Morning Catholic must-reads: 22/05/12

Latin Patriarch Fouad Twal of Jerusalem (CNS)

The Holy Land is suffering from a “human haemorrhage” of Christians, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem has said during a visit to southern Italy.

The University of Notre Dame and 42 other Catholic dioceses and institutions in America have filed lawsuits in federal courts challenging the Obama administration’s contraception mandate (full text of message from Notre Dame president Fr John Jenkins).

Bishop Bernard Fellay, superior general of the Society of St Pius X, has said that it is still not clear that the Holy See will give the SSPX “assurances that we can continue to do what we have been doing so far“.

William Doino argues that St Francis of Assisi was no “modern-day pacifist, liberation theologian, feminist or environmentalist”.

Christopher Vogt says that the Vatican’s doctrinal assessment of the American Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) raises “deeper questions about the nature and role of conscience”.

And Mennonite Julia Smucker explains why she became a Catholic.