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June 29, 2008 | From Times Wire Reports
An archbishop who tussled with singer Sheryl Crow, college basketball coach Rick Majerus, and 2004 Democratic presidential candidate John F. Kerry over their support for abortion rights has been named to lead the Vatican supreme court. Archbishop Raymond Burke, an expert in church law and perhaps the most outspoken of conservative U.S. bishops, will probably be made a cardinal. The supreme court is traditionally headed by a cardinal. Burke's disputes with public figures drew attention to the archdiocese in his 4 1/2 years in St. Louis.
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WORLD
March 27, 2014 | By Kathleen Hennessey
VATICAN CITY - President Obama visited Pope Francis for the first time Thursday, a meeting the White House hoped would amplify the two men's shared concern about economic inequality rather than the president's conflicts with the Roman Catholic Church hierarchy at home. Obama introduced himself to Francis as a "great admirer. " The pope has become internationally popular as he has shed some of the lavish trappings of the papacy and focused his teachings on caring for the poor. Obama has sought to borrow some of that goodwill for the new pope to help promote his own effort to reduce income inequality in the United States.
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NEWS
January 28, 1991
POPE JOHN PAUL II called the Gulf War unworthy of humanity and said any idea of it being a holy war is absurd. "We pray that God brings us peace very soon, that he shows those responsible that they should abandon immediately this war which is so unworthy of humanity," the Pope said. "May the infinite love of the Creator help all to understand the absurdity of a war in his name." More than 1,000 Jews demonstrated during the papal Sunday blessing in ST.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 22, 2014 | Steve Lopez
A 10-year-old student from Noble Avenue Elementary School in North Hills visited the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels last week on a diplomatic mission. Jersey Vargas, a fourth-grader, was about to leave for Rome and a possible visit with Pope Francis, but first she wanted to ask Archbishop Jose H. Gomez for his blessing and his help. Jersey said she hoped the archbishop will "help my Dad out, so he can be with me and my family, and we won't be separated ever again. " Her father has been in custody since September, Jersey told me. She said he "was caught driving without a license, and because he wasn't born in the United States, that also didn't help him out….
NEWS
May 4, 2012 | By Paul Thornton
The Times received more than three dozen letters weighing in on the Holy See's admonition of a group of American nuns, four of which were published in the paper. None of the submissions sent to letters@latimes.com before the two batches of letters on the subject ran on April 23 and 27 took the side of the Vatican in its dispute with the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, and the responses that were published reflect that. After the letters ran, two readers sympathetic to the Roman Catholic Church leadership sent us their letters, one of which accused The Times of anti-Vatican bias (I address that submission in the upcoming Postscript column, which can be found Saturday at latimes.com/letters )
OPINION
February 19, 2013
Re "Stymied by Vatican," Feb. 16 Pointing the finger at the Vatican for responding too slowly to Cardinal Roger M. Mahony's reports on priest misconduct in the 1990s and early 2000s diverts attention from the former archbishop's failure to report pedophile priests to civil authorities for prosecution. The issue is Mahony's handling of pedophile priests in the 1980s - when he covered up for them, failed to report them to law enforcement and allowed them to continue ministering to the congregation - not the slow Vatican response or how effective the cardinal's priest abuse reforms were in the 2000s.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 31, 1992
The Rev. Richard Land, head of a Southern Baptist agency, is protesting the U.S. ambassadorship to the Vatican ("Drop Vatican Envoy, Clinton Urged," Dec. 12). Mr. Land sees this as a grievous wrong and urges President-elect Clinton to "strike a blow" for separation of church and state. For his information, the Constitution guards against the establishment of a church/state religion. Every session of our Congress is opened with a prayer by its own chaplain. The military has had a chaplaincy for over 200 years with chapel and chaplain on every base and ship.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 28, 1992
Regarding the article titled "Vatican Statement Supports Discrimination Against Gays" (July 17): By changing two words in the Vatican's statement, the fuller scope of the its policy becomes clear. According to these Men of God, "There are areas in which it is not unjust discrimination to take sexual orientation into account." Change the words sexual orientation to gender or race or national origin or physical limitation or marital status, and what do you have? An organization that cloaks itself in righteousness while promoting a systematic denial of rights.
WORLD
March 13, 2013 | By Emily Alpert
The Vatican clarified Wednesday that the new pope -- the first to take the name Francis -- will be known as Pope Francis, not Pope Francis I. The Wednesday bulletin issued by the Vatican announcing his selection as pope called him simply Francis, as did the cardinal who announced his name from the balcony of St. Peter's Basilica. “It will become Francis I after we have a Francis II,” Vatican spokesman Rev. Federico Lombardi quipped to the Associated Press. The new name, taken by Argentine Jesuit Jorge Bergoglio, marks the first time that the leader of the Roman Catholic Church has chosen to be known as Francis.
