Must-see video: the future pope gets in trouble

I’ve said it before: this guy slays me. From today’s audience, a great yarn about his childhood that imparts a little truth about our times.  Video is from CNS.   [Read more...]

NY Times on “The Vatican Spring of Pope Francis”

Some thoughts this morning from New York Times Op-Ed contributor Timothy Egan:  Long after we’ve forgotten what his position is on Catholic doctrine, we will remember the serenity of Pope Francis — his self-deprecating lightness of being. His smile is just shy of goofy; it’s embracing, certainly not the tight facial clench of the seasoned [Read More...]

Pope repeats the “three words” for happy family life

From Vatican Radio:  Pope Francis at his Wednesday General Audience continued his catechesis on the family, focusing on family life. “Today’s catechesis is like the gateway to a series of reflections on the life of the family, its real life, with its different times and events.” On this gateway, he said, “are written three words, [Read More...]

“Francis has taken a new course from the one he initially traveled”

An astute observation from Sandro Magister: Until the synod of October 2014, Jorge Mario Bergoglio had repeatedly and in various ways shown encouragement for “openness” in matters of homosexuality and second marriages, each time with great fanfare in the media. Cardinal Kasper explicitly said that he had “agreed” with the pope on his explosive talk [Read More...]

Castro: “If the Pope continues to speak like this, sooner or later I will return to the Catholic Church”

From CNN:  Cuba has eased its persecution of religion in the last 23 years, but there have been few overtures suggesting the country’s executive office might be finding its faith. That changed Sunday when President Raul Castro said the teachings of Pope Francis had persuaded him not only to take a softer line on religion, [Read More...]

Pope to Pope: “We are united by the ecumenism of blood”

Pope Francis sent a Message to Pope Tawadros II of Alexandria on Sunday, to mark two years since the Coptic Patriarch’s visit to the Holy See. A snip:  As the second anniversary of our fraternal meeting in Rome is at hand, I wish to express to Your Holiness my prayerful best wishes for your well-being, [Read More...]

“Bienvenido!” Pope welcomes Raul Castro to the Vatican

Details from AP: Cuban President Raul Castro received a warm welcome at the Vatican Sunday from Pope Francis, who played a key role in the breakthrough between Washington and Havana aimed at restoring U.S.-Cuban diplomatic ties. “Bienvenido!” Francis said in his native Spanish, welcoming Castro in a studio near the Vatican public audience hall. The [Read More...]

Pope: church is about unity, not forming lobbies

I can’t imagine what he’s talking about, can you? Details:  Pope Francis says discussions within the Church are to seek unity and and it should not be a place where people are always clashing, betraying each other and forming lobbies to win their argument. He said the Holy Spirit helps bring change and moves things [Read More...]

Pope blesses small statue for Maryland family whose daughters died in fire

From Catholic News Agency:  After reading a letter while visiting Rome’s North American Seminary detailing the death of two young girls in a house fire, Pope Francis blessed their picture and a small statue to be given to their parents.“The Holy Father read the story about what happened and he was very moved by it. [Read More...]

Coming to a church near you: “Missionaries of Mercy” for the Year of Mercy

The full text of the papal bull announcing the Jubilee of Mercy was published several days ago, and is now available on the Jubilee of Mercy website. There are a number of specific, concrete details worth noting: The initiative of “24 Hours for the Lord,” to be celebrated on the Friday and Saturday preceding the Fourth Week [Read More...]