1. Catholic comments by Connecticut principal under scrutiny, By Susan Haigh, Associated Press, September 1, 2022An assistant principal at a public elementary school in Connecticut is facing an investigation by state education officials after apparently being secretly recorded saying he’d prefer not to hire politically conservative staff, including Roman Catholics. The Department of Education confirmed Wednesday that it’s looking into whether the assistant principal in the town of Greenwich violated rules of professional conduct. If there’s evidence the administrator’s conduct violated any state laws or regulations, his certification could be suspended or revoked, said department spokesperson Eric Scoville.  The video was released by Project Veritas, a conservative group known for using undercover methods to reveal supposed liberal bias.  The administrator is seen in a 12-minute video, which appears to have been taken covertly, speaking with a woman at various locations about how he tries not to hire politically conservative staff, including Catholics. He says: “Honestly, I don’t want to,” when asked if he’d hire a Catholic. When asked why, he says if someone is “raised a hardcore Catholic, it’s like they’re brainwashed. You can never change their mindset.” https://apnews.com/article/religion-education-connecticut-ned-lamont-greenwich-65b9af26b0df27e4413e9b7d1bdb1a62__________________________________________________________ 2. ‘Crushed’ by 2 papacies, John Paul I’s death eclipsed life, By Frances D’Emilio, Associated Press, September 1, 2022, 2:22 AM The moment that the black wall telephone rang early on the morning of Sept. 29, 1978, in Stefania Falasca’s Rome apartment is imprinted in her mind. Then 15, Falasca remembers her father answering and hearing the voice of her uncle, a priest who worked at the Vatican, coming through the receiver: “The pope is dead!”  Like countless others around the globe, her father struggled to comprehend how 65-year-old John Paul I, elected as pontiff barely a month earlier — on Aug. 26, 1978 — could be dead, and confusedly first thought of Pope Paul VI, who had died in early August at age 80. John Paul I, born Albino Luciani, is widely remembered more for his sudden, mystery-dogged death than for his life. Falasca, an Italian journalist for a Catholic publication, has toiled for more than a decade to change that and to convince the Vatican that he deserves to be a saint for how he lived his faith, as a priest, bishop, cardinal and, so briefly, as pontiff.  On Sunday, Pope Francis will beatify John Paul I, the last formal step before possible sainthood. Formal efforts aimed at beatification can begin five years after a pontiff dies. For John Paul II, that rule was waived a few weeks after his death in 2005, in response to cries of “sainthood immediately!” rising up from the faithful during his funeral. But it took 25 years for the beatification process for John Paul I to begin.  For a Catholic to be beatified, the pope must approve a miracle attributed to prayerful intercession. In Luciani’s case, that miracle was the medically unexplained recovery in 2011 of an 11-year-old girl hospitalized in Buenos Aires with brain inflammation and septic shock. Her parents pleaded with a priest from a nearby parish to come. As he rushed to her bedside, the Rev. Juan Jose’ Dabusti wondered to whom he should pray for her to live. Inspiration struck. He prayed to John Paul I. But why invoke the name of a largely forgotten pontiff? Falasca said Dabusti told her that when he was 15, he heard the newly elected John Paul I speak and decided to become a priest himself, because Luciani was “very simple and very happy.” https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/crushed-by-2-papacies-john-paul-is-death-eclipsed-life/2022/09/01/6299cb70-29be-11ed-a90a-fce4015dfc8f_story.html__________________________________________________________3. Pro-life Republicans can win by contrasting their views with opponents’, By Marjorie Dannenfelser, The Washington Post, September 1, 2022, Pg. A17, Opinion In a swing district that went for Joe Biden over Donald Trump by about 1.5 points in 2020, Molinaro’s Democratic opponent, Pat Ryan, spent weeks pummeling him on the abortion issue. Molinaro responded weakly, when he responded at all. He failed to define his opponent, letting himself be defined, and he lost.  Pro-life candidates who want a shot at winning need to go on offense and expose their opponents as having extreme views. Ryan avoided specifics, couching his position in well-worn, vague terms such as “freedom to choose” and “controlling women’s bodies.” A sharp offense could have punctured this obvious vulnerability, challenging the Democrat to explain exactly what policies he wants and whether there is a single limit on abortion he would support: when the child’s heartbeat can be detected? If not then, what about a first-trimester limit, which two-thirds of Americans support? Or 15 weeks, when some new evidence indicates unborn children can feel pain — a limit 72 percent of Americans support and that sits within the European mainstream? Or like Biden and almost every congressional Democrat, does he advocate legislation that allows abortion throughout all nine months of pregnancy as long as a doctor will say it’s for the woman’s health? Only 10 percent of Americans believe abortion should be legal that late, and this broad loophole means the bill is far more radical than Democrats would have you believe. Marjorie Dannenfelser is president of Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2022/08/31/abortion-republicans-win-election-honesty/__________________________________________________________  