Count slowly to five. Do it again, and again. Every time you recite the
numbers, a child somewhere in the world has died of hunger. Despite billions
spent on food aid, one child is lost every five seconds from hunger and
hunger-related causes, according to the United Nations World Food Program --
some 18,000 children every day. Further, one in seven people in the world is
hungry and one in three children underweight. These sobering statistics derive
from war, droughts, crop failures, poor governmental decisions, poverty and
The facts on hunger
Big agribusiness and shipping companies profit from food aid
Large U.S. agribusiness companies get the bulk of the benefits from food
aid policies, according to food aid expert Sophia Murphy. Because of the
ways the laws are written, there are only a handful of agricultural companies
that can source these foods. And because of these requirements and specific
requests -- like this food must be able to leave from this port on this day --
the government usually pays a bit more than the market price to buy
Soaring food prices imperil aid
Further complicating the world hunger problem, soaring food prices,
driven in part by demand for ethanol made from corn, have helped slash the
amount of food aid the U.S. government buys to its lowest level in a decade,
possibly resulting in more hungry people around the word. According to an Oct.
2 New York Times article, the United States has purchased less than half
the amount of food aid this year than it did in 2000, according to new data
from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Nigerian diplomat intervenes on behalf of fearful Burmese
Inter Press Service
Nights are no more the same for the 45-year-old
Buddhist monk who lives in a monastery in the Myay Ni Gone area, close to the
heart of this dilapidated city. Nor is sleep.
Dutch priests endorse right of laity to choose presiders
Dutch Dominican priests are proposing a bold solution to the priest
shortage in the Netherlands: Have the laity select leaders from their own faith
communities and designate them as the official presiders at Mass.
During his contentious U.N. visit, Christian peace denomination
invite Iranian president to meet and talk.
After nearly 300 murders in Philadelphia this year, a coalition of
media, civic and community leaders, and law enforcement officials is asking for
volunteers to help patrol the neighborhoods with the worst violence. They are
calling for an end to the bloodshed and trying to reach out to those more
inclined to squeeze a trigger than talk to solve a dispute.
On the fourth floor of the North Carolina State University student
center, Jeremy Scahill steps up to the podium and, for the next 45 minutes,
theres barely a pause in his rapid-fire remarks.
Peace churches in the breach
The Mennonite Central Committee and the American
Friends Service Committee, agencies of two small, traditional peace churches,
are to be commended for injecting an intelligent Christian approach to the
growing tensions between the United States and Iran. The two agencies organized
a religious dialogue with Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at a chapel
across the street from the United Nations.
We cant flog him. We cant incarcerate him.
Thats up to the Justice Department.
-- Erik Prince of the Blackwater security firm telling a congressional
committee that as a private company Blackwater was limited in how it could deal
with an employee who killed a bodyguard for the Iraqi vice president. We
fired him and fined him, Prince said.
Faith and politics
Energetic champion for the disabled
Proving the power of the Israel lobby
In the few weeks since it was published, the best-selling book
The Israel Lobby by Harvard Professor Stephen M. Walt and Chicago
University Professor John J. Mearsheimer has caused a furor as columnists and
reviewers rush to prove their pro-Israel credentials. Ironically, one of the
major contentions that has been most frequently attacked is that the Israel
lobby has a disproportionate amount of influence in the media and in American
Churches urged to skip Sunday service, worship through action
Religion News Service
Jim Yelvington decided he would do something different with the launch
of his new church in San Juan Capistrano, Calif. -- cancel Sunday worship
'In God We Trust' remains on coins
Did you get the e-mail from concerned Christians urging a boycott of the
new $1 U.S. president coins? The e-mails have been circulating widely since
early this year when the coins became available. The e-mail campaigners say
they want to force the coins out of circulation because they arent
inscribed with In God We Trust.
Georgetown law school reverses funding rule
Reversing a policy set in place less than six months ago, Georgetown
Universitys law school will allow a student-run organization, the Equal
Justice Foundation, to fund internships for students at organizations that
promote abortion rights.
FROM THE EDITOR'S DESK
The essential Catholic 'stuff'
One of the attractions Catholicism holds for those teetering on leaving
or maybe investigating joining the community, Im convinced, is what I
like to call Catholic stuff.
Christopher de Vinck
I woke up this morning with a vague notion of regret, recognizing that I
am limited in my choices, annoyed that the carpenter bees are still embedded in
the eaves of my house, and remembering what it was like to be 23 years old.
Raymond A. Schroth
One thousand veterans of World War II die every day. When I grew up in
Trenton, N. J., there were still veterans of the Civil War who marched in the
Armistice Day parade.
'Across the Universe' celebrates the
1960s; 'In the Valley of Elah' is an anti-Iraq war drama.
A therapist's view of the Sacred Heart
Poetry October 12, 2007
Letters for October 12, 2007
Classifieds for October 12, 2007
News Briefs for October 12, 2007
People for October 12, 2007
A memorable quote from this