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Posted on 05/23/2018 03:30 AM (CNA Daily News)
New York City, N.Y., May 22, 2018 / 08:30 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The Archbishop of New York said Tuesday that while some recent comments about homosexuality attributed to Pope Francis are “orthodox teaching,” the pope's reported remarks could require clarification.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan affirmed the pope’s recent affirmation of God’s love for a gay man with whom the pontiff visited in Rome, saying: “Jesus would have said that, and so would I. That’s conservative, traditional, Catholic, orthodox teaching. The ‘Catechism’ insists on that.”
“While any sexual expression outside of a man and woman in marriage is contrary to God's purpose, so is not treating anyone, including a gay person, with anything less than dignity and respect,” Dolan added, speaking May 22 during his weekly radio show on Sirius XM’s The Catholic Channel.
“What he says is beautiful, don’t you think?” Dolan asked.
The remarks were a response to questions about Juan Carlos Cruz, a Chilean victim of sexual abuser Fr. Fernando Karadima, who told the Spanish newspaper El Pais on Friday that Pope Francis told him that it did not matter that he was gay.
“He told me ‘Juan Carlos, that you are gay does not matter. God made you like that and he loves you like that and I do not care. The Pope loves you as you are, you have to be happy with who you are,’" Cruz recalled.
Asked about the most controversial aspect of the Holy Father’s remarks, regarding whether God wills that someone experience same sex attraction, Dolan was circumspect, citing “ongoing debate” among “professional circles.”
“Is one born that way, or is it - is it nature or nurture?... I don't think the Holy Father would feel competent to speak on that.”
Dolan noted that while he had no reason to doubt Cruz’s account, the pope’s reported remarks were “third hand: what the pope said to him, he said to the press, so one would want to get a clarification.”
He said his remarks were qualified by “a little bit of ‘wait and see’” adding “let’s find out exactly what the Holy Father said.”
Posted on 05/22/2018 23:22 PM (CNA Daily News)
Washington D.C., May 22, 2018 / 04:22 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Sexual attraction does not define identity, a priest has said, after comments attributed to Pope Francis have prompted questions about Catholic doctrine and the nature of sexual orientation.
“Of course God loves all people. This is his defining characteristic: God is love,” Fr. Thomas Petri, OP, told CNA.
“But he does not love sin, indeed he cannot love sin because sin is not only opposed to God but also opposed to the true good and happiness to which he calls every human person.”
“So while [God] may love every person, he does not love the things we do that separate us from him and harm our dignity as his children,” added Petri, academic dean of the Dominican-run Pontifical Faculty of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC.
On Friday, Juan Carlos Cruz, a Chilean victim of sexual abuser Fr. Fernando Karadima, told the Spanish newspaper El Pais that Pope Francis told him that it did not matter that he was gay.
He said the pope told him, “God made you like that and he loves you like that and I do not care.”
The comments have stirred a controversy about Catholic doctrine on homosexuality, with some media outlets reporting them as a “major shift” in Catholic teaching.
The Vatican does not customarily comment on private conversations involving the pope, and has not confirmed or clarified the remarks Cruz attributed to Pope Francis.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church states that “deep-seated” homosexual inclination is "objectively disordered," but that people with homosexual tendencies “must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.”
“Inasmuch as all of us has proclivities and disordered desires in our lives, we must be always be vigilant against temptation and repent when we fall,” Petri told CNA.
Furthermore, he added, it is “dangerous” to assert that God made anything that is sinful or causes suffering, including disordered desires, addictions, or diseases such as cancer.
Things that are not good cannot come from a God who is all good, Petri noted, although it is ultimately a mystery why God permits sin and disorder to exist in this life.
“The relationship of God’s almighty will and his infinite goodness to the disorder, sin, violence, and evil we experience in this life is question the Catechism of the Catholic Church says is ‘as pressing as it is unavoidable and as painful as it is mysterious,’” he said.
“What we know,” he added, “is that nothing escapes the providence of God, even disorders, pathologies, sin, and evil. In a very poignant section on providence and the scandal of evil, the Catechism points to the fact that God has created the world and humanity in a state of journeying. Nothing is perfect and so disorders exist.”
However, we can be confident that God works to bring good from the consequences of disorder and evil, “even those who struggle with disordered desires can, by God’s grace, come to embrace their call to be his children and to live in the dignity to which he has called them, even as they may suffer temptation.”
“In fact, it can be in the face of temptation that a person’s reliance on God becomes all the more strong,” he noted.
