My colleague, Claire Schaeffer-Duffy, reports on the decision by more Methodist groups to divest themselves from companies that in some way support the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories, or as the report says, "the West Bank, Gaza, and East Jerusalem." It has been a long time since Israel occupied Gaza and most of the West Bank.
Over at the National Catholic Register, Fr. C. J. McCloskey has a favorable review of a new book by Robert Spencer. McCloskey labels Spencer "perhaps the foremost Catholic expert on Islam in our country," but Spencer is more accurately described as one of America's foremost bigots.
Distinctly Catholic: The Catholic Health Association in a memorandum Tuesday said the HHS accommodation will allow ministries to provide insurance as it has always done.
Religion News Service is hosting a "Pope Francis Art Contest." I am not very good at drawing stick figures, so I will not be submitting an entry. But, if you have an artistic touch, be sure to enter. Details can be found by clicking here.
At the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Ann Rodgers has one of her typically wonderful articles on the role of Catholic sisters staffing military hospitals during the Civil War. Then, as now, the sisters were on the front lines bringing the Lord's healing presence to those who suffered.
This article in the New York Post by Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles, who also heads the USCCB's Committee on Migration, should, repeat should, invite some House Republicans to think about immigration a bit differently. +Gomez has also published a short new book on immigration that I will review tomorrow. On Wednesday, the House GOP caucus meets to discuss how to proceed on this issue.
Capitalists are always praising the need to take risk, but when a bunch of vulture capitalists who make money running hedge funds tries to impoverish an entire nation, things are out of hand. And, these vulture capitalists are hoping that U.S. courts will back them up. Here is the story in the LA Times and it features quotes from Eric LeCompte, head of JubileeUSA, an inter-faith group that advocates for debt relief for developing nations.
It tells us something, and something hopeful I think, about human nature that Pope Francis’ decision to canonize both Pope John XXIII and Pope John Paul II has captured the imagination of even our secular media. Amidst all the banality of our modern consumer culture, there is still something attractive, something that fascinates, about the idea of sanctity.
Regular readers may remember an article I did in May, based on interviews with Professor Jim Youniss, and two of his assistants, Trevor Falk and Catherine Noga. Professor Youniss was working on interviews and a poll of Egyptian young people to ascertain their views on civic engagement and politics.
The Department of Labor announced that the economy added another 195,000 jobs in June, beating analysts expectations. The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 7.6 %. Most importantly, the DOL's statement this morning included this: