LIVING THE CATHOLIC FAITH IN THE 3RD MILLENIUM

A LAYMAN'S LOOK AT THE JOURNEY OF FAITH

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CATHOLIC CHURCH MOVING FROM LEGALISM TO MERCY
The frame of reference is now going to be: ‘What does the Gospel really say here?’" the Washington DC Cardinal said of the recent Vatican synod.
CATHOLIC CHURCH MUST WELCOME UNCONVENTIONAL COUPLES, SAYS TOP ITALIAN BISHOP
The Catholic Church should make “unconventional couples” feel at home instead of making them targets of “de facto discrimination,” the leader of the Italian Bishops Conference said this week.
CATHOLIC LEADERS MADE STRONG CONDEMNATIONS ALONG WITH CALLS TO DO MORE
Policy victories overshadowed by questions about his demeanor and his continued advocacy for hard-line immigration proposals, both of which are prompting continued condemnations from Catholic leaders in the United States.
CATHOLIC LOBBYING CROSSES DIVIDES IN PURSUIT OF THE COMMON GOOD
State Catholic conferences across the nation work in all-red and all-blue states and in states with divided governments, seeking to bring often divergent groups together in pursuit of the common good.
CATHOLIC WOMEN CALL FOR EXPANDED NOTION OF 'FAMILY VALUES'
A group of Catholic women wants political leaders to think bigger when it comes to so-called family values, claiming that the election has been too quiet on topics important to families.
CATHOLICISM AND LGBT DISCRIMINATION
The Catholic Church can't just congratulate itself on condemning violence toward LGBT people. We need to do better and fight to end discrimination of all kinds.
CERTIFIABLY CATHOLIC
Want to prove you’re a good Catholic? You’ll have to do more than feed the hungry and teach your children the Lord’s Prayer in at least four modern languages and one or two dead ones.
CHURCH IN THE UNITED STATES MUST RECONCILE DIVISIONS POST-TRUMP
Cardina Tobin also says Pope’s teaching on family cannot be reduced to “yes or no” answers.
DIVORCE IS NOT A MORTAL SIN
The most serious and most common misrepresentation of Catholic Church teaching is the claim that those who have divorced and remarried are not allowed to receive communion because they are in a state of mortal sin.
DOES THE CHURCH NEED A REALITY CHECK ON SAME-SEX MARRIAGE?
Sometimes, everyone can benefit from a good reality check.
DOING VIOLENCE IN GOD'S NAME
We see countless examples of this in history. From the time that we first gained self-consciousness, we've done violence in God name.
EXAMINING OUR SOCIAL SINS
What does it mean to embrace honestly an examination of conscience at a time and in a world where racism, violence and environmental degradation are so present?
FATHER RICHARD ROHR ON RACISM, NON-DUAL THINKING, AND JESUS CHRIST
As a proponent of the Perennial Tradition with a distinct Wisdom Lineage, Rohr is known for his ability to reach spiritual seekers across traditional religious boundaries.
I WAS A STRANGER AND YOU DID NOT WELCOME ME
Refusing the one in need because you want to protect yourself, especially when the other is in desperate need and obvious danger, is not what Christianity is about.
IS IT TIME FOR A CULTURAL DETOX?
The #MeToo movement is driving important dialogue about privilege and sexual abuse, but let’s not pat ourselves on the back for a job well done just yet.
IT'S TIME FOR THE U.S. BISHOPS TO REVISE THEIR CATHOLIC VOTING GUIDE
True pastoral leadership notices, encourages and trusts the work of the Spirit in the heart of each believer for the building up of God's reign in our world.
IT'S TIME TO PUT TRUTH BEFORE POLITICAL TRIBE
The only antidote is an educated, critically minded electorate who can see through the hoaxes and separate fact from propaganda.
LIVING FAITHFULLY IN A WORLD OF VIOLENCE
The news lately seems unrelentingly grim, a constant litany of outrageous violence committed by those bent upon instilling fear.
LOVE AND JUSTICE ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN ATTACHMENT TO THE LAWS
Pope Francis lamented the case of Christians who are so attached to the laws that they neglect the concepts of love and justice.
MERCIFUL GOD, MERCIFUL CHURCH
In this wide-ranging exclusive Commonweal interview, Cardinal Walter Kasper discusses mercy, Pope Francis, the CDF, and the Catholic Church's stances on marriage, divorce and communion.
MERCY, TRUTH, AND PASTORAL PRACTICE
A huge number of persons today no longer go to church or have a very strained relationship to their churches because what they've met in their churches doesn't speak well of God.
ON RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
Religions impact public life; they are not wholly private. But what does religious liberty mean if churches aren't above public laws?
PROPHETIC PRAYER & MORAL RESISTANCE
The Role of the Faithful in the Trump Era... We can slumber through the next four years or wake up to this moment’s encroaching darkness with our spirits on fire.
SOLIDARITY IS ALWAYS ACTUAL, PROPHETIC
The word “solidarity” maintains it “prophetic force” today, even though some people may have thought the term had seen its day, said Pope Francis...
THE CHURCH NEEDS TO WORK MORE CLOSELY WITH ITS LGBT MEMBERS
The church must reconsider its treatment of LGBT persons, especially those who have been fired from their jobs because of their sexual orientations.
THE COMMON GOOD PERSPECTIVE
Imagine a world in which we are able to dialogue about abortion, civil rights, voting requirements, climate change, and a host of other contentious issues without slinging one-liners at one another.
THE DARK NIGHT OF OUR NATION'S POLITICS
Our nation’s political campaign has already distinguished itself by its debased level of public discourse. When national politics takes a dark turn, the road to renewal is also at hand.
THE GOSPEL ISN'T SINGLE-ISSUE
Pope Francis’s new apostolic exhortation Gaudete et Exsultate warns against elevating any issue, abortion in particular, over all others. And so 'he wants to prevent the faith from being shaped to suit political ideology.' In other words, the Gospel isn’t single-issue.
THE GOSPEL OF NONVIOLENCE
Neither passive nor weak, Jesus’ nonviolence is the power of love in action for the well-being of all. Is it time for the church to reconsider its approach to peace?
US FIRST!
More and more, we are making ourselves the priority and defining ourselves in ways that are not just against the Gospel but are also making us meaner in spirit and more miserly of heart.
WATERED DOWN, OR DRIED UP? FAITH & DISAFFECTION
In the end, reducing faith to political checklists can neither lift Christianity above the superficiality of bourgeois religion nor reverse the rapidly advancing disaffiliation of the young.
WHEN DOES FAITH DISAPPEAR?
Is ceasing to believe in something the same thing as losing one's faith? Not necessarily. Rejecting a set of theological propositions is not the same thing as losing one's faith.
A CHURCH FOR PEACE?
The message of fifty years of social teaching is that the entire church’s mission is to celebrate God’s gift of peace.
AN ARMY FOR MAKING PEACE; THE GEOPOLITICS OF FRANCIS
Stopping an unjust aggressor. With weapons if necessary. A pope thought to be pacifist appeals for the military protection of populations attacked by the Islamic caliphate.
BLACK LIVES, WHITE CATHOLICS
Consulting and collaborating with historians, political scientists, sociologists, psychologists, and theologians can help reveal the scope and tenacity of racism.
IS THE WORLD A PROBLEM? AN ESSAY BY THOMAS MERTON 1966
The world cannot be a problem to anyone who sees that ultimately Christ, the world, his brother and his own inmost ground are made one and the same in grace and redemptive love.
WHY THE CATHOLIC CHURCH STANDS WITH REFUGEES
New president and CEO of Catholic Relief Services Sean Callahan reminds us refugees need our assistance, not our fear.
SYSTEMIC RACISM IS PRO-LIFE ISSUE, AND CATHOLICS MUST STEP UP
If Catholic leaders are willing to hit the streets, carry banners and lobby lawmakers for the unborn, they should also be pouring out of churches to resist the assault on black and brown bodies.
BISHOPS' LETTER FAILS TO RECOGNIZE THAT RACISM IS A WHITE PROBLEM
The truth is that racism is a white problem because in this society whites hold the power, establish the institutions and set the social norms. And the new document does not come anywhere close to acknowledging or clearly stating this fact.
IT’S TIME TO GIVE THE CHURCH BACK TO THE PEOPLE—LITERALLY: AN (IM)MODEST PROPOSAL FOR CHURCH RENEWAL
We have nothing to lose but many hundreds or even thousands of neighbors and friends to gain. It’s time to give ourselves a renewed church, literally.
WHAT IS SOCIAL ACTION IN THE CHURCH TODAY?
Headlines are fleeting; the real work of activism is the same ordinary work of mercy that happens all over America, every day, in large and small actions.
THE WRONG MESSAGE
Why Were the Bishops so Quick to Oppose LGBTQ Protections?
ROOTS OF AMERICAN CATHOLIC POLARIZATION
Many Catholics have little to no knowledge of Catholic Social Teaching, which sadly remains the Church’s “best kept secret.”
FOUR BISHOPS SIGN ON TO LETTER VOICING CONCERNS WITH EQUALITY ACT
The bill would "add the terms 'sexual orientation' and 'gender identity' to the definition of 'sex' in federal civil rights laws...
WHAT WE LEARNED FROM JEAN VANIER
Love doesn't mean doing extraordinary or heroic things. It means knowing how to do ordinary things with tenderness.
