According to a new Polish law effective Jan. 1, women who agree to deliver babies with serious issues will receive a one-time payment of 900 Euros ($1,000).
Pope Francis has again appealed for an end to the brutal fighting in the Syrian city of Aleppo, calling war a "pile-up of tyrannies and lies" and asking people to say "no to destruction, yes to peace."
At the end of his weekly Angelus prayer in St. Peter's Square Sunday, the pontiff said: "Every day I am close, most of all in prayer, to the people of Aleppo."
Eco Catholic: His response to the economic crisis of the '90s was an ambitious program in organic agriculture, environmental planning, renewable energy and other sustainable development practices.
Assisted Suicide in Switzerland: A Swiss bishop has instructed Catholic priests not to give last rites to people suspected of seeking assisted suicide, following a sharp rise in the practice in his country. "It is increasingly difficult to take the right decisions in the face of death — there's even a sense of helplessness," said Bishop Vitus Huonder of Chur.
Mediation efforts in Congo: Congolese President Joseph Kabila expressed support for Catholic bishops' efforts to mediate a constitutional crisis after he extended his term in office.
Christian persecution in the Middle East: Christians in the Middle East face extinction because of genocide, wars and international indifference to their plight, according to panelists at a Dec. 5 interfaith forum in New York.
Eco Catholic: At COP22, thrilling African groups showed the light, embracing the notion that real people have to be involved in big policies. Participation is crucial.
NCR Today: After 30 years a pastor, this convert became head of the diocese of Sapporo, Japan, and a leader of the Japanese bishops' peace and justice efforts.
Cuban Catholic church: The relationship between Fidel Castro and the Cuban Catholic church has been a roller-coaster ride of ups and downs, though it has noticeably improved in recent years.
François Fillon becoming the conservative candidate for France's presidential election is as unforeseen as the role religion played in rallying Catholic voters behind him.