Catholic Conference statement on the death of JJ Hanson

Published on December 30th, 2017

James “JJ” Hanson, an outspoken advocate for patients rights and against physician-assisted suicide, died of brain cancer today at the age of 36. Mr. Hanson, a Hudson Valley resident, retired Marine and a one-time member of the administration of former Gov. David A. Paterson, leaves behind his wife, Kristen, and two young sons, James and Lucas.

For nearly three years, he has worked closely with the New York State Catholic Conference and the New York Alliance Against Assisted Suicide to educate others about the dangers of doctor-assisted suicide and the compelling alternatives for patients facing terminal illness, using the power of his own story to change hearts and minds. When first diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, doctors gave JJ four months to live, but he kept fighting, kept seeking out new treatments, and channeled his personal tragedy into advocacy in defense of the sacredness of all human life.

“Initially, JJ’s doctors offered him no hope, but he and Kristen had hope in abundance,” said Kathleen M. Gallagher, director of pro-life activities for the New York State Catholic Conference, who became close to the Hanson family. “He outlived that death sentence by more than three years, giving hope and inspiration to thousands of people during that time.

“He reached out to doctors, veterans groups and other organizations, persuaded lawmakers and journalists, raised funds for cancer research, traveled to Albany, Washington, D.C., and states all across the country, and took every opportunity to promote compassionate life-affirming care for persons facing disease and disability. And he did that while facing tremendous health hurdles, undergoing surgeries and treatments, and caring for his family.

“JJ lived his motto: ‘Every day is a gift, and you can’t ever let that go.’ He and Kristen are a true testament to living their faith through adversity, and JJ’s death is a loving example of an authentic ‘death with dignity.’ We are so grateful to Kristen and the boys for sharing JJ with us these last three years and enabling him to touch so many lives. We pray for their comfort and solace in this very difficult time.”

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2017/12/jj-hanson/

The Shining Light: Harrisburg Thrift Shop Serves as Beacon of Hope

““Karla”, 36, was recently released from prison, and was referred to Shining Light by Capitol Pavilion, one of our partner agencies. Trying to get back on her feet, and with limited resources, Karla needed basic clothing. Shining Light was able to provide her with several complete outfits, nightwear, shoes and underclothing. She can continue to obtain some additional free clothing over the next six months, as she seeks employment and establishes a household again. Her joy in selecting and “modeling” her “new” clothing touched us all!” – A Shining Light story

Treating all who enter our doors with dignity and respect. That’s the motto the Shining Light Thrift Shop has been operating in midtown Harrisburg since it opened its doors on September 9, 1992.

Today, the store is an outreach ministry within St. Patrick Cathedral Parish in the Catholic Diocese of Harrisburg. Donations and purchases help to fund the Shining Light, which serves the ongoing needs of over 1,000 economically disadvantaged individuals each year by providing free or low-cost clothing and domestic goods.

Gail Kline is the Shining Light’s store manager and says its mission is simple: “We are here to help people in need.” Over the years Kline recalls the store has helped individuals who have been released from prison, victims of home fires, and those who have lost their job to get back on their feet.

The Shining Light partners with nearly 50 local agencies that refer those in need to the store’s program. Individuals may get nearly $200 worth of clothing and household items over six months if needed. The store also helps those outside of the referral system by offering store discounts from 50 to 90 percent off of store merchandise.

As the Shining Light is closing in on its 25th anniversary year, Kline says it is during the holiday season that she sees the store shine a little brighter as a beacon of hope for those in need.

“This is the time of year we count our own blessings and, in turn, bestow those blessings upon those who need it the most. And that’s what the Shining Light does all year long.”

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/the-shining-light-harrisburg-thrift-shop-serves-as-beacon-of-hope/

Bill Setting Standards for Addiction Recovery Houses Signed Into Law

Legislation seeking to address the statewide opioid crisis that had strong support by the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference was recently signed into law by Governor Tom Wolf.

Senate Bill 446, now Act 59 of 2017, will establish state-regulated minimum quality standards for the licensure of recovery houses receiving funding or referrals from the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs or another state, federal or county agency.

In a statement issued by the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Tom McGarrigle (R-ChesterDelaware) said, “The addiction crisis is affecting communities in every region of Pennsylvania, and access to effective treatment is vital in turning the tide. People entering the recovery process have taken the crucial first step to a better, productive life. Approval of Senate Bill 446 sends the message that we will not let that journey be cut short due to lack of oversight.”

This new law is welcomed by the recovery houses operated by many Catholic Charities agencies within Pennsylvania’s Catholic dioceses. This is one of several important bills being considered by the General Assembly and monitored by the Pennsylvania Catholic Conference to combat the growing epidemic of opioid abuse.

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/bill-setting-standards-for-addiction-recovery-houses-signed-into-law/

President Should Work with Congress to Remedy Flaws in Tax Bill, Says U.S. Bishops Chairman

WASHINGTON— After the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate passed The Tax Reform and Jobs Act, Bishop Frank J. Dewane of Venice, Florida, chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, drew attention to unacceptable problems that remain, and called on President Trump to insist that Congress fix them before he signs a bill into law.

The full statement follows:

“Today, Congress passed its tax reform legislation, The Tax Reform and Jobs Act, and it has been sent to the President to consider.  The legislation achieves some laudable things, like doubling the standard deduction, which will help many struggling families avoid tax liability, expanding the use of 529 education plans, and increasing the child tax credit.

“However, the Act contains a number of problematic provisions that will have dramatic negative consequences, particularly for those most in need.  Among other things, the Joint Committee on Taxation indicates that the bill will eventually raise taxes on those with lower incomes while simultaneously cutting taxes for the wealthy.  This is clearly problematic, especially for the poor.  The repeal of the personal exemption will cause larger families, including many in the middle class, to be financially worse off.  The final bill creates a large deficit that, as early as next year, will be used as a basis to cut programs that help the poor and vulnerable toward stability.  The legislation is also likely to produce up to a $13 billion drop in annual charitable giving to nonprofits that are relied upon to help those struggling on the margins.  This will also significantly diminish the role of civil society in promoting the common good.

“As the President considers the tax bill before him, we ask that he take into account the full consequences of its provisions and work with Congress to remedy them before signing a tax bill into law.”


