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Curious Timing and Tough Cases on Immigration

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Federal officials announced the arrest yesterday of about 130 immigrants in Northern Virginia, half of whom are in the US legally, the Washington Post reports today.

The announcement was made as President Obama returned from his trip to Latin America, including a last stop in El Salvador, home to many of the immigrants who migrate to the Washington suburbs looking for work.

“About half of those arrested — 64 — were in the country legally, and the rest were not, officials said,” the Post reported. “But even those with legal status, such as work permits or ‘green cards,’ can be deported if they commit crimes of ‘moral turpitude’ or receive sentences of a year or more,” the paper said.

Florida judge orders use of Islamic Law

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Last month I blogged about an effort in South Carolina to ban the use of Sharia law, the internal law of the Muslim faith.

Yet, I pointed out that it has been common practice in the U.S. for decades to allow Roman Catholic corporations (e.g., dioceses and parishes) to use the church's own internal law, the Code of Canon law. In Connecticut, for example, specific religions are identified in the state's religious corporation act.

Now a Florida judge is permitting the use of Islamic law (a more moderate interpretation of the Koran than Sharia law, according to the story) in his courtroom, as the trustees of a mosque are suing the mosque.

According to WOFL Fox 35:

A Florida judge says, "I will follow Islamic Law," in a controversial case.

Father Corapi's fans

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Because I am Facebook friends with Deacon Greg Kandra, who among other things is a prolific Catholic blogger, I have been following last weekend's news and reaction to a rather famous priest accused of sexual impropriety by a former female employee.

Except that I had never heard of the priest. OK, that's not entirely true. Once I read that he had a show on EWTN, the name rang a bell, but only because I see it while scrolling through my cable channels.

Apparently, I am in good company. In this blog entry, Kandra writes about two New York monsignors who have the same reaction ("Father Who?") to what some are calling "The Most Important Story of the Catholic Universe."

Changes at the Vatican bank

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As reported by Italian writer, Sandro Magister:

Starting at the beginning of April, the Holy See will return to using a sanction that had practically fallen into disuse in the practice of canon law: prison.

This penalty is provided for by law no. 127 of the state of Vatican City, promulgated last December 30, which will go into effect next April 1. A law aimed against money laundering and the financing of terrorism.

But beyond this, the new norm will bring much more substantial novelties in the practices of the Vatican institutes that operate in the financial field, beginning with the one that most resembles a bank, the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR).

Until now, the IOR has enjoyed broad autonomy of action. It worked outside of the international norms that regulate, standardize, and supervise the activities of the banks in various countries.

On this day: St. Toribio de Mogrovejo

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On this day we celebrate the feast of St. Toribio de Mogrovejo.

"If a single person symbolized paradigmatically colonial Christendom, it would be Toribio de Mogrovejo, the heroic Archbishop of Lima during the sixteenth century."

--A History of the Church in Latin America: Colonialism to Liberation (1492-1979), by Enrique Dussel, Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1981.

Richard Sipe suggests Pope Benedict should resign

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In an article entitled "What can Benedict do to resolve the sexual crisis of Catholicism?" author Richard Sipe and Joe Rigert, write on the Australian Catholica website:

What can Benedict do to resolve the sexual crisis of Catholicism? At the very least he could open up for discussion and study the antiquated sexual teachings on such common practices as birth control, use of condoms and sex outside of marriage. Further, he could lead the way to making celibacy optional for priests and allow women in the ministry. (Would women have taken part in, or allowed, the sex abuse scandal?) And he might call for a representative church council to consider all of these basic reforms.

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May 6-19, 2016

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