4. No more ‘nuance’: Democrats slam GOP abortion-rights backers, By Nicholas Riccardi and Susan Haigh, Associated Press, September 1, 2022, 5:39 AM The anxious-looking women talk directly to the camera, warning that the Colorado Republican running for the U.S. Senate opposes the state’s reproductive rights law and supports the conservative Supreme Court justices who revoked the constitutional right to abortion this summer. “It’s not even close,” one says as the ad for the incumbent Democratic senator wraps up. “We need Michael Bennet fighting for us.” The spot is significant because the man it slams on abortion, businessman Joe O’Dea, is a rare Republican supporter of at least some abortion rights. O’Dea said he would back a law to codify the protections of Roe v. Wade, though he opposes abortions after 20 weeks except in cases of rape, incest or to protect the life of the mother. Analysts say similarly nuanced positions were once considered the political sweet spot in the complex world of abortion politics, coming closest to representing the views of the typical, conflicted voter. But that may be changing as abortion restrictions kick in following the fall of Roe with the high court’s ruling in June.  In New Hampshire, Democrats are attacking Republican Gov. Chris Sununu, who is running for reelection as a self-described “pro choice governor,” for supporting a ban on abortions after 23 weeks of pregnancy. In Connecticut, Democrats slammed as “extreme” former state Sen. George Logan in his race against Democratic U.S. Rep. Jahana Hayes — despite Logan receiving an A rating in 2017 and 2018 from the Connecticut chapter of NARAL, an abortion rights group. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/no-more-nuance-democrats-slam-gop-abortion-rights-backers/2022/09/01/93bba506-29ab-11ed-a90a-fce4015dfc8f_story.html__________________________________________________________ 5. Pro-life pregnancy sites defy dangerous threats, Colorado firebombing among latest attacks, By Valerie Richardson, The Washington Times, September 1, 2022, Pg. A1 Nearly everything was lost in the firebombing of the Life Choices Pregnancy Medical Center, but Executive Director Kathy Roberts goes back to the little things as she takes stock of the damage. The gift bags and boxes filled with baby items that had just been decorated by a local artist. The “beautiful art deco clock” hanging over the fireplace. The children’s clothing that survived the fire but was too smoky to save. The final paint job never happened. At 3:17 a.m. on June 25, hours after the Supreme Court’s decision overturning Roe v. Wade and a constitutional right to abortion, Longmont Public Safety responded to a call about a fire at the center, located in a quiet residential community about 40 miles north of Denver. Video showed the firebombers wore dark hoodies, carried backpacks and rode bikes. One of the neighbors reported hearing a “loud boom,” she said, an indication that the perpetrators used an incendiary device such as a Molotov cocktail.  The police and FBI are investigating, but the attack looks like the handiwork of Jane’s Revenge. The radical group boasts photos of the damage on its website, and the building was tagged with an anarchist “A” and black graffiti warning, “If abortions aren’t safe, neither are you.” The wreckage from the flames, soot and smoke, compounded with water damage from the fire hoses, was so extensive that demolition crews had to strip the 37-year-old building’s interior to its wooden frame.  Ms. Roberts has found a temporary location to serve clients as she works to restore the nearly 6,000-square-foot center, a process that could take eight months to a year. She estimated the cost to be about $250,000, although that figure could rise, and there is no guarantee the center won’t be attacked again.  The CatholicVote tracker lists 64 attacks in the past four months on the facilities, also known as crisis pregnancy centers. That figure doesn’t include incidents that have gone unreported for fear of drawing unwanted attention. “Various terror groups have issued threats against them on social media since the decision was made, with one group urging its followers to ‘mask up, stay dangerous,’” CatholicVote said. https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2022/aug/31/pro-life-pregnancy-center-refuses-fold-after-fireb/__________________________________________________________ 6. Commonsense policy proposals for life, Democrats are wildly out of touch with the American public on the issue of abortion, By Jeanne Mancini, The Washington Times, September 1, 2022, Pg. B1, Opinion For 50 years, the pro-life movement has persevered through opposition and attacks of various forms, challenging outdated abortion laws and the most destructive legal decision in American history, Roe v. Wade.     But in the time since Dobbs came down, we’ve experienced a whole new level of pro-abortion activism attempting to distract from a radical abortion agenda by painting the pro-life movement as extreme. Nothing could be further from the truth. In fact, since Roe’s overturn, some on the pro-abortion side have followed through on their promise of a “Summer of Rage,” vandalizing and even firebombing pregnancy resource centers, which provide countless free resources for women in need. As if that’s not radical enough, a glance at Democrats’ recent abortion legislation in Congress leaves no room for questioning their extremism on the issue. These abortion zealots are shamelessly pushing legislation that would legalize abortion through all nine months of pregnancy and force Americans, including pro-life and religious Americans, to fund abortion through their taxes.  