Bishop Frank J. Dewane’s December 6, 2017, letter analyzing the Senate and House bills prior to reconciliation can be found at: http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/federal-budget/upload/Tax-Conference-Letter-Congress-2017-12-06.pdf

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/president-should-work-congress-remedy-flaws-tax-bill-says-us-bishops-chairman

Statement on veto of nonpublic school aid bill

Published on December 19th, 2017

Last night, the New York State Catholic Conference was informed that Governor Andrew Cuomo vetoed legislation (S.6089) that would have averted cuts in state reimbursements to Catholic and other nonpublic schools. The cuts are based on the state changing a nearly four-decade-old formula for calculating reimbursement.

“The Bishops of New York State are extremely disappointed in Governor Cuomo’s veto of this bipartisan bill,” said James D. Cultrara, director for education of the New York State Catholic Conference. “The governor’s action will have serious impact on our schools and to the tuition-paying families who must absorb cuts in reimbursement aid, even as public school funding soars to new record heights every year.

“The Senate and Assembly first included this measure in both of their one-house budget proposals, but it was not enacted in the final budget. This necessitated the passage of the bill in separate legislation by both houses, in the Senate by a unanimous vote of 63-0 and in the Assembly by a vote of 133-6. This overwhelming support in the legislature makes the Governor’s action all the more disheartening to our Catholic school communities.

“We will continue our advocacy to ensure that the four-decade-old basis for reimbursement is restored, and that our schools get their fair share of reimbursement for providing state-mandated services.”

The Catholic Conference represents New York State’s Bishops in matters of public policy.

Article source: http://www.nyscatholic.org/2017/12/statement-on-veto-of-nonpublic-school-aid-bill/

Angel Tree Helps to Make Christmas Bright

This holiday season, students at Bishop Guilfoyle Catholic High School have teamed up with Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown to help make Christmas bright for seven children within two area families.

Every angel on the tree is marked with information describing a child, their interests and what they would like to receive for Christmas if they could make a wish.

“It’s almost a random selection. You just pick an angel and you go and you just think about how happy it’s going to make that kid by receiving that gift,” said Morgan Kiesewetter.

Kiesewetter is a senior at Bishop Guilfoyle and chairs the Celebration Committee. The committee is responsible for gathering the gifts once all of the wishes displayed on the angels have been collected, wrapping them and as Kiesewetter describes it, “sending them on their way”.

She added that students enjoy making the wishes of the children come true and even though they will not meet the families, she would also like to send this Christmas message: “They’re always in our prayers; we’re always thinking of them. We’re trying to give a little part of us to them.”

 

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/angel-tree-helps-to-make-christmas-bright/

Pro Life Legislation Vetoed

Pro-life legislation, which passed both the House and Senate chambers, has been vetoed by Governor Tom Wolf.

Senate Bill 3 would have strengthened Pennsylvania’s Abortion Control Act by banning the cruel and brutal practice of dismemberment abortions in the state of Pennsylvania.

Sen. Michele Brooks (R-Crawford County), who sponsored Senate Bill 3, responded to the governor’s veto and said,  “I am extremely disappointed with the Governor’s veto and the misinformation that opponents have spread about the bill.  But my greatest disappointment is that we will be unable to protect so many babies in the future, who will never know the joy of living in this world.

“My prayers are with the governor that one day his heart will soften and he will understand how horrific the dismemberment abortion procedure is.”

The legislation also would have placed a ban on abortions from the 20th week on during a pregnancy.

Brooks noted that the bill would not have changed existing law in its application to cases of rape and incest.

Senate Bill 3 passed the Senate by a vote of 32-18 and the House by a vote of 121-70.

 

 

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/pro-life-legislation-vetoed/

UPDATE: Tax Reform Bill Now Reflects USCCB’s Education Priorities

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Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/update-tax-reform-bill-now-reflects-usccbs-education-priorities

Insights: Demand Changes to Tax Bill; Urgent Support for DACA

Demand Changes to Tax Reform Bill

According to Congress’ own nonpartisan analysis, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act bills recently passed by the House and the Senate raises taxes on the poor and cut taxes on the rich, violating basic principles of justice. Congress has proposed a web of wide-ranging and complex changes to the tax code, yet is approaching the process at a pace that makes it difficult even for experts in the impacted areas to analyze effects. 

The sheer amount of policy changes contained in a single bill is staggering.  The fact that it was drafted without public hearings and hurriedly as Congress was pressed by artificial deadlines raises serious concerns about unintended consequences.  Finally, the lack of cooperation on this, and other issues, further polarizes our nation and ignores potentially good, bi-partisan problem-solving.

(Send a letter to your U.S. Senator and Congressmember now)

In letters to both the House and the Senate last month, the US Bishops outlined key moral principles that should be considered in any tax legislation. Given the passage of these bills and the unusual conference process now underway, the USCCB urged lawmakers in both houses and both parties to insist on several policies changes to ensure that a final tax bill is morally acceptable.

Continue Reading

 

Please Support DACA Young People

Unless Congress acts soon, the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will expire on March 5, 2018. In order to make this program permanent, it is urgent that the U.S. House of Representatives pass legislation before the end of 2017. 

According to a new Quinnipiac University poll, roughly 84 percent of U.S. voters said DREAMers brought to the U.S. as children should be allowed to remain in the country. Almost 77 percent said they should be allowed to apply for citizenship. Among Republican voters, 70 percent said DREAMers should be allowed to remain in the U.S. and fifty-seven percent said they should have a chance at citizenship.

(Send letters to your representatives now supporting DACA.)

Bishops around the United States, and especially in California, are calling on all people of faith and good-will to contact their local representatives by phone, email or letter to urge them to do the right thing and support the DREAM Act and make the DACA protections permanent.

“Our elected officials know what they need to do. They need to know right now that we care — and that millions of voters care also,” said Archbishop Gomez of Los Angeles in a letter to all people of faith.

Continue Reading

 

Support Professional Development of Teachers

Congress is currently considering whether to fund or eliminate Title II-A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, which deals with the professional development of teachers.  The Senate Appropriations Committee has approved $2 billion in funding for Title II-A, but the spending bill passed by the House provides no funding whatsoever for the program.

The California Catholic Conference supports teachers in all our schools – public, religious and private.  As Pope Francis has said: “Education…is critical for the future of society. How important it is for promoting the culture of encounter, respect for the dignity of each person and the absolute value of every human being!”

