Analysis and Comment

Women insist that equality should mean the right to vote Comments 0

Wednesday, October 16th, 2019

Catholic women attending the summit of bishops at the Vatican on the Amazon region praised the climate of inclusivity and openness ushered in by Pope Francis but insisted that equality demands they also have a right to vote. “As many other religious women, we believe we have come to the point that our superior generals Read more

John Henry Newman: The harmony of difference Comments 0

Monday, October 14th, 2019
John Henry Newman

When Pope Francis canonises Cardinal John Henry Newman tomorrow, the first Briton to be declared a saint in over forty years, it will be a cause of celebration not merely in the United Kingdom, and not merely for Catholics, but for all who cherish the values by which he was inspired. In the age when Read more

Australians ask NZ Bishops for help settling asylum seekers Comments 0

Monday, October 14th, 2019

Last month I joined with Rural Australians for Refugees (RAR) to speak at a series of public forums around the country to discuss the future for asylum seekers who remain in limbo in Papua New Guinea and Nauru. So far I have spoken in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Hobart and Launceston, Adelaide, Perth and Benalla in Read more

Amazon: One priest per 25,000 square kilometers Comments 0

Monday, October 14th, 2019

Deep in the Amazon forest, young couples looking to wed or baptize children often turn to Sister Alba, who fills in where Catholic priests cannot be found. But in many remote areas, there are not even enough nuns to go around, and it is laywomen who play a key role in the evangelization of indigenous Read more

Five reasons John Henry Newman is a saint for our times Comments 0

Thursday, October 10th, 2019

When people today hear that John Henry Newman is being named a saint, the first question that likely comes to mind is: What can I take away from the example of a 19th-century priest and intellectual? Not only did he live in a very different time, but his day-to-day existence was quite different from what Read more

Ordained elders not married priests Comments 0

Thursday, October 10th, 2019

It is amazing what a synod can do for a person. German Bishop Fritz Lobinger, a 90-year-old retired missionary bishop in South Africa, has suddenly become the talk of Rome. Lobinger’s idea of ordained elders in order to provide local communities regular access to the sacraments has been the root of discussions about “married priests” Read more

Making sense of the Vatican’s looming financial scandal Comments 0

Thursday, October 10th, 2019

Last week, the Vatican released a mysterious statement acknowledging a raid by Vatican police on the offices of its Secretariat of State and of its financial watchdog agency, saying it was carried out by judicial order by the Vatican tribunal and with permission from unspecified “superiors.” The Secretariat of State is the most powerful department Read more

When the Amazon meets the Tiber Comments 0

Thursday, October 10th, 2019
Amazon

The opening days of the Amazon Synod have been marked by the familiar polar tensions at the heart of the Catholic Church: between center and periphery, universal and local; between the demands of the law and the pastoral needs of a particular people. But now there is something new, something that is tilting the balance Read more

Being human Comments 0

Monday, October 7th, 2019
being human

Catholic laity are generally understanding about priestly indiscretion. We know that a hungry man cannot be judged for stealing a loaf of bread. But for some reason, many lay people believe that the tradition of celibacy for priests, goes back to the apostles. That is not so. Paul tells us that he apostles, including Peter, Read more

Married priests, saviours of the faith or part of an agenda? Comments 0

Monday, October 7th, 2019
married priests

At dusk in this small indigenous village, Antelmo Pereira calls local Catholics to prayer, changes into a white robe and leads a religious service that is the closest thing the faithful in this remote part of the Amazon can get to a proper Mass. Speaking in the indigenous Ticuna language, he leads a recital of Read more