Democrats are wildly out of touch with the American public on the issue of abortion. When told that Roe permitted abortion up to birth, 56% of Americans say they would strongly oppose it. Meanwhile, 71% of Americans support limiting abortion to the first three months of pregnancy, according to a recent Marist poll. Not only do 76% of Americans favor the maternity homes and pregnancy resource centers which supply women with countless free resources, but 78% of Republicans and even a surprising 73% of Democrats said they supported public funding for such centers after learning about the services that they provide. These are the same organizations that far-left Democrats such as Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez have threatened to shut down through federal action.  As an alternative to these unpopular proposals, the pro-life movement offers expecting mothers practical solutions so they can choose life. Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves, for example, signed two bills to boost pregnancy centers and other community efforts to protect pregnant women in the state.   Sadly, the pro-abortion movement offers little assistance to the American women they claim to champion while attempting to undermine the pro-life cause’s noble efforts to support both mother and child. Despite these attacks, advocates for life must continue to offer women and their families the care they need and deserve.   Jeanne Mancini is the President of March for Life  https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2022/aug/31/democrats-extreme-abortion-agenda-out-of-touch-wit/__________________________________________________________ 7. Spain’s bishops criticize bill to allow abortions without parental consent, By Catholic News Service, September 1, 2022 The Spanish bishops’ conference criticized a government-backed draft law that would allow girls 16 or older to obtain abortions without parental knowledge or consent and would impose fines and disqualifications for objecting medical staff. “Abortion is never a right,” Archbishop Luis Argüello García, the bishops’ secretary-general and spokesman, said in a tweet. “This new abortion law suppresses the prior information and reflection that are essential for making such a serious decision. It is all symptomatic of a way of governing.” https://cruxnow.com/church-in-europe/2022/09/spains-bishops-criticize-bill-to-allow-abortions-without-parental-consent__________________________________________________________ 8. Pope Francis shines spotlight on capital punishment, By John Lavenburg, Crux, September 1, 2022 Pope Francis is calling on Catholics worldwide to mobilize against the death penalty, a practice he says is both legally unnecessary and morally inadmissible. “The commandment, ‘Thou shalt not kill,’ refers to both the innocent and the guilty,” Pope Francis said on Aug. 31. “I, therefore, call on all people of goodwill to mobilize for the abolition of the death penalty throughout the world. Let us pray that the death penalty, which attacks the dignity of the human person, may be legally abolished in every country.” https://cruxnow.com/vatican/2022/09/pope-francis-shines-spotlight-on-capital-punishment__________________________________________________________ 9. German court rules in favor of right to pray near abortion counseling facility, By AC Wimmer, Catholic News Agency, September 1, 2022, 3:50 AM Silent prayer gatherings near an abortion counseling facility cannot be prohibited, a German court ruled Wednesday. The decision lifts a ban issued in 2019 by the city of Pforzheim in southwest Germany and upheld in May 2021 by a lower court decision. The Mannheim Administrative Court ruled on Aug. 31 that “authorities could only make an assembly dependent on such a condition if public safety would be directly endangered if the assembly were held. This was not the case here.” The prayer organizer welcomed the decision. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/252181/german-court-rules-in-favor-of-right-to-pray-near-abortion-counseling-facility__________________________________________________________ 10. Indiana court sides with Catholic diocese in teacher firing, By Tom Davies, Associated Press, August 31, 2022, 6:08 PM The Indiana Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that religious freedom rights protect the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Indianapolis from being sued by a teacher who was fired from his job at a Catholic high school for being in a same-sex marriage. Joshua Payne-Elliott argued in his lawsuit that archdiocese leaders wrongfully forced his firing in 2019 from his job of 13 years as a world language and social studies teacher at Cathedral High School in Indianapolis by mandating that all Catholic schools under its purview enforce a morality clause barring employees from entering into same-sex marriages. The state Supreme Court decision said religious institutions had the First Amendment right to decide matters of church governance for themselves. “The archdiocese’s decision whether a school maintains its Catholic identity is an internal matter that concerns both church policy and administration,” the decision said. https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/indiana-court-sides-with-catholic-diocese-in-teacher-firing/2022/08/31/1286e8fe-296c-11ed-a90a-fce4015dfc8f_story.html?