1. The Supreme Court’s conservative majority seemed to sympathize with a high school football coach who was fired after leading postgame prayers on the field, His differing approaches, school’s discipline may complicate ruling, By Robert Barnes, The Washington Post, April 26, 2022, Pg. A1 The Supreme Court’s conservative justices seemed sympathetic Monday to a former high school football coach who lost his job after leading postgame prayers at midfield, but the path to a decision is complicated by both the coach’s actions and the school district’s purported reason for disciplining him.  Alito, Thomas, Kavanaugh and Justice Neil M. Gorsuch sympathized with Kennedy a couple of years ago when the case first reached the Supreme Court, but it was deemed premature for consideration. In its current form, it has divided constitutional scholars, red states and blue states, and more friend-of-the-court briefs than any case at the Supreme Court this term, except for the controversies over abortion and gun control. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/04/25/supreme-court-football-coach-prayer/?___________________________________________________________ 2. A West Virginia priest said he faced a tough choice after presiding over a secret D.C. funeral for fetal remains. He buried them in an undisclosed location., Clergyman from W.VA. decided to bury them in a private cemetery, By Michelle Boorstein, The Washington Post, April 26, 2022, Pg. A1 The first time the Rev. William Kuchinsky performed a funeral Mass outside a parish, it was in the basement kitchen of a Capitol Hill rowhouse. He prayed over dozens of tiny blue circular, plastic containers. They held more than 100 human fetuses, and the service was a secret.  Kuchinsky, 62, knew the activists’ actions would be seen as controversial, even among other abortion opponents. Still, he decided to bury the fetuses. “The thought that came to me — and I’m not saying this is from the Lord — but the good Lord didn’t tell us, ‘Bury people in Arlington’ or ‘Bury them overlooking a river with scenery,’” the Catholic cleric told The Washington Post. “He just said to bury the dead.” He said he put the little containers in layers of dirt in a private cemetery of some people he knows well, he said. He won’t say where.  Kuchinsky acknowledged the secretive Mass was odd and he said he examined his conscience. But he said he told himself, “The decision to bury the dead — I think it goes across all religious lines.” Asked about what people who don’t believe life begins at conception might think, he said: “I’d hope the love that brought me to do this, and other people who had the remains, I would hope that would suffice to be enough. Certainly to end up in a landfill or incinerator, I would hope the families would be more happy with the care they were shown by us.” “I commended them to the Lord our God as I know him,” Kuchinsky said. “But I didn’t intend any disrespect to anybody else’s religion. This was an act of love for us.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/religion/2022/04/25/abortion-fetuses-lauren-handy-bury/___________________________________________________________ 3. 2013 preliminary injunction still in effect, By Valerie Richardson, The Washington Times, April 26, 2022, Pg. A2 After nearly nine years, Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen says it’s time for a court to lift the preliminary injunction on a state abortion law that turned out to be anything but temporary. In a strongly worded motion, Mr. Knudsen said that House Bill 391, a 2013 law that requires parental consent before a minor has an abortion, “must be allowed to take effect immediately. Not next week. Not on or after June 10, 2022. Today.” A hearing is scheduled Tuesday in state district court on the request to remove the preliminary injunction, which was issued shortly after the measure became law. https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2022/apr/25/montana-ag-fights-lift-9-year-old-preliminary-inju/___________________________________________________________ 4. US commission: Cite Afghanistan for religious persecution, By Peter Smith, Associated Press, April 25, 2022, 12:15 PM Afghanistan should join a list of the “worst of the worst” violators of religious freedom in the wake of the Taliban’s return to power, a U.S. advisory body is recommending to the State Department. The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, in its annual report issued Monday, says religious minorities have “faced harassment, detention and even death due to their faith or beliefs” since the Taliban reimposed its harsh interpretation of Sunni Islam on Afghanistan. It also cited attacks on religious minorities by an Islamic State affiliate that is an enemy of the Taliban. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/us-commission-cite-afghanistan-for-religious-persecution/2022/04/25/fb2bacbc-c4b2-11ec-8cff-33b059f4c1b7_story.html___________________________________________________________ 5. Order of Malta: Draft reform would impose term limits, end veto power of Grand Master, By The Pillar, The Pillar, April 25, 2022 What’s new: The newly obtained text of a draft constitution submitted to Pope Francis by the Order of Malta’s leadership would introduce dramatic new limits on the office of Grand Master, including term limits, the power of the Sovereign Council to override his decisions, and the requirement that the Grand Chancellor sign off on decrees of the Grand Master. What it means: The proposals are among competing options under consideration by Pope Francis, as he decides the order’s future. Critics of the proposed plan say that it would turn the 1,000-year-old religious order into an “international NGO,” by dividing its international diplomatic and charitable work from the religious life of the professed knights. Why it matters: The office of Grand Master, and the role of the first degree knights, who profess religious vows, are at the center of an increasingly bitter divide among the knights themselves — suggesting that, even after Pope Francis makes a decision about the constitutional reform of the order, the knights will remain divided among themselves. https://www.pillarcatholic.com/p/order-of-malta-draft-reform-would?s=r___________________________________________________________

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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