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A Catholic bishop has instructed priests in his central Illinois diocese to deny communion, last rites and funeral rites to people in same-sex marriages – unless they repent.

In the decree he sent to priests, deacons, seminarians and staff in his Springfield diocese last week, Bishop Thomas Paprocki sets forth a set of norms on same-sex marriage and related pastoral issues that he says are the policy of the diocese.

Arkansas's pesticide regulators have stepped into the middle of an epic battle between weeds and chemicals, which has now morphed into a battle between farmers. Hundreds of farmers say their crops have been damaged by a weedkiller that was sprayed on neighboring fields. Today, the Arkansas Plant Board voted to impose an unprecedented ban on that chemical.

Venezuela's ongoing political and economic crisis has taken a toll on daily life there.

A crash in oil prices and political instability under President Nicolas Maduro have led to food shortages, and that has prompted almost daily street protests by thousands of Venezuelans.

A 35-year-old protester named Carlos tells NPR's Audie Cornish the food situation is "pretty extreme." NPR is using only his first name for his safety.

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On August 21st, 2017 a Total Solar Eclipse will pass over a large portion of the United States putting southern Illinois and Carbondale at the intersection of this rare event.

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Southern Illinois Healthcare is notifying more than 600 patients who might be impacted by a breach of their information.

SIH Privacy Officer Marcia Matthias says it was an isolated incident involving the misdirection of data to other HIPPA-governed medical facilities by a third party vendor.

Senate President John Cullerton says his chamber has previously accomplished everything Gov. Bruce Rauner has outlined on a special session agenda called to force a budget deal.

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Belleville News-Democrat

Authorities say a sewer line in southern Illinois broke last month and daily is dumping about 2 million gallons of storm water and sewage into the Mississippi River.

Probation officers, supervisors and support staff of the 20th Judicial Circuit Court Services and Probation have voted to file an intent to strike after working without a contract since December of 2016.

WSIU/Kevin Boucher

Postpartum depression can affect women after giving birth.  One program, which begins this Sunday, June 25th, 2017 at Giant City State Park seeks to help sufferers of this with a retreat involving group therapy and nature.

In this report an SIU Graduate Student studying Therapeutic Recreation talks about the program.

Educators across the state are anxiously watching the special session in Springfield.

The lack of a budget for K through 12 schools has some wondering if they'll have to alter their calendars for the upcoming academic year.

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Brad Palmer, WSIU Radio

There is a new Regional Superintendent of Schools for Williamson, Franklin, Johnson and Massac counties.

The four county chairmen Thursday unanimously approved Lorie LeQuatte to replace Matt Donkin, who is the new District Superintendent in West Frankfort.

L-S-U Test Launches Eclipse Balloon At Saluki Stadium

Jun 22, 2017
WSIU/Kevin Boucher

A team of students and researchers led by Dr. Gregory Guzik, director of the Louisiana Space Grant Consortium at Louisiana State University's Department of Physics and Astronomy made a test flight of a weather balloon recently at Saluki Stadium.  WSIU radio was there with this report.

Higher Education and money
WSIU / WSIU

State legislators were called back to Springfield last week for a special session in a attempt to pass a budget.

It's the final week of the fiscal year and Illinois is still without a budget.

Principal Charley Cass is preparing for the start of his 7th year at Central Junior High School in West Frankfort.

For the hundreds of rural U.S. hospitals struggling to stay in business, health policy decisions made in Washington, D.C., this summer could make survival a lot tougher.

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WSIU InFocus

Fluorspar Memories With Centenarian Francis Brown

Rosiclare Illinois once was the Fluorspar Capital of the world in the late 1920s and 1930s. On this edition of WSIU INFOCUS, we visit with Rosiclare resident Mrs. Francis Brown, who was born in in 1917 in the Hardin County Town. Mrs. Brown's father, like many men at the time, worked in the Fluorspar mines and she talks about what life was like when the town was booming. To learn more about the mineral, you can visit: https://www.isgs.illinois.edu/outreach/geology-resources/fluorite-illinois-state-mineral

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