COMMON HUMANITY AS THE BASIS OF A COMMUNITY OF NATIONS
Love of country is always a mixture of gratitude, pain, joy, sorrow, pride, shame and sometimes guilt.
HOW BIBLICAL ‘CHOSENNESS’ HAS JUSTIFIED VIOLENCE, MISOGYNY, AND ANTI-IMMIGRANT SENTIMENT
The weaponization of belief is especially acute in cultures like ours.
NEVER AGAIN IN THE AGE OF TRUMP
In Gaudium et Spes, the Second Vatican Council made a list of several infamies which degrade humanity and human dignity, including... deportations.
A PRISM OF CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING
A refresher on Catholic social teaching, as reflected through the lens of a sister working in San Diego with migrants, treated as guests.
AS IMMIGRATION POLICY CHANGES, SO DOES WORK OF CATHOLIC ORGANIZATIONS
Catholic organizations and parishes have responded with renewed efforts focused on helping those groups.
WHAT'S THE PATH TO TRUE DIALOGUE ABOUT GENDER IN THE CHURCH?
True dialogue presupposes genuine conversation partners, who stand on equal footing...
MEET THE PIONEERS WHO CLEARED THE PATH FOR TODAY‘S CATHOLIC ACTIVISTS
The legacy of towering figures such as Dorothy Day and Daniel Berrigan still guides the work of Catholic activists today.
HEALTH CARE IS A HUMAN RIGHT THAT PRECEDES THE STATE
Health is not a consumer good but a universal right, so access to health services cannot be a privilege
HOW FIVE BISHOPS COULD DELIVER A POWERFUL PRO-IMMIGRANT GESTURE
The only way to get back into the game is by getting back into the game.
RELIGIOUS FREEDOM MAY BE A NO-BRAINER, BUT IT NEEDS TO BE RELEARNED
It should never be forgotten that the Gospel is incompatible with any form of forced conversion or religious bigotry.
OUR CHILDREN ARE DYING AT THE BORDER. BISHOPS, WHERE ARE YOU?
People showing up at the border are not vacationing. This is survival, not opportunism.
NATIVISM ISN’T NEW IN AMERICA
‘The Guarded Gate’ highlights uncomfortable comparisons with the modern United States
WHAT IS SOCIAL JUSTICE?
Few terms have become as unmoored from their Catholic origins, and have thus lent themselves to misunderstanding in contemporary discourse, as has the term “social justice.”
CATHOLIC CHURCH HELPS HIDDEN POOR IN MARTHA’S VINEYARD
The only Catholic parish on Martha's Vineyard is serving the homeless and the hungry on an island known for its wealth.
WHY WE NEED A NEW THEOLOGY OF WORK
We have to ask if the idea of vocation as a stable place in the world applies to the way careers operate in the American economy.
PEACE BY PIECE
Peacebuilding is everyone’s responsibility—as a church, in our schools, as individuals. It’s not just something for governments to do.
PRELATES SAY FEELING OF STRIFE, ENMITY SIGNALS ‘CRISIS OF COMPASSION’
Immigration is as ancient as recorded history. It is driven by multiple factors - people move because they are afraid, oppressed, or to escape violence and chaos.
HOW MUCH IS A PRAYER WORTH? FOR CHRISTIANS SURVIVING A DISASTER
There always seems to be this backlash after major disasters of people criticising these gestures and saying that they are meaningless.
STURZO IN EXILE: THE DEMOCRATIC LEGACY OF AN ITALIAN PRIEST
Is liberal democracy really so exhausted that there is no choice but to abandon it?
THE GLOBAL COMPACT FOR MIGRATION
We must encourage countries to coordinate more suitable and effective responses to the challenges posed by issues of migration.
AMID VITRIOL AND POLARIZATION, HOW CAN WE LOVE ONE ANOTHER?
A look at the American political climate — and the strain it's putting on personal relationships
VATICAN II’S FORGOTTEN APOSTLE OF THE POOR STAGES COMEBACK AT AMAZON SYNOD
Lercaro always represented a third option for the “spirit of Vatican II, one focused on the Church as a tribune for the poor and downtrodden of the world.
CHURCHES ANSWER THE CALL TO SHELTER THE HOMELESS
Churches around the country are opening their doors to those experiencing homelessness, offering them sanctuary within church walls.
POPE FRANCIS AND POPULIST POLITICIANS ARE IN PERFECT CONTRADICTION
The recent success of the 'Far Right' is diametrically opposed to the ideology of Pope Francis' Church
POLITICS: OLD AND NEW
While separation of church and state is an important protection for all religions, it doesn’t mean we as people of faith shouldn’t engage in our civic duties and the political process.
ANGER: A VIRTUE FOR OUR TIME, BECAUSE SILENCE IS NOT WORKING
"Generally speaking," the Dalai Lama said, "if a human being never shows anger, then I think something's wrong. He's not right in the brain."
ST. EPHREM’S LAMENT
In an about-face that was as stunning as it was ill conceived, the undisputed symbol of Western supremacy in a war-torn part of the Middle East turned its back on a faithful ally. The year was 363.
THE GOSPEL ECONOMY
Basically, to understand the Gospel in its purity and in its transformative power, we have to stop counting, measuring, and weighing.
IT'S TIME FOR OUR BIASES TO GROW
Find out the four biases she suggests to counter the toxic kinds that are plaguing U.S. society today. Decorum in differences must be reclaimed, says Sr. Joan Chittister.
HOW FAITH CAN TRANSFORM ADDICTION RECOVERY
Increasing the government budget for social care and rehabilitation will help cut public spending on prisons.
THE REVOLUTION OF TENDERNESS
The Emmaus Community is a successful example of how people with various disabilities can be integrated into society.
PEACE AS A JOURNEY OF HOPE: DIALOGUE, RECONCILIATION AND ECOLOGICAL CONVERSION
Message of His Holiness Pope Francis for the 53rd World Day of Peace [1 January 2020]
CHRIST THE REFUGEE AND OTHER THINGS THAT SHOULDN’T BE CONTROVERSIAL
Why are we so afraid to see Christ in the worst things that could happen to a person?
BE YOU EITHER HOT OR COLD: JESUS' WORDS, NOT MINE
Moderation won't do it. What we need now is Christian extremism, the idea that there are some things that cannot be tolerated in life, that there is something we can do...
DOROTHY DAY DOCUMENTARY EXAMINES THE WOMAN AND MIGHT-BE SAINT
She's been called uncompromising. Prophetic. A peacemaker. No wonder documentary filmmaker Martin Doblmeier admits to having been "afraid" to tackle Dorothy Day as a subject.
SANCTUARY CITIES AND THE PRINCIPLE OF SUBSIDIARITY
The idea of sanctuary cities arouses strong moral passions. For some, the term “sanctuary city” evokes images of a local community resisting unjust immigration enforcement, while for others it connotes lawlessness and disorder.
PROMOTING HUMAN DIGNITY IS OUR BAPTISMAL CALL
When we fail to make what Christ is doing the starting point as we take up the social ministry of the Church, we end up with a distorted view of the Church and our very call to holiness.
IS ALL RELIGIOUS SPEECH PROTECTED BY LAW? THE ANSWER IS COMPLICATED
Whether religious speech is immune from defamation and intentional infliction of emotional distress claims, for example, depends on the context and content of the speech.
THE CATHOLIC PEACE MOVEMENT IS AT A CRITICAL STAGE
There’s more than one way to be a Catholic peace activist today. The Catholic peace movement has changed over the years. What is its future?
WHAT DID JESUS THINK OF IMMIGRATION?
Anyone who imagines Jesus has no stake in the debate about our treatment of the stranger at our borders needs to attend more Bible study.
MIGRATION, CORRUPTION COULD BE KEY THEMES OF POPE’S MALTA DAY TRIP
Francis' first international trip of 2020, will likely be framed by key political issues for which he has often raised his voice: migration and corruption.
NEW YORK CITY’S UNKNOWNS COME ALIVE
"Portraits of Immigrants" will showcase 18 of Betsy Ashton's portraits and stories, from refugees to undocumented migrants. It runs from Feb. 14 - March 8 at Divine Mercy Parish in Williamsburg.
5 THINGS CATHOLICS SHOULD KNOW ABOUT ASYLUM SEEKERS AT THE BORDER
In the past two years, the situation of migrants has changed drastically, says a Claretian priest working at the U.S.-Mexico border.
RETHINKING POLITICS: A BETTER PATH TO FAITHFUL CITIZENSHIP
If our politics ever is going to be something better than a football game, it falls on Catholics especially to bear witness to a real alternative.
THE CHURCH'S TREATMENT OF LGBTQ PEOPLE IS KILLING ITS FUTURE
If [church leaders] truly want the church to have a future, they have to get on the right side of history and the right side of the Gospel.
CATHOLIC WORKER CONFRONTS NEW ERA
As TV documentary spotlights Dorothy Day's legacy, today's Catholic Worker houses face new challenges
UN REPORT BLASTS RELIGIONS' OVERREACH, AND THE HOLY SEE IS NOT AMUSED
{Report] looks at the ways religious groups influence laws that violate the rights of women, girls and LGBT people - something the Vatican has been doing for years.
AN EXPERT IN SOCIAL CARE URGES CHURCHES TO SPEAK OUT, WARNS: 'WHAT ABOUT THE NEXT TIME?'
