TCA Podcast, – “Conversations with Consequences,” Episode 229 – TCA Team Talks Ohio: Women Need a Pro-Life Safety Net—Not More Pressure to Abort As a ballot initiative in Ohio aims at enshrining abortion into the state constitution, the TCA team chats about what is at stake, and why language and semantics matter especially inside the voting booth as the pro-abortion lobby is working overtime in keeping the truth about this heinous initiative from the American public. As Ashley McGuire wrote recently: “Initiatives like the one on the ballot in Ohio will permanently limit pregnant women in crisis to a choice they don’t want to make.” We also visit with Bishop Thomas Paprocki about the Eucharistic revival–and the truth we all have as Catholics in the Real Presence. Father Roger Landry also offers an inspiring homily to prepare us for this Sunday’s Gospel. Catch the show every Saturday at 7amET/5pmET on EWTN radio! 1. A Miracle in Missouri? One Nun Put Her Abbey on the Map., By Monika Scislowska, The New York Times, September 10, 2023, Pg. A16 In life, Sister Wilhelmina Lancaster was known to her fellow nuns for her devotional poetry, her sense of humor and her fierce piety.  In death, Sister Wilhelmina has become something much larger to some: a potential saint, a pilgrimage attraction, a miracle. The transformation started this spring at the Abbey of Our Lady of Ephesus, run by the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of the Apostles, a small but growing conservative order whose headquarters are nestled in the rolling hills north of Kansas City. Four years after burying Sister Wilhelmina, the order’s founder, in a simple wood coffin in a corner of the property, the sisters decided to move her body into a customary place of honor inside their church. When they opened the coffin, expecting to find bones that could be easily cleaned and placed in a new box, they instead found what looked and even felt remarkably like Sister Wilhelmina herself. Her face was recognizable, even after years in a damp coffin, and the sisters said that her beloved habit was “immaculate.” For the Benedictines of Mary, this immediately signaled that Sister Wilhelmina may be an “incorruptible,” a term the Catholic Church uses to describe people whose bodies — or parts of their bodies — did not decompose after death. Believers in the phenomenon say there have been more than 100 examples worldwide, mostly in Europe.  In life, Sister Wilhelmina was the descendant of enslaved Catholics, and grew up in a Catholic family in St. Louis. She belonged to a traditionally Black order of nuns for 50 years, the Oblate Sisters of Providence. But by the end of that time, she was disillusioned by what she perceived as a loosening of standards in worship and clothing styles. She founded the new traditionalist order in the 1990s.  In an era in which the population of nuns and priests in the United States is aging and declining, however, the Benedictines of Mary is among the handful of orders that is growing. 2. The Vatican beatifies a Polish family of 9 killed by the Nazis for sheltering Jews, By Monika Scislowska, Associated Press, September 10, 2023, 2:12 PM In an unprecedented move, the Vatican on Sunday beatified a Polish family of nine — a married couple and their small children — who were executed by the Nazis during World War II for sheltering Jews. 3. Vatican orders investigation into Catholic clerics linked to abuse, Swiss Bishops’ Conference says, By Jamey Keaten and Kirsten Grieshaber, Associated Press, September 10, 2023, 3:29 PM The Vatican has ordered an investigation into high-ranking Catholic clerics in Switzerland in connection with sexual abuse, the Swiss Bishops’ Conference said on Sunday. The group said in a statement that there were allegations against several active and retired bishops as well as other clergy for their handling of abuse cases. Specifically, they are accused of covering up abuse cases. There are also accusations that some committed sexual assaults themselves in the past. 4. Zelensky advisor blasts Pope as ‘pro-Russian’ and ‘not credible,’ rejecting Vatican mediation, By Crux, September 9, 2023 A senior advisor to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has labeled Pope Francis as “pro-Russian” and “not credible,” flatly rejecting any prospect that the Vatican might play mediating role in the current Russian war in the country. The advisor also suggested that the pope’s line on the war may be influenced by Russian investments in the Vatican bank. Pope Francis “unknowingly is cancelling the reputation of the Holy See,” said Mykhailo Podolyak in an interview with Ukraine’s Channel 24 news service on Friday. “It doesn’t make sense to speak of a mediator called the pope if he assumes a pro-Russian position, which is evident to everyone,” Podolyak said. “It wasn’t the first time, but before it happened in a somewhat confused way and we pretended not to see.” Podolyak, a senior advisor to the Office of the President in Ukraine, spoke in the wake of a controversy that erupted in late August after Pope Francis praised the legacy of “Great Mother Russia” in a video conference with Russian Catholic youth gathered in St. Petersburg. 