Amoris Laetitia: Pregnancy Counseling, Penitence, And Pudding

my take at First Things:Philip Larkin lamented that whether or not anybody refills your drink at a party “seems to turn on where you are. Or who.” In our divided Catholic Church, pastoral care is a lot like Larkin's cocktails. Catholics who sincerely desire to submit themselves to the Church they love come to their local parish seeking the wine of resurrection; and receive sometimes water, sometimes vinegar. If you're in an especially culturally-contentious position, you may be favored with a … [Read more...]

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“Pope Opens Holy Door at Homeless Shelter”: Vatican Radio

woot: Pope Francis on Friday visited a new homeless shelter in Rome’s Termini – John Paul II train station, where he opened a Holy Door for the Jubilee of Mercy. ...The decision to open a special Holy Door of Charity at a homeless shelter is a unique feature of the extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy, designed to emphasize the centrality of concrete works of charity in the life of the Church. more … [Read more...]

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Papal Fever: Prayer Grotto and Pope Plushies in Phila…. Security Barriers and Metro Madness in DC

So this country is kind of losing what remains of its mind over the Pope, yes? You guys know that the pope makes me feel minty, and this mintiness is not decreased by proximity. I will be sheltering in place for the duration of his visit.That said, I was in Philadelphia recently and they have done one fantastic thing. The city is pope-mad, the train station is just covered in giant scary Francis faces that turn out to be ads for Jesuit colleges, and you can buy stuffed Pope Francises in the … [Read more...]

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Small Synod Notes: Not All Gay This Time. (But Mostly Gay.)

* Obviously I'm disappointed that the language of sacrificial love and welcome couldn't get a 2/3 vote.* More disappointing, though, is that neither "side" sought to imagine vocations--a fruitful, sacrificially loving future--for gay people within the Catholic Church and in accordance with Her teaching. That's just not anywhere in any document from the bishops. It's the most important question and it's still a blank.(Do I want bishops to sit around imagining my life? Not necessarily. But … [Read more...]

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“A Lonely Hearts Church”: I review a new Archdiocese of Philadelphia Catechesis on Family Life

for AmCon: Love Is Our Mission: The Family Fully Alive is a slim volume, more of an overgrown pamphlet, prepared for the 2015 World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia. It’s meant to lay out Catholic beliefs about vocation, sex, and family life in a way that acknowledges and responds creatively to contemporary challenges. It contains discussion questions to make it easy to use in ministries, book clubs etc. This is what outspoken Archbishop Charles J. Chaput and his team think is most important … [Read more...]

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“Hard Questions We’re Not Asking Pope Francis”: John L. Allen, Jr

item #2: Sex abuse is another front. An exception came with an Aug. 24 piece in The New York Times about former Polish Archbishop Joseph Wesolowski, a onetime papal envoy in the Dominican Republic accused of molesting minors. He was recalled in late 2013 and laicized, meaning kicked out of the priesthood, in June.The Times asked whether bringing the former prelate to Rome was a way of evading civil prosecution, forcing the Vatican to clarify that because he’s been stripped of diplomatic s … [Read more...]

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I’m Interviewed in America Magazine About “Gay and Catholic”

and vocation, the Eucharist, why we should all care less about the Pope, etc etc: You describe this book as a work of “vocational discernment for gay Christians.” Why did you write it?Well, there really wasn’t anything quite like it out there. There are a few good books on personal experiences of being gay and Christian, written in a way that’s faithful to historical Christian teaching on sexuality, but there wasn’t anything that was focused on the different paths that one’s life could take … [Read more...]

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