1. Britain’s NHS Left Indi Gregory to Die, By Mark Rienzi, The Wall Street Journal, November 21, 2023, Pg. A13, Opinion ‘We’re here for you. Helping you take control of your health and wellbeing.” That’s what the U.K.’s National Health Service promises its patients. Tragically, a growing number of cases show the NHS doing the opposite: taking away control and ensuring its patients die. The latest example is 8-month-old Indi Gregory, who died on Nov. 13. Indi was born with mitochondrial disease, a degenerative condition that prevents cells from producing energy. When her parents and the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham, England, disagreed over whether she should be kept on life support, the NHS turned to the courts to strip the parents of decision-making authority. The U.K. High Court agreed, overrode the parents’ wishes, and ordered life support removed.  The NHS doesn’t always succeed in ending the lives of those it has ticketed for death. Sometimes a patient escapes the system and successfully receives treatment elsewhere. That’s the story of Tafida Raqeeb, a young girl who suffered brain damage caused by ruptured blood vessels. In 2019 the NHS wanted to remove Tafida, then 5, from life support and leave her to die. Yet Tafida’s parents beat the system in court and took their daughter to Italy where she is still alive and receiving treatment. Tafida has had four years and counting with her parents, living a life the NHS had written off. We’ll never know whether the NHS was wrong about Indi Gregory too. But we will risk more tragedies until we insist on respecting the basic human rights of all people, including those who are sick or disabled. That doesn’t mean hospitals should be forced to treat patients against their will. But we can’t allow them to deprive patients of the right to try, stopping them from seeking potentially life-saving care from experts elsewhere. Courts should interfere with parental rights only in egregious cases. In such circumstances, they should be seeking to protect the child’s life, not sending the police to make sure it ends. Mr. Rienzi is a law professor at the Catholic University of America and president of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. https://www.wsj.com/articles/britains-nhs-left-indi-gregory-to-die-italy-rome-medicine-treatment-fbd0f933__________________________________________________________ 2. Pope Francis expresses ‘concerns’ about German Synodal Way, says it threatens Church unity, By Jonathan Liedl, Catholic News Agency, November 21, 2023, 4:55 AM Pope Francis has expressed deep reservations about the direction of the Catholic Church in Germany, warning that concrete steps currently being taken “threaten” to undermine unity with the universal Church. The pope made his criticisms in a letter to four German Catholic laywomen that was published in the German newspaper Welt on Nov. 21. “There are indeed numerous steps being taken by significant segments of this local Church that threaten to steer it increasingly away from the universal Church’s common path,” wrote the pope. The letter, dated Nov. 10, was written in German and included the pope’s handwritten signature.  https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/256068/breaking-pope-francis-intervenes-with-german-synodal-way__________________________________________________________ 3. Pope Francis calls for applause for 20 martyrs of Spanish Civil War beatified in Seville, By Walter Sanchez Silva, Catholic News Agency, November 20, 2023, 6:30 PM At Sunday’s Angelus, Pope Francis called for applause for the 20 martyrs beatified in the Seville cathedral, priests and laypeople who were murdered out of hatred for the faith during the beginning of the Spanish Civil War in 1936. “Yesterday in Seville, Manuel González Serna, a diocesan priest, and 19 fellow priests and laymen murdered in 1936 in the climate of religious persecution of the Spanish Civil War were beatified,” said the Holy Father after praying the Angelus on Sunday at the Vatican.  “These martyrs bore witness to Christ to the end. May their example strengthen so many Christians who in our time are discriminated against for their faith. “Applause for the new blesseds!” Pope Francis exclaimed. Cardinal Marcello Semeraro, prefect of the Dicastery for the Causes of Saints, offered the Nov. 18 beatification Mass of the 20 martyrs: 10 priests, one seminarian, and nine laity — eight men and one woman.  https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/256064/pope-francis-calls-for-applause-for-20-martyrs-of-spanish-civil-war-beatified-in-seville__________________________________________________________ 4. Texas lawmakers vote to remove school choice provision from funding bill, By Jonah McKeown, Catholic News Agency, November 20, 2023, 4:56 PM Lawmakers in Texas on Friday voted down a section of a major education bill that would have created a publicly-funded education savings account (ESA) for students wishing to attend private schools, including religiously-affiliated schools.  The Texas House voted 84-63 Nov. 17 in favor of an amendment to entirely remove a section from H.B. 1 related to school choice. That section would have allowed parents to make use of the equivalent of 75% of the cost of sending the student to public school to instead help pay for the educational institution of their choice. The amendment garnered support from 21 Republicans, most of whom represent rural districts, joined by all the House’s Democrats, KVUE reported.  With the vote, the future of the 177-page education bill itself is now uncertain. Republican Gov. Greg Abbott has said he will veto any education legislation that does not contain school choice vouchers and will continue to call lawmakers back to the state capitol until they pass a school choice bill, KVUE reported. Catholic bishops in the state have expressed support for earlier efforts in the state Legislature to enact school choice, while public school advocates have argued that the ESA program would divert funds away from needy public schools, especially in rural areas with fewer private school options available.  https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/256062/texas-lawmakers-vote-to-remove-school-choice-provision-from-funding-bill__________________________________________________________ 5. Pope Francis shares Vatican lunch with poor, By Hannah Brockhaus, Catholic News Agency, November 20, 2023, 11:11 AM Pope Francis had lunch with approximately 1,200 poor, refugees, and homeless from around Rome on Sunday to mark the Catholic Church’s seventh observance of the World Day of the Poor. The lunch, which was offered by Hilton Hotels, included spinach and ricotta cheese-stuffed cannelloni, meatballs with tomato sauce, and a cauliflower purée. The dessert was tiramisu and small pastries. The lunch was organized by the Vatican’s charity office and the Catholic Sant’Egidio community.  