Who gets to unplug the pope?


(RNS) — In a recent column, I made the fairly obvious point that Pope Francis, an 84-year-old man, wasn’t going to be with us forever. The response made it obvious that many Catholics and others hadn’t thought much about this evident fact, and prompted another, less obvious — but more urgent — point: Church law … Read more

Clergy among advocates suing Texas over new law deputizing citizens to enforce abortion ban


(RNS) — As an interfaith minister, the Rev. Erika Forbes guides people contemplating abortion. She said she doesn’t tell women what they should or shouldn’t do, instead she listens and reflects to help them make their own decision. “It is critical that clergy provide a safe space for a woman to come and discuss her … Read more

Will those suffering late-stage dementia be the next to be called less than human?


(RNS) — When do we stop counting an individual as one of “us”? Us the living? It’s becomes a pressing question in recent years as the intellectual and moral foundations that secure vulnerable populations of human beings their fundamental human rights are undermined. Currents in medicine and medical ethics have been influenced by the wider … Read more

She lost her husband in a beach accident. Her book tackles what it takes to heal.


RALEIGH, N.C. (RNS) — A dozen red roses in their clear cellophane wrapper were perched in a glass vase on Shannon Dingle’s kitchen counter, an indulgence she bought for herself earlier in the week as a way of coping with the grief for her husband, Lee, who used to buy them for her. Life is … Read more

Dr. Anthony Fauci named 2021 Humanist of the Year


(RNS) — The American Humanist Association announced Thursday (July 1) that Dr. Anthony S. Fauci is its 2021 Humanist of the Year. Fauci is chief medical adviser to President Joe Biden and has been director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the U.S. National Institutes of Health since 1984. Fauci played … Read more