In brief | Nation & world | 012214


Another snowstorm hits Northeast; flights canceled, schools send kids home early

PHILADELPHIA — A swirling storm with the potential for more than a foot of snow clobbered the mid-Atlantic and the urban Northeast on Tuesday, grounding thousands of flights, closing government offices in the nation’s capital and making a mess of the evening commute.

The storm stretched 1,000 miles between Kentucky and Massachusetts but hit especially hard along the heavily populated Interstate 95 corridor between Philadelphia and Boston, creating a perilous ride home for millions of motorists.

The snow came down harder and faster than many expected. Forecasters said some places could get 1 to 2 inches an hour, with wind gusts up to 50 mph.

Documents: Chicago archdiocese spent decades hiding priest sex abuse, putting children at risk

CHICAGO — Top leaders at the Archdiocese of Chicago helped hide the sexual abuse of children as they struggled to contain a growing crisis, according to thousands of pages of internal documents that also raise new questions about how Cardinal Francis George handled the allegations even after the church adopted reforms.

The documents, released through settlements between attorneys for the archdiocese and victims, describe how priests for decades were moved from parish to parish while the archdiocese hid the clerics’ histories from the public, often with the approval of the late Cardinals John Cody and Joseph Bernardin.

Although the abuse documented in the files occurred before George became archbishop in 1997, many victims did not come forward until after he was appointed and after U.S. bishops pledged in 2002 to keep all accused priests out of ministry.

Christie sworn in amid scandal, touts mandate from big election win and bond with voters

TRENTON, N.J. — Gov. Chris Christie sought to turn back the clock as he was sworn into a second term Tuesday, saying voters gave him a mandate in November to “stay the course” and put aside partisan differences, even as Democrats ramped up an investigation into whether his administration abused its power.

Christie, considered a likely Republican presidential candidate in 2016, was inaugurated amid a snowstorm that forced him to cancel an evening celebration on Ellis Island, and then gave an 18-minute address that dwelled on his 22-point election victory in the fall.

His speech came less than an hour after Democratic lawmakers announced they were consolidating twin probes into allegations that aides engineered traffic jams in September in the community of Fort Lee as political retribution, apparently against the town’s mayor for not endorsing his re-election bid.

Obama, Pope Francis to meet in the Vatican in March with focus on shared economic view

WASHINGTON — When President Barack Obama meets Pope Francis in the Vatican March 27, both men will speak a common economic language rooted in similar views about poverty and income inequality, giving prominence to an issue that the U.S. president wants to be a central theme of his second term.

In the complicated relationship between the Obama administration and the Catholic Church, the White House sees the popular new pontiff and his emphasis on the plight of the poor as a form of moral validation of the president’s economic agenda. When Obama delivered a major address on the economy last month, he cited the growth of inequality across the developed world and made sure to note that “the pope himself spoke about this at eloquent length.”

By wire sources