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By GEORGE WEIGEL | July 7, 2006
I first became aware of Baltimore's "Old Cathedral" in September 1957, when I began first grade at the Cathedral School, then at 7 W. Mulberry St. Months later, the entire school was marched across the street to pray the rosary inside what we now know as the Basilica of the Assumption; a fire had broken out at the Fallon & Helen furniture store a few doors away, and it was feared that it might take the school and its adjacent convent with it. Fortunately, that...
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NEWS
By MATTHEW HAY BROWN and MATTHEW HAY BROWN,SUN REPORTER | March 16, 2006
When the great dome of Benjamin Henry Latrobe's cathedral first rose over the Baltimore skyline two centuries ago, it loomed as a bold symbol of a new liberty. The British had suppressed Roman Catholicism in the American colonies, forcing the faithful to worship in secret. But now a church building that rivaled Latrobe's U.S. Capitol in size and sophistication, a cathedral on a hill for a Catholic diocese that encompassed the entire young nation, proclaimed a new era for religious freedom.
NEWS
By MATTHEW HAY BROWN and MATTHEW HAY BROWN,SUN REPORTER | November 16, 2005
WASHINGTON -- Sensing growing public ambivalence over capital punishment, the nation's Roman Catholic bishops renewed calls yesterday to end use of the death penalty, calling its application error-prone, biased and irreversible, and saying that state-sanctioned killing diminishes all Americans. "This statement is a call to reject the tragic illusion that we can demonstrate respect for life by taking life," Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio of Brooklyn, N.Y., told the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
NEWS
By MATTHEW HAY BROWN and MATTHEW HAY BROWN,SUN REPORTER | November 15, 2005
WASHINGTON -- The families of two men who apparently were shot to death by a priest demanded yesterday to meet with Roman Catholic bishops about reforming a system that they say still is not protecting parishioners from troubled clergy. The parents, brothers and sisters of the slain men, Daniel O'Connell and James Ellison, say church officials should have taken note of the Rev. Ryan Erickson's handgun collection, his penchant for drinking alcohol with youths on overnight visits, and the history of allegations against him that involved sexual abuse and affairs with parishioners.
NEWS
By Janice D'Arcy and Janice D'Arcy,SUN STAFF | June 17, 2005
CHICAGO - A board set up by U.S. Catholic bishops to examine the church's sexual abuse crisis recommended a sweeping study yesterday to provide a better understanding of why priests abused minors. Dr. Paul McHugh, a professor and former director of the Johns Hopkins psychiatry department, told the gathering of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops during a closed-door session that the research would take about three years and would include extensive interviews with victims and perpetrators.
NEWS
By Janice D'Arcy and Janice D'Arcy,SUN STAFF | June 16, 2005
With financial settlements in the church's sexual abuse scandal costing more than $1 billion, the nation's Roman Catholic bishops are expected this week to retain their zero tolerance policy - permanently dismissing priests from the ministry for any act of abuse against children. But as the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' semiannual meeting begins today in Chicago, the bishops will consider revising other policies enacted after the scandal erupted in Boston in 2002. Among the changes to be discussed will be scaling back independent reviews of dioceses, which ensured the policies were carried out and decided whether to fund a multimillion-dollar study of the underlying causes of the abuse.
NEWS
By Janice D'Arcy and Janice D'Arcy,SUN STAFF | May 20, 2005
When several Catholic bishops argued last year that they had a responsibility to deny Holy Communion to politicians who support abortion rights, Baltimore's Cardinal William H. Keeler was not among them. He instead offered that taking the sacrament was a personal matter, saying, "We don't need bishops to get into the act." Keeler said yesterday that he was not doing a turnabout in boycotting Loyola College of Maryland's commencement ceremony today. Keeler is not attending because of the abortion-rights stance of the keynote speaker, former New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani.
NEWS
By Janice D'Arcy and Janice D'Arcy,SUN STAFF | February 19, 2005
More than a thousand new sexual abuse complaints were lodged against U.S. Roman Catholic clergy last year, according a new report suggesting that the church is still suffering through a scandal that has rocked the institution since 2002. Released yesterday, not long after convictions of two prominent sexual abusers - including defrocked Baltimore priest Maurice Blackwell - the audit of local dioceses found that the church paid more than $157 million last year in connection with the scandal, bringing the nationwide total to at least $840 million.
NEWS
By NEW YORK TIMES NEWS SERVICE | November 28, 2004
BRATTLEBORO, Vt. - When it came time for the communion offering in Thanksgiving Mass at St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church, the Rev. Stanley Deresienski blessed the sacramental bread and wine on the altar, preparing it for distribution among the 40 or so congregants. But the wine never touched the parishioners' lips, for in the war against the flu here, not even the sacred is spared. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Burlington is the only one in the country that has formally asked priests to refrain from using the communion chalice and parishioners to avoid the usual handshake, hug or kiss when they make the sign of peace during Mass until the end of flu season, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said.
NEWS
October 22, 2004
Catholic faith carries tenets of social justice The Sun's editorial "A faith-based president?" (Oct. 14) mentions the Catholic bishops' "call to political responsibility" document. But in addition to the well-known Catholic teachings about abortion, cloning and assisted suicide, it is important for Catholics to note that the document mentions many other issues. They include working for a more just economic life with decent jobs and just wages, providing adequate assistance to poor families, overcoming a culture of violence, combating discrimination and defending the right to quality health care, housing and food.
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