From the synod: married couple speaks about welcoming gays, divorcees

This may have gone largely unnoticed, but it seems significant to me: an intervention at the synod by a married couple, Ron and Mavis Pirola from Australia. I can’t imagine this kind of commentary being welcomed, or even heard, at the Vatican just a few years ago. It may give us a taste of things to come:  [Read More...]

Pope to bishops at synod launch: “Say everything that you feel with frankness.”

Details:  During the opening session for the extraordinary synod on the family, Pope Francis told participants not to be afraid of saying what they truly think, and that only by doing this can they reach real conclusions.“You have to say all that which in the Lord you feel you have to say: without human respect, [Read More...]

Vatican investigating KC Bishop Robert Finn—UPDATED

From NCR:  A Canadian archbishop visited the Kansas City-St. Joseph, Mo., diocese last week on behalf of the Vatican to investigate the leadership of Bishop Robert Finn, the first Catholic prelate to be found criminally guilty of shielding a priest in the ongoing clergy sexual abuse crisis. Ottawa, Ontario, Archbishop Terrence Prendergast visited the Midwestern [Read More...]

“We believe in the sanctity of life…and counteract the abuse of religion to justify oppression, violence and conflict”

From the Vatican’s news site:  The King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Interreligious and Intercultural Dialogue, based in New York, U.S.A., yesterday published a declaration of principles, signed by the foreign ministers of Austria, Saudi Arabia and Spain, as well as by Fr. Miguel Angel Ayuso Guixot, M.C.C.J., secretary of the Pontifical Council for [Read More...]

Report: Cardinal Burke “demoted”?

As yet, no official confirmation from the Vatican. But this broke tonight, from Sandro Magister:  In his first months as bishop of Rome, Pope Bergoglio immediately provided for the transfer to lower-ranking positions of three prominent curial figures: Cardinal Mauro Piacenza, Archbishop Guido Pozzo, and Bishop Giuseppe Sciacca, considered for their theological and liturgical sensibilities [Read More...]

Vatican calls on Muslim leaders to condemn Islamic State: “No cause, no religion, can justify such barbarity”

From CNS: The Vatican called on Muslim leaders to condemn the “barbarity” and “unspeakable criminal acts” of Islamic State militants in Iraq, saying a failure to do so would jeopardize the future of interreligious dialogue.“The plight of Christians, Yezidis and other religious and ethnic communities that are numeric minorities in Iraq demands a clear and [Read More...]

Vatican publishes working document for extraordinary Synod of Bishops

An overview from CNS:  The working document for the October 2014 extraordinary Synod of Bishops offers a picture of the Catholic Church today struggling to preach the Gospel and transmit moral teachings amid a “widespread cultural, social and spiritual crisis” of the family. The 75-page “instrumentum laboris,” published by the Vatican June 26, is supposed [Read More...]

Vatican rolls out a new app

Having now tweaked the design of the Vatican website (not very successfully, imho, but that’s another story…take a look and see what you think)…the Vatican has now launched a new app for iPads and iPhones. No word yet if they’ve developed one for Androids.  It reportedly has material from the Vatican site, along with a [Read More...]

Ahead of UN meeting, Holy See condemns “any form of torture, degrading treatment or punishment”

This statement was released by the Vatican Press Office today. How timely:   Director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr Federico Lombardi, has issued a statement in which he emphasized the Holy See’s “strong commitment against any form of torture and other cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment”. The statement comes ahead of a [Read More...]

Cardinal calls for “renewed” interpretation of Church teachings on marriage

From CNS:  In its approach to divorced and civilly remarried Catholics, the Catholic Church needs to find a middle ground that does not destroy or abandon doctrine, but offers a “renewed” interpretation of church teaching in order to help those whose marriages have failed, Cardinal Walter Kasper said. “I propose a path that goes beyond [Read More...]


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