Friday, November 23, 2007


NETWORK is a progressive voice within the Catholic community that has been influencing Congress in favor of peace and justice for more than 30 years. Through lobbying and legislative advocacy, we strive to close the gap between rich and poor and to dismantle policies rooted in racism, greed and violence.

NETWORK’s membership, which includes both individuals and organizations, represents more than 100,000 people. This vast constituency is committed and active. When our national office puts out the word that Congress needs to hear from our members on critical legislation, our members respond by calling, writing, emailing or visiting their Senators and Representatives, and by mobilizing others to take action as well.

Since our founding in 1971 by 47 Catholic sisters, NETWORK has been faithfully answering the Gospel call to act for justice. Albany Catholic is a member and we invite you to join us in support of this worthwhile endeavor:

The NETWORK Legislative Update is on recess this week, but I wanted to take a moment to thank you for your support, and let you know about an opportunity to help NETWORK continue to provide Legislative Updates and the Legislative Action Center on our web site.

Last week, one of our dear NETWORK supporters offered us a matching grant if we could raise $10,000 from our Legislative Update subscribers by the end of this year. We don't want to pass up this opportunity and I'm hopeful that you won't either. We're now open for online donations at our new secure donation page here. Any contribution you can make will be worth twice as much because of the matching grant.

As you know, NETWORK would not exist without our members and friends who support our advocacy. When you get our Legislative Update and respond to our requests to contact your members of Congress, you help our lobbying efforts enormously by being a constituent lobbyist. We really appreciate that. We also appreciate any financial contribution you can make to help with the costs of providing our online advocacy tools.

We can get matching funds for any donation you make now -- up to $10,000. I think we can do this! You can use your credit card and donate online or send a check to:

NETWORK Legislative Update
25 E St. NW
Suite 200
Washington DC 20001.

Thank you for all of your support - I hope you have a good Thanksgiving holiday.
Jean Sammon
NETWORK Organizer

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Stem cell breakthrough

The New York State Catholic Conference hailed the breakthrough announced by stem cell researchers from Wisconsin and Japan that allows the creation of embryonic-like stem cells by reprogramming mature human cells, rather than destroying human embryos. The Conference urged the state government to pursue this research with the public funds earmarked in the New York State budget for stem cell research. Kathleen M. Gallagher, director of pro-life activities for the Catholic Conference, said:
Today marks the dawn of a new age for ethical scientific research and discovery. This breakthrough announced in two scientific journals appears to solve the ethical dilemmas of embryonic stem cell research and human cloning by eliminating the need for them. Instead, by simply adding four genes to an existing skin cell, the cell can be reprogrammed as a ‘pluripotent’ stem cell. The process appears to be easier, more cost efficient, scientifically promising and morally untroubling.

The entire statement is available here.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

The Social Agenda

The Social Agenda, A Collection of Magisterial Texts is a publication of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and available on-line here. The late Cardinal Francois Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan, the former President Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace and author of the forward, notes:
Students, teachers, and all those who seek a better knowledge of the social doctrine of the Church will find contained within this collection the central statements of the Roman Pontiffs from a range of texts, including papal encyclicals, apostolic letters, and Conciliar documents, on matters relating to politics, economics, and culture.

The selections are arranged thematically according to the significant subject areas of Catholic social doctrine. Under each subject heading, the quotations appear in pedagogical—as opposed to chronological or magisterial—order, with each subject area opening with a quotation that explains the issue at hand.

Albany Catholic recommends that you bookmark this one.