__________________________________________________________ 11. Indiana Supreme Court backs archdiocese over same-sex marriage firing, Vatican case lingers, The Indiana Supreme Court has upheld the dismissal of a high school teacher in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis who was fired after he contracted a same-sex marriage. The decision could pave the way for a Vatican ruling in a related dispute between the Indiana archdiocese and the Society of Jesus., By The Pillar, August 31, 2022, 7:18 PM The Indiana Supreme Court has upheld the dismissal of a high school teacher in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis who was fired after he contracted a same-sex marriage. The court decision could pave the way for a Vatican ruling in a related dispute between the Indiana archdiocese and the Society of Jesus.  The court’s Wednesday ruling could indicate that a lingering canonical case on a related situation will soon be resolved as well.The archdiocese has been mired in a canonical dispute with Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School over its 2019 instruction that the Jesus school should dismiss another teacher, Layton Payne-Elliot, who had contracted a same-sex civil marriage with Joshua Payne-Elliot, the Cathedral High teacher. Brebeuf school leaders became aware in 2017 that its teacher had contracted a same-sex marriage. In 2019, Archbishop Charles Thompson instructed both Cathedral High and Brebeuf Jesuit not to renew the contracts of the two teachers. Cathedral complied, but Brebeuf did not. The archbishop subsequently prohibited the Jesuit school from identifying itself as Catholic, and the Midwest Province of the Society of Jesus appealed that decision to the Vatican’s Congregation for Clergy, which suspended Thompson’s decree while the matter is being deliberated. While the canonical case has lingered for more than two years, speculation has mounted that the Vatican had withheld its decision in order to avoid prejudicing an eventual civil court ruling. Some curial officials feared that if a Vatican decision did not support Thompson, it might influence Indiana judges, leading to a large financial judgment against the archdiocese. But with the civil court case now resolved, a decision on the Vatican’s case could be forthcoming. https://www.pillarcatholic.com/indiana-supreme-court-backs-archdiocese-over-same-sex-marriage-firing-vatican-case-lingers/__________________________________________________________ 12. Burkina Faso bishop says American nun freed by captors, By Arsene Kabore, Associated Press, August 31, 2022, 4:19 PM An 83-year-old American nun kidnapped from her bed in Burkina Faso earlier this year has been released by her captors unharmed, Catholic church officials in the West African nation said Wednesday. Sister Suellen Tennyson had been abducted by 10 gunmen without her blood pressure medication. The church statement about her release, though, said she was still in good health after nearly five months in captivity.  Jihadi groups linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State in the Sahel, the vast expanse south of the Sahara Desert, have long taken foreign hostages for ransom to fund operations. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/burkina-faso-bishop-says-american-nun-freed-by-captors/2022/08/31/30a30478-296a-11ed-a90a-fce4015dfc8f_story.html__________________________________________________________ 13. Michigan election board rejects abortion rights initiative, By Joey Cappelletti and Sara Burnett, Associated Press, August 31, 2022 A Michigan elections board on Wednesday rejected an abortion rights initiative after its two Republican board members voted against putting the proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot. The two Democrats on the Board of State Canvassers voted in favor, but getting the measure on the ballot required at least three votes of the four-member board. The Reproductive Freedom for All campaign, which gathered signatures to get the measure on the ballot, is expected to appeal to the Democratic-leaning Michigan Supreme Court in the coming days and expressed confidence it would prevail. https://apnews.com/article/abortion-2022-midterm-elections-us-supreme-court-health-michigan-4888105cd9fe270786420c150e18c8b3__________________________________________________________ 14. Nurse practitioner says CVS fired her over abortion stance, By Matthew Barakat, Associated Press, August 31, 2022 A nurse practitioner from northern Virginia sued CVS Health on Wednesday, saying she was fired for refusing to provide abortion-inducing drugs at its MinuteClinic medical facilities. In the lawsuit, Paige Casey said CVS had for years granted her a religious accommodation that allowed her to opt out of prescribing or providing the drugs and certain contraceptives without incident. Last year, though, she says the company changed its policy and stopped providing such accommodations. Casey — who worked for MinuteClinic since 2018, primarily at a facility in Alexandria — appealed to the company, saying her Catholic faith teaches her that life begins at conception and she could not provide care in violation of that principle. She says she was fired in late March, the same day she emailed company officials to reiterate her objections. Alliance Defending Freedom, a nonprofit legal group led by conservative Christian Michael Farris, is representing Casey and says Virginia law explicitly bars employers from taking disciplinary action against employees who object to abortion on moral or religious grounds. https://apnews.com/article/abortion-health-religion-lawsuits-4bb36dab69b65f86febabdc8651b1c0f__________________________________________________________

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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