1. Vatican seeks elder care rethink after COVID-19 ‘massacre’, By Associated Press, February 9, 2021, 6:45 AM
The Vatican is calling for a new paradigm of care for the elderly after what it calls the “massacre” wrought by the coronavirus pandemic, which has disproportionately killed elderly people living in nursing homes.
The Vatican’s Pontifical Council of Life issued a position paper Tuesday that made the case for a global rethink of how to care for people in their final years, including resisting any rush to institutional care in favor of adapting home environments to the needs of people as they age.
2. Poland’s abortion ruling focus of debate in EU parliament, By Vanessa Gera, Associated Press, February 9, 2021, 7:49 AM
Most European Parliament lawmakers on Tuesday lashed out at Poland’s near-total abortion ban Tuesday, with several lawmakers arguing it was a fundamental violation of women’s rights.
Even though some praised authorities in Warsaw for what they called a defense of Christian values and human life, many in the major political groups were critical of the measure in the staunchly Roman Catholic nation.
EU equality Commissioner Helena Dalli acknowledged that the EU has no legal control over how member states regulate abortion, but she said she viewed the abortion ruling as a sign of the deterioration of sexual and reproductive rights of women in the central European nation.
3. SC House committee considers ban on almost all abortions, By Jeffrey Collins, Associated Press, February 9, 2021, 1:05 AM
A bill that would likely ban almost all abortions in South Carolina is expected to move closer to final approval Tuesday.
The House Judiciary Committee is meeting to discuss the “ South Carolina Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act.” The bill has already passed the Senate and the governor promises he will sign it.
The proposal would require doctors to use an ultrasound to try to detect a fetal heartbeat if they think pregnant women are at least eight weeks along. If they find a heartbeat, and the pregnancy is not the result of rape or incest, they can’t perform the abortion unless the mother’s life is in danger.
4. Pope Francis accepts resignation of bishop who called for council to discuss women priests, By Catholic News Agency, February 9, 2021, 4:00 AM
Pope Francis on Monday accepted the resignation of a Swiss bishop who recently called for a council to discuss women priests.
The Holy See press office announced Feb. 8 that the pope had accepted the resignation from the office of auxiliary bishop of the Diocese of Basel, Switzerland, presented by Bishop Denis Theurillat.
Theurillat told the Swiss Catholic Church’s website kath.ch that he had asked to resign five years before the customary retirement age for bishops because of the increasing burdens of his office.
5. Catholic schools in US hit by unprecedented enrollment drop, By David Crary, Associated Press, February 8, 2021, 8:46 AM
Enrollment in Roman Catholic schools in the United States dropped 6.4% from the previous academic year amid the pandemic and economic stresses — the largest single-year decline in at least five decades, Catholic education officials reported Monday.
Among the factors were the closure or consolidation of more than 200 schools and the difficulty for many parents of paying tuition fees that average more than $5,000 for grades K-8 and more than $10,000 for secondary schools, according to the National Catholic Educational Association.

Reyes said they disproportionately impacted urban communities where significant numbers of Black children, including many from non-Catholic families, attended Catholic schools.
Indeed, some of the largest enrollment losses were in big-city dioceses, including 12.3% in Los Angeles, 11.1% in New York and 8.2% in Chicago.

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.
Subscribe to the TCA podcast!

“Conversations with Consequences” is a new audio program from The Catholic Association. We’ll bring you thoughtful dialogue with the leading thinkers of our time on the most consequential issues of our day. Subscribe today or listen online and enjoy our entertaining and informative weekly episodes.