NATIONAL
June 1, 2012 | By Dalina Castellanos
When the Vatican released a scathing report in April excoriating a group that represents the majority of Roman Catholic nuns in the United States for deviating from church doctrine, the group kept mum. The report included a slew of positive and negative comments about the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, the group called out by the Vatican for promoting “radical feminist themes.” Still, the sisters were quiet. Until now. In a statement released Friday, the conference's board of directors said the doctrinal assessment released by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith - the church's enforcer of orthodoxy - was “based on unsubstantiated accusations and the result of a flawed process that lacked transparency.” The board members met this week to discuss the assessment, which accused the conference of deviating from church doctrine, such as opposing male-only ordination.
WORLD
February 24, 2014 | By Tom Kington
ROME -- In the most concrete sign to date of his intention to reform the Vatican, Pope Francis announced the creation Monday of a single authority to handle all business, administrative and personnel management at the Holy See, a response to the rash of financial scandals that have tarnished the Roman Catholic Church's reputation among believers and nonbelievers. The new Secretariat for the Economy will draw up the Vatican's annual budget, call on lay experts for advice and launch surprise internal audits.
NEWS
February 6, 2014 | By Michael McGough
A United Nations committee made headlines this week when it released a report criticizing the Vatican - a nation-state as well as the center of Roman Catholicism - for allowing priests to abuse tens of thousands of children over the years. The report issued by the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child also urged a new commission established by Pope Francis to order an independent investigation of all abuse cases and establish clear rules for the mandatory reporting of abuse to police.
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.
NATIONAL
January 24, 2014 | By Saba Hamedy
Though the Vatican hasn't made an official announcement, news that Pope Francis may visit Philadelphia in 2015 has generated buzz among the Catholic community and city residents. Vatican officials told the National Catholic Reporter on Friday that Pope Francis intends to attend the World Meeting of Families, a global Catholic event that aims to "support and strengthen families. " The event is held every three years and is scheduled to take place Sept. 22-27, 2015, in Philadelphia.
WORLD
January 16, 2014 | By Tom Kington
ROME -- In their toughest and most public questioning to date about sexual abuse of children by members of the clergy, senior Vatican officials came under heavy criticism Thursday from a United Nations committee over their handling of such cases and promised that changes were underway. "The Holy See gets it," Msgr. Charles Scicluna, the Vatican's former sex crimes prosecutor, told the Committee on the Rights of the Child at a meeting in Geneva. But Scicluna and a colleague maintained the Vatican's position that, while it is responsible for responding to abuses committed within the confines of the Vatican state, it is up to local law enforcers to punish abusive priests around the world.
WORLD
January 13, 2014 | By Henry Chu
LONDON -- Pope Francis decried abortion Monday as a sign of a wasteful modern culture that treats goods and people, including unborn children, as easily discarded commodities. In the annual papal “state of the world” speech delivered to diplomats, Francis said the denial of human dignity was a threat to world peace, and cited the problems of hunger among the have-nots and food waste among the haves. “Unfortunately, what is thrown away is not only food and dispensable objects, but often human beings themselves, who are discarded as 'unnecessary.' For example, it is frightful even to think there are children, victims of abortion, who will never see the light of day,” the pope said, according to excerpts released by the Vatican.
WORLD
April 18, 2013 | By Emily Alpert
The Roman Catholic Church is tightening its belt. Vatican employees will not get bonuses that are traditionally handed out upon the election of a new pope, a spokesman told reporters Thursday. The last time a pope was replaced, Vatican employees were reportedly granted 1,500 euros each (close to $2,000 at the current rate of exchange), including payments upon the death of one pope and at the selection of a new one. This time, “it didn't seem possible or appropriate to burden the Vatican's budget with a considerable, unforeseen extra expense,” Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi told the Associated Press.
WORLD
January 5, 2014 | By Batsheva Sobelman
JERUSALEM--Pope Francis will visit the Middle East in May, he announced Sunday to believers gathered at St. Peter's Square in Rome. "In the climate of joy typical of this Christmas period, I would like to announce that from May 24 to 26, God willing, I will carry out a pilgrimage to the Holy Land,"  the pope said . Francis' visit -- his only foreign travel planned for 2014 to date -- is to last three days and include Amman, Jordan;...
WORLD
January 5, 2014 | By Tom Kington
ROME -- Pope Francis has taken another step toward making the Catholic Church more inclusive by telling priests to rethink how they reach out to the children of gay and separated parents. But the Vatican warned Sunday against reading too much into the remarks. "How can we proclaim Christ to a generation that is changing? We must be careful not to administer a vaccine against faith to them,” Francis told around 120 leaders of male religious orders during a meeting at the Vatican.
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