Parish roundup: Weapons in the worship space; sanctuary status; follow the money

by Peter Feuerherd

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First Baptist Church

A note is seen at a memorial Nov. 7 near the site of the shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Texas, which was Nov. 5. (CNS photo/Reuters/Jonathan Bachman)

The Boston Archdiocese, in response to the killings in Texas, takes steps to keep churchgoers safe. The response from the Diocese of Dallas is confusing: it urges eliminating signs prohibiting weapons, while maintaining that its no-guns policy still is in force. 

A Guatemalan immigrant describes what it's like to live in a church sanctuary.

In Wisconsin, a parish secretary is convicted of stealing at least $800,000 from her parish and gets four years in prison. Gambling appeared to play a role.

The church is alive and well in Pittsburgh, says Bishop David Zubik, who argues that a massive consolidation will bring renewal to the diocese there. Meanwhile, a court rejects a request from parishioners to stop a church merger.

In Lynchburg, Virginia, a Catholic parish expands its religious education and outreach to people who need rent assistance.

A pastor goes on a hiking trip with children. Because there were no other adults present, he is removed as pastor because of what the diocese describes as a lapse of judgment. 

Know where your church donations go? It isn't all that easy to find out. A recent study compared diocesan financial transparency: the Diocese of Camden, New Jersey, ranked the lowest while Sacramento, California, gained top honors.

Jesuit Fr. Greg Boyle of Los Angeles' Homeboy Industries talks with National Geographic about the problem of gang violence.

Dreamers come together to pray for immigration reform at the Milwaukee cathedral.

An historian explores the long history of black Catholics in the U.S. and finds that there are more black Catholics than members of the A.M.E. Church.

In North Carolina, Catholic Br. David Boone, a parish administrator, is remembered for his civil rights work.

[Peter Feuerherd is a correspondent for NCR's Field Hospital series on parish life and is a professor of journalism at St. John's University, New York.]

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