Washington D.C., Aug 2019 / (CNA) - U.S. bishops are calling for prayer and action in the wake of two mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio this weekend. 

“We encourage all Catholics to increased prayer and sacrifice for healing and the end of these shootings,” the bishops wrote in an Aug. 4 statement. “We encourage Catholics to pray and raise their voices for needed changes to our national policy and national culture as well.”

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Vatican City, July 2019 /(CNA) - Pope Francis recalled the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, encouraging Catholics and other Christians to look to that great event for inspiration to overcome injustices and mistreatment of the weak.

“Fifty years ago yesterday man set foot on the moon, realizing an extraordinary dream,” the pope said July 21. “May the memory of that great step for humanity ignite the desire to progress together towards even greater goals: more dignity for the weak, more justice among peoples, more future for our common home.”

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Refugee crisisEl Paso, Texas, July 2019 /(CNA) - A Catholic aid agency in El Paso, Texas, has closed a temporary shelter for migrants and asylum seekers released from federal custody, as more asylum seekers are required to wait in Mexico for court dates, and after concerns have been raised about the detention conditions of would-be migrants in government custody.

Fernando Ceniceros, the communications specialist for the Diocese of El Paso, told CNA that changes in border patrol policy have likely led to the decrease in migrants entering the United States at El Paso, but the humanitarian crisis is no less severe— the difference is that many would-be migrants in need of aid are required to remain in Mexico, rather than crossing the border.

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