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January 31, 1995 | DAVID HALDANE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The monks of St. Michael's Abbey lead a cloistered life. Rising early, they gather at 5:45 a.m. to sing Gregorian chants in Latin. Later they eat a modest lunch in silence. And after evening prayers, the white-robed priests observe silence until bedtime. "It's an ancient thing," says Father Vincent Gilmore, the abbey's spiritual director who, like the other priests there, lives under a vow of poverty, chastity and obedience. "We've come together to live a common religious life; it's countercultural.
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WORLD
April 7, 2014 | By Patrick J. McDonnell and Nabih Bulos
BEIRUT -- A Dutch priest who lived in Syria for almost five decades and refused to evacuate this year from the rebel-held Old City area of Homs was shot and killed at his residence early Monday, according to official accounts. Father Frans Van der Lugt was eulogized by the Vatican as a “man of peace” who stayed behind in the ravaged Old City to assist a dwindling population of Christians and Muslims suffering the devastating effects of an almost two-year siege. Like Pope Francis, he was a Jesuit.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 15, 2002 | Steve Lopez
A scandal-weary Catholic cleric tells me he thinks twice about going out in public wearing the black collar. A disgusted Catholic university graduate calls to say he's short-arming the donation basket on Sunday at his Northridge parish, "because I refuse to pay the cost of silence." A ticked-off Catholic school teacher e-mails me this query: "If the Los Angeles Archdiocese can afford payouts of MILLIONS of dollars to people who've been sexually abused by priests, why can't they pay me a DECENT SALARY?
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 5, 2014 | By Kurt Streeter
Pope Francis is one of the best-known religious figures in the world, but a new Pew Research poll seeking to quantify his popularity raises questions about the so-called Francis effect. The poll found an overwhelming embrace of Francis, who has been trying to steer the Catholic Church toward a greater emphasis on compassion for the poor and marginalized. Sixty percent of non-Catholics and 85% of Catholics surveyed said they viewed the pontiff favorably - numbers approaching those of Pope John Paul II, whose peak popularity ratings among Catholics hovered just above 90%. However, the poll found no change in the number of people who self-identify as Catholic or in the number sitting in church pews on Sundays.
NEWS
July 10, 1994 | SCOTT HADLY, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Dennis Mongrain swings his surfboard around in the water, points himself toward shore and starts paddling. As the wave lifts his board, he jumps to his feet and begins to skirt across its smooth, arching surface. His face brightens with a broad smile. It's a moment of joy and peace, something akin to a religious experience for Mongrain, who should know about such things because he is a Roman Catholic priest. "I really look forward to getting out there," Mongrain said at the rectory of St.
NEWS
May 26, 1992 | KATHLEEN HENDRIX, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A framed photo of the happy couple on their wedding day stands on a living room table, the bride in a traditional white gown, the groom in a tux. They live in a cozy house with a white picket fence, flowers and a big dog. The wife serves coffee and cheerfully disappears.
NEWS
January 22, 2013 | By Patt Morrison
I had to look twice at the date on the newspaper to make sure I wasn't having a time-warp moment. I'd heard this before. In a way, I'd covered this before. My colleagues Ashley Powers, Victoria Kim and Harriet Ryan have dropped a doozy on Southern California with their story of memos recounting how, a decade and a half before the scandal emerged about Roman Catholic priests' sexual abuse of young people, future Cardinal Roger Mahony and an advisor planned to hide these molestations from law enforcement, going so far as to move the suspect priests out of California.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 28, 2012 | By Anh Do, Los Angeles Times
In a well-lit gym, the two men in white and gold robes sat on folding chairs, struggling to control their emotions. The Catholic faithful - grandmothers, fathers, members of a youth ministry - surged forward, offering tributes. "We will never forget you," parishioner Hieu Hoang said. "To us, you are like our own father. You will always be with us. " "Please don't forget us," another added. The sudden removal of two Vietnamese American priests at the largest parish serving Little Saigon has left the congregation at St. Barbara's confused and angry.
WORLD
October 1, 2012 | By Mark Magnier, Los Angeles Times
CHENNAI, India - Kesavan's father and grandfather were caretakers who sold candles and performed basic rituals at their local makeshift temple attended by fellow Dalits, or members of the so-called untouchable caste. In India, these structures are omnipresent around sacred trees, on sidewalks, abutting overpasses. So when the government of southern India's Tamil Nadu state offered to train Hindus as priests regardless of their caste - a calling traditionally limited to upper-caste Brahmins - he leaped at the opportunity.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 29, 1989
This is in response to the letter ("Jailings Criticized," Oct. 22) written by the 26 priests of the Escondido Deanery. If these priests read the paper, they should have known that these violators went to jail for violating the law. Free speech was not the issue. Violation of the law was the issue. There are other alternatives to getting your point across, and violating the law is not one of them. I'm sorry I disagree with the priests. They've got the wrong perspective. LORAN WON Oceanside
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 19, 2014
Join Times staff writer Victoria Kim for a discussion at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday on what officials say is the Los Angeles Archdiocese's final settlement of its pending priest molestation lawsuits. A decade of wrenching abuse litigation  has cost the Catholic Church more than $740 million. What is supposed to be the final settlement was reached last week with 17 victims for $13 million. That trial would have been about the alleged acts of Father Nicolas Aguilar-Rivera, a visiting cleric from Mexico who police believe molested more than two dozen boys over nine months in 1987.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 18, 2014 | By Victoria Kim
The Los Angeles Archdiocese has settled what officials said is the last of its pending priest molestation lawsuits, bring to a close a decade of wrenching abuse litigation that cost the Catholic Church more than $740 million. The church reached the $13-million agreement with 17 victims last week, on the eve of a trial scheduled to begin Feb. 14 over the alleged acts of Father Nicolas Aguilar-Rivera, a visiting cleric from Mexico who police believe molested more than two dozen boys over a mere nine months in 1987.
