• Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    Maryland county lifts ban on Communion 

    Washington, D.C. Newsroom, May 28, 2020 / 10:48 am (CNA).- Howard County, Maryland, has reversed a policy that banned consumption of any food or drink during religious services, effectively preventing the licit celebration of Mass.  A county spokesman told CNA May 28 the prohibition will be removed, and faith leaders will be consulted on future guidelines for church reopenings amid the coronavirus pandemic. On Tuesday, Howard County Executive Calvin Ball issued an executive order delineating reopening regulations and conditions for houses of worship and other entities deemed “non-essential” by the state of Maryland.  “There shall be no consumption of food or beverage of any kind before, during, or after religious…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    Vatican archives will reopen to scholars June 1

    Vatican City, May 28, 2020 / 10:00 am (CNA).- The Vatican Apostolic Archive will reopen to researchers June 1 after closing for 12 weeks due to Italy’s coronavirus lockdown. The archive was forced to close to scholars the second week of March, just days after the highly anticipated March 2 opening of the files on the pontificate of Venerable Pius XII. According to a notice on the archive’s website, the records office will reopen to researchers for four weeks, after which they will again close for the summer break until after Aug. 30. The archives will be open only during the morning until further notice and the number of researchers…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    Vatican orders founder to leave ecumenical community

    CNA Staff, May 28, 2020 / 06:00 am (CNA).- The Vatican has ordered the prominent Italian Catholic layman Enzo Bianchi to leave the monastery he founded in 1965. The Holy See made the ruling in a decree dated May 13, signed by Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin and approved by Pope Francis, following an apostolic visitation.  A statement on the Monastic Community of Bose’s website said the pope had approved the apostolic visitation in response to “serious concerns” about “a tense and problematic situation in our community regarding the exercise of the founder’s authority, the governance, and the fraternal climate.” Bianchi founded the ecumenical community in Biella, northern…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    St. Augustine bishop calls for end to Florida death penalty

    Denver Newsroom, May 28, 2020 / 03:00 am (CNA).- All of Florida’s death row inmates live in the Diocese of St. Augustine. Many are Catholic. At least twice a year St. Augustine’s Bishop Felipe Estevez goes to visit death row inmates himself. So when Estevez issued a pastoral letter this week chronicling the efforts of Catholics in Florida to end the death penalty, and laying out the Catholic case for its abolition, the issue was personal. “Justice needs to be restorative, not out of vengeance,” Estevez told CNA May 27. “We don’t want anyone in society to be in danger because of these criminals, but we don’t think that death…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    Baltimore archdiocese has ‘serious concerns’ about county Communion ban

    Washington, D.C. Newsroom, May 27, 2020 / 06:02 pm (CNA).- The Archdiocese of Baltimore said it has “serious concerns” about public health guidance from Howard County, Maryland, which prohibits the reception of Communion as a condition for churches to reopen during the coronavirus pandemic. “For the Catholic community, the reception of Communion is central to our faith lives and to our public worship,” said a statement from the archdiocese, released to CNA on Wednesday. “Since learning of the concerns of Howard County officials, we have shared our guidelines for the distribution of Communion and express our own serious concerns about their recent guidance preventing Catholic churches in Howard County from…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    Burundi bishops denounce suspect presidential election

    CNA Staff, May 27, 2020 / 06:00 pm (CNA).- The Catholic bishops of Burundi have denounced the country’s recent general elections, and alleged irregularities in the voting process earlier this month. The president of the Burundi Conference of Catholic Bishops (BCCB) issued a statement on Tuesday following the victory of Evariste Ndayishimiye, former secretary-general of the country’s ruling party, the CNDD-FDD. “We deplore many irregularities with regard to the freedom and transparency of the electoral process as well as fairness in the treatment of certain candidates and voters,” said Bishop Joachim Ntahondereye of Muyinga after results were announced, according to AFP. On Monday, the electoral commission declared Ndayishimiye the winner…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    Costa Rican bishop disappointed in legalization of gay marriage

    CNA Staff, May 27, 2020 / 04:29 pm (CNA).- A Costa Rican bishop has warned that although same-sex marriage has been legalized in the country, the Catholic Church will continue to proclaim the truth of God’s plan for sexuality and marriage. Despite the change in law, Bishop José Manuel Garita of Ciudad Quesada said May 26, “we will not tire in showing the beauty of marriage between a man and a woman. Nor will the Church cease to proclaim the plan willed by God in creating man and woman, even though the times, fashions, pressures and ideologies dictate otherwise.” In a January 9, 2018 decision, the Inter-American Court on Human…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    43% of US coronavirus deaths in nursing homes

    Washington, D.C. Newsroom, May 27, 2020 / 03:00 pm (CNA).- A new report on Tuesday says that more than 40% of deaths from the new coronavirus (COVID-19) in the United States have occurred in nursing homes or assisted-living facilities. “Much more attention must be paid to the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection in nursing homes, especially through nursing home staff who work at multiple facilities,” wrote Avik Roy and Gregg Girvan for the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity. “Nursing homes must use best practices for testing and cleanliness,” they wrote. Analyzing state data on COVID-19 deaths, Roy and Girvan noted that, of the states reporting coronavirus deaths in long-term care centers, 43%…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    Maryland county bans Eucharist in church reopening order

    Washington, D.C. Newsroom, May 27, 2020 / 12:00 pm (CNA).- An executive order issued Tuesday in Maryland’s Howard County outlines public health rules under which churches may reopen. The order prohibits the distribution and consumption of any food or drink as part of any religious service, effectively outlawing the distribution of Communion and the celebration of the Mass.  Howard County Executive Order #2020-09 outlines the conditions and regulations that must be met for non-essential businesses–which in Maryland includes churches and other houses of worship–to resume operations. The order was released by Howard County Executive Calvin Ball. “There shall be no consumption of food or beverage of any kind before, during,…

  • Inspiration,  Mission Giving

    LA archdiocese announces reopening plan

    Washington, D.C. Newsroom, May 27, 2020 / 10:35 am (CNA).- After California relaxed public health restrictions on churches on Monday, the nation’s largest diocese announced its plan on Tuesday to resume public Masses. In a two-step plan for parishes to reopen and offer the sacraments, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles on Tuesday provided a checklist for each parish to observe. The state’s dioceses and archdioceses have all curtailed public Masses since March, but starting June 3 the archdiocese will allow for public Masses. While Governor Gavin Newsom’s four-step reopening plan for the state had initially placed churches in stage 3 of reopening, that of “higher-risk workplaces,” on Monday the state…