Daily Links, Jan. 4: Bishop Zavala, Rick Santorum, and Elizabeth Ann Seton

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The big story in Catholic news today, of course, is that Los Angeles Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala has resigned after admitting to having a family. While it is unfortunate that in the Catholic Church having a family and being a bishop are mutually exclusive, this is certainly a scandal as for a bishop, a public face of the church, to break a vow and keep such a secret for so many years is troubling. According to NCR, Los Angeles Archbishop Jose Gomez said, "The archdiocese has reached out to the mother and children to provide spiritual care as well as funding to assist the children with college costs. The family's identity is not known to the public, and I wish to respect their right to privacy.”

The other big story rocking not just the U.S. Catholic church, but the whole United States is how Rick Santorum, one of two Catholic candidates running in the Republican primaries, came out of nowhere this week to end up second (by 8 votes) to Mitt Romney in the Iowa Caucus. But will the near win capture the interest of Catholic voters?

Not exactly making headlines, but still important, is that today is the feast day of Elizabeth Ann Seton, the first U.S.-born saint in the church. Sister Maxine of A Nun’s Life wrote Seton a letter.

And hat tip to Religion News Service for this link photos of the world’s coolest church. Baby, it’s cold outside. And inside.