If the churches and others stay silent and scrutiny is closed down the first time round it will not be any easier when the next time comes.
‘WE CANNOT LOVE GOD UNLESS WE LOVE EACH OTHER’
The current political climate calls for open doors and open hearts.
DETERMINED ITALIAN NUN EMBODIES POPE’S ‘FIELD HOSPITAL’ VISION
We should think of new ways to continue caring for our patients who, in addition to health issues, experience very precarious social situations.
TO FIGHT RACISM, CATHOLICS MUST HUNGER FOR JUSTICE LIKE WE DO FOR THE EUCHARIST
Here are five ways for Catholics to deepen their commitment to working against racism.
WE ALL MUST SAY 'BLACK LIVES MATTER'
In the most charitable read of the situation, perhaps the problem is that Catholic leaders don't realize what Black Lives Matter means.
WHY ARCHBISHOP GREGORY SHOULD BE PRAISED FOR STANDING UP TO POWERFUL FORCES
When historians look back on this period, his intervention may well go down as a courageous move demonstrating that at least some at the highest levels in the Church were willing to stand up to the US President.
FROM CHURCH TO CHURCHES: THE HISTORICAL FAILURE OF SOCIAL LOVE
What is commanded is not difficult to understand; it is hard to enact. By loving one another in imitation of Christ, Christians constitute themselves as a social body, a distinctive collectivity marked by a certain way of life.
“I CAN’T BREATHE”: THE WHOLE EARTH ECHOES THE CRY FOR JUSTICE
The metaforce of breath will not go away. And neither will the resistance to the systemic mechanisms of suffocation, symbolic and material, that control much of what we call civilisation.
PENTECOST DEMANDS A FAITH THAT MOVES
The Spirit sent the disciples out from silence and into the street. This Spirit was the very same Spirit that guided their prayers—the same Spirit that guides ours.
WHEN WILL THE US BISHOPS ADDRESS THE EVIL OF SYSTEMIC RACISM HEAD-ON?
The urgency of the moment demands honesty; The 2018 U.S. bishops' 'Open Wide Our Hearts' pastoral letter on racism has proven to be a worthless statement.
CORONAVIRUS: A NEW RESPONSIBILITY
Institutions can give the money, but they don’t dispense the compassion. That’s up to us. Now is the absolutely worst time for the world to fall apart in petty nationalist squabbling. There is a greater than ever need to pull together and work together.
FOUR WAYS TO TELL A PROPHET FROM A POLITICAL PUPPET
Religion can be a political prop or a prophetic voice. Religious and political leaders can work together for the common good, but they should be enriching the community, not each other.
RESOURCES FOR TODAY’S ANTI-RACIST CATHOLIC
As Catholics living in the United States, we recognize the times when our country has not been a place where that dignity is recognized equally for all people.
WHY BLACK DEATHS MATTER
When we mourn, we understand how hollow the safety and comfort provided by our world really is. We see our own exposure to death, as well as our shared humanity constituted by this vulnerability. The deepest meaning of Black Lives Matter is a call for new life rather than better life.
SIX LESSONS FOR POLICE REFORM FROM THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
The Catholic Church and the U. S. law-enforcement system have something in common: They are both powerful institutions with fiercely loyal agents who have covered up misdeeds — clergy sex abuse and police brutality — and have been in need of reform.
WE NEED TO DO MORE THAN TOPPLE (SOME) STATUES
For those who wish to understand the present moment, the salient point is not “law and order” or “urban decorum.” The problem is what we want to do with our past.
BLIND TO EQUALITY YET?
Consideration of racism is grounded in fundamental scriptural beliefs: equal dignity of all people, created in God's image; and Christ's redemption of all. The equality of men rests essentially on their dignity as persons and the rights that flow from it.
OUR ROMERO MOMENT: TIME FOR U.S. BISHOPS TO STAND UP AGAINST RACISM
Calling upon the faithful to pray, even to pray seriously, is about as safe a place that a religious leader can hide. It is also a good way to ensure that nothing changes.
COVID-19 IS NOT THE ONLY PANDEMIC OUR NATION IS FIGHTING
This virus of fear, which spreads racism, can be diagnosed and steps can be taken to resist and overcome it. The antidote is courage and love.
AMERICAN EXCEPTIONALISM NEEDS A REBOOT
Not only do we need better political leaders, we need more prophets to challenge us and to call us to follow the path leading to a better world for our grandchildren. If we do that, we will be truly exceptional.
ART, RACISM, AND THE PROBLEM OF WHITE JESUS
If a society decides to do away with some commercials they deem hurtful and dangerous, they can do that and they probably should. That’s not “erasing history”... It’s part of keeping the public safe, even if it doesn’t look like it to you.
IT’S THE CATHOLIC BISHOPS... WHO HAVE FAILED THE TEST OF HISTORY
Anti-racism requires that we confront the very nature of how we build institutions that relate to the past only in particular ways, and it demands that we reimagine our relationships to the past.
COVID-19 IS MORE THAN A PUBLIC HEALTH CHALLENGE: IT'S A MORAL TEST
The time is already past to admit that the coronavirus pandemic in the United States is a moral crisis, not simply a public health and economic crisis.
CATHOLIC NUNS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE 50 YEARS ON
The change for U.S. Catholic women in religious life between 1960 and the mid-1980s cannot be overstated. It was an historical, theological, sociological and psychological transition of epic proportions – personally, professionally and spiritually.
TAKING FREEDOM TOO FAR
When read carefully, the USCCB’s brief in the Bostock case proves to be only another example of Catholic leaders setting aside the Church’s moral theology for the sake of a “win” in the culture wars.
A CHURCH THAT IS POOR?
In many countries, including the United States, the Catholic Church is not only an important advocate for the voiceless, but also literally a lifeline. What are the costs for the poor of having a poor Church?
DON'T PLAY POLITICS WITH PEOPLE'S LIVES DURING A PANDEMIC
Catholic social teaching recognizes that personal charity is not enough, that just societies must be measured by the degree to which they ameliorate the conditions faced by the poor — not by the amount of money they bestow upon the wealthy.
ONLY RECONCILIATION CAN CANCEL TRANSGRESSIONS
Our task––our common task––is to try to desire reconciliation, and reconciliation requires building something together, and building something together requires a forgiveness the likes of which is unimaginable.
A BETTER WAY TO SERVE AND PROTECT
Police militarization has led to excessive use of force, says Tobias Winright, an officer-turned-theologian. We as a church are supposed to be a sacrament to the world, a community of all communities. What can we do to facilitate, to encourage, to be a catalyst for bringing these groups together?
VATICAN OFFICIAL SAYS ‘LIFE’ SHOULD NEVER BE USED AS A POLITICAL WEAPON
As the United States presidential elections draw nearer and candidates on both sides tout their position on life issues as reasons for their electability, the Vatican’s top official in the area has cautioned against turning life into an ideological weapon.
INEQUALITY AND ENVIRONMENTAL DEGRADATION ARE FRUIT OF A ‘SICK ECONOMY’
These symptoms of inequality reveal a social illness; it is a virus that comes from a sick economy. And we must say it simply: the economy is sick. It has become ill. This is the illness: the fruit of unequal economic growth — that disregards fundamental human values
STILL A SIGN OF CONTRADICTION
Liberal, conservative, traditionalist, progressive: Dorothy Day's life defies these conventional, increasingly inadequate categories. Dorothy simply tried to live in accord with the convictions that drew her to the church.
TROLLING THE CATHOLIC VOTE
Appealing to voters based on religious identity or values has a long and often inspiring history. What is disturbing about CatholicVote is its apparent cynicism about the intelligence and faith of its prospective audience.
AN INTERNSHIP TEACHES THE MEANING OF 'ANYTHING HELPS'
And anything can change everything if you see it as an opportunity to share joy, and give love with every moment.
PREEMINENT? THE BISHOPS MISS THE MARK ON FAITHFUL CITIZENSHIP
The bishops’ insistence on abortion as the preeminent political issue reveals their resistance to Pope Francis’s call to serve the common good in all its complexity.
MORAL DISCERNMENT OR (EVIL) GENIUS?
How demonization of Catholics with whom we disagree is a detriment to evangelization and undermines Christ's mission, which impedes the important call to reach those who have left the faith or contemplating doing so.
POPE FRANCIS IN ASSISI ON OCTOBER 3 TO SIGN THE ENCYCLICAL
Pope Francis will travel to Assisi on 3 October to sign his new encyclical on human fraternity titled “Fratelli tutti”. We can expect this to be a landmark document on how the Church can help build a more just world.
WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT RACISM IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
If you are a Catholic in America today, this is your chance. History is offering you an opportunity for conversion and unity. Our identity comes from the theological aspect of the sacrament: We are all one in Christ.
NOW IS THE TIME FOR A NEW CATHOLIC POLITICAL VISION
The principles of Catholicism invite us to transcend the political divide and encourage faithful Catholics to advocate Catholic social teaching even—and especially—within their respective parties.
EVERY CHRISTIAN GENERATION CALLED TO MANIFEST MERCY IN ITS TIME
In the ancient world, the single most popular mark of the Christian in common society was the believer’s willingness to forgive. It was mercy that was the predominant synonym for Christian.
THE U.S. POLITICAL SYSTEM IS BROKEN. HOW CAN WE FIX IT?
We need to stop seeking political victories at all cost and vilifying the people who disagree with us; instead we need to work together to renew our political order.
