Parish roundup: Portland homelessness; cry rooms; IDs for immigrants

by Peter Feuerherd

Portland, Oregon, is known for its vibrant cafes, environmental consciousness, and being a haven for former Californians tired of the Silicon Valley grind. It has an underside as well. Many of its neighborhoods are overwhelmed by homelessness. Catholics are exploring ways to help. One suggestion: Bring an extra sandwich to work each day to share with a desperate person.

Parishioners in Amsterdam, New York, mourn those killed by a limousine accident that ended 20 young lives.

Bishop Michael Barber of Oakland, California, says “we have nothing to hide” regarding sex abuse.

Some Catholics in Pennsylvania have had enough. They describe why they have left the church, with a number ending up in Episcopal and Unitarian congregations.

Jesus said to let the children come to him. So why do parishes isolate them in cry rooms?

Pennsylvania parish copes with fallout from that state’s scathing grand jury report on church sex abuse while adjusting to a reconfiguration of the parish in the Pittsburgh Diocese.

Old-time devotions make a comeback in Philadelphia.

Students at campus parishes at the University of Texas respond to the new emphasis on abuse protection.

What does an undocumented immigrant who is a victim of crime do? How can she relate to a police request for identification? A program in Baltimore provides identification cards for immigrants through Catholic parishes. The cards are unofficial, but still helpful