Introducing: Religion News Service

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You may have noticed some stories on our homepage today from different sources and writers that you don't normally find at U.S. Catholic. Those articles are the first of many to come from our new partnership with Religion News Service, which we are proud to introduce beginning today.

We've long admired the work of RNS in offering a wide range of coverage of religion and its place in our society, with top-notch reporting and thoughtful commentary on matters of faith. In addition to providing news about the latest developments in the Catholic Church (see today's article by Bob Smietana on the announcement regarding indulgences during World Youth Day, for example), RNS takes a journalistic approach to understanding the role of faith across the spectrum, from politics to pop culture. They also have some prominent Catholic writers whose talents we are happy to share with you, including Vatican correspondent Alessandro Speciale (see his piece on what Pope Francis can expect to find when he lands in Brazil for WYD next week) and David Gibson.

Our relationship with RNS will also allow us to bring our readers stories that look beyond the Catholic Church to ecumenical and inter-faith issues and the role of religion in a broader context. We are confident that you'll be pleased with their work and that they'll make an excellent addition to the content that our editors and writers craft exclusively for U.S. Catholic.

The introduction of content from RNS to our website also means that we will unfortunately be ending our use of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Catholic News Service as our primary news provider. We appreciate the content that CNS has provided for our readers throughout the years we've worked with them and wish them continued success in the future. And rest assured that we at U.S. Catholic will continue to cover the major news stories in the Catholic Church that CNS has brought us in the past, just in a different form.

We are continuing to come up with new ideas for our website and new ways to bring you exclusive content, so stay tuned in the coming months for more developments. And as always, feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.