Before the meal, Pope Francis led the weekly Sunday Angelus from a window overlooking St. Peter’s Square.   https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/256057/photos-pope-francis-shares-vatican-lunch-with-poor__________________________________________________________ 6. ‘Newman is Newman’, By The Pillar, November 20, 2023, 12:42 PM, Interview By a vote of 240-2, the U.S. bishops voted last Wednesday to write a letter of support to Pope Francis, for an effort to see St. John Henry Newman named a Doctor of the Church. Bishop Daniel Flores, who heads the USCCB doctrine committee, explained during the bishops’ fall plenary meeting that the Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales had asked the U.S. conference to write a letter in support of their efforts to see Newman given the title. The bishops’ conferences of Ireland and Scotland are also supporting the effort. Flores explained that the U.S. bishops’ doctrine committee concluded after a 2019 study that Newman’s writings are “eminent and of great relevance for the Church today” in a variety of areas, including doctrinal development, moral foundations of education, the role of the laity, the search for truth and the primacy of conscience. “Doctor of the Church” is a title granted by the Church to certain saints whose lives exemplify extraordinary holiness and whose writings or teachings contribute significantly to the life of the Church.  The Pillar spoke with Bishop Daniel Flores about Newman, his preaching, and his enduring wisdom for the Church.  https://www.pillarcatholic.com/p/newman-is-newman__________________________________________________________ 7. Iraqi leader meets pope after court rejects cardinal’s lawsuit, By Luke Coppen, The Pillar, November 20, 2023, 12:29 PM Iraq’s President Abdul Latif Rashid met with Pope Francis Saturday, days after a cardinal lost an Iraqi legal challenge over the withdrawal of a presidential decree. The Vatican said that during Nov. 18 talks between Rashid, the pope, and senior curial officials, “the need was reiterated for the Catholic Church in Iraq to be able to continue to carry out its valued mission and for all Iraqi Christians to be a vibrant and active part of society and the territory.” The Vatican meeting followed a Nov. 14 ruling by Iraq’s Federal Supreme Court upholding Rashid’s July decision to withdraw a 2013 civil decree recognizing Cardinal Louis Raphaël Sako as the head of the Chaldean Catholic Church and the holder of its endowments.  https://www.pillarcatholic.com/p/iraqi-leader-meets-pope-after-court__________________________________________________________ 8. Let an ‘Unwanted’ Child Have the Best Day With You Today, Our daughter was abandoned on a sidewalk in the depth of winter. We brought her home and gave her our hearts and taught her why all the trees change in the fall., By Grazie Pozo Christie, National Catholic Register, November 20, 2023, Opinion When you are pro-life and also a mother by adoption, there is one pro-choice argument that especially hurts. I’m sure you’ve heard it: “An unwanted baby is destined for a bad life. Abortion is probably better for that child.” That’s very hard to swallow when you love a child who was unwanted. My own daughter was abandoned at birth, on a sidewalk in the depth of winter. She was wrapped in a yellow blanket and her umbilical cord was still attached. She was an “unwanted” child — an inconvenient person whose presence in this world comes with a whole set of challenges and dangers to her birth parents. Today she is a cheerful, pretty, teenage girl who delights us every day. Although her story of “unwantedness” is specific to her, it is essentially the same tale told in different ways for every baby that has been labeled as unwanted and undesirable. I can give you countless examples: the baby whose father will not take responsibility for her upbringing but instead offers up money for her abortion; the little one who would have been wanted if conceived a year later, but today is inconvenient; the child who has a congenital defect like a cleft palate or Down syndrome; the hundreds of thousands of babies conceived in careless sexual encounters between men and women who have no desire to build a family together. You yourself can come up with many more variations on this theme, if you give it some thought. My pretty girl was born in China when the one-child policy had not yet been changed to the two-child policy. She was fortunate. A passer-by took pity on her and carried her to the police station. She spent the first part of her life in a crowded orphanage.  When we adopted her, she was a toddler with an uncertain smile and a worried frown. As far as “unwanted” babies she was probably a poster child. Most likely she was a second child, an unexpected — maybe even a tragic — pregnancy, exposing her parents to retribution by the state. The population police in China have been known to bulldoze the houses of couples who are hiding an unsanctioned pregnancy or child. Forced abortion, even of babies advanced in development, has been routinely practiced. Many stories have been told of heroic mothers and fathers who kept their pregnancies secret in order to bring their child to life, at great personal risk. The subsequent hidden births are dangerous because they’re unattended by doctors or midwives. The accounts are harrowing. So, too, are the tales of the sadness of laying the infant on the dirty street cement with a nearly hopeless prayer for her rescue. What is hard to bear when you love one of these children who somehow survived their “unwantedness” is the awfulness of the sentence meted out to those who died by abortion. Sentenced to death for being the wrong sex. Or coming at the wrong time. Or simply coming uninvited. What a horrid loss. Every one of these children was meant to be a delight in the same way my daughter is a delight. I hear her in the kitchen as I type these words. She is baking cupcakes and wearing AirPods. She probably doesn’t realize she is singing along loudly to our favorite Taylor Swift song. It’s called “The Best Day” and it’s about a girl growing up having “best days” with her mother. Let me assure all those who have not had the great joy of loving an “unwanted’’ child. Every day — every single day — is the best day with her. https://www.ncregister.com/blog/i-had-the-best-day-with-you-today__________________________________________________________

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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