Pope Declares Swedish Nun a Saint

Maria Elisabeth Hesselblad helped hide Jewish families in her convent during the German occupation of Rome.

CHR Comment: Hesselblad was baptized as a Lutheran in Sweden, converted to Catholicism in New York, helped to found the Bridgettine Order in Rome, and hid at least a dozen Jews in her convent during the Holocaust. She was truly an interesting person, the first Swedish saint in over 600 years.

Source: Pope Declares Swedish Nun Who Sheltered Jews During The Holocaust A Saint

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Baby Left in Manger in New York Church

A mother who left her newborn baby in a manger in a nativity scene in a New York church has been found and will not be charged, officials say.

CHR Comment: New York has a law that allows babies to be left at churches anonymously. However, the mother was supposed to present the child to someone rather than leave it in the manger of a nativity scene. This story illustrates the long standing role of churches as havens of mercy.

Source: New York nativity baby: Mother found and will not be charged – BBC News

How New Yorkers and Parisians Reacted Differently to Attacks on Their City

One priest who helped victims of the Paris attacks remembers his own experience helping communities in New York after 9/11.

CHR Comment: Rev. Jean-Christophe Bieselaar was a priest serving in New York City in 2001 and currently serves as a chaplain in Paris. He describes how Americans look to the Lord as a refuge in times of crisis whereas the French tend to ask why God allows terrible things to happen. New York churches were full in 2001, with people standing in line to enter. Church attendance in Paris has jumped but the response is not nearly as great as was seen in New York.

Source: How New Yorkers and Parisians reacted differently to attacks on their city | Public Radio International