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Pope Francis requests Roman Catholic priests be given the right to get married

Pope Francis has requested that Roman Catholic priests be given the right to get married. The request applies to priests in Brazil, and is on the agenda for an upcoming synod (church council) in the Amazon region. The controversial move would address the critical shortage of men joining the priesthood


Pope Francis has requested that Roman Catholic priests be given the right to get married.

The request applies to priests in Brazil, and is on the agenda for an upcoming synod (church council) in the Amazon region.

The controversial move would address the critical shortage of men joining the priesthood – but is likely to drive divisions through the church by enraging conservative factions.

A small number of married Roman Catholic priests already exist, including previously married Anglican vicars who have joined the church.

A request to lift the ban on marriage was made by Brazilian bishop Cardinal Claudio Hummes, who reportedly asked the Pope to consider ‘viri probati’, meaning married of great faith, as priests.

Derry priest Father Paddy O’Kane suggested that Pope Francis may move to end celibacy earlier this month, saying there was support amongst the church for the idea.

Fr O’Kane cited Brazilian liberation theologian Leonardo Boff, who said: “The Brazilian bishops, especially the pope’s own personal friend Cardinal Claudio Hummes, have expressly requested Pope Francis to enable married priest in Brazil to return to pastoral ministry.

“I have recently heard that the pope wants to fulfil this request – as an experimental, preliminary phase for the moment confined to Brazil.”

Finish up here: Pope Francis requests Roman Catholic priests be given the right to get married






 

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TERROR ON THE LOOSE – IN BRAZIL’S PRISONS AND BEYOND…

Trail of slaughter in prisons shocks Brazilians as gang war explodes

 

‘Brazil is getting out of control’ warns police investigator after a series of horrific massacres by rival drug gangs sweeps the country’s penitentiaries.


The men on the prison roof laughed as they raised a hand-painted flag emblazoned with the initials of two of Brazil’s most dangerous drug gangs. In the yard below, other gang-members hacked the heads off prisoners from a rival mafia faction and lined them up in a row.

The horrific scenes were filmed on a mobile phone during a jail riot on 1 January in which 56 prisoners were butchered near the Amazon city of Manaus – the first in a string of violent incidents in Brazilian prisons this year.

The next day, four more inmates were killed at another prison in Manaus. Five days later, 33 prisoners died at a prison outside Boa Vista, in Roraima state in the far north of Brazil. Then, early on Sunday morning, four more prisoners were killed in another Manaus jail which had been reopened to accommodate prisoners transferred after the 1 January massacre.

In a country long used to violent crime, the savagery has appalled Brazilians: local media reports have included footage of of dismembered corpses, and messages scrawled in human blood.

Police and prosecutors have warned that a war between rival gangs to control Brazil’s lucrative drug trade has escalated to a new level of brutality – and there are signs that the battle has already moved from the country’s overwhelmed prison system to Rio de Janeiro, where it threatens to destabilise a city already reeling from a rise in violent crime.

“If security agents don’t exercise caution, there is a great chance of a bloody conflict happening all over Brazil,” Josmar Jozino, a journalist who has written extensively about organized crime, wrote on security site Ponte…

Finish reading: Trail of slaughter in prisons shocks Brazilians as gang war explodes | World news | The Guardian






 

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Zika mosquito: thrives in hot weather, hard to wipe out

ZIKA MOSQUITO

…Five things to know about the bug: FIRST IN AFRICA Aedes aegypti is a small, dark, hot weather mosquito with white markings and banded legs. Scientists believe the species originated in Africa, but came to the Americas on slave ships. It’s continued to spread through shipping and airplanes. Now it’s found through much of the world, including cities across the southern United States…

…A CITY DWELLER Aedes aegypti has an unusually cozy relationship with people. While other species thrive in more rural areas, or at least in parks and gardens, this is a domesticated species — sort of a housecat mosquito — accustomed to living in apartment buildings and city centers. It prefers biting people to animals and likes to feed indoors, during daylight hours. It doesn’t venture far. Researchers say it doesn’t travel more than a few hundred yards during its lifetime — usually two to four weeks…

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Zika virus ‘scarier than thought’ says US – BBC News

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The Zika virus is “scarier” than first thought and its impact on the US could be greater than predicted, public health officials have admitted.

A wider range of birth defects has been linked to the virus, said Dr Anne Schuchat of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

And the mosquitoes that carry the virus could travel to more US states than previously thought, she said.

The current Zika outbreak began almost a year ago in Brazil. It has been linked to thousands of birth defects in the Americas…

Read more: It gets worse: Zika virus ‘scarier than thought’ says US – BBC News