As negotiations on a final FY 2018 spending bill move forward, please encourage your leaders, appropriators, and conference committee members to fund Title II-A at $2 billion to help teachers across the country improve their capacity to educate the children in their care.

Click here to send a letter now to encourage your leaders, appropriators, and conference committee members to fund Title II-A. 

 

His Holiness Pope Francis’ Message for World Day of Peace

“In a spirit of compassion, let us embrace all those fleeing from war and hunger, or forced by discrimination, persecution, poverty and environmental degradation to leave their homelands,” writes Pope Francis in the this year’s World Day of Peace message.

In his statement, the Holy Father speaks of the “over 250 million migrants worldwide, of whom 22.5 million are refugees.” He also cites Pope Benedict XVI’s referral to these individuals as those “who are searching for somewhere to live in peace.”

The World Day of Peace is January 1.  Popes traditionally release the message a couple of weeks prior.

Read the statement in its entirety here.

 

Charter for the Protection of Young People and Children

The Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People is a comprehensive set of procedures established by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in June 2002 for addressing allegations of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy. The Charter also includes guidelines for reconciliation, healing, accountability, and prevention of future acts of abuse. 

If you have any questions on the measures the Catholic Church has put into place to protect children or you have any suspicious activity to report, every archdiocese and diocese in the state has a Safe Environment Coordinator to contact.  You can find a list on our Protecting Our Children page.

December 15, 2017
Vol. 10, No. 36

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/insights-demand-changes-tax-bill-urgent-support-daca

Perspectivas: Exija cambios para Proyecto de Ley de Impuestos; Apoyo urgente para DACA

Exija cambios para el Proyecto de Ley de Impuestos

Según el propio análisis no partidista del Congreso, los proyectos de ley de Recortes de Impuestos y Empleos, recientemente aprobados por la Cámara de Representantes y el Senado, aumentan los impuestos para los pobres y recortan los impuestos para los ricos, lo cual vulnera los principios básicos de justicia.  El Congreso ha propuesto una maraña de cambios complejos y de amplio alcance al código de impuestos, sin embargo, aborda el proceso a un ritmo que dificulta el poder analizar sus efectos, incluso para los expertos en los campos afectados.

Es asombroso tan solo la cantidad de cambios en las políticas que contiene este singular proyecto de ley. El hecho de que éste se redactó sin audiencias públicas y aceleradamente, puesto que el Congreso se encontraba presionado por fechas límite artificiales, provoca una verdadera preocupación por las consecuencias no intencionadas que pudieran darse. Por último, la falta de colaboración que requirió esto y otros problemas, polariza más a nuestro país e ignora la búsqueda de soluciones potencialmente positivas y bipartidistas.

(Envíe una carta a su Senador de EE.UU. y miembros del Congreso ahora)

En cartas dirigidas a la Cámara de Representantes y al Senado el mes pasado, los Obispos de los EE.UU. delinearon los principios morales claves que deberían considerarse en cualquier legislación de impuestos. Debido a la aprobación de estos proyectos de ley y el proceso de pláticas formales inusual que se está llevando a cabo ahora, la USCCB (Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU.) ha instado a los legisladores de ambas cámaras y a ambos partidos que insistan en diversos cambios en las políticas para asegurarse de que el proyecto de ley definitivo sea moralmente aceptable.

Continúe leyendo

 

Favor de apoyar a los jóvenes de DACA

A menos que el Congreso actúe pronto, el programa de Acción Diferida para los Llegados en la Infancia (DACA) terminará el 5 de marzo de 2018. Para que este programa sea permanente, es urgente que la Cámara de Representantes de los EE.UU. apruebe alguna legislación antes de que termine el año 2017.

Según una nueva encuesta de la Universidad Quinnipiac, aproximadamente el 84 por ciento de los votantes en los EE.UU. dice que a los Soñadores (“DREAMers”) que fueron traídos a los EE.UU. cuando eran niños, debería permitírseles quedarse en este país. Casi el 77 por ciento ha dicho que se les debería permitir solicitar la ciudadanía. Entre los votantes Republicanos, el 70 por ciento ha dicho que se les debería permitir a los Soñadores permanecer en los EE.UU. y el 57 por ciento ha dicho que debería brindárseles la oportunidad de obtener la ciudadanía.  

(Envíe cartas a sus representantes ahora para que apoyen a DACA.)

Los obispos a lo largo de los Estados Unidos, y especialmente en California, han hecho un llamado a toda persona de fe y buena voluntad para que se comunique con sus representantes locales por teléfono, correo electrónico o carta, para exhortarles a que hagan lo correcto y que apoyen la Ley de los Sueños (DREAM Act) y que hagan que las protecciones de DACA se conviertan en algo permanente.

“Nuestros funcionarios electos saben lo que tienen que hacer. Tenemos que dejarles saber ya mismo que éste es un tema que nos importa — y que también importa a millones de votantes,” dijo Mons. Gómez, Arzobispo de Los Ángeles en una carta dirigida a todas las personas de fe.

Continúe leyendo

 

Apoye el desarrollo profesional de los maestros

El Congreso actualmente está considerando si provee fondos o elimina el Título II-A de la Ley de la Educación Primaria y Secundaria, que trata el desarrollo profesional de los maestros.  El Comité de Asignación de Fondos del Senado ha aprobado $2 mil millones en fondos para el Título II-A, pero la cuenta de gastos aprobados por la Cámara de Representantes no designa fondos para este programa.

La Conferencia Católica de California apoya a los maestros en todas nuestras escuelas – públicas, religiosas y privadas.  Como afirma el Papa Francisco: “La educación…es crucial para el futuro de la sociedad. ¡Qué importante es ésta para promover la cultura de encuentro, el respeto a la dignidad de cada persona y el valor absoluto de todo ser humano”!

En este momento en que avanzan las negociaciones para la cuenta definitiva de gastos para el año fiscal 2018, le pedimos que aliente a sus líderes, a los que asignan los fondos, y a los miembros de los comités de conferencia para que provean fondos para el Título II-A por $2 mil millones para ayudar a los maestros a lo largo del país para que tengan mayor capacidad de enseñar a los niños que tienen a su cargo.

Pulse aquí para enviar una carta ya  para impulsar a sus líderes, a los encargados de los fondos, y a los miembros de los comités de conferencia para que proporcionen fondos para el Título II-A. 

 

Mensaje de Su Santidad el Papa Francisco por la Jornada Mundial de la Paz

“En un espíritu de compasión, abracemos a todas las personas que huyen de la guerra y del hambre, o forzados por la discriminación, persecución, pobreza y degradación del medio ambiente, a dejar su tierra natal,” ha escrito el Papa Francisco en su mensaje de este año para la Jornada Mundial de la Paz.

En su declaración, el Santo Padre alude a “más de 250 millones de migrantes a nivel mundial, de éstos, son refugiados 22,5 millones”. Él también cita al Papa Benedicto XVI cuando describe a estas personas como “aquellos que buscan un lugar dónde vivir en paz”.

La Jornada Mundial de la Paz es el 1ro. de enero.  Los Papas tradicionalmente publican su mensaje con un par de semanas de antelación.

Lea la declaración en su totalidad aquí.

 

Estatuto para la Protección de los Niños y Jóvenes

El Estatuto para la Protección de los Niños y Jóvenes es un conjunto de procedimientos integrales establecidos por la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU. en junio de 2002, para abordar los alegatos de abuso sexual infantil por miembros del clero católico. El Estatuto también incluye pautas para la reconciliación, sanación, rendición de cuentas, y prevención de futuros actos de abuso. 

Si usted tiene alguna pregunta sobre las medidas que la Iglesia católica ha establecido para proteger a los menores de edad o si tiene alguna actividad sospechosa que denunciar, todas las arquidiócesis y diócesis en nuestro estado cuentan con un coordinador(a) del programa Ambiente Seguro que usted puede contactar.  Encontrará una lista en nuestra página de Protecting Our Children page.

15 de diciembre de 2017
Tomo 10, No. 36

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/espanol/perspectivas/perspectivas-exija-cambios-para-proyecto-de-ley-de-impuestos-apoyo-urgente-para

Support DACA Young People

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/support-daca-young-people

Bill to Address Homelessness Set for House Vote

People who are homeless in Pennsylvania have new hope. House Bill 1076, legislation that would use collaborative relationships among municipalities to address the need for housing for the homeless across the state is now poised for a vote by the full House of Representatives.

The bill, introduced by state Rep. Tom Caltagirone, D-Berks, would form what are commonly referred to as ‘land banks’ at the municipal level, enabling municipalities to partner with private developers and others to convert abandoned and blighted properties into housing for the homeless.

“The House Urban Affairs Committee’s unanimous passage of House Bill 1076 today moves us one step closer to helping eliminate homelessness in Pennsylvania,” said Caltagirone. “I thank the chairman of the committee and the advocates and stake holders for helping get this bill moved, especially the PA Catholic Conference for their commitment and efforts to combat homelessness across the Commonwealth.”

According to federal estimates, the majority of the homeless in Pennsylvania are staying in emergency shelters, with the remainder living in cars, abandoned buildings or under bridges. If passed into law, this bill would create many more affordable housing alternatives all across the Commonwealth.

 

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/bill-to-address-homelessness-set-for-house-vote/

Pro Life Legislation to Amend Abortion Law Passes

 

Legislation that would strengthen Pennsylvania’s Abortion Control Act passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 121-70.

Senate Bill 3, authored by Sen. Michele Brooks (R-Crawford) previously passed the Senate by a vote of 32-18 and it passed both chambers in bipartisan fashion.

Specifically, the bill would completely ban the cruel and brutal practice of dismemberment abortions in the state of Pennsylvania.

The effort to pass the legislation in the House was led by Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-WarrenForest) who said, “God tells us specifically to choose life. This is innocent life.”

In addition, it would enact a ban on abortions from the 20th week on during a pregnancy.

“We must protect the dignity of each and every life as best we can,” said House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny) in a statement. “The passage of this bill is evidence of bipartisan and bicameral support to protect unborn children and mothers and demonstrates the Commonwealth’s commitment to promoting a culture of life. The bill is both constitutional and reasonable.”

Rapp, who faithfully wears a necklace depicting a child and mother, received it as a gift from her own daughter and wears it to remind her of the sacred gift: children.

 

Click here to find out how members of the Senate in your diocese voted.

Click here to find out how members of the House in your diocese voted.

 

 

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/pro-life-legislation-to-amend-abortion-law-passes/

US Bishops: Tax Reform Must Meet Key Moral Concerns

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/us-bishops-tax-reform-must-meet-key-moral-concerns

Catholic Resources for California DACA Recipients

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/CA-DACA

Pro Life Lawmakers Stand Together for Life

 

Lawmakers from across Pennsylvania joined at the state Capitol to stand in support of legislation that would strengthen Pennsylvania’s Abortion Control Act.

Specifically, Senate Bill 3 would completely ban the cruel and brutal practice of dismemberment abortions in the state of Pennsylvania.

In addition, it would enact a ban on abortions from the 20th week on during a pregnancy.

Taking a stance in support of this pro-life legislation was:

House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny)

“A life should not be something that you can just so quickly dispose.”

Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-Warren/Crawford/Forest)

“To the reasonable, common man, when you say dismemberment you instantly have an image in your mind of what dismemberment is. Every reasonable, common man does not need a poster because the image comes to our mind very vividly.”

Rep. Sid Michaels Kavulich (D-Lackawanna)

“We (my wife and I) experienced it in both adoption and birth. When it’s time to leave this earth, I can stand before God and say I was 100 percent pro-life.”

Rep. Rick Saccone (R-Allegheny/Washington)
“This is still a pro-life state. Pennsylvania is solidly pro-life. People should let lawmakers know they support Senate Bill 3.”

Urge your state representative to stand up for life and support this legislation. Send a message here through the Catholic Advocacy Network.

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/pro-life-lawmakers-stand-together-for-life/

Pro-life Lawmakers Stand Together for Life

 

Lawmakers from across Pennsylvania joined at the state Capitol to stand in support of legislation that would strengthen Pennsylvania’s Abortion Control Act.

Specifically, Senate Bill 3 would completely ban the cruel and brutal practice of dismemberment abortions in the state of Pennsylvania.

In addition, it would enact a ban on abortions from the 20th week on during a pregnancy.

Taking a stance in support of this pro-life legislation was:

House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny)

“A life should not be something that you can just so quickly dispose.”

Rep. Kathy Rapp (R-Warren/Crawford/Forest)

“To the reasonable, common man, when you say dismemberment you instantly have an image in your mind of what dismemberment is. Every reasonable, common man does not need a poster because the image comes to our mind very vividly.”

