- June 25, 2016
Many non-Catholics fear that unity with Rome would mean being swamped by the papacy, but by treating the head of the small Armenian Apostolic Church as a complete equal over the last three days, Pope Francis in effect suggested that in the end, size doesn't matter.
In a part of the world where memory so often seems a dangerous thing, nursing resentments and fueling new conflicts, Pope Francis made the audacious claim in Armenia on Saturday that memory, coupled with faith, is actually the only route to peace.
As the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul suggests, the Catholic Church today can learn a great deal from the way Romans in the early Church found ways to "Catholicize" the surrounding culture rather than always going to war aganst it.
A new film about a gruff Mississippi figure who led farmers and slaves in resisting the Confederacy, and whose motivation and worldview, however flawed, had a great deal to do with the Bible and his religious views.
Archbishop Georg Gänswein, the closest personal aide to emeritus Pope Benedict XVI, speaks in a new interview about Benedict’s resignation, negative reaction to Gänswein’s recent suggestion of an “expanded Petrine ministry,” and more.
Ecumenism can sometimes be a tough sell as a transcendent cause, but two little-known lessons from northern Armenia, one involving a church and the other a hospital, illustrate why the press for Christian unity really does matter.
After an emotional visit to Armenia’s genocide memorial on Saturday to recall the tragedies of the past, Pope Francis’ focus on the first of two outings to the South Caucasus in 2016 shifts to the present, where thorny challenges await him on Azerbaijan, Turkey, and the Orthodox.
“Throughout the whole lesbian and gay community, particularly touched by the heinous crimes committed in Orlando, motivated by hate, driven perhaps by mental instability and certainly empowered by a culture of violence, know this: the Archdiocese of Chicago stands with you. I stand with you,” Archbishop Blase Cupich said.
India’s Maharashtra state, which includes the sprawling city of Mumbai, is under the control of a political party linked to Hindu nationalist movements and has been criticized for hostility to religious minorities. Recently, however, it granted official recognition to the tiny local Jewish community.
In Asia’s largest Catholic nation, scores of Filipino villagers don capes of banana leaves and cover themselves in mud in a ritual to thank their patron saint, St. John the Baptist, who they believe saved residents from being killed by Japanese invaders in World War II.
Marist Brother Paul Phillipp of south Texas, now 92, says the stories he heard from his English teacher, who arrived to the country in 1906 flying Catholic persecution and blood-drenched altars in Mexico, inspired him to join the Marists.
In a departure from his prepared text on Friday, Pope Francis used the magic word “genocide” in describing the suffering and loss of life of Armenians at the hands of the dying Ottoman Empire in the early 20th century. Invoking that term generally brings political and diplomatic protests from Turkey.READ MORE
“We need a clear sign from the table [discussing the deal] that the weapons will effectively, and not only symbolically, be given up and publicly destroyed,” said Archbishop Luis Augusto Castro Quiroga, head of the Colombian Bishop’s Conference, after the government and the country’s main guerilla group signed a peace deal on Thursday.READ MORE
The next time Catholics get upset about some spontaneous off-the-cuff comment by Pope Francis, they need to take a deep breath and take the long view. Yes, we’ve had bad popes in Church history, but he’s not one of them.READ MORE
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In a seismic Referendum, the United Kingdom has voted 52-48 per cent to leave the European Union. As an exercise in discerning solutions and building consensus, it was a disaster. Could the UK have learned something from Pope Francis’s synod?READ MORE
Cultural critic Mary Eberstadt says, “The kind of ridicule we see aimed at Christianity today, especially in popular entertainment, is nothing new. There’s a pretty straight line from Voltaire’s Candide, say, to The Book of Mormon and other modern fare that exploits religious faith for laughs.”READ MORE