REIMAGINE FAITHFUL CITIZENSHIP, RESTORE THE COMMON GOOD
One of the key signs of our times is the fact that the U.S. constitutional republic is facing its greatest stress test since the Civil War. Yet the U.S. Catholic bishops, in their quadrennial reflection on political responsibility, seem oddly out of tune...
ENVIRONMENT, OTHER ISSUES BEYOND ABORTION ARE CRITICAL IN VOTING
Pushing back against single-issue voting, the bishop of Lexington, Kentucky, said Catholics should consider concerns beyond abortion, such as the environment, when evaluating candidates for political office.
POPE TO TAKE COVID CONCERNS TO GLOBAL STAGE AT UN
Pope Francis will speak about using the coronavirus crisis as an opportunity to rethink economic, political and environmental policies when he addresses the UN General Assembly via video message on September 21.
READING MATER ET MAGISTRA
Mater et Magistra, published in May 1961, came at a significant moment in the life of the Church. In tone as well as in content, it was beginning to manifest what would later be called the “Spirit” of Vatican II.
LAND OF THE FREE, HOME OF THE SELF-CENTERED
Clearly, the land of the free and the home of the self-centered have a lot to learn from the people of all ages and all countries who manage to wear masks, avoid pool parties and understand that the fines that go with activities like those are in recognition of everybody else's rights.
GOOD POLITICS FOR THE COMMON GOOD
The Christian response to the pandemic and to the consequent socio-economic crisis is based on love, above all, love of God who always precedes us. He loves us first...
POPE: “PHARMACEUTICAL MARGINALITY” FURTHERS GAP BETWEEN NATIONS
Pope Francis is a rare leader on the global stage to call out big pharmaceutical companies for making drugs so expensive so that they are only accessible to the rich - and the poor who are sick are denied treatment.
WORKING FOR JUSTICE MEANS TAKING SIDES
Every Catholic bishop should be willing to take a side, to say without qualification, “Black lives matter,” not just because it’s true, but because that’s what needs to be said now.
THE ONLY WAY OUT OF THE CURRENT CRISIS IS ALL TOGETHER
Pope Francis looks to a post-pandemic world and reflects on the principle of subsidiarity, whereby every level of society has a role to play in revitalizing the social fabric.
CATHOLICS MUST VOTE THEIR CONSCIENCE THIS ELECTION
There is much Americans can disagree about, but one thing is clear: In the past three and a half years, many people have been suffering.
POPE CALLS FOR REFORMS, CHANGE IN DIRECTION, IN ADDRESS TO THE UNITED NATIONS"
The Future We Want, the United Nations We Need: Reaffirming our Joint Commitment through Multilateralism"Transform the challenge that lies before us into an opportunity to build together, once more, the future we all desire"
POPE'S POST-COVID ENCYCLICAL ENVISIONS A LESS POPULIST, LESS CAPITALIST WORLD
In new encyclical 'Fratelli Tutti,' Pope Francis imagines societies that are more caring, more focused on helping those in need and fundamentally less attached to the principles of market capitalism.
POPE OFFERS FRANCISCAN VISION TO HEAL BROKEN WORLD
In Fratelli Tutti, Pope Francis sets out a vision for a new kind of politics and moves the Church a step closer to a complete rejection of war. Christopher Lamb reports from Assisi.
THE CORRUPTION OF THE WORD
The word has a performative quality. But so does the lie... We have ample evidence of the damage done by organized, systematic lying in our politics. The impact of it in the Church remains to be seen.
A SOCIETY WITH SOLIDARITY IS MUCH MORE RESISTANT THAN ANY KIND OF VIRUS
Pope Francis continues his series of catecheses on the need to heal the world
POPE’S NEW ENCYCLICAL OFFERS ‘VOTER’S GUIDE’ FOR POST-PANDEMIC WORLD
Though Francis’s vision is clearly global, the pope’s words pack a clear punch for the United States, which next month will hold presidential elections at the end of a contentious and even hostile political campaign.
AMERICANS NEED TO HEED POPE'S COUNTERCULTURAL MESSAGE ON THE COMMON GOOD
The pope's third encyclical is no rote call for prayers and best wishes in the face of the pandemic. It is a pointed critique of nationalistic populism, of economic systems that exploit the poor, and of democracy itself.
'FRATELLI TUTTI' SEEN AS SPEAKING TO A DIVIDED US CHURCH AND COUNTRY
The release of Pope Francis' latest encyclical has been greeted by a number of leading U.S. Catholics as a letter that speaks directly to a deeply polarized church and country struggling to overcome racial, economic and political divides.
NEW ENCYCLICAL ON HUMAN FRATERNITY: THE POPE'S "CRI DE COEUR"
The 83-year-old pope is ideally suited to issue this call to conscience. A religious leader? Yes. But even more than that, he remains one of the world's leading moral figures in a world sorely in need of them.
AMERICAN POLITICS & SOCIAL CATHOLICISM - RADICAL, MODERATE, AND NECESSARY
Those inspired by Catholic thinking have always been alive to the importance of balance—between personal responsibility and a concern for community, between individual rights and the common good.
THE POPE'S IRRESPONSIBLE BEHAVIOR AND THOSE WHO DEFEND IT
Pope Francis has been a great gift to the Church and to the world. But he is only a human being. And like all human beings, he can be wrong.
POPE HAS ‘SIMPLE BUT JARRING’ MESSAGE FOR THE WORLD IN ENCYCLICAL
Voices from around the U.S. Church are praising Pope Francis’s new encyclical on human fraternity, calling it a timely address for the culture and politics of the world’s largest economic power.
HYPERFOCUS ON ABORTION ISSUE OBSCURES CALL OF COMMON GOOD
This hyper focus, paired with the political manipulation of the issue, draws a false line in the sand and creates a litmus test for the role of people of faith in the public square that obscures the multiple ways in which we participate in a culture of death.
POPE FRANCIS WANTS CATHOLICS TO DARE TO DREAM OF A BETTER WAY OF DOING POLITICS
Catholic Christians would do well to revisit his critique of false realism and false nostalgia, and his call for the church to foster a political attitude of faithful and daring dreaming.
VOTING CATHOLIC: SHOULD CATHOLICS EVER BE SINGLE-ISSUE VOTERS?
Catholic teaching is always that in your core of your heart, when you are just there with God, after you’ve listened to the teachings of the church, after you’ve listened to other issues.... You sit down and you pray and ask what is God calling you to do?
EXAMINING THE ENCYCLICAL: WHERE DOES ‘FRATELLI TUTTI’ FIT IN THE MAGISTERIAL TRADITION?
Catholics should read Francis’s new encyclical not just for what it says, but also for how it says it.
THE POPE IS NOT A POLITICIAN, BUT HIS LATEST ENCYCLICAL IS INTENSELY POLITICAL
The Pope's encyclical is not a political manifesto. It is, however, a radical blueprint for a post-coronavirus world. Now is the time to change the framework of our economic systems, through debt relief for the poorest countries.
THE ARCHITECTURE OF PEACE
A collection of Catholic theologians, historians, and political theorists offer reflections on different aspects of the Pope’s new encyclical, and the challenge it holds out for our times.
TO BE TRULY PRO-LIFE, THE CHURCH MUST BE ANTIRACIST
Pro-life efforts must involve antiracism, or they are disingenuous. We cannot tolerate or turn a blind eye to racism and exclusion in any form and yet claim to defend the sacredness of every human life.
CAN CATHOLICS AND SOCIALISTS WORK TOGETHER TO BUILD A BETTER FUTURE?
Yes, if socialism is the belief that both the economy and society should be run to meet the needs of all.
POPE FRANCIS CALLS FOR CIVIL UNION LAWS FOR SAME-SEX COUPLES
In a new documentary, Pope Francis has called for the creation of civil union laws for same-sex couples, in remarks that break from the Catholic Church’s official teaching and mark his clearest support to date for the issue.
WHY THE POPE'S COMMENTS ON CIVIL UNIONS ARE SO MOMENTOUS
Some will say this is a new departure given the Vatican’s past opposition to civil unions, but the Pope has stressed that on the LGBT question he is following the Church's catechism which states that gay people be treated with “respect, compassion and sensitivity”.
POPE FRANCIS’ SUPPORT FOR CIVIL UNIONS IS A CALL TO JUSTICE – AND NOTHING NEW
The pope’s support for civil unions does not change Catholic doctrine about marriage or sexuality. The church still teaches – and will go on teaching – that, in the Catholic view, marriage – different from civil unions – is between a man and a woman.
SIX THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT POPE FRANCIS AND GAY CIVIL UNIONS
Signs of the Times: Francis is not changing dogma or doctrine or even canon law. He is talking about civil law, an area of prudential judgment.
HOW TO BE ANTI-RACIST AT WORK: SUGGESTIONS FOR WHITE CATHOLICS
If we provide opportunities for dialogue on race, if we practice listening, if we follow up on public pronouncements of solidarity, if we examine our work structures from hiring to retention and if we believe that the image of God is imprinted within all, then our prayers and our acts of faith must honor that.
POPE FRANCIS AND CIVIL UNIONS
The confusion around Francis’s comments about same-sex civil unions is not merely a media crisis, but also a moral one. We need clarity, not a media blackout.