In his pastoral experience with people who have same-sex attractions, Petri said some have a harder time believing in God’s love than others.
He added that he has found it useful to compare disordered sexual desires to other disordered desires people experience, whether in relation to food, drink, or other things.
Petri noted that confusion sometimes stems from “the tendency to treat [homosexuality] as an identifying trait of the person, as though it is somehow fixed as an ultimate reality for a person,” Petri said.
“It’s not. The identifying trait of each us is that we are loved by God and children of God. Everything else revolves around that.”
“Attractions, sexual or otherwise, are complicated. They come and go, can alternate and shift, and can often be fickle. Our dignity as human beings is that with grace we are called to become masters of our desires and not servants to them.”
Posted on 05/22/2018 22:16 PM (CNA Daily News)
Los Angeles, Calif., May 22, 2018 / 03:16 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Archbishop José Gomez of Los Angeles is asking Catholics in the archdiocese to contact their representatives urging a vote on bipartisan legislation to address the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
“The Dreamers have been waiting for decades for Congress to do its job and pass immigration reform legislation,” said Gomez in a May 19 statement. “But for many years now, reform has been blocked in the House for political reasons by a minority of lawmakers.”
“This is not about Republicans or Democrats,” the archbishop said, noting that more than 75 percent of Americans support offering permanent legal status to DACA recipients. “It is about right and wrong. People’s lives are in the balance.”
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals was an executive action created by President Barack Obama that granted protection from deportation as well as job permits to people who were brought to the United States illegally as children. DACA recipients, also known as “Dreamers,” have to register each year with the program.
In September of 2017, President Donald Trump moved to end DACA, saying that he did not believe he had the executive power to continue the program. Initially, Trump gave Congress six months to codify parts of DACA into law and to create a solution to this issue, but a solution was not reached by the March 5 deadline.
Two federal judges blocked the March 5 expiration date for DACA, and the Supreme Court declined to hear an immediate review from the Trump administration protesting this decision, moving the “deadline” to the fall of 2018.
A federal judge ruled in April that DACA must be kept and begin to accept new applications.
Lawmakers in Congress have been unable to agree on stipulations within a bill, including whether a legislative proposal should include funding for a wall along the southern U.S. border, supported by President Donald Trump.
While several bills have been proposed, none have made it out of committee and onto the House floor for a vote.
One bill in particular, the “Uniting and Securing America (USA) Act of 2018,” has gained the support of the U.S. bishops’ conference. In addition to shielding “Dreamers” from deportation and providing for a path to citizenship for certain qualified persons, the bill – H.R. 4796 – would increase border security and would seek to address corruption in Central America, a major cause of “irregular migration.”
A group of moderate Republicans in Congress has been working to force a vote through a rare procedural tool called a “discharge petition.” If successful, this would bypass the committee stage bring all immigration proposals to the House floor for debate and a vote.
Stressing the need for prayer and action, Archbishop Gomez did not blame a particular political party for the stalled progress on the legislation, instead referring to a “minority of lawmakers.”
He urged Catholics to call their congressmen, to encourage them to come to a solution before time runs out.
“Urge them to do what is right and what the American people want them to do — to allow a vote on DACA.”
Posted on 05/22/2018 21:59 PM (CNA Daily News)
Los Angeles, Calif., May 22, 2018 / 02:59 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- The Archbishop of Los Angeles encouraged Catholics to love the Blessed Virgin Mary as their mother during a Mass commemorating a newly-proclaimed Catholic feast day.
“Jesus wants you to take Mary into your homes – into your lives and into your hearts,” Archbishop José Gomez said May 21, during his homily at LA’s Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels.
Pope Francis added the Memorial of Mary, Mother of the Church to the Roman calendar in February. The feast day will be celebrated annually on the Monday after Pentecost Sunday.
Archbishop Gomez challenged Catholics to receive the Blessed Mother into their homes and hearts.
“Love Mary as your mother! Ask her to be a mother to you and to never leave you! Ask her to intercede for you and help you grow in faith and to do the will of God,” he said.
Gomez said that “when Jesus rose from the dead and ascended into heaven, Mary became the maternal heart of his Church.”
“Mary is still the heart of the Church, the Mother of the family of God. The Mother of Jesus still goes with us, sharing our joys and hopes, helping us in all the challenges of our daily life. She still opens her arms to us with tender love, to give us comfort and guidance.”
Over 3,000 people attended the Mass. Attendees brought to the Mass written prayer intentions, which will be delivered to the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe in Mexico City during an archdiocesan pilgrimage in July.
