1. Births up, abortions down after Texas fetal heartbeat law, Study challenges the claim of more out-of-state terminations, By Sean Salai, The Washington Times, November 17, 2022, Pg. A6 A new study finds that more babies have been born in Texas since it restricted abortions last year, challenging the claim that women there are simply terminating pregnancies out of state. The number of babies born in Texas between March and July (157,856) exceeded the previous three-year average by more than 5,000, according to the Charlotte Lozier Institute, a pro-life research nonprofit that analyzed data from the Texas Department of State Health Services. The Texas Heartbeat Act, which bans most abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected, became law in September 2021. Between September 2021 and January 2022, the number of abortions in the state dropped by 10,000. “This is powerful statistical evidence that the Texas Heartbeat Act is saving thousands of lives,” said Michael New, a Catholic University of America professor of social research who conducted the study. https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2022/nov/15/study-finds-texas-births-abortions-down-after-feta/__________________________________________________________ 2. Italy church releases abuse accounting, but only for 2 years, By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press, November 17, 2022, 6:03 AM Italy’s Catholic bishops on Thursday provided their first-ever accounting of clergy sexual abuse, but Italy’s main survivor advocate said it was “shamefully” inadequate given it only covered reports to church authorities over the last two years and omitted documentary research into church archives. The report, which found 89 presumed victims and some 68 people accused, was never meant to provide an accurate or historic look at the clergy abuse problem in Italy. The country’s bishops never authorized such research despite demands from survivors for a full accounting, which some other Catholic Churches in Europe have published. Instead, the Italian bishops limited the scope of their report to evaluate the work of “listening centers” that were set up in dioceses since 2019 to receive complaints from victims. Organizers said during a news conference Thursday that the report provided a “first photograph” of the problem and the bishops planned to release annual reports from now on.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/italy-church-releases-abuse-accounting-but-only-for-2-years/2022/11/17/7ad8fdb0-6667-11ed-b08c-3ce222607059_story.html__________________________________________________________ 3. Ukrainian archbishop urges U.S. bishops to continue support for Ukraine, By John Lavenburg, Crux, November 17, 2022 The top-ranking Ukrainian Greek Catholic prelate in the United States on Nov. 16 encouraged U.S. bishops to continue praying for Ukraine, and invited them to travel to the Eastern European nation where they’d “be inspired” by the resilience and faith of the people. In a presentation to the fall assembly of the  United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), Archbishop Borys Gudziak called what’s happening to Ukrainians a genocide. The comments came a day after Russia launched approximately 100 missiles at Ukrainian cities, further damaging infrastructure. Gudziak, head of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia, told Crux after his presentation that U.S. bishops traveling to Ukraine would be a powerful message of solidarity. https://cruxnow.com/church-in-the-usa/2022/11/ukrainian-archbishop-urges-u-s-bishops-to-continue-support-for-ukraine__________________________________________________________ 4. US Catholic bishops worry about abortion views in the pews, By Peter Smith, Associated Press, November 16, 2022, 7:54 AM Even as they signaled a continued hardline stance on opposing abortion and same-sex marriage, the nation’s Catholic bishops acknowledged Wednesday that they’re struggling to reach a key audience: their own flock. The members of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops rounded out their leadership bench during the last day of public sessions of their fall annual meeting in Baltimore, which concludes with private meetings Thursday. They also set in motion a plan to recirculate their long-standing election document in 2024 — a 15-year-old statement that prioritizes opposition to abortion — while acknowledging it’s outdated and adding a cover statement addressing such things as the teachings of Pope Francis and the Supreme Court’s Dobbs ruling in June that overturned the nationwide right to abortion.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/us-catholic-bishops-worry-about-abortion-views-in-the-pews/2022/11/16/75d9fb34-6612-11ed-b08c-3ce222607059_story.html__________________________________________________________ 5. Faith groups split over bill to protect same-sex marriage, By David Crary, Associated Press, November 16, 2022, 5:36 PM Among U.S. faith leaders and denominations, there are sharp differences over the bill advancing in the Senate that would protect same-sex and interracial marriages in federal law. The measure, a high priority for congressional Democrats, won a key test vote Wednesday when 12 Senate Republicans joined all Democrats to forward the bill for a final vote in the coming days. At least 10 GOP senators were needed for that to happen. On Tuesday, one of the most prominent conservative-leaning denominations — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints — came out in favor of the legislation. But the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention remain opposed, saying the bill – even with a newly added amendment aimed at attracting Republican support – is a dire threat to religious liberty. A paramount concern for these leaders of the country’s two largest denominations is that even the updated bill would not protect religious schools or faith-based nonprofits such as adoption and foster care providers.  Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, chairman of the Catholic bishops’ Committee for Religious Liberty, dismissed the bipartisan amendment as failing even the “meager goal” of preserving the status quo in balancing religious freedom with the right to same-sex marriage. “The bill will be a new arrow in the quiver of those who wish to deny religious organizations’ liberty to freely exercise their religious duties, strip them of their tax exemptions, or exclude them from full participation in the public arena,” Dolan said earlier this week.  