After nearly four weeks of fighting between Israel and the Palestinian militant Hamas, the expectation that things will get better has been consistently disappointed.
Maryknoll Fr. Miguel D'Escoto Brockmann, 81, had written to the Vatican that he wanted to be able to celebrate Mass again "before dying."
A German cardinal warned that the number of Catholics leaving his country's church is "alarmingly high" and urged an end to "scandals and vexations" involving clergy.
"This trip is an opportunity to deeply understand the history of El Salvador, the history of the martyrs and what their legacy was."
It is hard for people in Sierra Leone not to lose hope as the death toll rises and worldwide fear grows over the worst Ebola outbreak on record, said the head of Caritas in the archdiocese of Freetown, Sierra Leone.
"Our situation is desperate," said Fr. Peter Konteh, executive director of Caritas.
In a telephone interview Wednesday from Freetown, Konteh said the mood of the West African country was bleak following the death Tuesday of the doctor who had been leading the country's fight against the highly contagious disease.
As the Catholic church wrestles with changing community attitudes on key social issues, a new Italian survey finds more support for abortion, gay rights and euthanasia than for cosmetic surgery.
According to the survey published in the daily La Stampa this week, 61 percent of Italians support abortion and 76 percent believe they should be able to request the right to die.
Sr. Gilbert Saliba, the hospital's president, said all patients are treated equally, Israeli or not, because in each one, they see the face of Jesus.
The removal suggests that priests suspected of child abuse in one country can no longer find shelter in other countries.
The head of a Michigan-based tour company that leads trips to the Holy Land said the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas so far has not had an impact on pilgrimages he and his associates lead.
"Everything is still functioning like in any other normal business day. The sector of tourism industry to the Holy Land is not affected," said Steve Ray, a tour guide and CEO of Footprints of God in Ann Arbor.
Catholic AIDS activists said they are encouraged by the steady progress being made against HIV, but warned against complacency.
As an estimated 18,000 delegates and visitors to yet another international AIDS conference made their way home from Australia in late July, there were no headlines about how the end of AIDS is just around the corner. There is no cure yet, conference participants heard, and there's unlikely to be one in the near future.