More than 1,300 Catholic school students, teachers, and chaperones from 22 of the archdiocese’s schools were in attendance. Representatives from each of the 22 schools offered flowers to the Virgin Mary.
The Mass was concelebrated by Bishop Kevin Vann of Orange, Auxiliary Bishop Joseph Brennan of LA, and several priests of the archdiocese.
In honor of the new feast, an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe, blessed by Archbishop Gomez, has been made available to every family in the archdiocese. The gift may be ordered free on AngelusNews.com, the archdiocese’s news site.
Posted on 05/22/2018 21:51 PM (CNA Daily News)
Vatican City, May 22, 2018 / 02:51 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis will meet for three days next month with victims of a Chilean priest who committed sexual abuse as well as abuse of power and conscience, in an effort to respond to the country's clerical sex abuse crisis.
The Holy See press office stated May 22 that Pope Francis will receive a second group of victims of Fr. Fernando Karadima and his followers at the Vatican's Santa Marta guesthouse June 1-3.
The group of nine includes five priests who were victims of abuse of power, conscience, and sexuality; two priests who have been assisting the victims; and two lay people.
Most of those coming to the Vatican participated in Archbishop Charles Scicluna of Malta's investigation of abuse cover-up by the hierarchy in Chile, whick took place in February. The others worked with the investigation after the archbishop's time in Chile.
“With this new meeting, scheduled a month ago, Pope Francis wants to demonstrate his closeness to abused priests, to accompany them in their pain and to listen to their valuable views to improve the current preventive measures and the fight against abuses in the Church,” the Holy See press office said.
The meeting will conclude the pope's first round of meetings with the victims of abuses which occurred at Karadima's Sacred Heart parish in Santiago.
“These priests and lay people represent all the victims of abuses by clerics in Chile, but it is not ruled out that similar initiatives may be repeated in the future.”
The visit will include various meetings “which will take place in an atmosphere of trust and confidentiality.” Pope Francis will say Mass for the group June 2, after which there will be a group meeting, followed by individual conversations.
“The Holy Father continues to ask the faithful of Chile – and especially the faithful of the parishes where these priests carry out their pastoral ministry – to accompany them with prayer and solidarity during these days.”
Francis had met with three more of Karadima's victims, Juan Carlos Cruz, James Hamilton, and Andres Murillo, at the Vatican April 27-30. Cruz, who has same-sex attraction, told a Spanish newspaper May 20 that the pope had told him to accept himself and his attraction, because God made him that way.
Karadima was convicted by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 2011 of abusing minors, and sentenced to a life of prayer and penance. He has not been sentenced by civil courts because of Chile's statue of limitations.
A sacerdotal association which Karadima had led, the Priestly Union of the Sacred Heart, was suppressed within a year of his conviction.
Attention to Karadima's abuse has heightened since the 2015 appointment of Bishop Juan de la Cruz Barros Madrid to the Diocese of Osorno. Barros had been accused of covering up Karadima's abuses.
Pope Francis initially defended Barros, saying he had received no evidence of the bishop's guilt, and called accusations against him “calumny” during a trip to Chile in January. He later relented, and sent Scicluna to investigate the situation in Chile.
After receiving Scicluna's report, Francis apologized, said that he had been seriously mistaken, and asked to meet the country's bishops and more outspoken survivors in person.
He met with Chile's bishops May 15-17. As a result, each of them tendered letters of resignation, which Pope Francis has yet to accept or reject. The pope also gave the bishops a lettter chastising them for systemic cover-up of clerical abuse and calling them to institute deep changes.
On May 19, Bishop Alejandro Goić Karmelić of Rancagua suspended several priests after allegations of sexual misconduct were raised against them. He also apologized for not following up when the accusations were first brought to his attention.
Posted on 05/22/2018 18:09 PM (CNA Daily News)
Adelaide, Australia, May 22, 2018 / 11:09 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Australian Archbishop Philip Wilson has been found guilty of failing to report allegations of child sexual abuse disclosed to him in the 1970s.
The guilty verdict was announced Tuesday by local magistrate Robert Stone.
Currently the head of the Archdiocese of Adelaide, Wilson is the most senior Catholic Church official to be convicted of concealing abuse. The bishop, who has maintained his innocence throughout the trial, could face up to a maximum of two years in jail. It is unknown if he will appeal the verdict.
