Vatican says U.S. nun’s book on sexuality poses ‘harm’

The Vatican on Monday sharply criticized a book on sexuality written by a prominent American nun, saying it contradicted church teaching on issues such as masturbation, homosexuality and marriage and that its author had a “defective understanding” of Catholic theology.

The Vatican’s orthodoxy office said the 2006 book, “Just Love: A Framework for Christian Sexual Ethics” by Sister Margaret Farley, a member of the Sisters of Mercy religious order and emeritus professor of Christian ethics at Yale Divinity School, posed “grave harm” to the faithful.

Farley said Monday she never intended the book to reflect current official Catholic teaching. She said she wrote it to explore sexuality via various religious traditions, theological resources and human experience.

The Farley critique comes amid the Vatican’s recent crackdown on the largest umbrella group of American sisters.

The Vatican last month essentially imposed martial law on the Leadership Conference of Women Religious, accusing it of undermining church teaching and imposing certain “radical feminist themes” that were incompatible with Catholicism.


Four African refugees suffer injuries from firebombing

A wave of violence against African refugees in Israel hit Jerusalem on Monday with the firebombing of an apartment where 10 Eritrean asylum-seekers were living.

At least four refugees suffered smoke inhalation and burns while trying to put out the blaze, officials said. The assailants left behind a graffiti message to get “out of the neighborhood,” police said.

Officials have condemned the attacks, but critics say statements by some of them about deporting or imprisoning refugees have encouraged the attacks.


New CIA drone strike targets high-ranking al-Qaida figure

A CIA drone strike Monday targeted al-Qaida’s second in command, Abu Yahia al-Libi, in Pakistan, but it was unclear whether he was among those hit, U.S. officials said.

U.S. officials say fewer than five people were hit, although Pakistani officials say more than a dozen people were killed in two days of strikes in Pakistan.

The CIA has carried out a half-dozen strikes in less than two weeks, as the U.S. pushes ahead with the controversial drone program despite Pakistani demands that it stop.