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Approximately 70 families from 25 parishes filled Saint Mary, Mother of the Church in Garner for the annual Mass with Homeschool Families on Friday, December 6, 2013. The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge, Bishop of Raleigh, was the Principal Celebrant and Homilist. Fr. David M. Chiantella, Administrator of St. Mary, concelebrated. Dr. Michael J. Fedewa, Diocesan Superintendent of Faith Formation and Education; Sister Rose Marie Adams, I.H.M., Executive Director of Catholic Formation and Evangelization; and Mrs. Diane Quintal, Diocesan Coordinator of Catechesis and Faith Formation, were also in attendance.
Friday, December 6 is the deadline for Catholics in the Diocese of Raleigh to provide their input in a survey being conducted among Catholics on behalf of the Vatican. In October 2014, Pope Francis will convene a Synod of Bishops to review and discuss Pastoral Challenges to the Family in the Context of Evangelization.
The University of Notre Dame refiled its lawsuit against three Cabinet agencies and their secretaries arguing it should be exempted on religious grounds from the contraceptive mandate that is part of the Affordable Care Act.
"Notre Dame alleges that the purpose of the U.S. government mandate, including the narrow exemption, is to discriminate against religious institutions and organizations that oppose abortion and contraception," the university said in its suit, filed Dec. 3 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana.
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- Expect the rebuilding in typhoon-ravaged regions of the Philippines to take up to five years, a Catholic Relief Services official said at a congressional hearing.
Because the recovery will be slow for millions of displaced Filipinos, Sean Callahan, chief operating officer at CRS, urged congressional representatives to commit funding for the long term so that progress can continue after the disaster that has claimed more than 5,600 lives is no longer in the headlines.
The December 2013 issue of NC Catholics is now available online. The cover story, “How God Turns Things Around!” tells how one Catholic family’s tragedy led to Andrew’s Toybox, a charity which collects and delivers toys to sick children. This issue’s featured ministry is Tarboro Community Outreach, directed since 1986 by Sr. Mary Ann Czaja, CSA, providing food, shelter and clothing for the homeless. And in his monthly column, Bishop Burbidge tells about his recent visit with Pope Francis and the importance during the seasons of Advent and Christmas for all of us to be renewed in faith and strengthened in hope.
Read the December NC Catholics online.
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- The best present in life is encountering Jesus -- an encounter that will last a lifetime, Pope Francis said.
A Christian's whole life "is an encounter with Jesus: in prayer, when we go to Mass, when we do good works, when we visit the sick, when we help the poor, when we think of others, when we're not self-centered, when we are amiable," he said in a homily given at a Rome parish Dec. 1.
"We always encounter Christ in these things and the journey of life is exactly this: walking to encounter Jesus," he said.
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) continues the tradition of providing online resources for the Advent and Christmas seasons, with daily suggestions for prayer, reflection and action beginning on the first Sunday of Advent, December 1. The content is presented in a clickable calendar format, with each date opening a page of suggestions and links.
The Most Reverend Michael F. Burbidge celebrated a Rite of Dedication for a New Church, Saturday, November 23, 2013, with the blessing of the new Saint Catherine of Siena Church in Wake Forest. The Mass was concelebrated by 30 priests, including Msgr. David D. Brockman, Vicar General of the Diocese, Father Phillip M. Tighe, pastor of Saint Catherine of Siena, and Father Thomas S. Duggan, parochial vicar.
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