The sentencing hearing is scheduled for June 19. Archbishop Wilson said in a statement May 22 that he is “obviously disappointed at the decision” and that he will “now have to consider the reasons” and consult with his lawyers to determine the next steps.
The prelate, 67, was convicted of concealing child sexual abuse committed by a fellow parish priest in New South Wales in the 1970s. At the time, Wilson had been ordained a priest for only one year.
The victims of the scandal, Peter Creigh and another altar boy who is unnamed for legal reasons, said they both had told Wilson of their abusive experience with Fr. James Fletcher.
Creigh said that he told Wilson in graphic detail of the abuse in 1976, five years after it had occurred. However, Wilson said the conversation never took place, noting in a court hearing April 11, “I don’t think I would have forgotten that.”
The second victim said he had told Wilson of the abuse in the confessional in 1976, but that Wilson had dismissed the boy with a penance, saying that he was lying. Wilson said he would never tell someone in the confessional that they were untruthful, and that he did not remember having seen the boy at all in 1976.
Fletcher was convicted of nine counts of sexual abuse and was jailed in 2006. He died of a stroke within the year. Wilson said he had no previous suspicions about the integrity of Fletcher’s character.
Wilson also told the court that if he had been notified of the scandal, he would have offered pastoral care to the victims and their families, and reported the event to his superiors.
According to CNN, the archbishop’s legal team argued that in the 1970s, child sex abuse was not understood to be a serious crime that should be reported to authorities.
His legal team had attempted four times to have the case thrown out, including after the archbishop was diagnosed with the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease late last year, but it was denied by magistrate Stone.
Wilson said that his current medication is helping his memory, “although it’s not perfect,” according to the Australian Associated Press.
President of the Australian bishops’ conference, Archbishop Mark Coleridge, said in a statement on the decision May 22 that “the Catholic Church, like other institutions has learned a great deal about the tragedy of child sexual abuse and has implemented stronger programs, policies and procedures to protect children and vulnerable adults.”
“The safety of children and vulnerable adults is paramount for the Church and its ministries.”
The conviction comes less than one week after the Australian bishops announced that the Adelaide archdiocese will host the opening session of the bishop conference’s 2020 plenary council to discuss the future of the Church in Australia.
Posted on 05/22/2018 10:01 AM (CNA Daily News)
Mbandaka, Democratic Republic of the Congo, May 22, 2018 / 03:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- After 26 confirmed deaths have been attributed to the Ebola virus in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Catholic Relief Services has been working to combat the deadly outbreak through educational and financial assistance.
“CRS is helping contain the Ebola outbreak by supporting our local Caritas partners in the affected region,” said Katherine Overcamp, head of programs for CRS in DRC, who is based in Kinshasa.
“Staff and volunteers are promoting accurate and timely information that helps people to take precautions and reduce their risk of contracting or transmitting the virus,” Overcamp told CNA.
The first case of Ebola in the nation was reported May 8 in rural areas of Equateur province near the town of Bikoro. The virus has since spread to Mbandaka, the provincial capital, which lies on the Congo River upstream of Kinshasa, the Congolese capital.
CRS, an international relief agency which provides assistance to people in need in more than 100 countries, has been working with Caritas Mbandaka, both remotely and in Kinshasa during the outbreak.
Caritas Mbandaka has been responding to Ebola by hosting sensitization campaigns to reduce the fear surrounding the virus, while also organizing public messaging with the goal of Ebola education. They also ensure that those with Ebola symptoms seek medical care and testing immediately.
“Ebola is a dangerous disease that can easily slip over national and continental borders. That’s why it’s imperative at this stage to raise awareness about the outbreak in as many communities as we can, as quickly as possible,” Overcamp said.
CRS was also active in responding to previous Ebola outbreaks. During the 2014-16 epidemic in West Africa, CRS worked to fight the outbreak by educating local communities and dispelling myths about the virus.
“CRS played a critical role in minimizing the impact of Ebola on the health systems in Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone following the 2014 outbreak,” Overcamp noted.
“Our partners are extremely valuable in an outbreak because they are embedded in the countries’ most vulnerable and marginalized communities,” she continued, adding, “the same is true here in the DRC.”
The rapid spread of the virus has caused some alarm as to the possibility of a more widespread outbreak, as many cities are connected by river. The World Health Organization has warned that the chances of Ebola spreading within Congo is “very high,” according to the Associated Press.
In an effort to fight the virus, President Joseph Kabila approved an increase in Ebola emergency funds to more than $4 million. Additionally, the nation’s health ministry announced that it would begin administering Ebola vaccines in Mbandaka May 21 in an effort to contain the outbreak.