5. The Chicago Teachers Union Chief Sends Her Son to Catholic School, Stacy Davis Gates wants choice for her son, but not for everyone else., By The Wall Street Journal, September 8, 2023, 6:35 PM, Editorial Chicago Teachers Union President Stacy Davis Gates has called school choice racist and made it her mission to kill an Illinois scholarship program for low-income children. So how did Ms. Gates try to explain herself this week after press reports that she has enrolled her son in a private Catholic high school? “Dear Union Sibling,” began her email to fellow teachers. She said that black students have “limited” options on the city’s south and west sides: “It forced us to send our son, after years of attending a public school, to a private high school so he could live out his dream of being a soccer player while also having a curriculum that can meet his social and emotional needs.” Ms. Gates’s desire to do what’s best for her child is laudable. What’s not is to do that while denying other families the same choice. The school where her son is enrolled reportedly costs her $16,000 a year. What about those who can’t afford such a school? Illinois’s Invest in Kids program funds about 9,000 scholarships, and last year it had 31,000 applications. But the program is scheduled to sunset, and that’s exactly what the teachers unions have demanded.  Ms. Gates’s son deserves a quality education, but so do his neighbors. With any luck this controversy will improve the odds of renewing the Invest in Kids program. But the real moral and political scandal remains the same: that thousands of Chicago’s children are locked into failing public schools as part of a political job-protection program for the teachers union. 6. Giving is up, conflict is down at churches, but clergy are still unhappy, By Bob Smietana, Religion News Service, September 8, 2023, 12:03 PM Three years after the start of the covid-19 pandemic, churches have fewer people in the pews, more money in the collection plate and less conflict than they had in 2020. Despite their struggles, many congregations are optimistic about the future. Clergy dissatisfaction, on the other hand, remains on the rise. Those are among the findings of the latest report from the Hartford Institute for Religion Research, part of a five-year study of the impact of the pandemic on America’s churches.  Giving to religious groups — including congregations and other faith-based charities — grew by 5.2 percent in 2022, according to a Giving USA report. Those donations made up about a quarter (27 percent) of all giving to charity — and religion was the only sector in the Giving USA report where giving went up. While online worship persists, other forms of activities — such as youth programs, adult education and prayer groups — that were held online during the pandemic are now mostly in person. 7. Supreme Court is asked to reject limits on a drug used in the most common method of abortion, By Mark Sherman, Associated Press, September 8, 2023, 3:45 PM The Supreme Court is being asked to reverse an appellate ruling that would cut off mail-order access to a drug used in the most common method of abortion in the United States. The case would be the first major abortion dispute decided by the Supreme Court since it overturned Roe v. Wade last year. That ruling has led to bans on abortion at all stages of pregnancy in 15 states, with some exceptions, and once cardiac activity can be detected, which is around six weeks, in two others. In an appeal filed Friday, Danco Laboratories, the manufacturer of mifepristone, argued that federal judges should not second-guess the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the drug or the conditions under which it is dispensed. The Biden administration also was expected to file an appeal. A federal appeals court ruling in August would revoke approval for sending the drug through the mail and would shorten, from the current 10 weeks to seven weeks, the time during which mifepristone can be used in pregnancy. 8. U.S. bishops call for opening of corridor to allow aid to Armenian Christians, By Daniel Payne, Catholic News Agency, September 8, 2023, 11:10 AM The chairman of the U.S. bishops’ international peace committee on Thursday called for an end to the blockade of humanitarian supplies in the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, warning of a looming “catastrophe” if the conflict continues and aid workers aren’t permitted to bring supplies to those within it. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said in a press release on Thursday that the now-nine-monthlong blockade of Nagorno-Karabakh, a disputed territory in western Asia long claimed by both Armenia and Azerbaijan, has had a “devastating impact.” The USCCB on Thursday noted that “since December 2022, Azerbaijan has blocked the Lachin corridor,” cutting off humanitarian supply chains in the region for nine months.  More than 100,000 ethnic Armenian Christians behind the blockade “find themselves trapped in Nagorno-Karabakh, facing dire shortages of food, medicine, and medical supplies, fuel, electricity, and other basic essentials to sustain life,” the bishops said. 9. ‘Gender affirmation’ must be a factor in child custody fights, California Legislature says, By Kevin J. Jones, Catholic News Agency, September 8, 2023, 3:20 PM California courts’ child custody decisions must consider whether a parent affirms a child’s “gender identity or gender expression,” under a bill the California Legislature approved Friday. The California Assembly passed Assembly Bill 957 on Friday by a party-line vote of 57-16, with several Democrats not voting, KCRA 3 News reported. The state Senate passed the legislation on Wednesday in a 30-9 vote, with all Republicans voting against the bill. Gov. Gavin Newsom is expected to sign the bill by the legal deadline of Oct. 14. The concept of “gender” has come to mean more than biological sex. It now has connotations of a social role that allows boys to identify or act like girls and vice versa. Gender identity now includes categories such as transgender and nonbinary. “Affirmation includes a range of actions and will be unique for each child, but in every case must promote the child’s overall health and well-being,” the California bill states.

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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