US bishops vote in favor of bishop accountability measures (USCCB) A new protocol imposes “limitations on former bishops who were removed from office for grave reasons”; a new series of commitments extends diocesan codes of conduct to include bishops (as well as priests and deacons). The bishops also approved directives that apply Pope Francis’s recent apostolic letter on sexual abuse to the US bishops.
Pope offers 'decalogue for nuncios' (Vatican Press Office) Pope Francis addressed pontifical representatives as they took part in a four-day meeting at the Vatican. The “decalogue,” included in an address the Pope handed to nuncios, “in reality, is addressed through you also to your collaborators and, rather, to all the bishops, priests and consecrated persons you encounter in every part of the world.”
Climate change threatens humanity, Pope says (Vatican News) Effective action is urgently needed to stem a climate-change crisis that “threatens the very future of the human family,” Pope Francis said in a June 14 address to participants in a Vatican conference on energy production. He said that restrictions on carbon emissions are “essential.” The Pontiff also called for “open, transparent, science-based and standardized” reporting on climate change.
Illinois governor signs bill legalizing abortions up to birth (LifeNews.com) The state’s bishops repeatedly spoke out against the legislation. The Illinois Catholic Conference stated, “The ‘Reproductive Health Act’ goes further than Roe v. Wade in stripping rights from the unborn child with this single sentence: ‘A fertilized egg, embryo, or fetus does not have independent rights under the laws of this State.’”
Cardinal Parolin celebrates 25th anniversary of diplmatic relations with Israel (Vatican Press Office) Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican Secretary of State, spoke at a June 14 event in Rome marking the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the Holy See and Israel. Cardinal Parolin praised “the commitment of the State of Israel to ensure the Catholic Church the freedom to carry out her mission,” and said the Vatican and Israel will continue to cooperate in support of religious freedom and human dignity.
Judicial nominee withdraws after GOP senators accuse him of anti-Catholic bias (Washington Post) Michael Bogren “came under intense scrutiny for a legal defense he provided the city of East Lansing [Michigan] when it was sued by a Catholic-owned farm that refused to allow same-sex marriages on its property,” the Post reported. “The city found the farm violated its anti-discrimination ordinance and barred it from participating in its farmers market. In his legal brief, Bogren compared the situation to a Ku Klux Klan-member-owned business refusing service to an interracial couple.”
Islamic State expands reach in Afghanistan, threatening West (AP) “The Islamic State group has lost its caliphate in Syria and Iraq, but in the forbidding mountains of northeastern Afghanistan the group is expanding its footprint, recruiting new fighters and plotting attacks on the United States and other Western countries,” according to the report. “Nearly two decades after the US-led invasion, the extremist group is seen as an even greater threat than the Taliban.”
Texas bishop calls for stronger defense of dignity of immigrants (CNS) “I feel that as a (bishops’) conference, we must express ourselves more strongly when it comes to the dignity of immigrants, to say that they are not criminals, that they are vulnerable families and we need to invite all the governments involved, not just the US, to defend the migrant as a human being, to not cast the person aside as someone who doesn’t matter and is a problem,” Bishop Daniel Flores of Brownsville said.
Pope Francis praises Poland's march for life, recalls St. Anthony (Vatican Press Office) “I know that many of you and thousands of your compatriots participated in the March for Life last Sunday, carrying the message that life is sacred as it is a gift from God,” Pope Francis said following his June 12 general audience. “We are called to defend and serve life, from conception in the womb until advanced age, when it is marked by disease and suffering. It is not permissible to destroy life, to make it the object of experiments or false conceptions. I ask you to pray that human life will always be respected, bearing witness to Gospel values, especially in the family.”