1. Pope evokes cold-war replay, says leaders should avoid arms, By Frances D’Emilio, Associated Press, April 12, 2023, 5:24 AM Pope Francis urged world leaders Wednesday to use reason and not arms to resolve differences, evoking memories of the 1960s Cold War between Washington and Moscow. At his weekly audience in St. Peter’s Square, Francis noted that Tuesday marked the 60th anniversary of the issuance of a Cold War-era encyclical by Pope John XXIII.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2023/04/12/pope-francis-ukraine-war-peace/c5717de2-d913-11ed-aebd-3fd2ac4c460a_story.html__________________________________________________________ 2. Okla. church denied in bid for first publicly funded U.S. religious school, By Kelsey Ables, The Washington Post, April 12, 2023, 4:28 AM A state board on Tuesday denied the Catholic Archdiocese of Oklahoma City’s application to open what would be the first publicly funded religious charter school in the United States, in a move that delays — for now — a probable legal reckoning over long-held constitutional principles on the separation of church and state. The five members of Oklahoma’s Statewide Virtual Charter School Board unanimously rejected the proposal, citing the need for clarification on several points, including how a taxpayer-sponsored Catholic school would comply with the Constitution. The school’s supporters said it was “fairly normal” for the board — which has given the archdiocese 30 days to revise the application — to reject such bids on their first attempt. The application did not have the backing of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, whose president said in a statement that religious charter schools are likely to run “afoul” of state and federal law and that “board members are right to move cautiously as they weigh the impact of violating the law.”  Whether St. Isidore’s application is approved or denied, it lays the groundwork for a legal battle that could make its way to the Supreme Court, which has a conservative majority.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/education/2023/04/12/oklahoma-religious-charter-school-catholic/__________________________________________________________ 3. Abortion is not the magic bullet that Democrats think it is, By Henry Olsen, The Washington Post, April 12, 2023, 7:15 AM, Opinion Democrats have been touting the election of liberal Janet Protasiewicz to Wisconsin’s Supreme Court as proof that abortion is an anchor around the GOP’s neck. The truth is more nuanced.  These nuances yield messages for both parties. Democrats would be wise to continue their focus on abortion rights, since it energizes their voters and donors. And Republican candidates can take a strong pro-life position depending on their state or district, but they cannot be defined by it. National leaders should resist any effort to make abortion a federal issue and allow their local candidates craft positions best suited for their electorates. The abortion issue likely helps Democrats on the margin today, but it’s not the magic bullet many think it is. Recognizing that and keeping their cool is the best way Republicans can move forward.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2023/04/12/abortion-wisconsin-supreme-court-election-democrats/__________________________________________________________ 4. Arizona court upholds clergy privilege in child abuse case, By Michael Rezendes and Jason Dearen, Associated Press, April 11, 2023, 6:42 PM The Arizona Supreme Court has ruled that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can refuse to answer questions or turn over documents under a state law that exempts religious officials from having to report child sex abuse if they learn of the crime during a confessional setting. The ruling was issued April 7 but not released to the public until Tuesday.  Clergy in Arizona, as in many other states, are required to report information about child sexual abuse or neglect to law enforcement or child welfare authorities. An exception to that law — known as the clergy-penitent privilege — allows members of the clergy who learn of the abuse through spiritual confessions to keep the information secret.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/2023/04/11/mormon-church-child-sex-abuse/26f14fde-d8ba-11ed-aebd-3fd2ac4c460a_story.html__________________________________________________________ 5. New York latest state to stockpile abortion-inducing pills, By Maysoon Khan, Associated Press, April 11, 2023, 4:17 PM New York joined other Democratic-led states Tuesday in stockpiling abortion pills in response to a Texas court ruling that could limit access to the commonly used drug. At the governor’s direction, the state Department of Health will begin purchasing 150,000 doses of misoprostol, one of two commonly used abortion-inducing drugs, New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced.  Massachusetts, California and Washington state are among the other states that have stockpiled the drugs. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2023/04/11/new-york-abortion-pill-stockpile/ef73543a-d8a5-11ed-aebd-3fd2ac4c460a_story.html__________________________________________________________ 6. Law will end time limit on Maryland child sex abuse lawsuits, By Brian Witte, Associated Press, April 11, 2023, 4:38 PM Gov. Wes Moore signed legislation on Tuesday to end Maryland’s statute of limitations for when civil lawsuits for child sexual abuse can be filed against institutions. The bill signing comes less than a week after the state’s attorney general released a report that documented the scope of abuse spanning 80 years and accused church leaders of decades of coverups.  For private entities, under the bill, damages are capped at $1.5 million for non-economic damages like pain and suffering, but there isn’t a cap for damages relating to costs for services like therapy. For public entities like school boards and local governments, damages are capped at $890,000.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2023/04/11/child-sex-abuse-church-lawsuits-maryland/d77a9778-d8a8-11ed-aebd-3fd2ac4c460a_story.html__________________________________________________________ 7. Predictions about the decline of Christianity in America may be premature, By John Blake, CNN, April 9, 2023, 9:29 AM For years, church leaders and commentators have warned that Christianity is dying in America. They say the American church is poised to follow the path of churches in Western Europe. . . . Yet when CNN asked some of the nation’s top religion scholars and historians recently about the future of Christianity in the US, they had a different message. They said the American church is poised to find new life for one major reason: Waves of Christians are migrating to the US.  The US has more immigrants than any other country. People from Latin America and Asia now make up the overwhelming majority of immigrants to the US, and many are bringing their religious fervor with them.  … Those who predict that the church in America will collapse often overlook how the migration of Global South Christians to America will revitalize the country’s religious landscape, scholars say. Christianity could rebound in America if White Christians embrace this one change, they say.  https://www.cnn.com/2023/04/08/us/christianity-decline-easter-blake-cec/index.html__________________________________________________________ 8. Marching to Zion, By Dominic Pino, National Review, April 9, 2023, 6:30 AM, Opinion The events Christians celebrate today took place in and around Jerusalem. Nazareth, where Jesus grew up, is in the northern part of Israel. His early miracles and teachings took place around the Sea of Galilee, also in the north. From that area south to Jerusalem is about a two-hour drive today, but walking it in the first century was a lengthy ordeal. After telling the story of Jesus’s birth and the beginning of His public ministry, Luke narrates the bulk of his Gospel as a slow progression to the holy city. Luke 9:51 says that “Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem,” and the reader follows that journey through the rest of the book, concluding in chapter 24.    Why Jerusalem? Jesus tells His disciples in Luke 18:31-33: [“] We are going to Jerusalem, and everything that is written about the Son of Man will be fulfilled. He will be delivered over to the Gentiles. They will mock him, insult him and spit on him; they will flog him and kill him. On the third day he will rise again.[”] In a word, Easter. That’s why they were going to Jerusalem.  That’s what Christians celebrate today, but Luke doesn’t end the story there.  Easter wasn’t only the culmination of a long walk to Jerusalem. It was the fulfillment of God’s plan from before the beginning of time. That plan was to make salvation available to all, through the death, burial, and Resurrection of the Son, who now sits at the right hand of the Father. He is there in heaven, having prepared a place for you and made a way for you to get there, if only you will repent and believe in His finished work. And so we, too, as Christians today, are on a journey to Jerusalem. Robert Lowry knew that when he took a poem of Isaac Watts’s and added his own refrain to create the hymn “We’re Marching to Zion.” “Zion” is a poetic name for Jerusalem, but in this case, it doesn’t refer to the city we can visit today, but rather the New Jerusalem, the heaven promised in Revelation chapter 21. “We’re marching through Immanuel’s ground, to fairer worlds on high,” the hymn says. There, God will live with His people, and “there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away,” Revelation 21:4 says. Just as the crowds joined Jesus on His physical walk to Jerusalem, so we are charged with following Him on a spiritual walk to the New Jerusalem. That’s only possible through Easter, the victory over death, the empty tomb by way of the cross. https://www.nationalreview.com/2023/04/marching-to-zion/__________________________________________________________

TCA Media Monitoring provides a snapshot from national newspapers and major Catholic press outlets of coverage regarding significant Catholic Church news and current issues with which the Catholic Church is traditionally or prominently engaged. The opinions and views expressed in the articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Catholic Association.
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