Munich archdiocese sees record 10,000 Catholics formally leave Church (CNA) The Munich archdiocese saw 10,744 people renounce their membership in the Catholic Church last year. The exodus set a new high for the archdiocese, which has seen the number of departing Catholics increase steadily each year. By formally leaving the Church, Germans can avoid the income-tax surcharge that is applied to registered Catholics. This “church tax” has allowed the Catholic Church in Germany to enjoy rising revenue despite shrinking membership. Munich’s Cardinal Reinhard Marx is a member of the Pope’s Council of Cardinals.
Philippine bishops, religious superiors divest from coal (UCANews) “We believe that coal, the dirtiest of all fossil fuels and the single biggest contributor to the climate emergency, goes against everything that the Church stands for … especially the preservation of the life and dignity of the human person and the care for God’s creation,” said the signatories.
Australian archbishop protests double standard on church openings (SBS) Archbishop Anthony Fisher of Sydney has protested emergency regulations that allow only 10 people at a time to enter a church, criticizing “double standards being applied to people of faith.” The archbishop pointed out: “Currently the bus that stops outside my cathedral can have more people inside it than my cathedral can.” He encouraged support for a petition asking for a change in the restrictions.
Pittsburgh diocese to consolidate more parishes (Crux) The Pittsburgh diocese has revealed new plans to consolidate parishes, merging 61 existing parishes into 15 communities. Bishop Davis Zubik said that the plan will allow “more effective ministry by addressing financial needs, sharing resources, and allowing your clergy to focus on the spiritual work for which they were ordained.” This is the second restructuring in less than a year, bringing the total number of parishes in the Pittsburgh diocese down from 170 to 106.
Founder of K of C cleared for beatification (Vatican News) The Congregation for the Causes of Saints has acknowledged a miracle through the intercession of Father Michael McGivney, the founder of the Knights of Columbus, thus fulfilling the requirements for his beatification. In decrees issued on May 27, the Vatican also recognized miracles attributed to Blessed Charles de Foucauld, the French hermit who died as a martyr in Algeria, who is now eligible for canonization; and Pauline-Marie Jaricot, founder of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, who is cleared for beatification. The Congregation also recognized the martyrdom of Cosma Spessotto, a Franciscan priest killed in El Salvador in 1980.
Oklahoma governor signs pro-life health coverage act (Washington Times) The Nondiscrimination in Health Care Coverage Act, drafted by pro-life advocates, “prohibits use of Quality-Adjusted Life Years (QALYs) as a measure of whether a health-care service should be covered by insurance or other health reimbursement,” according to the National Right to Life News. “Under a QALY system, the lives of persons with disabilities are deemed less valuable.”
Study examines decline in American religiosity (American Enterprise Institute) “The present decline is striking in its speed and uniformity across different measures of religiosity,” writes Lyman Stone of the American Enterprise Institute. “But a longer historical perspective suggests some caution in making overbold statements about what such a decline might portend. At the dawn of the American republic in the 1780s, probably just a third of Americans were members in any religious body, and just a fifth could be found at church on a given Sunday. This was a historic low ebb in American religiosity.”
Maryland county bans Catholic Mass (CNA) In Maryland’s Howard County, a new regulation—issued by the county’s executive—bans “consumption of food or beverage of any kind before, during, or after religious services, including food or beverage that would typically be consumed as part of a religious service.” The regulation effectively bans celebration of the Mass.