Cardinal says Francis has no intention of restricting access to Latin Mass

Details:  The former prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy has told a traditionalist group that Pope Francis has no intention of restricting access to the Extraordinary Form of the Latin liturgy. “I met Pope Francis very recently and he told me that he has no problem with the old rite, and neither does he [Read More...]

Rise in Italian church attendance pegged to the “Francis Effect”

From Religion News Service:  Italy’s Center for Studies on New Religions reported Sunday (Nov. 10) that around half of the 250 priests it surveyed reported a significant rise in church attendance since Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio became Pope Francis in March. “If we project these findings nationally, and if half of the parishes have been [Read More...]

The pope’s new BFF?

From Amy Sullivan in the National Journal: Stephen Colbert may be—as he bragged in character last month at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner—”America’s most famous Catholic.” But he has serious competition for the title of most important Catholic in the United States. Until recently that distinction arguably belonged to Cardinal Timothy Dolan, head [Read More...]

“Pope Francis” ranks as the most talked about name on the Internet in 2013

From Catholic News Service:  Of the 1.83 billion people chatting and posting in English on the Internet, guess what they’ve been talking about most ? Not only is Pope Francis the most talked about name of 2013, his twitter handle @Pontifex ranks in the top-five “top words” on the World Wide Web. The Austin, Texas-based Global [Read More...]

You, too, can pose with the pope

Seeing this image of me and the pope on the blog a couple days ago, a priest writes: “Where can I get one of those?” First option: go to Rome and hope he notices you. Second option:   A company called has a wide array of famous people, beautifully rendered in cardboard, including Pope Francis [Read More...]

Historic: Vatican to put St. Peter’s relics on display for first time

From CNS:  For the first time, the bones traditionally believed to be the relics of St. Peter the Apostle will be on public display for veneration. Archbishop Rino Fisichella, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting New Evangelization, said the veneration of the relics at the Vatican is a fitting way to conclude the Year [Read More...]

It’s Sartorial Saturday!

Kathy Schiffer has taken note of Bishop Jenky having a little fun in the Wild West, hot on the heels of the image of Pope Francis donning a bright red clown nose.  Lest we forget, bishops—including the Bishop of Rome—have a long history of this sort of thing. Especially when it comes to hats. They love [Read More...]

How did I miss THIS picture?

Great shot of Francis from Wednesday’s audience.  Read all about it.  [Read more...]

“God meddles in our miseries, he approaches our wounds and heals them with his hands”

Using that stunning picture from earlier in the week as a starting point, CNS has posted an overview of some memorable photographic moments with Pope Francis. Writer Carol Glatz makes note of something beautiful the pontiff said during a recent homily: “God meddles in our miseries, he approaches our wounds and heals them with his [Read More...]

Worth a thousand words: Francis kisses a man with boils

The man from Assisi kissed a leper. And so, today, the man from Buenos Aires acted likewise. From Vatican Insider.  See more.  [Read more...]