Rep. Sid Michaels Kavulich (D-Lackawanna)

“We (my wife and I) experienced it in both adoption and birth. When it’s time to leave this earth, I can stand before God and say I was 100 percent pro-life.”

Rep. Rick Saccone (R-Allegheny/Washington)
“This is still a pro-life state. Pennsylvania is solidly pro-life. People should let lawmakers know they support Senate Bill 3.”

Urge your state representative to stand up for life and support this legislation. Send a message here through the Catholic Advocacy Network.

Article source: https://www.pacatholic.org/pro-life-lawmakers-stand-together-for-life/

Perspectivas: Ley de Protección de Conciencia; Apoyo para la Neutralidad de la Red

Inste al Congreso para que promulgue Ley de Protección de la Conciencia

Ahora es el momento para comunicarse con sus miembros del Congreso y abogar a favor de la protección de la vida y la libertad de conciencia.

La Ley de Protección de la Conciencia del 2017 (H.R. 644) ha sido incluida en la legislación que requiere asignación de presupuesto, la cual deberá ser aprobada este año para que el gobierno siga en operación. La Ley de Protección de la Conciencia es legislación de sentido común que clarificará la ley federal y asegurará que aquellos que proveen cuidados de la salud y seguro médico lo puedan hacer sin que el gobierno les obligue a ayudar a destruir a creaturas inocentes aún no nacidas.

El año pasado, en la fecha del 13 de julio, la Cámara de Representantes aprobó un proyecto de ley idéntico con el mismo nombre (S. 304), pero éste nunca llegó a ser promulgado como ley. Por lo tanto, debemos seguir abogando a favor de la protección de conciencia para aquellos que elijan no participar en abortos y seguir con la esperanza de que el cambio en la Casa Blanca permita que nuestros esfuerzos tengan éxito este año.

 Favor de tomarse un momento para expresarles a sus representantes en el Congreso que esperamos que protejan nuestras libertades más preciadas.

La Ley de Protección de la Conciencia del 2017 resolverá las deficiencias que bloquean la ejecución eficaz de las leyes existentes, de manera más notable al establecer un derecho subjetivo procesal, lo cual permitiría a las víctimas de la discriminación que defiendan sus propios derechos en un juzgado.

Continúe leyendo

 

Arzobispo Gómez insta a la acción para proteger a los “Dreamers” (Soñadores) para la Navidad

La ley federal de DACA (Acción diferida para los que llegaron al país en su infancia) se vencerá para el 5 de marzo de 2018, a menos que el Congreso actúe para que las protecciones de DACA sean permanentes. Para poder lograr este objetivo para la fecha límite, es urgente que la Cámara de Representantes de los EE.UU. apruebe la legislación antes de que termine el año 2017. 

El Congreso cuenta con la posibilidad de promulgar una ley para brindarle un estatus legal a los 800,000 jóvenes inmigrantes (a menudo denominados “Dreamers” o Soñadores) quienes fueron traídos a los EE.UU.  cuando eran niños por sus padres sin la autorización legal requerida. Estas personas son nuestros vecinos. Ellos(a) trabajan y se sientan a nuestro lado en la iglesia el domingo.

El Arzobispo Gómez ha hecho un llamado a todas las personas de fe y buena voluntad, a lo largo de la arquidiócesis, para que se comuniquen con sus representantes locales por teléfono, correo electrónico, o carta para exhortarles a que hagan lo correcto y ayuden a los “Dreamers” para que las protecciones de DACA sean permanentes.

“Nuestros funcionarios electos saben lo que deben hacer. Ellos(as) tienen que saber ahora mismo que este es un tema importante para nosotros — y que también lo es para millones de votantes,” afirmó el Arzobispo Gómez en una carta dirigida a todas las personas de fe en action.thenextamerica.org.

Visite action.thenextamerica.org para obtener mayor información sobre lo que usted puede hacer para defender las vidas de los más de 800,000 jóvenes.

 

Dígale a sus Senadores que insistan en que se hagan cambios a la “Ley de Recortes de Impuestos y Empleos”

Después de realizar un análisis, la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU. (USCCB, por sus siglas en inglés) ha determinado que la versión del Senado de la Ley de Recortes de Impuestos y Empleos es inaceptable en su forma actual.  La Comisión Conjunta de Tributación no partidista informó que el proyecto de ley del Senado aumentaría los impuestos promedio a las personas que ganan entre $10,000 y $30,000 al año, a partir del año 2021, a la vez que los millonarios recibirían un recorte en sus impuestos en ese mismo periodo. En los años 2023 y 2025, la cantidad promedio de impuestos aumentaría para las personas que ganan menos de $30,000 al año, pero bajarían para las personas que ganan más de $30,000.  Para el año 2027, cuando se dispone que vencerían la mayoría de recortes de impuestos individuales, los impuestos promedio aumentarían para los contribuyentes que ganan menos de $75,000, a la vez que disminuirían para los que ganan más. ¡Tome medidas ya!

 

Quinto Encuentro Nacional involucra a más de 250,000 discípulos misioneros

La iniciativa del V Encuentro de la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU.  es un proceso de evangelización, consulta y misión que fue lanzado oficialmente el año pasado para discernir las formas en que la Iglesia en los Estados Unidos puede responder mejor a la presencia hispana en continuo aumento, y para ayudar a los hispanos católicos a fortalecer su identidad cristiana y su respuesta como discípulos misioneros para la Iglesia entera. Ciento sesenta y tres diócesis están actualmente participando en el proceso. 

Esta tentativa de las bases empezó a nivel de la parroquia local en enero de este año con más de 250,000 discípulos misioneros, involucrados, hasta la fecha, acompañando, dando frutos y regocijándose con sus hermanos y hermanas que necesitan escuchar la Buena Nueva de Jesucristo. Más de 40,000 de estos líderes han sido elegidos como delegados para representar a sus parroquias y organizaciones católicas en los Encuentros Diocesanos. Estos líderes incluyen a líderes de mucho tiempo atrás, así como a nuevos líderes emergentes que se ven a sí mismos como discípulos misioneros, además de las personas encontradas durante las actividades misioneras.

Hasta el 11 de noviembre de 2017, ochenta y ocho diócesis han terminado su proceso de consultas que culminó con Encuentros Diocesanos que han ayudado a desarrollar un documento de trabajo para la Pastoral Hispana en cada diócesis.

