First parishioner: Aides and friends of President Obama have been quietly visiting churches in Washington, D.C., to help the first family find a spiritual home. The Obamas are looking for a church whose beliefs match theirs and one that has a youth ministry suitable for their daughters and is active in helping the needy. Security logistics are also a factor (Boston Globe, March 22).
The Vatican’s top bioethics official said the two Brazilian doctors who performed an abortion on a nine-year-old rape victim do not merit excommunication, since they acted to save her life. The statement by Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Academy for Life, appeared as the lead article in the March 15 issue of the official Vatican newspaper L’Osservatore Romano.
The White House’s budget proposal to reduce the tax deduction for charitable giving from 35 percent to 28 percent for wealthy givers “would equalize” the benefit common to all taxpayers who itemize their returns, said President Obama in his March 24 news conference.
Bernard d’Espagnat, a French physicist and philosopher of science whose research has focused on “veiled reality,” has won the 2009 Templeton Prize, believed to be the largest yearly monetary award given to a single individual.