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Monday, May 20, 2019

Diocese Of Pittsburgh Announces Five Mergers
PITTSBURGH, Pa. (WPXI)  - Pittsburgh Catholic Bishop David Zubik  has announced the first five parish mergers  and new shrines as part of the ongoing On Mission for The Church Alive! initiative. According to a release, each of the five mergers will become a single new parish with a new name July 1. 

The five new parishes are:

  • Christ Our Savior (North Side) : which brings together the parishes of Saint Cyril of Alexandria (Brighton Heights), Holy Wisdom (North Side), Saint Peter (North Side), Risen Lord (Marshall Shadeland).
  • Holy Spirit (New Castle Area):  which brings together the parishes of Saint Camillus (Neshannock), Christ the King (Bessemer/Hillsville), Saint James the Apostle (Pulaski), Saint Joseph the Worker (New Castle), Mary, Mother of Hope (New Castle), Saint Vincent de Paul (New Castle) and Saint Vitus (New Castle).
  • Saint Matthias (Greene County):  which brings together the parishes of Saint Ann (Waynesburg), Saint Hugh (Carmichaels), Saint Ignatius of Antioch (Bobtown), Our Lady of Consolation (Crucible/Nemacolin/Rice’s Landing) and Saint Thomas (Clarksville/Jefferson).
  • Saint Paul of the Cross (Castle Shannon/Mount Lebanon):  which brings together the parishes of Saint Anne (Castle Shannon) and Saint Winifred (Mount Lebanon).
  • Saint Teresa of Kolkata (Beechview/Brookline):  which brings together the parishes of Saint Catherine of Siena (Beechview), Our Lady of Loreto (Brookline), Saint Pamphilus (Beechview), Saint Pius X (Brookline) and Resurrection (Brookline).

Area DAs Look To Stop Mon River Pollution
WASHINGTON, Pa. - Two local district attorneys are joining forces to stop pollution of the Monongahela River. Washington County D.A. Gene Vittone and Fayette County district attorney Richard Bower jointly filed a civil action seeking an injunction that would prevent wastewater from reaching the waterway. Earlier this week, the Municipal Authority of Belle Vernon voted to terminate a contract with Tervita Sanitary Landfill to treat wastewater which leached from a site in Westmoreland County. The pair says that no area resident should have to deal with the environmental issues from this situation. Judge Steven Leskinen of Fayette County signed the temporary injunction and a hearing on the matter is scheduled for May 24th. The Pennsylvania Attorney General's office is also working on this case.

Flags Ordered At Half-Staff For Fallen State Trooper
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - The governor of Pennsylvania has ordered flags to fly at half-staff to honor a state trooper who died on duty over the weekend in suburban Philadelphia. State police say other troopers responded to the westbound lanes of I-276 in Bucks County at about 11:30 a.m. Saturday after 58-year-old Trooper Donald Bracket failed to answer radio transmissions. Police say he was found unresponsive outside his patrol vehicle after "an apparent medical episode" and was pronounced dead at Jefferson Torresdale Hospital in Philadelphia. Brackett joined the force in October 2001 and was assigned to the patrol section of Troop T, King of Prussia at the time of his death. Gov. Tom Wolf said Bracket "chose a life of service" and the commonwealth was "indebted to him and his family for their sacrifice."

Bethlehem Steel's Headquarters Imploded
BETHLEHEM, Pa. (AP) - Sixteen thousand tons of Bethlehem Steel has collapsed in a matter of seconds as a demolition crew imploded Martin Tower, the defunct steelmaker's former world headquarters. Crowds gathered Sunday to watch the demolition of the area's tallest building, a 21-story monolith that opened at the height of Bethlehem Steel's power and profitability. America's second-largest steelmaker went out of business in 2003. Explosives took out Martin Tower's steel supports and crumpled the 47-year-old building, which had earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places despite its relatively young age. The implosion created a dust plume expected to linger for several minutes before settling to the ground. Martin Tower had been vacant for a dozen years. Its owners are redeveloping the site into a mix of medical offices, stores and apartments.

Driver Goes Into Crowd In Slippery Rock; 1 Injured
SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. (AP) - Authorities say a man believed to have been under the influence of alcohol drove into a crowd in a western Pennsylvania apartment complex parking lot, injuring one person. State police in Butler County say the victim was left with a broken nose, a concussion and other injuries after he was hit shortly before 3 a.m. Saturday in Slippery Rock Township. Police say the 23-year-old driver fled on foot but was arrested a short time later. Police say he will face more than a dozen charges including aggravated assault.

Pitt To Get Romero Archives
PITTSBURGH (AP) - The University of Pittsburgh is getting a spooky addition: the archives of late iconic horror filmmaker George A. Romero. Romero's horror flicks date back to the 1968 film "Night of the Living Dead," and many consider him the godfather of zombie cinema. The university announced the acquisition this week. The archives will be available to scholars, students and filmmakers and include the original annotated "Night of the Living Dead" script and a foam latex zombie head. University officials say the collection will be used to build an international resource for the study of horror and science fiction. Romero came to Pittsburgh in the late 1950s to study graphic art. He launched his career with commercials and shorts, including work for Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood. Romero died in 2017.


