1. Sacrifice: Before Lent, movement to fast for Ukraine gains steam, Those who follow many branches of Christianity answer the pope’s call, By Sarah Pulliam Bailey, The Washington Post, March 2, 2022, Pg. A1 Pope Francis and other Christian leaders around the globe have encouraged believers to fast and pray for Ukrainians on Ash Wednesday, a day when many Christians are reminded of their mortality with a swipe of ashes to their foreheads. The last two years have led clergy scrambling to find ways to distribute ashes safely during the pandemic. This year, Christian leaders’ attention has turned to the recent attacks from Russia on Ukraine with calls for prayers for peace. “May the Queen of Peace preserve the world from the madness of war,” Pope Francis wrote in his call for fasting. https://www.washingtonpost.com/religion/2022/03/01/ash-wednesday-ukrainians-invasion/___________________________________________________________ 2. German archbishop offers resignation on return from timeout, By Geir Moulson, Associated Press, March 2, 2022, 6:17 AM A prominent Roman Catholic archbishop who faced strong criticism for his handling of the church’s sexual abuse scandal in Germany said Wednesday that he has offered his resignation to Pope Francis following a “spiritual timeout” granted by the pontiff. Cardinal Rainer Maria Woelki, the archbishop of Cologne, marked his return to work with a lengthy letter to the faithful in which said he was “not returning unchanged, as if nothing had happened in this time.” Woelki has become a deeply divisive figure in the German church. In September, the Vatican said that Francis had decided to leave him in office but also give the cardinal the several-month timeout after he made what it termed “major errors” of communication. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/german-archbishop-offers-resignation-on-return-from-timeout/2022/03/02/470bef3e-9a1a-11ec-9987-9dceee62a3f6_story.html___________________________________________________________ 3. Pope clings to hope for dialogue by not specifically criticizing ‘Russia’, By Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service, March 2, 2022 Condemning violence and expressing his concern for and solidarity with Ukraine, Pope Francis has not uttered the word “Russia” publicly. While Russian President Vladimir Putin has become a pariah in the West, Pope Francis has continued the long Vatican tradition of not condemning one side in a war, even when it is blatantly evident who the aggressor is. A Vatican diplomat told Catholic News Service March 1 that the pope must keep a door or window open for dialogue, even if it was a long shot. https://cruxnow.com/church-in-europe/2022/03/pope-clings-to-hope-for-dialogue-by-not-specifically-criticizing-russia___________________________________________________________ 4. Bishops: Senate rejection of ‘extreme’ abortion bill is ‘tremendous relief’, By Julie Asher, Catholic News Service, March 2, 2022 The failure of the U.S. Senate Feb. 28 to advance an “extreme measure” to establish a legal right to abortion at any stage of pregnancy nationwide “is a tremendous relief,” said the chairmen of the U.S. bishops’ pro-life and religious freedom committees. “We must respect and support mothers, their unborn children and the consciences of all Americans,” the committee chairmen said in a joint statement, noting a provision in the bill likely would not have protected the conscience rights of health care providers who object to abortion. Passing the Women’s Health Protection Act, also known as H.R. 3755, “would have led to the loss of millions of unborn lives and left countless women to suffer from the physical and emotional trauma of abortion,” said Archbishop William E. Lori of Baltimore, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities, and Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan of New York, chairman of the USCCB’s Committee for Religious Liberty. https://cruxnow.com/church-in-the-usa/2022/03/bishops-senate-rejection-of-extreme-abortion-bill-is-tremendous-relief___________________________________________________________ 5. Georgia Senate: Require in-person exams for abortion pills, By Jeff Amy, Associated Press, March 1, 2022, 6:40 PM A Georgia woman would have to be examined by a physician in person and sign a consent form before she could be prescribed abortion pills under a bill passed Tuesday by the state Senate.Senate Bill 456, which passed 31-22 on a party-line vote, is part of a nationwide push by anti-abortion groups to limit the ability of physicians to prescribe abortion pills by telemedicine. It now moves to the House for more debate. Kentucky’s Republican-controlled House committee advanced a similar measure on Tuesday. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/georgia-senate-require-in-person-exams-for-abortion-pills/2022/03/01/d787a5b6-99a3-11ec-9987-9dceee62a3f6_story.html___________________________________________________________ 6. Who are the 13 Catholic senators who voted for ‘shameful’ pro-abortion bill?, By Katie Yoder, Catholic News Agency, March 1, 2022, 10:35 PM Thirteen Catholic lawmakers in the U.S. Senate voted Monday in favor of a failed attempt to pass a sweeping new abortion law that threatened to override states’ pro-life laws and remove restrictions on abortion up to the point of birth, in some cases. Their support of the defeated bill, called the Women’s Health Protection Act, placed them sharply at odds with the clear teaching of their Catholic faith, which strictly prohibits abortion and condemns efforts to promote it. Church leaders and Catholic pro-life advocates were quick to criticize the senators’ votes after the measure was defeated on Feb. 28. “Catholics are tired of seeing their faith used as a political football on the campaign trail, then thrown aside by Catholic political figures when they need to vote along the party line against the Church’s most fundamental moral teachings,” Joshua Mercer, the communications director for CatholicVote, said Monday. “One of the standout examples tonight was Sen. Bob Casey, a self-proclaimed Catholic who has again and again presented himself to Catholic voters as pro-life.”  The following Catholic senators voted in favor of the bill: Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.; Bob Casey, D-Penn; Catherine Cortez Masto, D-Nev.; Dick Durbin, D-Ill.; Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y.; Tim Kaine, D-Va.; Mark Kelly, D-Ariz.; Patrick Leahy, D-Vt.; Ed Markey, D-Mass.; Bob Menendez, D-N.J.; Patty Murray, D-Wash.; Alex Padilla, D-Calif., and Jack Reed, D-R.I. While Ben Ray Luján, D-N.M., was absent, he co-sponsored the bill. Another Catholic, President Joe Biden, strongly supported the measure and would have signed it into law. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/250534/catholic-senators-abortion-womens-health-protection-act___________________________________________________________

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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