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Measles are making a comeback, so what does the Church teach about vaccines?

A child shows a classic day-4 rash with measles. (CDC/NIP/Barbara Rice)

By Mary Rezac
CNA/EWTN News

Disneyland is supposed to be the Happiest Place on Earth, not the place where you contract a highly contagious, once-eradicated disease.

Unfortunately, that is what happened at Disneyland in California, starting back in December. The measles virus, likely carried by a tourist from a foreign country, started a chain of infections that has now reached at least 87 people in seven states and Mexico. The outbreak has also resurfaced arguments surrounding the vaccination of children. Continue reading

 
Congress aims to fight dark side of Super Bowl

University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., seen Jan. 21, is readied for Super Bowl XLIX, the Feb. 1 match between the Seattle Seahawks and the New England Patriots. Catholic Charities of Arizona is preparing to serve an increased number of sex-trafficking victims arrested by local police in the days surrounding Super Bowl Sunday. (Nancy Wiechec)

By Matt Hadro
CNA/EWTN News

Just days before Super Bowl XLIX, the U.S. House of Representatives is pushing for a bipartisan crack-down on the hidden menace of sex trafficking, which some human rights advocates refer to as “modern-day slavery.” Continue reading

 
Iowa Catholic school one of 10 in U.S. to get football helmet sensors

Dan Nelson, a certified athletic trainer at Bishop Heelan Catholic High School in Sioux City, Iowa, shows how Shockbox helmet sensors are attached to the inside of the crown of a football helmet with a piece of Velcro Dec. 8. The high school is one of 10 in the country to receive free sensors for their football team that, according to the manufacturer, are designed to help coaches and parents better diagnose potential concussions. (CNS photo/Joanne Fox, Catholic Globe)

By Joanne Fox
Catholic News Service 

SIOUX CITY, Iowa — Micah Herbst of Sioux City does not have a son on the football team at Bishop Heelan Catholic High School.

But her quick eye — that caught a contest through her employer — resulted in the Sioux City school being one of 10 high schools in the country to receive free Shockbox helmet sensors for their football teams. The technology, according to the manufacturer, is designed to help coaches and parents better diagnose potential concussions.

Herbst, whose daughter Brooke is a 2013 Heelan alum and daughter Claire a current freshman there, learned about the contest, “Progress Is: Playing Smart,” through her employer, Progressive Insurance Co. Continue reading

 
March shows youth, growth and energy of pro-life movement

Students from Shanley High School in Fargo, N.D., St. Mary's High School in Bismarck, N.D., and Bishop Ryan High School in Minot, N.D., carry the lead banner during the annual March for Life in Washington Jan. 22. Nearly 500 students from North Dakota Catholic schools participated in this year's event. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

By Nate Madden
Catholic News Service 

WASHINGTON — At this year’s March for Life Jan. 22, the things to notice about the crowd in attendance were its youth, its growth and the sense that these young people are bringing about a cultural renewal.

Groups from all over the United States came in droves and the majority of people in those groups were young, energetic, bright-eyed and hopeful.

At a coffee and doughnuts breakfast at St. Peter’s Church on Capitol Hill, offered in the parish hall below and filled with March for Life pilgrims, one group that stood out was the one from St. Agnes Church in Hillsboro, Illinois. Continue reading

 
‘We shall overcome’ in fight against abortion, says Cardinal O’Malley
Boston Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley gives the homily during the opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington Jan. 21. The all-night vigil is held before the annual March for Life, which this year marked the 42nd anniversary of the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion across the nation. (CNS photo/Bob Roller) See VIGIL- Jan. 21, 2015.

Boston Cardinal Sean P. O'Malley gives the homily during the opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington Jan. 21. The all-night vigil is held before the annual March for Life, which this year marked the 42nd anniversary of the Supreme Court's Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion across the nation. (CNS photo/Bob Roller)

By Mark Pattison
Catholic News Service 

WASHINGTON — Evoking a phrase long associated with the civil rights movement, Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley of Boston told an overflow crowd in Washington that “we shall overcome” in the fight against abortion.

Quoting Pope Francis in his homily Jan. 21 during the opening Mass of the National Prayer Vigil for Life, Cardinal O’Malley said, “The church cannot and must not remain on the sidelines in the fight for a better world.”