AFTER THE ELECTION IS THE TIME TO FORM CONSCIENCES FOR FAITHFUL CITIZENSHIP
Like Pope Francis, let's not be afraid to dream of a better world. It seems that after the election, rather than in the midst of it, is the time to be forming consciences for faithful citizenship.
'PEOPLE ARE RAW': SISTERS REFLECT ON HOW WE LIVE TOGETHER POST-ELECTION
We won't all be holding hands and singing 'Kumbaya,' no matter who wins. ... It's going to take more than the election for us to start talking about coming together.
WHAT DID THE EARLY CHURCH SAY ABOUT ECONOMIC JUSTICE?
In an age when Christianity is comfortably entwined with consumer capitalism, the early Christians’ passion for social and economic justice can come as a shock. From the first... the duty to care for the poor and marginalized was at the center of the gospel.
THE CONFLICT OF INTERPRETATIONS OVER WHAT POPE FRANCIS SAID ABOUT CIVIL UNIONS
While some might interpret the “right to be a part of a family” and the “right to a family” as Francis’s approval of same-sex couples to acquire children, his comments immediately following these statements offer important clarification as to what he meant
WHO ARE WE TO JUDGE?
It’s something humans are notoriously bad at; Why we should be quicker to judge our own side than we should others. We must recognize that our ultimate confidence lies in God’s judgments, not our own.
'FRATELLI TUTTI' OFFERS A NEW LANGUAGE FOR MUSLIM-CATHOLIC SOLIDARITY
Catholics and Muslims collectively account for roughly one-third of all people, and the well-being of the world is dependent not just upon our relationships with each other, but upon our relationships with humanity as a whole.
WE WILL BE JUDGED ON CHARITY
"Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and we didn't serve you?" Jesus answers this question, in the unusual and severe capacity of judge of humanity: "Whatever you did not do to one of these least, you did not do to me."
POPE URGES "TRANSFORMATION" OF ECONOMY POST-COVID
"It is time to let 'the poor' and 'the excluded' become protagonists in society." In a video message for the 'Economy of Francesco' event, Pope Francis has urged a "transformation" of the economy post-COVID
ECONOMY OF FRANCESCO: GENERATING SOLIDARITY OUT OF ASHES OF PANDEMIC
“The Economy of Francesco” online event continued into its second day on Friday, with participants focusing on how questions of finance, economics, sociology, and ecology are all interrelated.
THE ECONOMY OF FRANCIS – BOTH SAINT AND POPE
The world – and especially the poor – needs a national and global economy that justly and fairly works for everyone.
DOROTHY DAY'S WRITINGS FROM COMMONWEAL
“The most significant, interesting, and influential person in the history of American Catholicism.” A complete collection of her decades of contributions to Commonweal Magazine.
SOCIAL TEACHING | CATHOLIC CENTRAL
What do hymns, holy water, and incense have to do with defending human rights around the world? - An entertaining little reminder how much Catholicism's official vision for our society overwhelmingly aligns with progressive values.
THE SUPER RICH, PHILANTHROPY AND POPE FRANCIS'S DREAM
Some billionaires have cashed in on COVID. So are they morally bound to share the wealth? And Pope Francis has endorsed the controversial idea of a universal basic income. (The Religion and Ethics Report presented by Andrew West)
NINE SOCIAL JUSTICE PRINCIPLES OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
The social doctrine of the Catholic Church developed in response to the rapidly changing economic conditions brought about during the last two hundred years by the advent of capitalism, communism and socialism.
THE INITIATIVE ON CATHOLIC SOCIAL THOUGHT AND PUBLIC LIFE
A unique effort to promote dialogue on Catholic social thought and national and global issues, encouraging a new generation of Catholic lay leaders to see their faith as an asset in pursuing the common good.
LET AMERICA BE AN ISLAND OF MERCY FOR IMMIGRANTS, REFUGEES
To seek a better life for one's family is genuinely human. To flee violence, persecution or starvation is an affliction. If we are to follow Christ, we must act as if the griefs of today's refugees and asylum seekers are our own.
POPE FRANCIS, FAKE NEWS, AND POST-TRUTH JOURNALISM
At the heart of the rigidity and self-isolation of groups within the Church—whether on the left or the right—is not an ideological problem but a spiritual one, for which ideology provides the rationale or justification.
'YOU REAP WHAT YOU SOW': SOME BISHOPS DECRY VIOLENCE AT CAPITOL
We need to begin immediately a moral and spiritual regeneration in the public and political realms that touches the hearts of Americans and helps us all to see through the prism of this terrible assault on our democracy.
REPAIRERS OF THE BREACH: A MEDITATION ON AMERICA
If we can’t find some sort of common ground, some shared values or goals, the chasm dividing our nation will continue to widen. How, then, might we begin to repair the breach and to restore the dwellings that our divisiveness has so damaged? How can we make our cracked foundations whole?
THOMAS MERTON'S WRITINGS ON RACE RESONATE
He was a white guy, who spent most of his life alone in the woods in a then-Jim Crow region. But the words Thomas Merton on racial justice resonate as strongly today as they did when they were published more than a half-century ago.
CONFRONTING SYSTEMIC RACISM IN A POST-TRUTH WORLD
We have a duty to remember that, even if each culture is rendered in a different artistic style by our endlessly creative Creator, we are all made in the image and likeness of God.
THE CHURCH TEACHES THAT PURPOSE OF GOVERNMENT IS THE COMMON GOOD. PERIOD.
The respect for the inherent dignity and value of the human person is not up for personal selection, choosing as one might which population, political party, class or race of people... one wishes to recognize.
5 THINGS WORTH KNOWING ABOUT EMPATHY
Empathy is a skill that can be learned and enhanced. But it has its limits, and can even promote conflict. Here’s what some experts say about how it works.
BE FRIENDS WITH THE RADICALS: DOROTHY DAY AND WHAT IT MEANS TO LOVE OUR NEIGHBORS
They simply treated these odd people as men and women loved by God, and did not identify them first by their politics or their morals, or even their manners.
HEALING THE WOUNDS OF A DIVIDED AMERICA
We cannot will healing into happening. We also can’t expect our elected officials to fix this for us. It’s going to take effort—and in equal measures from individuals across the political spectrum.
BLACK LIVES AND THE PREFERENTIAL OPTION FOR THE POOR
The preferential option for the poor asks us first to notice the way in which some lives do not, in fact, but only in theory, matter. John Cavadini on what lives matter according to the Gospel.
AN UNHOLY TRINITY LED TO THE CAPITOL RIOTS: FAKE NEWS, FANATICISM AND A FETISH FOR GUNS
We are doing it to ourselves, of course: crafting idols out of our politicians; stacking guns into shrines in our homes or wearing them across our chests like amulets...
WORKERS DESERVE A LIVING WAGE, NOT JUST A MINIMUM WAGE
For more than a century, Catholic social teaching has advocated not for a minimum wage but for a living wage for workers. Sadly, however, the U.S. Congress cannot even increase the minimum wage because of parliamentary rules...
POPE VISITS BIRTHPLACE OF ABRAHAM, INVOKING TIES AMONG FAITHFUL
In settings both intimate and theatrical, in gestures concrete and symbolic, Francis used the backdrop of ancient Mesopotamia as a powerful reminder that what binds humanity can be more powerful than what divides.
THE POPE IN IRAQ, ARMED WITH A MESSAGE OF PEACE
Here was a reminder that the Pope is not a world leader who comes to a country backed by any military or economic power. Judging by the joy of ordinary Iraqis on the streets of Baghdad, his is a message that just might be getting a hearing.
RELIGIOUS FREEDOM PROTECTS OUR RIGHT TO WORSHIP. IT DOESN’T PROTECT DISCRIMINATION
People of faith look the other way while legislators codify discrimination against LGBTQ Americans in the name of ‘religious liberty.’
TIME FOR SOME GOOD NEWS FOR THE POOR
The American Recovery Plan is 'good news for the poor' in the midst of a global pandemic — which should cheer Christians in both parties.
IS FRATELLI TUTTI A “LEFTIST” ENCYCLICAL?
A primary purpose of any social encyclical is to correct the errors and excesses present in the ideologies of its day. To assert that Fratelli Tutti promotes a leftist ideology is a serious disservice to the Holy Father’s thought.
VATICAN SAYS YES TO GAY PEOPLE, NO TO BLESSING GAY UNIONS
The Vatican said "God cannot bless sin." This will go down as one of the most pastorally insensitive statements coming from the Francis papacy.
GERMAN BISHOPS 'NOT HAPPY' WITH SAME-SEX BLESSING RULE
The head of Germany's Catholic bishops has indicated concern over this week's Vatican ruling that the Church can never bless same-sex couples.
THE VATICAN STATEMENT ON GAY UNIONS MAY HAVE BEEN RUSHED PAST THE POPE
...the document was drafted by a much smaller group of people than would ordinarily be involved in writing this type of statement and that Pope Francis reviewed it just before his Iraq trip.
RULING ON SAME-SEX BLESSINGS 'IS NOT LAST WORD'
Rather than ring-fencing the discussion, it has instead provoked a series of new questions about how the Church can do more to welcome people, regardless of their sexual orientation
VATICAN'S DECREE ON GAY UNIONS RISKS MAKING FRANCIS INTO A HYPOCRITE
forced distancing imposed by the pandemic has cut many off from their usual support structures, including their parishes. And now the pope of "building bridges and not walls" has erected another barrier
BISHOPS CRITICIZE VATICAN'S BAN ON BLESSING SAME-SEX COUPLES
In a rare display of open disagreement with the Vatican, a number of bishops have publicly denounced a statement issued by the Congregation for Doctrine of the Faith.