Trump's EPA Shifts More Enforcement To States
BOKOSHE, Okla. (AP) - A small town in Oklahoma is warning communities about the Trump administration's environmental policies. Residents of Bokoshe have been worried for years about coal-ash contamination from a power plant that burns the high-sulfur coal mined near the community southeast of Tulsa. Townspeople regard the Environmental Protection Agency as the only source of serious environmental enforcement. Now the EPA has approved Oklahoma to be the first state to take over enforcement on coal-ash sites. The EPA is delegating more enforcement to states. The administration says local officials know best how to deal with local problems. Critics say regulators are retreating on enforcement and putting people and the environment at greater risk. Many EPA enforcement actions have fallen sharply over the past two years, some to the lowest point in decades.

Hundreds Protest Alabama's Abortion Ban At State Capitol
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - Hundreds of demonstrators have marched to the Alabama Capitol to protest the state's new abortion ban. Protesters chanted "My body, my choice!" and "vote them out!" as they rallied Sunday evening, days after Gov. Kay Ivey signed the near total abortion ban into law.
The Alabama law, the nation's most restrictive, is to take effect in six months. It bans abortion in almost all cases unless necessary because of a mother's health. There are no exceptions for pregnancies involving rape and incest. Planned Parenthood and the American Civil Liberties Union say they plan to sue the state to try to block the law's implementation. Alabama and other states are enacting abortion restrictions in hopes of getting a conservative-leaning U.S. Supreme Court to revisit the 1973 decision that legalized abortion nationwide.

U.S Military Confirms Rocket Near Embassy In Iraq
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - The U.S. military command that oversees the Mideast has confirmed an explosion outside the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad and says there are no U.S. or coalition casualties. A spokesman for U.S. Central Command, Bill Urban, says in a statement that Iraqi Security Forces are investigating Sunday's incident. A State Department spokesman says that "a low-grade rocket" landed within the International Zone near the U.S. Embassy and that there was no significant damage or impact on any U.S.-inhabited facility. The spokesman says that such attacks will not be tolerated and will be responded to "in a decisive manner" and that the U.S. will hold Iran responsible "if any such attacks are conducted by its proxy militia forces or elements of such forces."


Saudi Arabia Won't Hesitate To Defend Itself

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) - The U.S. military command that oversees the Mideast has confirmed an explosion outside the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad and says there are no U.S. or coalition casualties. A spokesman for U.S. Central Command, Bill Urban, says in a statement that Iraqi Security Forces are investigating Sunday's incident. A State Department spokesman says that "a low-grade rocket" landed within the International Zone near the U.S. Embassy and that there was no significant damage or impact on any U.S.-inhabited facility. The spokesman says that such attacks will not be tolerated and will be responded to "in a decisive manner" and that the U.S. will hold Iran responsible "if any such attacks are conducted by its proxy militia forces or elements of such forces."

Brazil Officials Report 'Massacre'; Report Says 11 Dead At Bar
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) - Brazilian authorities say there has been a "massacre" in the country's northern Pará state without releasing any details, while Brazilian news media say gunmen attacked a bar in Belem City and killed 11 people. The G1 news website says police reported that seven gunmen opened fire on a bar. G1 says police also report one wounded in the attack. A Pará state spokeswoman, Natalia Mello, says she can only "confirm" there was a massacre in the state.

Students Stop Potential Gunman In Oregon
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) - Officials at a Portland, Oregon, high school say two students informed a staff member of concerning behavior by another student before a school coach and security guard found him armed with a gun and tackled him. Parkrose School District Superintendent Michael Lopes Serrao said in a letter to families Friday evening that thanks to their heroic efforts all students and staff are safe. Lopes Serrao says the student with the gun will not be returning to school and that classes will resume on Monday as usual with an enhanced security presence.

Graduation Speaker Pledges To Pay Class Of 2019 Student Debt
ATLANTA (AP) - A billionaire technology investor and philanthropist says his family is providing grants to wipe out the student debt of the entire 2019 class at Morehouse College. Robert F. Smith made the announcement Sunday morning in front of nearly 400 graduating seniors and elicited the biggest cheers of the morning. Smith received an honorary doctorate from Morehouse during the ceremony. He had already announced a $1.5 million gift to the school. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports the pledge to eliminate the student debt for the class has been estimated at $40 million. Morehouse College is an all-male historically black college located in Atlanta. Smith is the Founder and CEO of Vista Equity Partners, a private equity firm that invests in software, data, and technology-driven companies.

Winter Has Come.....And Has Gone
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Winter has come and winter has gone.
The last of the heads have been lopped off and the last of the dragon fire has been spent as "Game of Thrones" aired its 73rd and final episode Sunday night. While the results were the usual split decision, there were some clear winners and losers. (MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD.) Jon Snow vowed love and loyalty to Queen Daenerys Targaryen, even as he stabbed her to death for fear she's become a mad tyrant. The aftermath brought a serious upset, with King Brandon Stark becoming King Bran the Broken. Yet Bran doesn't get to sit on the Iron Throne - a dragon melted that - or rule the Seven Kingdoms - his sister Sansa broke one off to become queen of an independent Winterfell.

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