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OSV News Showcase | April 19, 2024

One of the rosette windows of Notre Dame Cathedral is seen as reconstruction work at the iconic Paris cathedral entered its last phase as the world observed the fifth anniversary of the April 15, 2019, blaze that caused the spire to collapse inside the cathedral. Notre Dame is scheduled to reopen Dec. 8, to be followed by six months of celebrations, Masses, pilgrimages, prayers and exhibitions. (OSV News photo/Charlene Yves)

Five years ago, on April 15, flames engulfed Notre Dame Cathedral. 

It had long been on my bucket list of places to visit. I remember watching online videos of the fire burning and finding a virtual tour of the building, mourning the loss of this edifice of faith, history, art and culture.

Happily, Notre Dame Cathedral will reopen later this year on December 8 — recently the Archbishop of Paris shared what that would look like, declaring it will be “six months of celebration and praise.”

But being a simple soul, something the cathedral’s rector said in an interview struck me even more so than the joy of this treasured building’s resurrection. He said: “Today, I am not interested in commemorating five years since the fire. What I am really looking forward to is getting everything in place that will allow us to celebrate Masses after the reopening.” 

The building does not the church make, it’s the faith life lived and people in community there. 

I hope our stories this week help inspire you to live your faith joyfully both in the pews and out in the world. Read a selection of OSV News stories below, and in your local Catholic news source.

Megan Marley

Digital Editor

P.S.: Enjoy reading this roundup? Sign up to receive our emails here.

Murdered Polish missionary begins ‘path to sainthood’

Poland’s church is seeking the beatification of a young lay missionary, who was stabbed to death in a bungled robbery shortly after starting work with Catholic nuns at a children’s home in Bolivia in 2017.

Pregnant Workers Fairness Act’s final regulations aim to protect mothers, but accommodate abortion

Final regulations for the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act will grant workers protections for time off and other job accommodations for pregnancy-related medical conditions like miscarriage, stillbirth and lactation — but also for abortion, which was opposed by many of the bill’s supporters.

Why Catholics make the sign of the cross

FAITH FORMATION: “I used to make the sign of the cross casually as a nice gesture for beginning and ending my prayers. More than a decade ago, probably nudged by the Holy Spirit, I began to take it more seriously…I did not think much about it, but after a year I noticed that I seemed to be doing measurably better in my Christian life.”

Encouragement, Eucharistic adoration key to fostering priest vocations, report shows

Personal encouragement and Eucharistic adoration are crucial in fostering vocations to the priesthood, according to data from a newly released report. On April 15, the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University released the 2024 “Survey of Ordinands to the Priesthood,” a report made directly to the Secretariat of Clergy, Consecrated Life and Vocations of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

Catholic bioethicists: Lack of agreement about brain death imperils patients, organ donations

Catholic bioethicists are sounding the alarm about a critical lack of agreement on what constitutes brain death; and the implications for organ donation are “profound,” they said.

Catholic approach to migration seen as a chance to be ‘prophetic’

An April 11 migration conference at The Catholic University of America, “Responding to Changing Realities at the U.S. Border and Beyond,” included four panels with historians and experts with hands-on experience ministering to migrants and a Q&A with Bishop Mark J. Seitz of El Paso, Texas.

New York bill expands hate crime criteria to help protect houses of worship

Legislation in New York state would expand the state’s criteria for a hate crime to include trespassing on houses of worship. 

Is it the devil? Don’t ‘self-diagnose’ — follow the church’s protocols, say experts

FEATURE: What should the faithful do if they, or others in their circle, suspect the presence of the demonic?

Kenyan bishops accuse government of impeding church’s mission in schools and hospitals

Catholic bishops in Kenya have criticized what they see as government interference in schools and hospitals owned by the church, while underlining their right to manage the institutions.

Mexico City is ‘waiting room’ for migrants as they sort out legal situation before heading to border | La Ciudad de México es una ‘sala de espera’ para los migrantes mientras resuelven su situación legal antes de dirigirse a la frontera

An increasing number of migrants are now staying put for long periods in Mexico City as they attempt to get their legal situations sorted out prior to risking crossing the U.S.–Mexico border — where drug cartels target them for kidnapping.

Religious, civic leaders urge calm after second Sydney stabbing declared ‘terrorist attack’

Australian religious and political leaders have called for calm and unity after the attempted murder of an Assyrian Orthodox clergyman at his church’s altar in Sydney’s western suburbs, just days after a separate knife attack claimed six lives in Sydney’s Bondi Junction mall.

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