Continúe leyendo

 

Presidente de la Comisión de Comunicaciones de la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU. expresa su apoyo a las protecciones para la neutralidad en la red

Monseñor Christopher Coyne, Obispo de Burlington, Presidente de la Comisión de Comunicaciones de la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU., está instando la retención de un internet abierto a raíz de la revelación de la propuesta de la Comisión Federal de Comunicaciones la semana pasada, la cual revocaría las protecciones que pretendían mantener al internet abierto y justo. El concepto de un internet abierto ha sido denominado “neutralidad en la red” desde hace mucho tiempo.  Por medio de este concepto, los proveedores de servicio de internet ni favorecen ni discriminan a los usuarios del internet o a los sitios web. El Obispo Coyne sigue expresando su firme apoyo para las protecciones de la neutralidad en la red en una declaración en respuesta a la acción propuesta por la FCC la semana pasada. 

A continuación, tenemos la declaración completa del Obispo Coyne: 

“Las fuertes protecciones para la neutralidad en la red son esenciales para que la comunidad de fe funcione y se conecte con sus miembros, esenciales para proteger y mejorar la posibilidad de que las comunidades vulnerables utilicen la tecnología avanzada, y necesarias para cualquier organización que procure organizarse, abogar por la justicia o dar testimonio en el entorno de medios muy concurridos y sobre comercializados. 

Son vitales las sólidas protecciones del internet para hacer posible que nuestras Arquidiócesis, Diócesis, y Eparquías, nuestras parroquias, escuelas y otros institutos, se comuniquen entre sí y con nuestros miembros, para compartir enseñanzas religiosas y espirituales, para promover actividades en línea, y para involucrar a las personas – particularmente a los jóvenes – en nuestros ministerios.

Continúe leyendo

 

Presidente de la USCCB exhorta a un debate efectivo en torno a la violencia por armas de fuego

El Obispo Frank Dewane, Presidente de la Comisión de Justicia Nacional y Desarrollo Humano de la Conferencia de Obispos Católicos de los EE.UU. (USCCB, por sus siglas en inglés), ha exhortado a los líderes políticos para que participen en un debate serio y efectivo en torno a la violencia por armas de fuego en este país. Su declaración se publica tras dos horrendos tiroteos masivos en Sutherland Springs, Texas, y Las Vegas, Nevada.  Monseñor Dewane, de manera particular, ha impulsado la necesidad de que existan revisiones de antecedentes penales universales y la prohibición de armas de fuego de asalto de alto calibre.  A continuación, presentamos su declaración completa:

“Por muchos años ya, los obispos católicos de los Estados Unidos, hemos estado instando a nuestros líderes a que exploren y adopten políticas razonables para ayudar a frenar la violencia por armas de fuego. Los recientes e impactantes acontecimientos en Las Vegas y Sutherland Springs nos recuerdan cuánto daño se puede causar cuando las armas—particularmente las armas diseñadas para producir niveles extremos de derramamiento de sangre—llegan, con demasiada facilidad, a las manos de personas que desean usarlas para lastimar a otros.

La violencia en nuestra sociedad no se resolverá tan solo por una sola pieza de legislación, y son muchos los factores que contribuyen a lo que estamos viendo que sucede a nuestro alrededor. Con todo y eso, nuestros líderes deberán participar en un debate efectivo sobre las medidas necesarias para salvar vidas y lograr que haya mayor seguridad en nuestras comunidades. La USCCB sigue instando a una prohibición total de armas de fuego de asalto, la cual apoyamos cuando se aprobó la prohibición en 1994 y cuando el Congreso no la renovó en el 2004.

Continúe leyendo

 

1 de diciembre de 2017
Tomo 10, No. 35

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/espanol/perspectivas/perspectivas-ley-de-protecci%C3%B3n-de-conciencia-apoyo-para-la-neutralidad-de-la

Insights: Conscience Protection Act; Support for Net Neutrality

Urge Congress to Enact the Conscience Protection Act

Now is the time to contact your members of Congress and advocate for the protection of life and freedom of conscience. 

The Conscience Protection Act of 2017 (H.R. 644) has been included in appropriations legislation that must pass this year to keep the government operating. The Conscience Protection Act is common-sense legislation that will clarify federal law and ensure that those who provide health care and health coverage can do so without being forced by government to help destroy innocent unborn children.

Last year, on July 13, the House passed an identical bill of the same name (S. 304), but it was never enacted into law. Therefore, we must continue to advocate for conscience protection for those who choose not to participate in abortion and remain hopeful that with a change in the White House our efforts will meet with success this year.

Please take a moment to let your representatives in Congress know that we expect them to protect our most cherished liberties.

The Conscience Protection Act of 2017 will address the deficiencies that block effective enforcement of existing laws, most notably by establishing a private right of action allowing victims of discrimination to defend their own rights in court. 

Continue Reading

 

Archbishop Gomez Urges Action to Protect Dreamers by Christmas

The federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will expire on March 5, 2018 unless Congress acts to make the DACA protections permanent. In order to meet that deadline, it is urgent that the U.S. House of Representatives pass legislation before the end of 2017. 

Congress has the ability to enact legislation to provide legal status for the 800,000 immigrant youths (often referred to as “Dreamers”) who were brought to the U.S. as children by their parents without legal authorization. These are the people that live next door. They go to work and we sit next to them at church on Sunday. 

Archbishop Gomez is calling on all people of faith and good-will throughout the archdiocese to contact their local representatives by phone, email or letter to urge them to do the right thing and help the Dreamers and make the DACA protections permanent.

“Our elected officials know what they need to do. They need to know right now that we care — and that millions of voters care also,” said Archbishop Gomez in a letter to all people of faith on action.thenextamerica.org.

Visit action.thenextamerica.org for more information on what you can do to defend the lives of more than 800,000 young people.

 

Tell Your Senator to Insist on Changes to the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act”

After analysis, the USCCB has determined that the Senate version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is unacceptable in its current form.  The nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation reported that the Senate’s bill would raise average taxes on persons making between $10,000 and $30,000 per year beginning in 2021, while millionaires will get a tax cut during the same period.  In 2023 and 2025, average taxes will increase for those making less than $30,000 per year, but will go down for those making more than $30,000.  By 2027, after most individual tax cuts are set to expire, average taxes will increase for taxpayers making less than $75,000, while decreasing for those making more. Take Action Now!

