1. Vatican: Benedict XVI’s condition serious but stable, By Hannah Brockhaus, Catholic News Agency, December 29, 2022, 6:35 AM Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI’s condition is serious but stable, the Vatican said on Thursday. “The Pope Emeritus was able to rest well last night; he is absolutely lucid and alert, and today, although his condition remains serious, the situation at the moment is stable,” Vatican Press Office Director Matteo Bruni told journalists Dec. 29. “Pope Francis renews his invitation to pray for him and accompany him in these difficult hours,” the spokesman added. Pope Francis, at the end of his general audience on Dec. 28, asked for prayers for a “very ill” Benedict XVI, who, “in silence, is sustaining the Church.” https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/253176/vatican-benedict-xvi-s-condition-serious-but-stable__________________________________________________________ 2. Retired pope’s ailing health raises questions of what’s next, By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press, December 28, 2022, 9:25 AM The Vatican has detailed rituals and procedures to follow when a pope dies, but it has not published such rules for a pope emeritus. As a result, official word Wednesday that the health of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI had worsened prompted questions about what happens if and when he dies. The answer is: There is no specific answer, at least not one the Vatican has announced ahead of time. The only thing certain is that the most important ritual following the death of a pope — a conclave to elect a new one — does not apply. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/retired-popes-ailing-health-raises-questions-of-whats-next/2022/12/28/832e82d6-86bb-11ed-b5ac-411280b122ef_story.html__________________________________________________________ 3. Vermont lawmaker to seek to close clergy reporting exemption, By Wilson Ring, Associated Press, December 28, 2022, 11:39 AM The head of the Vermont Senate Judiciary Committee says he’s going to introduce a bill in the upcoming legislative session to close an exemption to the state’s child abuse and neglect reporting laws for members of the clergy. Democratic Sen. Richard Sears of Bennington says he was unaware that the Vermont law requiring members of a number of professions, including doctors, teachers, social workers and the clergy, to report abuse if they become aware of it contains an exemption for members of the clergy if they become aware of abuse during a setting that is considered privileged, such as during confession. Sears said that under the law it shouldn’t be up to people who are mandated reporters to decide what to do if they learn of potential abuse, they should report it. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/vermont-lawmaker-to-seek-to-close-clergy-reporting-exemption/2022/12/28/8e2c319e-86c8-11ed-b5ac-411280b122ef_story.html__________________________________________________________ 4. Christians in Pakistan celebrate Christmas amid heightened security, By Aftab Alexander Mughal, Catholic News Agency, December 28, 2022, 5:15 PM Despite the continued threat of terrorist attacks, Christian communities across Pakistan celebrated Christmas Sunday in much the usual way, with great zeal and joyfulness. Prayers were offered for peace, progress, and prosperity of Pakistan as well as for the safety of all humanity. The faithful took part in traditional Yuletide activities, including illuminating houses and neighborhoods, and came to church prepared by their leaders to expect bodily searches from security personnel. In the end, there were no violent attacks to mar the celebration of the Lord’s birth, and many credited the heightened security measures for keeping the peace.  Just two days before Christmas, Pakistani militants carried out a suicide bombing in Islamabad, the country’s capital. When police tried to stop them at a checkpoint one police officer was killed. More than 1,500 policemen were deployed around churches in the capital to ensure foolproof security during prayer services. In Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, near the Afghanistan border, Pakistan army personnel also set up posts in volatile areas. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/253175/christians-in-pakistan-celebrate-christmas-amid-heightened-security__________________________________________________________

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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