Pope vows no more cover ups on sexual abuse in letter to Catholics

Pope vows no more cover ups on sexual abuse in letter to CatholicsPope Francis, facing sexual abuse crises in several countries, wrote an unprecedented letter to all Catholics on Monday, asking each one of them to help root out "this culture of death" and vowing there would be no more cover ups. In a highly personal letter addressed to "the people of God," Church language for all members, the pope appeared to be launching an appeal for all Catholics to face the crisis together and not let it tear the Church apart. The Catholic Church in the United States, Chile, Australia, and Ireland - where the pope is making a two-day visit this weekend - are reeling from crises involving sexual abuse of minors.




Exclusive: Pentagon raises alarm about sharp drop in Iraqi refugees coming to U.S.

Exclusive: Pentagon raises alarm about sharp drop in Iraqi refugees coming to U.S.The Pentagon is concerned that not providing safe haven to more of the Iraqis, many of whom interpreted and did other key tasks for U.S. forces, will harm national security by dissuading locals from cooperating with the United States in Iraq and other conflict zones, the officials said. In a closed-door White House meeting last week devoted to the Iraqi issue, officials focused largely on the Federal Bureau of Investigation's method of conducting certain deep background checks on the Iraqis, and identified it as a major source of the drop in admissions, said the two officials aware of the discussions, who declined to be named. As of Aug. 15, just 48 Iraqis have been admitted to the United States this fiscal year through a special refugee program meant for people who worked for the U.S. government or American contractors, news media or non-governmental groups, according to data provided by the State Department.




U.S. health secretary says agency has power to eliminate drug rebates

U.S. health secretary says agency has power to eliminate drug rebatesU.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said it was within his agency's power to eliminate rebates on prescription drug purchases, a key element of the Trump administration's plan to lower prescription medicine costs. Such rebates are negotiated in the United States by pharmacy benefits managers (PBMs) to lower the cost of medicines for their clients, including large employers and health plans that cover tens of millions of Americans. Drugmakers say they are under pressure to provide rebates to the few PBMs that dominate the market and that those payers do not pass on enough of those savings to patients - a contention the PBMs dispute.




Colorado prosecutors set to charge man for murdering family

Colorado prosecutors set to charge man for murdering familyColorado prosecutors said they plan to formally file murder charges on Monday against a man accused of killing his pregnant wife and their two young daughters, days after he told police they went missing and pleaded on TV for their safe return. Christopher Watts, 33, has been held without bond in the Weld County jail since his arrest last week for the murders of his pregnant wife Shanann Watts, 34 and two daughters, Celeste, 3, and Bella, 4. Weld County District Attorney Michael Rourke will formally file charges against Watts on Monday and seek the release of an arrest affidavit, which has been under seal, that lays out details of the crime, his spokeswoman Krista Henery said in a telephone interview.




USA Gymnastics ex-doctor moved from prison after alleged assault

USA Gymnastics ex-doctor moved from prison after alleged assaultNassar was at a federal transfer facility in Oklahoma City after being removed from a penitentiary in Tucson, Arizona, Federal Bureau of Prisons records showed. Last year, Nassar, 55, was given an effective life sentence by a Michigan court for sexually abusing young female gymnasts entrusted to his care. Nassar's lawyers said in a legal filing last month that the former doctor was assaulted soon after being released into the general population at the medium-security Tucson prison.




Fire that prompted closure of parts of Yosemite Park is contained

Fire that prompted closure of parts of Yosemite Park is containedMore than 3,000 personnel have battled the Ferguson Fire, which ignited on July 13 and has burned through nearly 97,000 acres (39,250 hectares) of steep slopes and bone-dry terrain southwest of the park, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire, said. Two firefighters were killed while tackling the blaze and 19 others injured, it said. Cooler weather and calmer winds in recent days have helped firefighters in California and other western states get a handle on major blazes, according to authorities.




U.S. Catholics 'sickened' by sex abuse report, stand by their faith

U.S. Catholics 'sickened' by sex abuse report, stand by their faithMany churchgoers said they were sickened and saddened by a grand jury report detailing widespread sexual abuse by hundreds of priests in Pennsylvania but they would not let the Roman Catholic Church's cover-up dissuade them from their faith. Nearly 200 parishioners filled almost all the pews for Saturday’s Mass at St. Patrick’s Church in York, Pennsylvania, where six priests who at one time worked in that parish are accused in the report https://bit.ly/2vTa9oY of sexually abusing children. “I can't talk about it without crying," said Kathy Morris, a retired steelworker and a member of St. Patrick's for over 15 years.