A few interesting Catholic news stories from around the Web:
First, the pope met behind closed doors with 100 cardinals to discuss both sexual abuse by priests and religious freedom around the world:
The meeting is taking place on the eve of a ceremony known as a consistory at which the pope will create 24 new cardinals, including 20 who are under 80 and thus eligible to… elect his successor.
This meeting comes just before the release of a new book of interviews with the Holy Father, conducted by veteran journalist Peter Seewald and entitled Light of the World: The Pope, the Church and the Signs of the Times.
The Vatican also announced that come January, it will establish an ordinariate for Anglicans in England and Wales. According to news reports, “five traditionalist Church of England bishops have applied to join the ordinariate, and about 30 groups of parishioners are due to cross over from the Anglican Church.”
In related news, France will be granting asylum to 150 Iraqi Christians, giving priority to those wounded in the recent siege on the Syrian Catholic Cathedral in Baghdad:
The first batch of 36 Iraqis wounded in the Baghdad church hostage crisis were due to arrive in France on Monday, said Eric Besson, the immigration minister.
France said it would help the most seriously wounded, all but two of whom are Christians, soon after last Sunday’s shoot-out, when Iraqi and US security forces stormed the Syriac Catholic cathedral during mass.
France has been receiving Iraqi Christians since 2007.