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NEWS
July 9, 2014 | By Laura McCrystal, Inquirer Staff Writer
Standing inside his new home in Swarthmore, Jack Abbott admired the Phillies poster being hung above his bed and surveyed the freshly painted room. "I love it," said Abbott, 59. It is his first new home since age 6, when he moved into Don Guanella Village, a facility for developmentally disabled men in Delaware County. Last week, Abbott and seven other men left the campus for a smaller, free-standing home. By July 2015, the Don Guanella Village property will belong to a developer, and its 128 residents will have scattered to about a dozen homes across the region.
NEWS
July 3, 2014 | By Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia has reached an agreement to sell its seven nursing and senior-living facilities for $145 million, officials said Tuesday. It's the biggest deal yet in Archbishop Charles J. Chaput's effort to fill deep financial gaps caused by years of overspending and mismanagement. The buyer, Center Management Group, is a privately held for-profit company in Flushing, N.Y. Center Management owns and operates 15 nursing homes in New York and New Jersey, including two former Catholic homes in Brooklyn, archdiocesan officials said.
NEWS
July 1, 2014 | By Laura McCrystal, Inquirer Staff Writer
At the Church of the Holy Spirit in South Philadelphia on Sunday morning, scenes from the last five decades replayed in Barbara Diana's mind. She saw the baptisms of her three children. She saw her son playing the part of Joseph in the children's Christmas pageant. She saw her daughter weeping at graduation from Holy Spirit School, distraught by the idea of leaving her friends for high school. Diana said she can now relate to how her daughter felt that day. She, too, cried from a pew as her parish celebrated its last Mass before merging with a nearby parish.
NEWS
June 29, 2014 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
A FEDERAL appeals court yesterday issued an order enabling the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to temporarily avoid being forced to provide insurance coverage for contraceptives. The order followed an appeal Thursday by the Archdiocese of a federal judge's decision denying a preliminary injunction to block enforcement of parts of the Affordable Care Act. In his order yesterday, Third Circuit Judge D. Brooks Smith wrote that both sides must say what impact two U.S. Supreme Court decisions expected Monday will have on the Philadelphia case.
NEWS
June 19, 2014 | By Laura McCrystal, Inquirer Staff Writer
Five Catholic churches slated to close at the end of the month, together totaling more than 13,000 parishioners, have filed appeals with Archbishop Charles J. Chaput. Though their chances of winning are minimal, and the process is costly and lengthy, some parishes already are preparing for a second step: sending their cases to Rome. Any appeals will not delay parish mergers, set to take effect July 1. So, as they prepare to shut their doors, a few parishes are also hiring lawyers familiar with church law, holding meetings, and raising money.
NEWS
June 14, 2014 | By Jeremy Roebuck, Inquirer Staff Writer
A former social worker and three employees of a residential-care facility for the disabled have been charged with selling the identities of children in their care to help others cheat on their taxes - a scheme U.S. Attorney Zane David Memeger described Thursday as "truly despicable. " Federal prosecutors unsealed an indictment accusing Gebah Kamara, 46, of Sharon Hill, of stealing personal information from several foster children he encountered while working for Catholic Social Services, the charitable wing of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.
NEWS
June 3, 2014
ISSUE | LEWIS KATZ Inspiration from a life lived fully What a wonderful triumph when only last week the turmoil over ownership of The Inquirer was resolved with the outcome of the auction ("Katz never forgot his roots," June 2). Finally, we could look forward to once again enjoying the wonderful gift that the paper provides to our daily lives. Then we had to accept the news of the tremendous tragedy of the death of co-owner Lewis Katz and his friends. How cruelly ironic. Life offers no guarantees, but Katz used what time he had to make life better for all of us. We should strive to do the same in his memory.
NEWS
June 3, 2014 | BY PATRICIA MADEJ, Daily News Staff Writer madejp@phillynews.com, 215-854-5938
THE HOLY SPIRIT Parish complex at 18th and Hartranft streets in Packer Park was founded 50 years ago this week, and Gina Falgiatore was on the groundbreaking crew a year later. Her husband dug one of the first holes, and when he took his shovel home, he painted it gold and tied a bow around it as a sign of accomplishment and his love for the parish. Yesterday, Falgiatore, 83, stood crying in the pews. Longtime friends and fellow parishioners helped wipe away her tears. At morning Mass, the Rev. Mark Kunigonis had just announced what many had been expecting.
NEWS
June 2, 2014 | BY VINNY VELLA, Daily News Staff Writer vellav@phillynews.com, 215-854-2513
AFTER HEALTHY discussion, the city's Catholic high school teachers have ratified a new labor agreement, one in which health played a crucial role. The Association of Catholic Teachers and the Archdiocese announced the ratification yesterday - much earlier than usual. "We tried to approach it this year with a very different attitude than in years past, to get it done for kids and parents before summer break," said Chris Mominey, chief operating officer for the Archdiocese. "We're trying to show people that both sides are approaching this from a new mind-set of innovation and growth, and not getting distracted by dragging this along through summer.
NEWS
June 2, 2014 | By Harold Brubaker, Ben Finley, and Erin McCarthy, Inquirer Staff Writers
Merging one parish into another is "like someone dying or losing a child," Father Salvatore Pronesti said during Saturday afternoon Mass at Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Bridgeport. "A mother, actually," he continued, referring to the namesake of the Montgomery County parish he has led for 20 years, only to see it become part of Sacred Heart Parish in Swedesburg. Still, he hopes for the best. "You must pull together and try to form this united parish," Pronesti said. "It's critical for our spiritual lives.
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