Unlikely missionary credits God for her inspiration

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Lorraine Shelstad’s plan to study at Bible college in Toronto for a year turned into a nearly 20 years of mission work in Thai hospitals.    Photo by Agnieszka Krawczynski

Lorraine Shelstad was a prairie girl on her first trip to the big city, starting what was supposed to be a year of Bible study in Toronto.

The only child of a Catholic mother and a Lutheran father who rarely went to church, Shelstad wanted to know more about her parents’ beliefs. “I didn’t know all the Bible verses you’re supposed to use to witness to people, so I thought I should go to Bible college,” she said simply.  More from the Catholic Register>>>

A sickly college dropout may become the 1st Puerto Rican saint

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Blessed Carlos Manuel Rodriguez Santiago already had in his heart what the Holy Spirit would inspire in Vatican II.  More from Aleteia>>>

Pope Francis creates new category for beatification: oblatio vitae

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Pope Francis issued an Apostolic Letter motu proprio on Tuesday, by which he created a new category, distinct from martyrdom, under which a Servant of God may be declared Blessed: oblatio vitae, or “the free offering (i.e. “oblation”) of [one’s] life”.  More from the Vatican News Service>>>

Celebrating St Benedict of Nursia

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The facade of the Basilica of St Benedict of Norcia, in the town of Norcia, Italy – ANSA

To celebrate the day the Church remembers Benedict of Nursia on July 11th we shine the spotlight on the figure of this great saint.  More from the Vatican Radio>>>

He was an opium addict who couldn’t receive the sacraments. But he’s a martyr and a saint

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Wikipedia | CC

St. Mark Ji Tianxiang couldn’t stay sober, but he could keep showing up.  St. Mark Ji Tianxiang was an opium addict. Not had been an opium addict. He was an opium addict at the time of his death.  More from Aleteia>>>

Pope at Angelus: Find true rest in the Lord

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Pope Francis giving the Angelus address (file photo)

“Come to me, all you who are weary and are burdened, and I will give you rest.”

This passage, from the day’s Gospel reading, was the starting point for Pope Francis’ reflections ahead of the Sunday Angelus.  More from the Vatican Radio>>>

Vatican calls on bishops to prevent Eucharistic abuse in their dioceses

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Credit: Flickr Saint Joseph (CC-BY-NC-ND-2.0)

In a new letter to bishops, the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments denounced abuses against the Eucharist and “lack of respect in the sacred sphere,” and reiterated existing norms regarding the Eucharist at Mass.  More from the Catholic News Agency>>>

Aquila and Priscilla, the Husband and Wife Who Helped St. Paul

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St. Paul at the house of Aquila and his wife Priscilla. The family makes tents as St. Paul writes at the desk. (Engraving by J. Sadeler after Jodocus Winghe. CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

It’s a little tricky to get to know the sainted married couple Aquila and Priscilla (who is also known as Prisca), for their small stories are scattered about within the New Testament and a challenge to link together. But, a little connecting of dots can help create an impressive narrative of these two people and how they influenced the growth of Christianity.  More from the National Catholic Register>>>

Mental health and sinfulness – the Church urgently needs clear teaching

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The Church needs to answer hard questions if it is to really engage with mental illness  Mental health is one of the great social issues of our time. It is estimated that as many as one in four British adults will be diagnosed with a mental illness during their lifetime. That’s aside from the scale of mental health issues that are not simply medical. More from the Catholic Herald>>>

Fresh Hopes for Charlie Gard

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Charlie Gard with his parents Connie Yates and Chris Gard. (The Sun)

New York hospital offers to ship experimental drug to help the critically ill 11-month old baby; Italian medical association rejects court rulings opposed to treatment, saying it is a consequence of a mental attitude “polluting the roots of medical practice.”  More from the National Catholic Register>>>