1. UK Judge to Decide Whether Baby Charlie Gard Can Go Home to Die.

By Reuters, July 26, 2017, 2:57 AM

A British judge will rule on Wednesday on where terminally ill baby Charlie Gard will spend his last moments before his life support system is switched off, unless a last-ditch attempt by his parents to bring him home is successful.

Charlie’s parents, Connie Yates and Chris Gard, wish to take him home and spend several days with him before his ventilation tube is removed. Great Ormond Street Hospital said on Tuesday this was impossible for practical reasons.

The parents’ lawyer accused the hospital of putting “obstacle after obstacle” in the way.

But the hospital said that given the intensive care Charlie needs, it was not practical to get the equipment needed into his parents’ home, nor could a specialist doctor be found to oversee his treatment in a domestic environment.

Nicholas Francis, the High Court judge who has presided over an agonising series of hearings on the case, gave the parents until Wednesday to find a team of intensive-care specialists willing to oversee Charlie’s care at home.

Failing that, the judge will make a ruling on where Charlie’s life should end. He indicated on Tuesday that the best option may be a hospice – a possibility supported by the hospital and preferred by the parents to a hospital death.

The court heard that the parents wanted to spend four days with their son away from the hospital before his life support was withdrawn, but it is likely instead to be only a few hours.


2. Protesters to show video of abortion on Jumbotron: Pro-life activists aim to close state’s last clinic.

By Bradford Richardson, The Washington Times, July 26, 2017, Pg. A6

The pro-life movement is trying to jettison Kentucky’s last abortion clinic by showing a graphic video of abortion procedures on a Jumbotron.

Mark Harrington, national director of the pro-life group Created Equal, said he will set up the 12-foot by 18-foot electronic billboard in downtown Louisville on Wednesday to “raise awareness about abortion and to change public opinion.”

“If it’s the public policy of our country that abortion is legal, then abortion should be shown publicly,” Mr. Harrington said. “If people are upset with the video, then they should be upset about abortion, not those who are showing it. We’re just depicting what happens every day in America.”

The effort comes as hundreds of pro-life activists have descended upon Kentucky for a weeklong protest during Operation Save America’s annual national conference. The target of their protest is EMW Women’s Surgical Center in Louisville, the last remaining abortion clinic in the state.

Demonstrations outside of the clinic began Monday and already have sparked a contentious legal fight. District Judge David Hale issued a temporary restraining order Friday to create a 15-foot by 7.5-foot buffer zone at the clinic entrance to ensure patients are not impeded by the protesters.


3. George Pell, Vatican Finance Chief, Will Plead Not Guilty to Sex-Abuse Charges: Cardinal is highest-ranking official to be charged in church sex-abuse scandals. 

By Robb M. Stewart, The Wall Street Journal, July 25, 2017, 10:52 PM

Cardinal George Pell, Pope Francis ’ finance chief, will plead not guilty to multiple charges of sexual abuse leveled against him in Australia, his lawyer told a court Wednesday.

The next step will be the preliminary hearing, set for Oct. 6, where the judge may give permission to cross-examine witnesses and discuss areas of dispute. That will be followed by another hearing when the court will decide whether a jury might convict the accused and whether the case should proceed to a higher court.


4. Blast damages offices of Mexico Catholic Bishops Council.

By Associated Press, July 25, 2017, 7:37 PM

An explosive device damaged a door at the headquarters of Mexico’s Roman Catholic Council of Bishops early Tuesday, church officials said, but there were no injuries.

The office is located in the northern part of the capital near the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, one of the world’s most important Catholic shrines.

There have been three murders of Catholic priests in Mexico so far this year, and 18 since 2013. Those included killings during robberies, extortions and kidnappings, where it was not clear if the clerics were targeted because of their religion.