The legislation included a proposed Senate amendment, designed to bring more Republicans on board, clarifying that it does not affect rights of private individuals or businesses that are already enshrined in law. Another tweak would make clear that a marriage is between two people, an effort to ward off some far-right criticism that the legislation could endorse polygamy.  https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/faith-groups-split-over-bill-to-protect-same-sex-marriage/2022/11/16/13154584-65ff-11ed-b08c-3ce222607059_story.html__________________________________________________________ 6. Retired French archbishop admits ‘inappropriate’ behavior toward woman in 1980s, Former Strasbourg Archbishop Jean-Pierre Grallet is facing both civil and canonical investigations., By Luke Coppen, The Pillar, November 16, 2022, 11:30 AM A retired archbishop has admitted to inappropriate behavior toward a young woman in the 1980s, in the latest setback for the French Catholic Church. In a statement dated Nov. 15 but released on Wednesday, Archbishop Jean-Pierre Grallet said that he was facing both canonical and civil investigations into his actions.The 81-year-old Franciscan, who retired as Archbishop of Strasbourg in 2017, said: “At the end of the 1980s, when I was a Franciscan religious, I acted inappropriately toward a young adult woman, behavior that I deeply regret.” “A canonical investigation is currently underway and a report to the civil justice system has been made. In the summer of 2022, I learned of this woman’s testimony and immediately wrote to her to tell her that I had failed her and to ask her forgiveness.” https://www.pillarcatholic.com/retired-french-archbishop-admits-inappropriate-behavior-in-1980s/__________________________________________________________ 7. New report: Anti-Christian violence ‘passes threshold of genocide’ in some countries, The charity Aid to the Church in Need said that the oppression or persecution of Christians intensified in 75% of the nations it tracked in 2020-2022., By Luke Coppen, The Pillar, November 16, 2022, 10:30 AM Anti-Christian persecution in Nigeria and other countries “clearly passes the threshold of genocide,” according to a report released Wednesday by Aid to the Church in Need (ACN). The Catholic charity found that oppression or persecution of Christians increased in 75% of the countries it tracked between October 2020 and September 2022, compared with the period 2017-2019. The study, “Persecuted and Forgotten? A Report on Christians oppressed for their Faith 2020–22,” concluded that “escalating violence – often aimed at driving Christians out – meant that the faithful suffered some of the world’s most vicious campaigns of intimidation orchestrated by militant non-state actors.”  https://www.pillarcatholic.com/embargoed-new-report-anti-christian-violence-passes-threshold-of-genocide/__________________________________________________________ 8. Bishops elect Burbidge pro-life chair; other votes signal no dramatic policy shifts, By Shannon Mullen, Katie Yoder, Catholic News Agency, November 16, 2022, 12:10 PM Bishop Michael Burbidge of Arlington, Virginia, a seasoned communicator viewed as a staunch defender of the right to life, was elected chair of the U.S. bishops’ pro-life committee Wednesday. The bishops, meeting in Baltimore for their annual fall assembly, chose Burbidge over Bishop W. Shawn McKnight of Jefferson City, Missouri, by a vote of 174-63. The pro-life chair was one of several high-profile leadership decisions the bishops have made this week. Taken together, the moves signal that there will be no dramatic policy shifts within the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) for the next several years.  In other key elections Wednesday, Oklahoma City Archbishop Paul S. Coakley was elected USCCB secretary over Cardinal Joseph Tobin of Newark (130-104), and Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades of Fort Wayne-South Bend, Indiana, was tabbed as the next chair of the Committee for Religious Liberty over San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone (165-77).  https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/252832/bishops-elect-burbidge-pro-life-chair-other-votes-signal-no-dramatic-policy-shifts__________________________________________________________ 9. FULL TEXT: Archbishop Gomez calls for evangelizing response to secular age, By Catholic News Agency, November 16, 2022, 12:45 PM Editor’s note: Archbishop José H. Gomez of Los Angeles, the outgoing president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, addressed his fellow U.S. bishops on Nov. 15 at their annual fall assembly in Baltimore. He used the occasion to speak passionately — and optimistically — about how evangelization can counteract the increasing secularization of society. The full text of his speech is below. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/252830/archbishop-gomez-speech-to-us-bishops-on-evangelization__________________________________________________________10. U.S. bishops decide to put off rewriting voting guide until after 2024 election, By Zelda Caldwell, Catholic News Agency, November 16, 2022, 5:30 PM The U.S. Catholic bishops will postpone writing a full revision of the teaching document on the political responsibility of Catholic voters until after the 2024 election. The teaching document, “Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship,” is meant to advise Catholic voters on how to apply Church teaching to the decisions they make in the ballot box. The guide, for example, states that the abortion should be a “preeminent” political issue for Catholics. In the introduction to the 2019 document, the bishops wrote: “The threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself, because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed. At the same time, we cannot dismiss or ignore other serious threats to human life and dignity such as racism, the environmental crisis, poverty and the death penalty.” Gathered in Baltimore for their annual fall assembly, the bishops voted Wednesday to keep the guidance the same but include a new introduction and “supplemental inserts,” to be ready before the 2024 election. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/252839/us-bishops-decide-to-put-off-rewriting-voting-guide-until-2024-election__________________________________________________________

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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