US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Weekly roundup: Deacons, dinosaurs, and a mysterious disappearing priest

By Kira Dault | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

Another week, another roundup. Hope it's been a good one for you.

This week, dinosaurs got some publicity from creationist Ken Ham, who claims that dinosaurs were on Noah's Ark. That must have been one really, REALLY big boat.

In Boston, the episcopal vicar for the archdiocese was arrested for soliciting a prostitute. In a cemetery. Monsignor Arthur M. Coyle pled "not guilty" to charges at his arraignment on Monday. He is on a leave of absence from his position at the archdiocese.

The U.S. Ninth Circuit court of appeals has dismissed a lawsuit filed against the Holy See in John V. Doe v. Holy See, a case that involved the sexual abuse of a minor by a priest.

Great news about the diaconate! There are more permanent deacons now than ever! The problem? Most of the permanent deacons are nearing the age of retirement. The Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate claims that at least 68 percent of the permanent deacons are at least in their 60s, with 25 percent in their 70s. Time for some young blood in there!

A bit of a debate has gotten stirred up about those who choose not to have children. Carolina A. Miranda wrote a piece over at Time in which she argues the benefits of living a childless life. Over at the Washington Post, Jana Bennett, an associate professor of moral theology at University of Dayton offers a rebuttal.

In Wisconsin, the Department of Justice has told a Catholic hospital that they cannot deny hospital privileges to physicians who perform abortions.

Over at the National Journal, Ronald Brownstein offers an analysis that shows an increasing polarization between red states and blue states in the U.S. Blue states have legislatures that are pushing for same-sex marriage, while red states legislatures are making extra pushes toward abortion restriction.

Another teacher was fired from a Catholic school this week. Ken Bencomo was fired from St. Lucy's Priory High School after he married his partner.  This happened, of course, a few days after Pope Francis uttered those immortal words, "Who am I to judge?"

A church in Wisconsin has told a boy scout troop that they should find another place to meet if they are intending to include gay scouts. This is after the Boy Scouts of America announced that they would no longer ban openly gay members from participating in scouting.

In Albuquerque, N.M. an unusual funeral was held when a group led by Deacon Pablo Lefebre buried the cremated remains of 87 county residents, most of them unclaimed or unidentified indigents, and those whose families were too poor to afford a proper burial. The headstone reads "We grow afraid of what we might forget. We will find peace and value through community in knowing that we belong to each other."

In eastern Missouri earlier this week, a teenage girl was trapped in a car following what "should have been" a fatal accident. At one point, a grey-haired priest showed up and prayed with her. But then he disappeared. Some say he was an angel. Whoever he was, everyone on the scene wanted to extend their thanks to him.

That's it for now! What happened this week in your corner?