Analysis and Comment

Our own Advent story Comments 0

Thursday, December 10th, 2020

When we read the Gospels as a parable, they bring new meaning to us, and this is especially so in the holy seasons of Advent and Easter. In prayer, we are now with Mary and the angel. Gabriel does not appear to us like something from a medieval painting, but we are aware of a Read more

What the hell kind of Christmas is this? Comments 0

Thursday, December 10th, 2020

Christmas time 1973 I was a newly-arrived seminarian in Japan. It was my first-ever Christmas away from home. The “economic miracle” of the country’s post-war recovery was in full swing. Before the end of the decade, a best-selling book would tout Japan as Number One. However, the miracle was not yet complete, even in the Read more

Empty spaces, abandoned places; challenges and opportunities abound Comments 0

Thursday, December 10th, 2020
empty spaces

COVID-19 safety measures and social distancing have put further strain on many Catholic churches and parishes that have already seen their flocks dwindling. While many still hope things will go back to “normal” once a vaccine is widely available, one researcher is asking a tough question: “What if they never come back?” Dan Cellucci, CEO Read more

Digital technology creating new self-segregated global liturgical identities Comments 0

Thursday, December 10th, 2020
Canon law

The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the way most Catholics around the world are used to worshiping, having led to measures ranging from outright bans on physical gatherings to limits on the size and behaviour of congregations. The various restrictions have raised numerous theological, liturgical and spiritual questions. And the Holy See and the local Churches Read more

Catholic life after COVID-19 Comments 0

Monday, December 7th, 2020
catholic life

There can be little doubt that the experience of being a Catholic in 2020 – the year of COVID-19 – has marked our experience and our habits profoundly and changed the way we shape and imagine our belonging to the Church. But there is an additional element to consider – the impact of these new Read more

A new approach to helping abuse survivors Comments 0

Monday, December 7th, 2020

Dealing with the impact of sexual abuse has been largely outsourced by the Church. Now an initiative is being launched, with the support of Cardinal Reinhard Marx, Archbishop of Munich and Freising, taking a fresh pastoral approach to the welfare of survivors “You took away my faith”; “The Church cheated me out of my relationship Read more

As a teen, I chose adoption. Why are stories like mine missing from the abortion debate? Comments 0

Monday, December 7th, 2020

I would rather jump through a glass window than talk to literally anyone about reproductive politics. Given the choice between a very normal and appropriate conversation about reproductive politics and a glass window, I will be in the bushes out front, picking glass out of my torso. That is because when I was 17 I Read more

You can’t reach the world when all you have is a hammer Comments 0

Monday, December 7th, 2020

“Give a small boy a hammer, and he will find that everything he encounters needs pounding,” said philosopher, Abraham Kaplan. In the Church today, we have one single instrument for leadership—the pastor. Search church positions on any of the many job search forums and recruitment sites and you’ll find there is only one tool churches Read more

Hearing God’s voice in the ordinary Comments 0

Thursday, December 3rd, 2020

There was a time in my life when reading the wise words of some faraway monk sufficed in motivating me to a life of greater solitude and spiritual discipline. I wondered why it was so difficult for most people to find time for God when it came so easily for me. Naturally, at every naïve Read more

His job is to be bishop of Rome and the arbiter of last resort on disputed matters of faith Comments 0

Thursday, December 3rd, 2020
bishop of rome

The Pope’s new work, Let Us Dream, about which Austen Ivereigh, his collaborator, writes movingly in this week’s Tablet, was published on 1 December. So, with the caveat that the final work may be different from the excerpts I have read, it strikes me that it is characteristic of Francis’ best and least good aspects. Read more