THE VATICAN ‘DOUBTS’ SAME-SEX LOVE, BUT MORE DOUBT THE VATICAN
The Roman Catholic institutional Church is only a small and shrinking part of a much broader Catholic community that has more common sense and ethical savvy.
FOR U.S. BISHOPS, LGBTQ 'ANTHROPOLOGY' RULES OUT EQUALITY ACT COMPROMISES
The general strategy of most Catholic bishops has been to simply double-down on opposition to the Equality Act, without any consideration of possible alternatives.
THE WRONG MESSAGE: WHY WERE THE BISHOPS SO QUICK TO OPPOSE LGBTQ PROTECTIONS?
The Equality Act — now before the US Senate — designed to bolster LGBTQ protections, provoked fierce opposition from the USCCB. But fears of infringement on religious liberty are unfounded.
POPE FRANCIS CALLS FOR AN AGE OF MERCY. SO WHERE IS IT?
Of course, the wounded world is much easier to see today than any concrete evidence that humanity has entered an epoch primarily characterized by its mercy.
AFTER VATICAN DECREE, OVER 100 THEOLOGIANS PLEDGE TO SUPPORT SAME-SEX COUPLES
More than 3,000 Catholic theologians, clergy, laypeople and organizations have pledged to support LGBTQ couples in the face of the recent Vatican decree banning priests from blessing same-sex unions.
CATHOLICS MUST DO MORE TO REJECT ANTI-ASIAN DISCRIMINATION, VIOLENCE
We must learn to center and uplift the Asian experience, from our Catholic schools to our parishes to our media.
PARENTS WHO SEND THEIR KIDS ACROSS THE BORDER ARE NOT HEROES OR VILLAINS. THEY’RE HUMANS...
Many migrants and asylum seekers are parents doing their best to make difficult decisions. That recognition should guide our border policies.
MAJOR CATHOLIC FUNDERS AND POWER BROKERS SPEARHEAD VOTER SUPPRESSION EFFORTS
Conservative Catholic philanthropists and pro-life leaders are key players behind efforts to limit voter access in a number of states...
CATHOLICS CANNOT SUPPORT VOTER SUPPRESSION, EVEN UNDER THE GUISE OF BEING PRO-LIFE
It should go without saying that anything that tries to limit a citizen's right to vote is contrary to Catholic teaching on faithful citizenship.
"GOD IS ON YOUR SIDE"
More Catholic religious orders, schools and institutions have signed onto the Tyler Clementi Foundation statement standing up against #LGBTQ bullying, joining 14 US bishops and over 100 Catholic groups.
CATHOLICS ACROSS THE GLOBE REJECT VATICAN’S LGBTQ CRUELTY
Not since Thomas doubted the resurrection of Jesus has a Catholic dubium caused a stir like the recent Vatican response about blessing same sex couples.
PRIESTS SHOULD THINK TWICE BEFORE DENYING COMMUNION TO CATHOLICS IN SAME-SEX UNIONS
Pass-givers and gate-keepers do not usually talk to each other. They should, because there is some important wisdom to be found in each perspective.
VOW OF SILENCE?
The silence from Catholic bishops when it comes to systematic, partisan, and racist efforts to undermine voting rights is a failure to apply Catholic social teaching to one of the most brazen injustices of our time.
U.S. BISHOPS CALL FOR 'HEALING' AFTER CHAUVIN VERDICTS
"The death of George Floyd highlighted and amplified the deep need to see the sacredness in all people, but especially those who have been historically oppressed. Whatever the stage of human life, it not only matters, it is sacred."
IT’S EASY TO HATE ‘THE MEDIA.’ BUT LOCAL JOURNALISM IS ESSENTIAL (AND HOLY) WORK
Journalism gets attention when it breaks big stories about institutions... But they can only do that work if they are consistently read — and broadly trusted.
ACADEMIC STATEMENT ON THE ETHICS OF FREE AND FAITHFUL SAME-SEX RELATIONSHIPS
Theologians and academics have joined forces to produce a new interdisciplinary study that annuls Christian homophobia, appealing directly to Pope Francis
SO WHAT WENT WRONG IN ROME OVER SAME-SEX BLESSINGS?
The Vatican’s doctrine office may have only sparked more debate which go to the heart of what it means to be the Church.
DOZENS OF GERMAN PRIESTS WILL DEFY THE VATICAN AND LIVE-STREAM BLESSINGS OF GAY COUPLES
We need an honest theological discussion; we have to — finally — recognize as a church that sexuality is part of life.
THEOLOGIANS CALL VATICAN STANCE ON SAME-SEX UNIONS UNBIBLICAL
An international group of theologians and scholars released an academic statement on May 4 alleging inconsistencies in the Vatican's arguments against same-sex relationships, and urging the church to review its stance in light of modern research.
GERMAN CATHOLICS TO BLESS GAY UNIONS DESPITE VATICAN BAN
The German church has been at the forefront of opening discussion on hot-button issues such the church’s teaching on homosexuality as part of a formal process of debate and reform.
DIVINE REVELATION LEADS TO REVOLUTION
As long as the work of justice is incomplete, we will require revolutions large and small to harmonize the values of heaven and earth.
CALLS TO DENY COMMUNION TO BIDEN PROMPT CATHOLIC SOUL-SEARCHING
Decisions on who can receive Communion rest solely with the bishop in whose diocese the sacrament is being administered. As the bishops debate, ordinary Catholics consider what the sacrament does for them.
BISHOPS DENYING COMMUNION TO CATHOLIC POLITICIANS A 'DISTINCTIVELY AMERICAN' APPROACH
As the U.S. bishops consider a new document, a range of historians and theologians describe the U.S. church-state confrontation as one lacking much precedent.
SHOULD CATHOLIC SCHOOLS TEACH CRITICAL RACE THEORY?
Parents, students and alumni are divided over the place of race in the classroom. Can Catholic social teaching show the way forward?
COLLEGE STUDENTS’ ATTITUDES TOWARD DIVERSITY
Students at Catholic colleges leave with less positive attitudes toward gay people than their peers – but that’s not the whole story.
VATICAN STEPS INTO HEATED DEBATE ON ANTI-HOMOPHOBIA LAW IN ITALY
As Italy considers legislation that would make homophobia and discrimination punishable by law, the Vatican has been forced to weigh how its own teachings on sexuality and its claims of religious freedom will play in a changing social context.
YES, CRITICAL RACE THEORY IS COMPATIBLE WITH CATHOLICISM. HERE’S WHY
It has something to teach us about ourselves. And if you’re going to reject out-of-hand analytical tools that are designed to deepen understanding, that’s just anti-intellectual; it’s like modern-day book burning.
FOR NATIVE PEOPLES, AN APOLOGY NEVER SPOKEN IS NO APOLOGY AT ALL
To paraphrase the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., it is not the silence of the enemy that is remembered, but rather that of the friend and advocate who never speaks up.
FREEDOM OF RELIGION: A SHIELD TO PROTECT OR A SWORD TO HARM?
Ahmed Shaheed, the United Nations special rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief, discusses state-sanctioned intolerance.
WHEN IT COMES TO LGBTQ CATHOLICS, WHAT POPE FRANCIS GIVETH, THE VATICAN TAKETH AWAY
While Francis has often shown in his words and actions that he is close to LGBTQ individuals, the Vatican itself has done little to recast its hard doctrinal line.
SOCIAL INJUSTICE, SYSTEMATIC RACISM, CRITICAL RACE THEORY AND ORIGINAL SIN
It is important for us to realize that the society which we live in does not emerge from immaculate past. We are heirs of injustices.
LIKE JESUS TURNING TABLES, PROTEST CAN BE AN ACT OF FAITH
Viewing Jesus through the lens of privilege often leads people to miss the radical call of the good news. Protest isn’t just a part of democracy — it’s a part of discipleship.
CRITICAL RACE THEORY AND CATHOLICISM GO HAND IN HAND
Many of us have divorced the spiritual from the intellectual as though they are two opposing forces rather than God-given attributes that support each other.
SACRIFICING CHILDREN ON THE ALTAR OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM
A Flood of Mask and Vaccine Lawsuits are Warping ‘Religious Freedom’ - the theology is stretched pretty thin to reach a preferred political stance.
THIS IS WHY AMERICA NEEDS CATHOLICISM
The idea that Catholic social teaching can inspire secular politics is not new. Today Pope Francis addresses his writings to “all people of good will” rather than to the Catholic faithful alone...
BISHOPS' MIGRATION COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN OBJECTS TO 'FAST-TRACK' DEPORTATIONS
A U.S. bishop charged with addressing immigration issues has raised objections to fast-tracking deportations, of some immigrant families who entered the U.S. illegally and do not qualify for asylum.
ON RACISM, THE CHASM BETWEEN CATHOLIC SISTERS AND BISHOPS IS VAST
While women religious congregations are bravely forging ahead in addressing deep issues of racism, the official church hierarchy remains in denial.
AS SOUTHERN STATES RESTRICT VOTING RIGHTS, LOCAL BISHOPS REMAIN LARGELY SILENT
This is about the very survival of our democracy, and certainly what is happening is also very racist in that these bills are being put forward to keep African Americans, Latinos and other people of color from voting.