 

Fifth National Encuentro Engages Over 250,000 Missionary Disciples

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ V Encuentro initiative is a process of evangelization, consultation and mission that was officially launched last year to discern ways for the Church in the United States to better respond to the ever-growing Hispanic presence, and to help Hispanics Catholics to strengthen their Christian identity and their response as missionary disciples for the entire Church.  One hundred and sixty-three dioceses are currently involved in the process. 

This grass-roots effort began at the local parish level in January of this year with over 250,000 missionary disciples, thus far, getting involved, accompanying, bearing fruit and rejoicing with their sisters and brothers in need of hearing the Good News of Jesus Christ. More than 40,000 of these leaders have been selected as delegates to represent their parishes and Catholic organizations in Diocesan Encuentros. These leaders include long standing as well as new emerging leaders that see themselves as missionary disciples, as well as people that were encountered during missionary activities.

As of November 11, 2017, eighty-eight dioceses have completed their consultation process that culminated with Diocesan Encuentros which helped developed a working document for Hispanic Ministry in each diocese.

Continue Reading

 

Chairman of U.S. Bishops Conference Committee on Communications Voice Support for Net Neutrality Protections

Bishop Christopher Coyne of Burlington, Chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Communications, is urging the retention of an open internet in the wake of a Federal Communications Commission proposal unveiled last week that would repeal protections intended to keep the internet open and fair. The concept of an open internet has long been called “net neutrality,” in which internet service providers neither favor nor discriminate against internet users or websites. Bishop Coyne continues to voice strong support for net neutrality protections in a statement in response to last week’s proposed FCC action. 

Bishop Coyne’s full statement follows: 

“Strong net neutrality protections are critical to the faith community to function and connect with our members, essential to protect and enhance the ability of vulnerable communities to use advanced technology, and necessary for any organization that seeks to organize, advocate for justice or bear witness in the crowded and over-commercialized media environment. 

Robust internet protections are vital to enable our Archdioceses, Dioceses, and Eparchies, our parishes, schools and other institutions to communicate with each other and our members, to share religious and spiritual teachings, to promote activities online, and to engage people – particularly younger persons – in our ministries.

Continue Reading

 

USCCB Chair Urges Real Debate on Gun Violence

Bishop Frank Dewane, Chairman of the USCCB”S Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, has urged political leaders to engage in a serious and real debate on gun violence in this nation.  His statement follows the two horrendous mass shootings in Sutherland Springs, Texas, and Las Vegas, Nevada.  Bishop Dewane particularly urged the need for universal background checks and the banning of high-capacity assault weapons.  His complete statement follows:

“For many years, the Catholic bishops of the United States have been urging our leaders to explore and adopt reasonable policies to help curb gun violence. The recent and shocking events in Las Vegas and Sutherland Springs remind us of how much damage can be caused when weapons—particularly weapons designed to inflict extreme levels of bloodshed—too easily find their way into the hands of those who would wish to use them to harm others.

Violence in our society will not be solved by a single piece of legislation, and many factors contribute to what we see going on all around us. Even so, our leaders must engage in a real debate about needed measures to save lives and make our communities safer. The USCCB continues to urge a total ban on assault weapons, which we supported when the ban passed in 1994 and when Congress failed to renew it in 2004.

Continue Reading

 

December 1, 2017
Vol. 10, No. 35

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/insights-conscience-protection-act-support-net-neutrality

USCCB Chair Urges Real Debate on Gun Violence

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/usccb-chair-urges-real-debate-gun-violence

Urge Congress to Enact the Conscience Protection Act

Now is the time to contact your members of Congress and advocate for the protection of life and freedom of conscience. 

The Conscience Protection Act of 2017 (H.R. 644) has been included in appropriations legislation that must pass this year to keep the government operating. The Conscience Protection Act is common-sense legislation that will clarify federal law and ensure that those who provide health care and health coverage can do so without being forced by government to help destroy innocent unborn children.

Last year, on July 13, the House passed an identical bill of the same name (S. 304), but it was never enacted into law. Therefore, we must continue to advocate for conscience protection for those who choose not to participate in abortion and remain hopeful that with a change in the White House our efforts will meet with success this year.

Please take a moment to let your representatives in Congress know that we expect them to protect our most cherished liberties.

Background

The Conscience Protection Act of 2017 will address the deficiencies that block effective enforcement of existing laws, most notably by establishing a private right of action allowing victims of discrimination to defend their own rights in court. 

The need for clarification of federal law cannot be doubted.  While existing federal laws already protect conscientious objection to abortion in theory, this protection has not proved effective in practice.  These laws can only be enforced by complaint to the Office for Civil Rights at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which— despite repeated violations—has refused to fully enforce these laws. 

For example, on June 21, 2016, the HHS Office for Civil Rights declared that the State of California may continue forcing all health plans under its jurisdiction to cover elective abortions—in violation of the plain text of the Weldon amendment.  Violations of the Weldon amendment are also taking place in other states, such as New York and Washington.

Even HHS itself has discriminated against those who cannot in conscience facilitate abortions, as when in 2011 it implemented a new “strong preference” for grantees willing to refer human trafficking victims solely to health care providers who favor abortion.  While the Weldon amendment to the annual Labor/HHS appropriation bill has forbidden such governmental discrimination since 2004, state officials have violated that amendment with impunity and claimed that any effort to enforce it would be subject to legal challenge.

Due to the difficulty in getting legislation like the CPA through the Senate, efforts are focused on getting the CPA attached to must-pass appropriations legislation. On July 19, 2017, the House Appropriations Committee approved the Fiscal Year 2018 Labor, Health, and Human Services Appropriations bill, which included the language of the Conscience Protection Act. On September 14, 2017, the Conscience Protection Act of 2017 (H.R. 644) was included in omnibus appropriations legislation, H.R. 3354, Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act, 2018 which was approved by the House. The Senate should be urged to include CPA in the final funding legislation of the year jointly approved by House and Senate.”