The vaccine, which is an experimental antidote to the Ebola virus that proved successful during a similar outbreak in West Africa a few years ago, will be administered first to medical staff and those in close contact with patients who are suspected to have the Ebola virus.
More than 4,000 doses of the vaccine are in the country, and it will initially be administered to approximately 600 people in Mbandaka. One of the major challenges surrounding the vaccine will be to keep it in properly cold conditions in the DRC’s tropical climate.
Early diagnosis and treatment is the best solution for patients who have contracted the Ebola virus. Overcamp said that even the initial symptoms, such as fever and nausea, can mimic less serious conditions and people often do not take precautions until it is too late.
Symptoms of Ebola include fever, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle pains and occasional bleeding and is primarily spread through contact with bodily fluids. The disease is fatal in up to 90 percent of cases.
Ebola has currently claimed the lives of 26 people within DRC, with an additional 21 confirmed cases and another 25 suspected patients.
Despite the growing number of Ebola victims within DRC, Overcamp said her past experience has shown her that international collaboration can effectively overcome a dangerous outbreak.
“Our experience with the Ebola outbreak in West African taught us that while the presence of the disease can cause massive damage and even worldwide panic, if the international aid community works together with the government and local partners, there is hope that an outbreak can be stopped in its tracks.”
Posted on 05/22/2018 07:01 AM (CNA Daily News)
Washington D.C., May 22, 2018 / 12:01 am (CNA).- The following are excerpts of remarks delivered by Congressman Chris Smith (R-N.J.) on the House floor May 21, 2018. Published with permission:
Last Friday, the Trump Administration announced its intention to reassert and promulgate portions of President Ronald Reagan’s modest but necessary life-affirming Title X Rule—a policy designed to ensure that taxpayers don’t fund, facilitate or promote abortion in America’s $286 million-per-year family planning program.
This new/old policy comes at a time when huge majorities of Americans—over 60 percent according to major polls—strongly oppose the use of taxpayer funds for abortion.
The Trump/Reagan policy—now called the Protect Life Rule—comes at a time when the high utilization of ultrasound imaging of the child in the womb has provided spectacular clarity and empathy and love for the baby.
First baby pictures today—the kind you put on the door of your refrigerator—are of unborn babies. Seeing is believing. No-one can seriously deny anymore that unborn children are alive, dynamic, precious, a miracle—and defenseless.
Created by Congress in 1970, Title X of the Public Health Service Act authorized taxpayer funds to assist “voluntary family planning projects” but made absolutely clear in the statute that federal funds were prohibited from being spent on “programs where abortion is a method of family planning.”
As Title X was administered, that didn’t happen.
To faithfully implement both the spirit and letter of the law, President Ronald Reagan issued a rule in 1988 that included physical separation of abortion activities from federally-funded family planning projects.
In response, the American abortion industry sued to get hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies—and lost. On May 23, 1991—27 years ago this Wednesday—the U.S. Supreme Court in Rust v. Sullivan affirmed the constitutionality of the Reagan Title X Rule.
Tragically, President Bill Clinton by executive order reversed the Reagan policy. He not only authorized abortion clinics and family planning activities under the same roof—co-location—but went further, mandating that Title X recipients refer for abortion—an egregious violation of conscience rights protected under federal law. Thus, by requiring abortion referrals, family planning service providers who oppose abortion were and are today precluded all participation in the federal program.
Today, hundreds of abortion clinics are co-located as Title X family planning facilities. For example, 266 of Planned Parenthood’s abortion clinics are subsidized by U.S. taxpayers in the Title X program to the tune of about $56 million each year. Planned Parenthood is an organization that is directly responsible for over seven million deaths of unborn children, a staggering loss of children’s lives.
If past is prologue, I fully expect an organized, aggressive, willful distortion of the Protect Life Rule.
Nevertheless, in the spirit of honest debate and civil discourse, I urge opponents and the news media to be clear as to what this rule actually does and does not do.
According to the White House, the new Protect Life Rule:
• Will physically and financially separate family planning clinics from abortion and make other important reforms.
• Will safeguard the conscience rights of providers, by eliminating the egregious, illegal, mandate that requires all participants in the program to refer pregnant women to abortion.
• Will not prohibit counseling that may include conversation about abortion. This would be in keeping with guidance issued by the George H.W. Bush Administration that affirmed “Nothing in these regulations is to prevent a woman from receiving complete medical information about her condition from a physician.”