DO CATHOLICS HAVE TO GET THE COVID-19 VACCINE?
Vaccines protect the common good, but if you choose not to get one your moral obligation doesn't end there. We are all really responsible for all.
IF EVER WE NEEDED AN ENCYCLICAL FOR ALL BROTHERS AND SISTERS...
Recognizing a brother or sister in everyone we meet and, for Christians, recognizing the face of Jesus in the other who suffers – these responses reaffirm the irreducible dignity of every human person created in the image of God.
ADDRESSING THE US HOUSING CRISIS MUST BE A TOP PRIORITY FOR CHURCHES
In building housing for communities, our churches can do their part, and in so doing, offer up an alternative vision for society — that of God's word enacted here on Earth.
SCRAPPING THE COLOR CODE - A POST-RACIAL AMERICA IS INEVITABLE
Global economic and demographic riptides are carrying us—especially millions of young biracial Americans—irreversibly beyond whiteness or Blackness as vessels of hope.
PRIESTS NAVIGATE CATHOLICS’ FEARS AND CONSCIENCES IN VACCINE EXEMPTION PLEAS
It’s unclear how many Catholics are seeking vaccine religious exemptions, but more and more of their bishops are urging their priests to decline such requests.
NEVER MORE WAR
It would have taken courage to have chosen a different path after the provocation and suffering of 9/11. Twenty years later it is not clear we will have the courage to press for peace when that decision looms before us again.
TRANSPHOBIC STATEMENTS FROM BISHOPS MAKE TRUTH CLAIMS WITHOUT FACTS
The mystery of human personhood is complex and requires a tremendous degree of humility in approaching any claim to understanding, especially when attempting to make universal claims.
WHAT CRITICAL RACE THEORY IS — AND IS NOT
To hear some describe it, critical race theory is Marxism, a threat to the American way of life, reverse racism and a scheme to indoctrinate children. The reality is less sensationalistic
MY FATHER WAS A STRANGER: BIBLICAL TEACHING ON MIGRANTS
We all forget the events of the distant past, and then we find ourselves in situations which appear unusual; exceptional; and without parallel; their presumed abnormality becomes a source of anxiety.
WHAT’S THE LAW ON VACCINE EXEMPTIONS? - A RELIGIOUS LIBERTY EXPERT EXPLAINS
No major organized religious group has officially discouraged the vaccine, and many, like the Catholic Church, have explicitly encouraged them.
POPE FRANCIS’ 9 COMMANDMENTS FOR A JUST ECONOMY
Pope Francis renewed his call for a universal basic income and advocated the shortening of the working day as partial solutions to the economic crisis so many millions are experiencing.
FORGIVENESS AS A “WORK OF LOVE”?
We live in fractious times. Resentment, anger, and injustice seem to abound — a situation that seems to be exacerbated by the apparent desire to be hyper-vigilant in seeking out new ways to take offence, new “wrongs” to unearth.
WORKING TO ‘TRANSFORM YOUR OWN HEART’ CAN’T BE AN EXCUSE TO IGNORE SOCIAL INJUSTICE
If the world is going to wait for all of us to become perfect before we can find solutions to social evils, the world will have to wait for a long time.
GEN Z IS TURNING AWAY FROM RELIGION IN ORDER TO LIVE OUT THEIR VALUES
Any religious group that fails to support productive steps toward LGBTQ+ rights, gender equity, immigration rights, racial justice, etc., will continue to have trouble appealing to Gen Z and gaining their trust.
SOLIDARITY IS NOT 'A DIRTY WORD': CARDINALS, EXPERTS DISCUSS 'FRATELLI TUTTI' AT ONE YEAR
The pope's call must lead to a rejection of populist leaders who cloak their political agendas with religious messages or images.
THE CHURCH IS THE SACRAMENT OF THE PREFERENTIAL OPTION FOR THE POOR
We do not really understand the Incarnation if we do not see in the poor Christ Himself, who being rich became poor, if we do not see in the poor the “limbs” or “members” of Christ.
A MODEL OF FEMALE LEADERSHIP AT KOLBE HOUSE JAIL MINISTRY
Meet MaryClare Birmingham, the first layperson to lead Chicago’s archdiocesan criminal justice reform ministry.
POPE REFLECTS ON CHANGED ATTITUDES TOWARD LIBERATION THEOLOGY
Time, experience and reflection have “purified” liberation theology and its attempts to make clear what the Gospel says about social injustice.
DOES RELIGION MAKE PEOPLE MORE LIKELY TO WELCOME REFUGEES? IT’S COMPLICATED.
But how common is it for faith to drive compassion toward refugees? Does religiosity make people more welcoming — or more suspicious — of the stranger?
DEFINING RACISM: INDIVIDUALS AND INSTITUTIONS, SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES
Strategies and slogans designed to motivate and mobilise people are important, but those strategies are undermined by in-group jargon and unyielding dogma.
10 THINGS POPE FRANCIS AND CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING TAUGHT ME ABOUT THE ECONOMY
It is clear that humans need to do the hard work of figuring out how to build an economy that allows us to better love our neighbors.
WOMEN WITNESSES FOR RACIAL JUSTICE
This eries features 15 Black Catholic Women who shaped Catholic tradition as they fought for racial and reparative justice in their religious communities, in the Catholic Church, and in their country.
WE DON’T UNDERSTAND RELIGIOUS FREEDOM. COVID-19 PROVED IT
Religious freedom has been a hot topic in the United States for decades. But the pandemic offered a crash course on the topic.
POPE FRANCIS PRAISES SISTER JEANNINE GRAMICK’S 50 YEARS OF L.G.B.T. MINISTRY
In a handwritten letter, Pope Francis congratulated Sister Gramick on “50 years of closeness, of compassion and of tenderness” in a ministry that he described as being in “the style of God.”
TO BECOME WHOLLY PRO-LIFE, CARE FOR FRAGILE FAMILIES
A decades-long study on vulnerable families aligns closely with the themes of Catholic social teaching. “Being pro-life” means enabling people to be who God created them to be. It is not pro-life enough just to keep someone alive.
THE CHURCH IS CHANGING ITS APPROACH TO LGBTQ CATHOLICS
Is the Church beginning to decisively shift its approach on LGBTQ matters? An analysis by Christopher Lamb.
NOW IS NOT THE TIME TO GIVE UP ON BUILDING SOLIDARITY
At a time of widespread dysfunction, death and despair, what is missing is clear: solidarity. As a society, we lack a sense of responsibility for the common good and the well-being of others.
POPE WARNS AGAINST 'CANCEL CULTURE'
Francis has issued a warning against “cancel culture” saying it is undermining the ability of countries to work together and that misinformation was harming the global response to Covid-19.
POPE FRANCIS URGES PARENTS NOT TO ‘CONDEMN’ CHILDREN FOR THEIR SEXUAL ORIENTATION
Pope Francis encouraged parents instead to have the courage to help and accompany them.
POPE DENOUNCES FAKE NEWS ABOUT COVID, VACCINES, URGES TRUTH
Francis met with Catholic journalists who have formed a fact-checking network to try to combat misinformation about the pandemic.
HISTORY WILL JUDGE THE CHURCH HARSHLY FOR ITS TREATMENT OF LGBTQ PERSONS
Ironically, those who defend the discrimination against LGBTQ persons at Catholic institutions often do so with appeal to religious liberty and their right to free exercise of religion.
A BLACK BISHOP REFLECTS ON THE UNITED STATES’ RACIAL DIVIDE
Catholics must learn to talk about race without political agenda, says Bishop Edward Braxton.
REJECTION OR WELCOME: TRANSGENDER CATHOLICS ENCOUNTER BOTH
A small but growing number of parishes have formed LGBTQ support groups and welcome transgender people on their own terms.
HAPPY ARE THOSE WHO ARE WILLING TO BE PERSECUTED THEMSELVES FOR JUSTICE
It's not simply personal perfection that counts where the Beatitudes are concerned. It is the standing up together in the face of evil that is the real task.
WHAT’S RELIGIOUS ABOUT BEING WOKE?
Who speaks for the church in this moment of fragmentation and conflict? What does the church stand for? If these questions seem awkward and artificial, that is because they are.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN SOCIAL MOVEMENTS ARE AT ODDS WITH CATHOLIC TEACHING?
What is a conscientious person to do when one’s natural inclination to see justice done is offset by serious concerns about the moral or logical underpinnings of any particular advocacy for a secular cause?
WHAT WOULD JESUS SAY ABOUT CANCEL CULTURE?
Even a cursory look at Scripture shows that Jesus was not at all afraid to repudiate those who deserved it.
HOLY WEEK PAIN, EASTER HOPE IN UKRAINE
The culmination of these days ahead is not the cross; it is the Resurrection. Beyond the pain there is hope. Hope in Christ; hope in the Spirit that can change hearts and inspire works of peace, justice and love.
THOMAS MERTON CAN STILL TEACH US A LOT ABOUT NUCLEAR WAR
Faced with anxieties we have not experienced since the Cold War, perhaps it is time to return to Thomas Merton’s writings on nuclear weapons and the Christian responsibility to advocate for peace in a nuclear age.
NEVER AGAIN, AGAIN
The time is right to retrieve world peace from the punchlines of Miss America jokes and restore it to its rightful place atop the wildest dreams and highest aspirations of humankind.