WORLD
February 5, 2014 | By Tom Kington
ROME - The Roman Catholic Church has "systematically" protected predator priests, allowing tens of thousands of children to be abused, a United Nations committee said Wednesday in a scathing report that cast the first shadow over Pope Francis' honeymoon period as pontiff. The panel called on the Vatican to remove all suspects from their posts immediately and to open its confidential archives "to hold abusers accountable. " "The committee is gravely concerned that the Holy See has not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed, has not taken the necessary measures to address cases of child sexual abuse and to protect children, and has adopted policies and practices which have led to the continuation of the abuse by and the impunity of the perpetrators," the report says.
WORLD
February 5, 2014 | By Tom Kington
ROME -- The Roman Catholic Church has “systematically” protected predator priests, allowing “tens of thousands” of children to be abused, a United Nations committee said Wednesday in a scathing report that cast the first shadow over Pope Francis' honeymoon period as pontiff. The panel called on the Vatican to remove all suspects from their posts immediately and to open up its confidential archives in order “to hold abusers accountable.” “The committee is gravely concerned that the Holy See has not acknowledged the extent of the crimes committed, has not taken the necessary measures to address cases of child sexual abuse and to protect children, and has adopted policies and practices which have led to the continuation of the abuse by and the impunity of the perpetrators,” the report said.
NATIONAL
January 21, 2014 | By Manya Brachear Pashman, Christy Gutowski and Todd Lighty
Thousands of pages of secret church documents released Tuesday as part of a court settlement provide an unprecedented look at how the Archdiocese of Chicago for years failed to protect children from abusive priests. The documents provide new details and insights into how the nation's third-largest archdiocese quietly shuttled accused priests from parish to parish and failed to notify police of child abuse allegations. The paper trail, going back decades, also portrays painfully slow progress toward reform, accountability and openness.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 8, 2014 | By Christine Mai-Duc
A man suspected of the New Year's Day killing of a well-loved Northern California priest also allegedly attempted to light the body on fire and blow up the rectory at St. Bernard Parish in Eureka, court records reveal. Gary Lee Bullock, 44, allegedly rolled Father Eric Freed's body into blankets and doused him with “several bottles” of 80-proof alcohol. He then attempted to light Freed's body on fire, according to an affidavit filed with the Humboldt County Superior Court. The fire extinguished itself.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 6, 1998
The underlying point of "Priests Divide Their Time" (Oct. 31) is that the scarcity of priests has led to the loss of service to the faithful. The Archdiocese of Los Angeles has reverted to the status of the California missions of the 19th century. Not mentioned, however, is that the dearth of priests has also caused millions of the faithful to have "fallen away." The 4 million nominative Catholics in L.A. who may remain are not well served, just as the millions who have drifted away over the last three decades through the lack of priests to minister to them were not. Southern California has hundreds of priests who left the active priesthood to marry in the '60s and '70s who would be more than eager to return to the ministry they left as younger men, if they were invited.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 28, 2013 | By Victoria Kim and Harriet Ryan
Thousands of pages of secret files held by Roman Catholic orders concerning priests accused of molesting children will be released throughout the summer beginning as early as next month, according to attorneys. Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Emilie Elias set a deadline of September for the religious orders to turn over files on dozens of priests for public release at a hearing Tuesday. The release of confidential files kept by the orders, such as the Salesians, Vincentians and Marinists, were agreed to as part of settlements with victims.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 7, 2014 | By Christine Mai-Duc
The man suspected in the killing of a beloved Northern California priest was arraigned Monday, just hours after parishioners mourned the cleric's passing at a funeral Mass. Gary Lee Bullock, 43, was charged with first-degree murder, auto theft and attempted arson in a Eureka courthouse late Monday afternoon, according to the Humboldt County district attorney's office. Bullock also faces special allegations of burglary and intentional infliction of torture in the murder of the Rev. Eric Freed, who was found dead in a Eureka church rectory New Year's Day. Bullock pleaded not guilty to all counts and remained in custody in lieu of $1.2-million bail, prosecutors said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 6, 2014 | By Christine Mai-Duc
The popular priest who was found dead in his Eureka parish last week died of blunt force injuries to a "substantial part of his body," the county coroner has determined. The Rev. Eric Freed was found dead inside the St. Bernard Church rectory on New Year's Day after he failed to show up for a Mass, shocking the small Northern California community where he taught college courses on religion and often advocated on behalf of the homeless. Gary Lee Bullock, 43, was slated to be arraigned Monday in connection with the death, just hours after a memorial service for Freed, according to Eureka Police Chief Andrew Mills.
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