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, chair of the Committee on Pro-Life Activities summed it up best: “…For too long Title X has been used to subsidize the abortion industry. We need to draw a bright line between what happens before a pregnancy begins and what happens after a child has been created……Abortion always takes the life of a child and often harms the mother, her surviving children and other family and friends as well…”
Posted on 05/22/2018 03:00 AM (CNA Daily News)
Dallas, Texas, May 21, 2018 / 08:00 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- In a legal case that includes allegations of death-hastening drug use and falsified do-not-resuscitate orders, a former hospice executive has admitted speeding the deaths of patients to boost the company’s profits.
The case concerns Novus Health Services in Frisco, a Texas city in the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area. The company’s leaders allegedly worked a scheme that billed Medicaid and Medicare $60 million from 2012-2015, resulting in payments to Novus for over $35 million.
Melanie Murphey, 36, former director of operations for Novus, has pleaded guilty to health care fraud and faces up to 10 years in prison, the Dallas Morning News reports.
She has admitted she worked as the “go-between” for Novus owner Bradley Harris and doctors and nurses. She is expected to testify against Harris, his wife, and 13 other defendants, all of whom have pleaded not guilty.
Federal officials said the scheme also involved kickbacks to referring physicians and health care facilities as well as falsifying and destroying documents to conceal activities from Medicare.
Harris’ attorney Chris Knox challenged Murphey’s testimony, saying “we wholeheartedly disagree with her opinions.”
“We are not aware of any evidence that shows that Mr. Harris caused, hastened or otherwise contributed to the death of the hospice patients being treated by Novus.”
Murphey has said that she defrauded Medicare and Medicaid by billing them for patients who were unqualified for hospice services. She filled out forms as if she were a doctor by using nurse’s notes.
She said she followed orders from Harris, who has no medical training. Patients were admitted to hospice without seeing a doctor first.
When patients stayed at the facility beyond the time they were profitable for the company, court records indicate, Harris ordered them to receive higher doses of “whatever narcotic was being used, generally morphine, Dilaudid or Ativan.” This overmedication was intended “to hasten their deaths,” Murphey said in the court document. Harris has no medical training.
An FBI search warrant says Harris sent a text to a nurse that reads “You need to make this patient go bye-bye,” NBC DFW reports.
Murphey said the falsification of paperwork and of orders not to resuscitate patients was done in order to avoid paying for ambulance trips to a hospital in case a relative called 911.
In a March 2016 statement Novus said: “We have not and would not — ever — willfully harm any patient.”
Posted on 05/22/2018 02:00 AM (CNA Daily News)
Concepción, Chile, May 21, 2018 / 07:00 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- A Catholic “Mobile Mercy Shelter” celebrated its first anniversary in service to the poor and homeless in the city of Concepción, Chile.
The modified bus is an outreach of the Archdiocese of Concepción. Various organizations contributed to the effort from the design of the bus to its completely remodeled interior.
When launched in 2017, Archbishop Fernando Chomali told ACI Prensa, CNA's Spanish language sister agency, that “there are a lot of needy people, that's true, but there are also a lot of people that want to help, who don't want to be idle bystanders in life, but rather make a real commitment to those most in need.”
“The ideal would be that there would be no more need for this, that everyone would have a family where they could live in dignity, but unfortunately this has not happened yet, and so we have to assume our responsibility to work together in the name of Christ,” he said.
Volunteers receive training in tasks which “help Jesus through these people,” according to project coordinator Gustave de Pennart. Four volunteers are required per night, and include a social worker and a nurse's aid.
The bus is usually stationed in Concepción's main square and operates overnight Monday through Saturday. It has four beds, two bathrooms with showers, and offers food and clothing. It also has solar panels to light the bus at night.
To celebrate the May 15 anniversary, volunteers organized a dinner with the people that benefit from the mobile shelter. The event took place in front of Concepción's cathedral, where attendees had a meal, sang “Happy Birthday mobile shelter!” and shared a cake.
So far the mobile shelter has provided 650 overnight stays and served more than 5,000 street people who for various reasons do not want to go to the traditional shelters.
This winter, the mobile shelter added flu shots to its services.
Although there are mobile showers in the United States, and Spain has mobile barber shops, organizers believe the “Mobile Mercy Shelter” is the first of its kind in the world. The project has received the formal blessing of Pope Francis.
This article was originally published by our sister agency, ACI Prensa. It has been translated and adapted by CNA.