He added, “In our country, people have come together in the fight to overcome racism” and other social ills. “The quest for human rights and solidarity brought together people of faith to ‘repair the world,’ to use the Jewish expression.” Continue reading

 
Catholic lawmakers urged to back immigration reform as pro-life issue
Paralegal Maria Alejandra McKee addresses the audience at St. John the Evangelist Church in Riverhead, N.Y., Jan. 18 during an information session on immigration reform based on President Barack Obama's executive actions. A group of Catholic leaders urged fellow Catholics in Congress to set aside partisan bickering and support the U.S. bishops' efforts on behalf of comprehensive immigration reform, calling it a sanctity of life issue and an important step in building a culture of life. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

Paralegal Maria Alejandra McKee addresses the audience at St. John the Evangelist Church in Riverhead, N.Y., Jan. 18 during an information session on immigration reform based on President Barack Obama's executive actions. A group of Catholic leaders urged fellow Catholics in Congress to set aside partisan bickering and support the U.S. bishops' efforts on behalf of comprehensive immigration reform, calling it a sanctity of life issue and an important step in building a culture of life. (CNS photo/Gregory A. Shemitz)

By Catholic News Service 

WASHINGTON — A group of Catholic leaders urged fellow Catholics in Congress to set aside “partisan bickering” and support the U.S. bishops’ efforts on behalf of a comprehensive immigration reform, calling it a sanctity of life issue and an important step in building a culture of life.

“Our nation’s inhumane and flawed immigration policies leave migrant women, children and families abandoned by the side of the road,” the group said in a letter released Jan. 20, two days before the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion.

Among the more than 100 signers of the letter were the presidents of at least 31 Catholic universities as well as bishops, men and women religious, former staff members at the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, and the heads of various institutes and social action agencies. Continue reading

 
Pope says he will canonize Blessed Junipero Serra in Washington

Pope Francis reacts to questions from Associated Press reporter Nicole Winfield about the September U.S. papal visit during a news conference aboard his flight from Manila, Philippines, to Rome Jan. 19. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

By Francis X. Rocca
Catholic News Service 

ABOARD THE PAPAL FLIGHT FROM MANILA — Pope Francis said his September trip to the U.S. will take him to Philadelphia, New York and Washington — where he intends to canonize Blessed Junipero Serra — but probably no other stops.

Pope Francis made his remarks Jan. 19, in an hourlong news conference with reporters accompanying him back to Rome from a weeklong trip to Asia. Continue reading

 
Nebraska monsignor appointed new Bishop of Grand Island

Coat of Arms for the Diocese of Grand Island. (Screenshot)

CNA/EWTN News

Pope Francis on Wednesday appointed Monsignor Joseph Hanefeldt, a priest of the Omaha archdiocese and a Nebraska native, as the eighth Bishop of Grand Island, which serves Catholics in central and western Nebraska. Continue reading

 
Dominican sister chosen to lead Catholic Charities USA

Dominican Sister Donna Markham has been chosen to succeed Father Larry Snyder as the new president of Catholic Charities USA. The announcement was made Jan. 12 at Catholic Charities headquarters in Alexandria, a suburb of Washington. She is pictured in an undated photo. (CNS photo/courtesy Catholic Charities USA)

Catholic News Service

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — Dominican Sister Donna Markham has been chosen to succeed Father Larry Snyder as the new president of Catholic Charities USA.

The announcement was made Jan. 12 at Catholic Charities headquarters in Alexandria, a suburb of Washington. Continue reading

 
Top Vatican Official: Washington, NYC likely stops on papal trip

Pope Francis blesses the crowd gathered in St. Peter's Square as he leads the Angelus from the window of his studio overlooking the square at the Vatican Jan. 4. After praying the Angelus, the pope announced the names of 20 new cardinals he will create at a Feb. 14 consistory. (CNS photo/Alessandro Bianchi, Reuters)

By Alan Holdren & Andrea Gagliarducci
CNA/EWTN News 

VATICAN CITY — Although it’s still not official, the Vatican’s Secretary of State confirmed today that Pope Francis will most likely visit Washington D.C. and New York during his visit to the United States.

“I think the Pope will go to United Nations, everybody is speaking about that… but no official announcement has been delivered,” Cardinal Parolin told CNA Jan. 6. Continue reading