1. Archbishop calls religious freedom ‘measure’ of respect for all rights, By Nirmala Carvalho, Crux, August 27, 2020
When religion is “instrumentalized or politicized for vested interests,” the cause of peace is put “in jeopardy,” an Indian archbishop has told a forum on religious liberty in the Asia-Pacific region.
Archbishop Felix Machado of Vasai said most at fault are “political or religious leaders, commercialized by the business world or observed with indifference by secular society.”
Machado, who served as under-secretary of the Vatican’s Council for Interreligious Dialogue from 199-2008, said there have been many human rights violations taking place right now among religious people in the wake of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic and government-imposed emergency restrictions.

Asia is the scene of some of the most egregious examples of religious freedom violations. In the 2020 report of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom, fourteen countries were recommended to be put on the U.S. State Department’s list of “countries of particular concern” (CPC), a designation established under the International Religious Freedom Act (IFRA) of 1998. Twelve of those countries were in Asia: Burma (Myanmar), China, India, Iran, North Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Vietnam.

Machado also said freedom of religion is not only about our ability to practice religion in the private sphere, but it is also about whether we can make our contribution to the common good of all people in society.
2. Trump administration asks Supreme Court to reinstate abortion pill rule, By John Kruzel, The Hill, August 26, 2020, 4:55 PM
The Trump administration on Wednesday asked the Supreme Court to reinstate a rule mandating that abortion-inducing drugs be taken in the presence of a doctor after a lower court lifted the requirement amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The request comes after a federal district judge in Maryland last month suspended the longstanding Food and Drug Administration (FDA) rule in response to a lawsuit from the American College Of Obstetricians and Gynecologists as well as doctors and patients.
Since 2000, the FDA has required that doctors administer abortion pills in person due to health risks associated with misuse of the drugs mifepristone and misoprostol.
3. Boston priest claims Catholics can support ‘right to choose,’ archdiocese declines comment, By Christine Rousselle, Catholic News Agency, August 26, 2020, 3:00 PM
A Boston priest has said he believes in “a woman’s right to choose” on the issue of abortion, and will continue his advocacy for Joe Biden’s presidential campaign, despite Catholic teaching on abortion and a Church prohibition on clerical advocacy for political candidates.
Msgr. Paul Garrity of the Archdiocese of Boston spoke to CNA Tuesday, after attracting criticism for a Facebook post endorsing former vice president Joe Biden for president.

CNA made several requests for comment on Garrity’s remarks from the Archdiocese of Boston. The archdiocese did not respond to those requests.
While the archdiocese did not offer any official comment on the matter, one archdiocesan leader did say the priest’s view was contrary to Catholic teaching.
In a since-deleted tweet, Thomas Carroll, Secretary of Education & Superintendent of Schools for the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston, expressed criticism of Garrity’s post.
4. New survey of German religious orders finds decades of abuse accusations, By Catholic News Service, August 26, 2020
A new survey of heads of German Catholic religious orders found abuse allegations against at least 654 members over a period of decades, reported the German Catholic news agency KNA.
The survey of 392 orders found at least 1,412 children, adolescents or wards were the victims of sexual abuse. Of the victims, around 80 percent were male and around 20 percent female, KNA reported.

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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