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2007 promises a world of busyness for Pope
Dec 26 2006
VATICAN CITY (CNS) -- A new Vatican calendar features photos of Pope Benedict XVI relaxing, but the pope's own agenda for 2007 leaves little time for repose. The Vatican will be a busy place throughout the year, with hundreds of papal meetings, liturgies and other events already scheduled and several documents in the pipeline. The pope will make at least two foreign trips, including his first intercontinental journey, and sometime during the year is likely to name another batch of new cardinals.

Bookstore owners earn spiritual currency
Dec 22 2006
Dolores Orlando of Towson recently walked into the Catholic Corner Bookstore determined to find specific Christmas cards and a statue of St. Joseph, and looked relieved when she spotted the establishment’s owner, Joan Linz. “Joan, I really need your help,” said Ms. Orlando, an Immaculate Conception, Towson, parishioner. The bookshop keeper, a parishioner of St. Ursula in Parkville, assured her longtime customer a shipment of Christmas cards would be arriving later that evening and helped her select a St. Joseph statue for a friend. This is the kind of help on which 50-year-old Ms. Linz thrives, and it is part of her store’s mission to provide fellow Catholics with the tools to become closer to God.

Moving in fast forward: 2006 saw acceleration of Benedict's papacy
Dec 19 2006
The year 2006 saw an acceleration of Pope Benedict XVI's pontificate, highlighted by publication of the pope's first encyclical, four foreign trips and important appointments at the Vatican and around the world. For what was supposed to be a pared-back papacy, it was a busy 12 months.

Kidnappers release two Chaldean Catholic priests in Iraq
Dec 11 2006
The kidnapped rector of the Chaldean Catholic seminary and a kidnapped parish priest in Baghdad, Iraq, have been released. The Rome-based AsiaNews agency reported Dec. 11 the reasons for the priest's abduction and release were still unknown, but it said the rector's health "was fine."

Tradition of Mary's house in Turkey stems from nun's vision
Dec 02 2006
EPHESUS, Turkey (CNS) -- Catholics, Orthodox and Muslims began making pilgrimages to the House of the Virgin Mary near Ephesus only after a bedridden, almost illiterate German nun had a vision of the house's location.

St. Elizabeth educators help special education school in Qatar
Dec 02 2006
Since its founding 45 years ago by the Franciscan Sisters of Baltimore, St. Elizabeth School in Baltimore has developed into one of Maryland’s most respected schools for students with special needs.

St. Wendelin
Oct 21 2006
St. Wendelin was born in Scotland in 554. Although he was born a prince, he gave up his royal life in order to devote his life to God. The saint traveled to Rome in 574 and had an audience with Pope Benedict I. The pontiff advised Wendelin to follow his wish to live a life for God. After this, the saint began to live as a hermit. He tended sheep to earn a living, but he always made sure he had time for prayer. He became abbot of Tholey in 597. St. Wendelin died in 617.

St. John de Brebeuf
Oct 19 2006
St. John de Brebeuf was born in Normandy, France, in 1593. A Jesuit, he traveled to Canada at age 32 to be a missionary on the frontier. The climate was tough, but he did very well; his endurance led to the nickname “Echon,” meaning load bearer. It was difficult for him to learn the Huron language, but he did and eventually wrote a catechism in Huron and a French-Huron dictionary. St. John de Brebeuf named the present-day version of the game lacrosse because the stick resembled a bishop’s crosier. He was tortured and martyred by the Iroquois in 1649. St. John de Brebeuf is patron saint of Canada.

St. Thomas the Apostle
Jul 03 2006
St. Thomas, also known as Doubting Thomas, was an Apostle. He doubted that Christ was truly resurrected until he was able to touch Christ’s wounds. The saint preached in Persia and India. He helped start the church in various places by forming many parishes and building churches as he traveled. He was killed in India circa 72. St. Thomas is patron saint against doubt. He is also patron saint of stone masons because he is said to have built a palace for a king of India.

St. Romuald
Jun 19 2006
St. Romuald was born to a noble family in Ravenna, Italy, circa 951. After seeing his father kill a man in a duel, he became a Benedictine monk in Classe, Italy. From 996 to 999 he served as abbot. St. Romuald traveled and started monasteries throughout Italy. He also founded the Camaldolese Benedictines and was a spiritual teacher of St. Wolfgang. He died in 1027 in Italy and his body was later found incorrupt. St. Romuald was canonized by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582.