zealanders own a Bible, only 23 per cent who have one pick it up and read it...

St Mary’s plans in Wanganui get council go-ahead

WANGANUI Much to the relief of St Mary's parish, Wanganui, permission has finally been granted by the Wanganui District Council to go ahead and...

Priests must spread Gospel where people live, work, says cardinal

VATICAN CITY (CNS) Priests cannot fulfil their missionary mandate by staying in their rectories and churches waiting for people to come to them, said...

Missing Indians urged to “do the right thing”

AUCKLAND The head of Aucklands World Youth Day committee hopes the Indian pilgrims who went missing from host families homes will do the right...

Vatican laicises Paraguayan bishop elected president

ASUNCION, Paraguay (CNS) The Vatican has laicised a bishop elected Paraguayan president, allowing him to take office in August without violating Church law, said...

Vatican encouragement for Anglican traditionalists

SYDNEY (CWN) A traditionalist Anglican group has received strong Vatican encouragement for its hopes of "corporate unity" with the Catholic Church. Archbishop John...

Iraqi prime minister, Pope discuss inter-religious dialogue, peace

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy (CNS) Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki invited Pope Benedict XVI to visit Iraq as a way to help support peacemaking efforts...

Politicians oppose extension of abortion act to Northern Ireland

LONDON (CNS) Politicians and lobbyists who oppose abortion in Northern Ireland have said they will resist attempts to extend Britain's abortion laws to the...

Church leaders cautiously hopeful over Zimbabwe power-sharing deal

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (CNS) Church leaders expressed cautious hope over a deal signed by Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai...

For secular Australia, World Youth Day was wake-up call

SYDNEY (CNS) In what is often seen as one of the most intensely secular nations in the world, Australia received a wake-up call the...

Pope tells Australians of God’s plan for creation, especially people

SYDNEY (CNS) In the longest-lasting and longest-distance trip of his pontificate, Pope Benedict XVI spoke to Australians and to young people from around the...

Pope assures Anglicans he is praying for Lambeth Conference

CANTERBURY, England (CNS) Pope Benedict XVI has assured Anglicans meeting for their once-a-decade worldwide conference that he and other Catholics are praying for them....

Set amid Sydney landmarks, stations attract hundreds of thousands

SYDNEY (CNS) In a week when the presence of Pope Benedict XVI in Sydney for World Youth Day had produced multiple memorable moments, the...

Plaque to St Paul blessed

CHRISTCHURCH The parish of St Paul in Dallington marked the beginning of the Pauline Year with a choral Mass celebrated by Bishop Barry Jones,...

New Zealander elected in Rome to head Marist Sisters

AUCKLAND New Zealands Sr Jane Frances OCarroll, SM, has been chosen as the new superior-general of the Marist Sisters. Sr Jane, who is...

Church’s psychosexual centre closes

AUCKLAND A psychosexual assessment and treatment centre set up by the Catholic Church to deal with abusive clergy has closed pending a restructuring. ...

Pope urges young people to respect life by safeguarding all creation

SYDNEY (CNS) Wonder and awe, tradition and novelty were combined on July 17 as Pope Benedict XVI shared a 45-minute boat ride through Sydney...

Vatican diplomat tells WYD pilgrims Spirit guides them to God

SYDNEY (CNS) The Vatican's ambassador to Egypt told World Youth Day pilgrims that the Holy Spirit will guide them in their relationship with God...

World Youth Day kicks off in Sydney with Mass, dancing, testimonies

SYDNEY (CNS) World Youth Day officially kicked off July 15 with an opening Mass celebrated by Sydney Cardinal George Pell before an estimated 140,000...

Pontiff arrives in Sydney for World Youth Day

SYDNEY (ZENIT) Benedict XVI affirmed that he is optimistic about the future of the Church in the West during the nearly 20-hour flight from...

Cardinal: Faith includes solidarity with poor, care for environment

SYDNEY (CNS) Growing in Catholic faith and experiencing the universality of the Catholic Church necessarily includes growing in solidarity with the poor and working...

WYD official pleads for missing Indians to turn themselves in

AUCKLAND The head of Aucklands World Youth Day committee has made a plea for the 39 Indian pilgrims who have gone missing apparently in...