The pope, the media and balance on pro-life ministries

It was the telephone call heard around the world, because the pope made the call.On the other end of the line was a single woman in central Italy, who mailed Pope Francis a confused, anguished letter after learning she was pregnant by a man who turned out to be married. The man demanded that she have an abortion and she refused.Then a strange telephone number appeared on her caller ID screen. It was the pope, who called to say that she made the right decision because the "child was a … [Read more...]

‘Tis this pope’s gift to be simple

The rise of Pope Francis has certainly raised new questions for Vatican watchers, such as: How significant is it that he has not been wearing cufflinks?In the past, this kind of detail "would be seen as frivolous," noted Rocco Palmo of Philadelphia, whose "Whispers In The Loggia" site is must reading for Catholic insiders. Now, this pope's commitment to beyond-symbolic simplicity is causing religious leaders, journalists, diplomats and Catholics at every level to wrestle with the importance … [Read more...]

Warnings to believers in a consumer culture

Since the goal was to explore the cultural ties that bind, Father John Kavanaugh asked the young Catholics in a St. Louis classroom a basic civics question: How many national and world leaders could they name?The Jesuit didn’t allow the seventh graders to include celebrities and entertainers, which meant that actor Tom Cruise didn’t make the list. In the end, they ended up with 12 names."You started off with the pope and the president, of course. Then things got harder after that," said the S … [Read more...]

So a cardinal, Jesuit and comedian get to chat …

In the year 752, a priest named Stephen was elected pope, but died four days later -- before officially filling the chair of St. Peter in Rome.For centuries Catholic records included him as Pope Stephen II -- until the Second Vatican Council. At that time, Pope Stephen III officially became Pope Stephen II (III) and the other later popes named Stephen received similarly strange titles.So Pope Stephen III kind of vanished and that title became a kind of ecclesiastical inside joke, the kind … [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X