Archdiocese of Washington
El Pregonero
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Your Catholic Online News Magazine
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Tuesday, April 7, 2020
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  • Report on Cardinal Donald Wuerl’s midday Ash Wednesday Mass on Feb. 18 at the Cathedral of St. Matthew the Apostle. That was the assignment given me, and one that I was looking forward to writing about.


  • This month we focus on two issues very important to Catholics: Catholic education and life. January is not only the first month of the new year, but it is also the month when the Catholic Church marks Catholic Schools Week and when we participate in rallies, Masses, vigils, marches and other events in defense of life.
  • I will be away from the paper for the next couple of months recovering, recuperating and generally getting used to having a new hip. How can this be, you may ask, for someone as young as me? Okay, maybe I am not that young, but still the diagnosis startled me and came out of the blue.
  • This is a very special week for the faithful of the Archdiocese of Washington. This coming Tuesday, July 22, is exactly 75 years to the day that the Archdiocese of Washington was founded.
  • Tired, but excited and happy and overjoyed. That was the general answer given by the three dozen Washington-area pilgrims who attended the April 27 canonizations of St. John XXIII and St. John Paul II when asked what they thought about being present at the historic event.
  • For the first time in my more than 50 years on the face of this earth, I am going to have a real Thanksgiving. Of course, I've always celebrated the fourth Thursday in November with family and friends and football and parades and turkey and way too much eating. But this year will be different - this year the focus will be not on food but on actually giving thanks.
  • The mumbled prayers, the soft clacking of rosary beads, the lighted candles and the petitions to God that were evident Sept. 7 at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception were comforting and reassuring. About 700 gathered in the National Shrine's Crypt Church to pray for peace in Syria and other trouble spots throughout the world.
  • I attended a conference recently where one of the speakers urged Catholic pro-lifers and Catholic social justice advocates to work together. The speaker, Capuchin Franciscan Father Daniel Mindling, academic dean of Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, noted that Catholics are "being asked to favor social programs or pro-life teachings."
  • Cardinal Donald Wuerl and the U.S. bishops have been warning us and warning us about a full-press assault on religion and religious freedom. The bishops are urging all people of goodwill to stand up against these attacks.
  • This should not come as a surprise to anyone: the Washington Post is criticizing the U.S. Catholic bishops (again!) for their forthright and very determined stance to fight the Obama administration's declaration that the Catholic Church and other faith groups must now offer employer-provided health insurance that includes coverage for services that violate its moral teachings.
  • After a long and protracted fight, a slim majority has prevailed in the Maryland state House and Senate and forced through a law that legalizes same-sex marriage in the state. Gov. Martin O'Malley, a Catholic, not only supported the law, but sponsored it after a similar measure failed last year. There is no doubt that he will sign it.
  • Our bishops have rightly reacted with concern, alarm and righteous anger to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' mandate and subsequent "accommodation" that faith-based institutions must offer employer-provided health insurance that includes coverage for contraceptives, abortifacients and sterilization.
  • In some Metro subway cars there is a placard showing a young happy family smiling at each other and kissing and loving each other. It includes this message: "You don't need God - to hope, to care, to love, to live." It includes the website of the Center for Inquiry (CFI).
  • When I moved to the Washington, D.C., area more than 25 years ago, I knew I would not feel totally comfortable here until I understood the roads. For a long time, I didn't know how to give directions to my new home better than "take the exit right after then one I had to get off one time because the car was overheating."
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