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Vatican Cardinal Francesco Coccopalmerio (AP)

Prelates who fail to apply penalties seem to be ‘consenting to the evil committed’, says cardinal

Fish and chips: a popular option for Catholics on meatless Fridays (PA)

Australia may follow England and Wales in restoring penitential practice

An alligator swims in  everglades waters in Florida (PA) Below: The Catholic Herald cartoon (Christian Adams)

Archbishop Gregory Aymond said that alligators should be “considered seafood”

Pope Francis released his first apostolic exhortation today (CNS)

Pope offers encouragement to members of the Church’s highest tribunal

A man calls for the excommunication of US politician Nancy Pelosi (CNS)

The Church only ever uses the penalty as a last resort – a shock tactic to bring people back to God

A Free Syrian Army fighter walks down a street in Aleppo (AP)

Morning Catholic must-reads: 23/10/12

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church