USCCB Conscience Protection Act

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/policies-issues/faith-public-square/abortion-procreation-bioethics-health-care/urge-congress-enact

Chairman of U.S. Bishops’ Conference Committee on Communications Voices Strong Support for Net Neutrality Protections

1119 K Street 2nd Floor, Sacramento, CA 95814  |  916 313-4000 | General Email: leginfo@cacatholic.org | © 2017 All Rights Reserved

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/chairman-us-bishops%E2%80%99-conference-committee-communications-voices-strong-support-net-neutrality

Fifth National Encuentro Engages Over 250,000 Missionary Disciples

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ V Encuentro initiative is a process of evangelization, consultation and mission that was officially launched last year to discern ways for the Church in the United States to better respond to the ever-growing Hispanic presence, and to help Hispanics Catholics to strengthen their Christian identity and their response as missionary disciples for the entire Church.  One hundred and sixty-three dioceses are currently involved in the process. 

(See below for California V Encuentro information.)

This grass-roots effort began at the local parish level in January of this year with over 250,000 missionary disciples, thus far, getting involved, accompanying, bearing fruit and rejoicing with their sisters and brothers in need of hearing the Good News of Jesus Christ. More than 40,000 of these leaders have been selected as delegates to represent their parishes and Catholic organizations in Diocesan Encuentros. These leaders include long standing as well as new emerging leaders that see themselves as missionary disciples, as well as people that were encountered during missionary activities.

As of November 11, 2017, eighty-eight dioceses have completed their consultation process that culminated with Diocesan Encuentros which helped developed a working document for Hispanic Ministry in each diocese. These working documents will help draft reports for the regional phase and will culminate at the V Encuentro National Event to be celebrated September 20-23, 2018 in Grapevine, TX with approximately 3,000 delegates from participating dioceses across the country. After that, a time for reflection on the findings, identification of good ministerial practices and implementation strategies at the local level will follow.

Bishop Nelson Pérez, bishop of Cleveland and chairman of the USCCB Subcommittee on Hispanic Affairs, provided a report on the V Encuentro to the Fall General Assembly of Catholic Bishops in Baltimore on November 14, 2018 noting that the initial results count with the participation of about 250,000 missionary disciples, but that number will increase as more reports are submitted. Bishop Pérez informed that there are more than 288 parishes have started Hispanic Ministry as a direct result of the V Encuentro and participants now recognize their baptismal call to missionary discipleship, evangelizing beyond the parish grounds, and serving the whole Church. Many are no longer afraid to invite, give witness, and share their faith with others.

Diocesan Encuentros across the nation have counted with the presence of their Bishop and participants have expressed gratitude that the bishop is becoming more engaged in the Hispanic community. Dioceses have also reported changes to staffing with 35 dioceses hiring pastoral staff for Hispanic ministry, 52 dedicating more time to Hispanic ministry, and 21 hiring support staff. Dioceses reported a total of more than 300 volunteers—an average of about 2 per diocese— enlisted to help with communications and social media. Parishes have also benefited from the process with 30 pastoral positions for Hispanic ministry created in parishes as result of V Encuentro.

Bishop Pérez thanked Bishops for the ways they have embraced and implemented the V Encuentro in their dioceses and they were notified that if they would still like to participate, it is not too late. Pérez stated, “You are more than welcome to come to the V National Encuentro with your delegation even if you have to complete the implementation of the process in your diocese after the National Event.”

“There is no doubt that the Holy Spirit has been quite busy and feeling very much at home in these Diocesan Encuentros,” said Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller of San Antonio and chairman of the USCCB Committee on Cultural Diversity in the Church, which is responsible for this initiative on behalf of the U.S. bishops. “There are plenty of stories and visible signs that the personal and pastoral conversion that our Holy Father speaks of in The Joy of the Gospel, has been taking place in these gatherings in dioceses across the United States.”

The V Encuentro calls for the development of resources and initiatives to better serve the fast-growing Hispanic population in dioceses, parishes, ecclesial movements, and other Catholic organizations and institutions while at the same time promoting the development of Latino leadership within the Church.

California Encountro-Releated Information and Reports

Article source: http://www.cacatholic.org/fifth-national-encuentro-engages-over-250000-missionary-disciples

Fifth Consecutive Pope Francis Challenge, Just in Time for Thanksgiving

At Pope Francis’ first World Youth Day, he challenged all the young people to go home and do something inspiring.

The students of Bishop Guilfoyle High School listened.

In the heart of the Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown, the students have completed their fifth consecutive Pope Francis Challenge, just in time for Thanksgiving.

Tessa Crider is a senior at Bishop Guilfoyle and calls the challenge a humbling experience and “the biggest thing we do here at B-G.”

And big it is. The ‘challenge’ is posed to the school’s approximately 300 students, who are encouraged to collect 50 items to donate to those who need them most. Students collect food, personal hygiene items and other household supplies.

Patrick Donoguhe, who is also a Bishop Guilfoyle senior, simply calls the experience “fulfilling”.

The collected items were loaded by students onto trucks and the boxes were then delivered to six local charitable organizations across all faiths.

Bob Sutton teaches Theology at Bishop Guilfolye and works with the students on the challenge. “There’s no book that could teach them this.”

2017 Pope Francis Challenge by the numbers:

–          Over 18,000 items were collected

–          1,100 full-sized boxes of cereal set a new school record

–          One seventh-grade student collected 250 items

–          One twelfth-grade student collected 400 items

 

Article source: http://www.pacatholic.org/fifth-consecutive-pope-francis-challenge-just-in-time-for-thanksgiving/

House Committee Approves Measure Condemning Child Pornography

The Health Committee within the Pennsylvania House of Representatives has approved a resolution which condemns the free availability of pornography based on the public health hazard that it presents by harming children and families across the Commonwealth.

“It’s a public awareness resolution,” said Chairman Matt Baker (R-Tioga).

With the resolution, Pennsylvania joins nineteen other states that have passed or introduced a similar measure.

“Most people understand pornography is bad, and child pornography is particularly bad,” continued Baker.

The resolution cites that due to advances in technology, young children are now exposed to pornography at alarming rates, with as many as 27% of older millennials reporting that they first encountered explicit pornography before even reaching puberty.

“As someone with two small daughters, I think that it’s something we owe a certain amount of time and effort to look at,” said Rep. Eli Evankovich (R-WestmorelandAllegheny).

House Resolution 519 also encourages a three-pronged approach to confronting this issue with education, prevention and research and policy change at the community and social levels.

Prior to the vote, Rep. Martina White (R-Philadelphia) stated that her intent is to “make sure that families are aware of this issue, that it is a concern and it can become, if it not already is, a public health crisis.”

 

Article source: http://www.pacatholic.org/house-committee-approves-measure-condemning-child-pornography/