TCA Media Monitoring August 6, 2020

1. Pope Francis Names Six Women to Senior Vatican Jobs, Appointments to Vatican’s finance council represent effort to promote more women in the Catholic Church, By Francis X. Rocca, The Wall Street Journal, August 6, 2020, 6:09 AM

Pope Francis named six women to the body that oversees Vatican finances, making them the most senior female officials ever to serve at the Vatican.

Their appointment to the Vatican’s 15-member Council for the Economy, which was previously all-male, is the biggest step so far by Pope Francis to carry out his promise to place more women in leadership roles in the Catholic Church. The change comes as the Vatican’s longstanding financial problems have become especially acute on account of the coronavirus pandemic and economic recession.

Only one of the council’s seven lay members will be a man. According to the council’s statutes, a majority of eight members must be cardinals or bishops, who are always men.

2. Pence visits pro-life pregnancy clinic during Florida trip, By Valerie Richardson, The Washington Times, August 6, 2020, Pg. A3

He was the first sitting vice president to speak at the March for Life, and Mike Pence marked another milestone Wednesday by becoming the first to visit a pro-life pregnancy clinic as he joined the Susan B. Anthony List to kick off a multistate tour called “Life Wins.”

Mr. Pence toured A Woman’s Place Medical Clinic, part of New Life Solutions, which offers prenatal care, counseling and free ultrasounds — but not abortions — before he spoke at the Starkey Road Baptist Church in Largo, Florida.

The “Life Wins” tour comes with the Trump administration seeking to draw a sharp contrast between President Trump’s pro-life record and the pro-choice stance of former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, the presumptive Democratic nominee.

3. Vatican: Baptisms administered ‘in name of the community’ are invalid, By Hannah Brockhaus, Catholic News Agency, August 6, 2020, 4:03 AM

The Vatican’s doctrinal office issued Thursday a clarification on the sacrament of baptism, stating changes to the formula to emphasize community participation are not permitted.

The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith responded to a question about whether it would be valid to administer the sacrament of baptism saying “We baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”

The formula for baptism, according to the Catholic Church, is “I baptize you in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”

The CDF ruled Aug. 6 any baptisms administered with the formula “we baptize” are invalid and anyone for whom the sacrament was celebrated with this formula must be baptized in forma absoluta, meaning the person should be considered as not yet having received the sacrament.

4. Pope says fighting clerical abuse fosters deeper respect for life, By Inés San Martín, Crux, August 6, 2020

Beyond the obvious reasons to fight clerical sexual abuse, above all the damage such abuse inflicts on victims, Pope Francis has added another argument: The effort to prevent abuse, he’s written, promotes a deeper acknowledgment that all life is sacred and deserves respect.

“Fighting abuse [means] fostering and empowering communities so that they are capable of keeping watch and announcing that all life deserves to be respected and valued, especially that of the most defenseless who do not have the resources to make their voice heard,” Francis wrote.

“We’ve been challenged to look squarely at this conflict, to take it up and suffer it together with the victims, their families and the whole community, to find ways that make us say: ‘Never again to the culture of abuse’,” he wrote. “This reality calls us to work in the awareness, prevention and promotion of a culture of care and protection in our communities and in society in general so that no person sees their integrity and dignity violated or mistreated.”

5. Archbishop Gomez echoes pope in calling for abolition of nuclear weapons, By Dennis Sadowski, Crux, August 6, 2020

The president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops echoed Pope Francis’s long-standing call for full nuclear disarmament as the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombings in Japan approached.

Archbishop Jose H. Gomez of Los Angeles in a July 30 statement urged world leaders to “persevere in their efforts to abolish these weapons of mass destruction, which threaten the existence of the human race and our planet.”

6. Ban on D&E abortions advances in Nebraska legislature, By Catholic News Agency, August 5, 2020, 6:01 PM

Nebraska lawmakers on Wednesday, in a contentious vote, gave first-round approval to a ban on dilation and evacuation abortions, which pro-life lawmakers are hoping to pass before the end of legislative session.

The Nebraska Catholic Conference, which has supported the ban since its introduction, hailed the Aug. 5 vote and thanked all those that had prayed and fasted for the success of the bill.

D&E abortions, commonly known as dismemberment abortions, are typically done in the second trimester of pregnancy and result in the dismemberment of an unborn child.

7. US Religious-Liberty Policy Has Worldwide Consequences, By Andrea Picciotti-Bayer, National Catholic Register, August 5, 2020, Opinion

Progressives have joined forces with anarchists in an attempt to “cancel” religious freedom in the United States. It’s a creepy alliance. If they succeed, the people who will suffer most are Christians and other religious minorities abroad. It has never been more important that American Catholics stand up for our country’s first freedom.

Now is a crucial moment for ordinary folks like you and me to understand what’s at stake and shore up religious freedom at home and abroad. Let me put this as plainly as possible: If America’s desperately important policy of defending religious freedom around the world is brushed aside, that is wonderful news for dictators, torturers and sinister specialists in religious “reeducation” everywhere. Whether the Church will step into the breach is an open question. Therefore, ordinary Catholics must mobilize. There is no time to lose.

Andrea Picciotti-Bayer is a legal analyst and regular Register contributor.

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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