THANKS TO NETWORK FOR 50 YEARS OF LOBBYING FOR THE COMMON GOOD
It is not an overstatement to say that some 17.5 million formerly uninsured Americans now have health insurance thanks, in large part, to a group of Catholic sisters.
WHAT IS LIBERATION THEOLOGY?
Liberation theology often calls for reorganization of social, governmental, and economic structures so that the poor are not merely cared for, but brought into the fullness of human flourishing.
WEAPONIZING THE EUCHARIST
Instead of beginning every discussion with “Who do we get to exclude?”, we should, like Pope Francis, preach the good news of the grace and mercy of Christ to every person from conception to natural death.
REREADING PAUL'S LETTER TO CORINTH AMID 1 MILLION U.S. COVID DEATHS
Much of our nation is ready to get back to life as normal. Meanwhile, we’ve stopped talking about the deep racial and socioeconomic inequalities that the pandemic revealed and exacerbated.
IF ROE IS OVERTURNED, WHAT SHOULD BE NEXT FOR THE PRO-LIFE MOVEMENT?
Now is the time to get to work and create a world that supports and protects not just the unborn person in the womb but also the equally human and valuable people carrying them.
CATHOLICS IN THE CROSSFIRE IN A POST-ROE WORLD
The leaked draft opinion from the Supreme Court indicates that Roe will be overturned. While this is good news, there are things to consider.
TO SUPPORT FAMILY LIFE, LOOK TO SOCIOECONOMICS
Can the church do more than instruct parents on how to pass the faith onto their kids? More than just encourage them to have children? More than just enact family leave policies?
WHEN TIMING IS PARAMOUNT
What the public has not heard is a matching statement from the Church’s leaders spelling out the components of a “culture of life” that would protect and empower vulnerable women and children.
THE APOSTLES, THE AMERICAN BISHOPS AND THE US SUPREME COURT
The conflict on abortion is not so much about its morality but about determining what is the most appropriate law and policy to govern it in pluralistic democratic societies.
WILL OVERTURNING ROE FINALLY ALLOW CATHOLICS TO PURSUE A CONSISTENT ETHIC OF LIFE?
The next months and years will be as critical a moment for Catholics as the years after Roe was decided.
BUFFALO MAKES IT CLEAR: RACISM AND GUN VIOLENCE ARE A CHRISTIAN PROBLEM
You cannot claim to be a legitimate Christian and espouse white supremacist ideology, deny the reality of racism, embrace white nationalism or support the proliferation of assault weapons...
RETHINKING OUR METHOD
‘Fratelli tutti’ and the need to reconsider the nature and approach of Catholic social teaching and social engagement, May 12, 2022, at Forum Plus, the European Catholic Forum for Social Engagement.
ROME CONFERENCE REVISITS 'AMORIS LAETITIA' AND CHURCH'S CALL TO WELCOME MARGINALIZED CATHOLICS
Theologians have long said the text's implementation on the ground has been mixed.
THE NEXT ISSUE IN THE ABORTION DEBATE AFTER ROE V. WADE
Do we really honor motherhood? As a society, we need to find better ways to support families, especially those raising children under adverse circumstances.
CARDINAL CUPICH: THE SECOND AMENDMENT DID NOT COME DOWN FROM SINAI
The right to bear arms will never be more important than human life. Our children have rights, too. And our elected officials have a moral duty to protect them.
PELOSI VS. CORDILEONE ISN’T ONLY ABOUT ABORTION. IT’S ABOUT WOMEN AND BISHOPS
The list of reasons Catholic women stopped listening to bishops is a long one.
GETTING USED TO IT
One measure of a sick society is how much suffering it can resign itself to. By this measure, the United States isn’t doing very well these days.
POPE FRANCIS, UKRAINE AND EFFECTIVE NONVIOLENT RESISTANCE
Francis is trying to shift our gaze. It is a shift that he senses Jesus models. A shift toward pastoral accompaniment and a focus on how we might break the violent dynamic.
IF ONLY AMERICANS, OR EVEN CATHOLICS, KNEW ABOUT CATHOLIC SOCIAL DOCTRINE
The four pillars of Catholic social doctrine — the common good, the inviolable dignity of the human person, solidarity and subsidiarity — can be applied to all issues.
WHY BELIEVE BETTER FAMILY POLICIES WILL REDUCE ABORTIONS? WELL, THERE’S THE DATA
There is plenty of evidence to suggest that increased social support will result in fewer abortions.
MOST U.S. CATHOLICS DISAGREE WITH CHURCH LEADERS ON ABORTION AND L.G.B.T. ISSUES
A major challenge for church leaders is the possibility that many of the faithful see opposition to abortion as inseparable from a politically conservative agenda that they do not share.
PROPHETS WITHOUT ROBES OR STAFFS
Today and always, the prophet confronts a dark object, a menacing, enigmatic, obdurate reality affecting the entire community. How to grasp that dark object?
THE CATHOLIC BISHOPS SUPPORT GUN CONTROL. WHY DON’T WE HEAR MORE ABOUT IT?
Hardly anyone in the country knows about the strong and comprehensive position on gun control taken by the U.S. Catholic bishops.
3 THINGS THE CATHOLIC CHURCH CAN DO TO FIGHT RACISM (BESIDES ISSUING STATEMENTS)
Until the U.S. Catholic Church actively works to end racism and exclusion in all forms, it will continue to lose credibility among its members of color...
THIS PRIDE MONTH, CATHOLIC CHURCH SHOWS CLEAR, IF SUBTLE, SHIFTS TOWARD LGBTQ WELCOME
From welcoming trans women at the Vatican to promoting LGBTQ outreach around the world, some advocates say Pope Francis has created a space for inclusion without fear.
TO WALK WITH LGBTQ CATHOLICS, LEAVE YOUR BAGGAGE BEHIND
To enter the kingdom of heaven, leave behind desire for control, assumptions, and nostalgia.
THE EUCHARISTIC REVIVAL SHOULD REMIND CATHOLICS: COMMUNION MEANS WORKING FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE
Once we have realized the true miracle of Emmanuel, will we realize God’s presence in those we have cast aside. In the Eucharist we are forced to confront what we have left undone.
CELEBRATING PAX CHRISTI USA: 50 YEARS OF BUILDING THE PEACEABLE KINGDOM
We continue to long for the realization of Isaiah's vision of swords and spears becoming instruments for cultivation of food. But we do not wait idly.
FRANCIS’ BLUEPRINT FOR A BETTER WORLD, POST COVID
Can we choose a better path this time? The answer to that question might lie in whether or not we take seriously the principles of Catholic social teaching.
TO END GUN VIOLENCE, WE NEED MORE THAN LEGISLATION
True transformative work begins in our own communities and from there radically changes society like yeast leavens an entire batch of bread (Matthew 13:33).
NO ONE CAN DISPOSE OF OR ABUSE HUMAN DIGNITY
The Holy Father's message for the 43rd Meeting for Friendship Among Peoples: A person cannot make the journey of self-discovery alone; the encounter with the other is essential.
CATHOLIC LABOR LEADERS URGE CHURCH TO PRACTICE WHAT IT PREACHES
The church has a beautiful social teaching on labor and work issues. But too often, when the church is the employer, that teaching is not followed — and when it isn't, the church's witness is compromised.
CUPICH CRITICISES TEXAS GOVERNOR IN MIGRANTS STATEMENT
Cupich has issued a strong statement of support for migrants/refugees who had been bussed to his city by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, with no provision made for their transfer or reception.
PRONOUNS, UNIFORMS AND BATHROOMS: HOW CATHOLIC SCHOOLS ARE FACING QUESTIONS OF GENDER IDENTITY
Church leaders say they are simply affirming existing teaching, but some critics argue they penalize children who already face many challenges.
HOW THE POOR PEOPLE’S CAMPAIGN IS MAKING ‘GOOD TROUBLE’
Opposing poverty, systemic injustice, and threats to democracy is not partisan work, and these are not fringe issues.
NEW CATHOLIC POLICIES ACROSS US CREATE 'CULTURE OF FEAR' FOR LGBTQ STUDENTS
An in-depth look at the growing number of directives on gender identity and sexual orientation and how they impact queer teens.
USING MIGRANTS AS POLITICAL PAWNS IGNORES THEIR GOD-GIVEN HUMAN DIGNITY
It's not hard to determine that using people—especially already vulnerable people—as objects to a political end is not consistent with Catholic teaching about humans' inherent dignity.
OMAHA ARCHDIOCESE'S NEW SCHOOL POLICY ALIENATES LGBTQ+ CATHOLICS
The archdiocese's policy highlights the disconnect between a synodal church, seeking unity in diversity, and a hierarchical church, tone-deaf to the people of God's voices.
CATHOLIC TEACHING ON THE HUMAN PERSON POINTS A WAY FORWARD IN US POLITICS
Bishops need to say less about individual issues and more about fostering a Christian worldview capable of withstanding the moral relativism of the ambient culture.
CHURCH'S ANTI-LGBTQ POLICIES DRIVE PEOPLE AWAY — AND THE POLICIES ARE SINFUL, TOO
When you consider the message of hatred, ignorance, division and discrimination, it is no wonder that so many people are simply walking away.
A HIDDEN STRUGGLE
For many Catholic women experiencing infertility, the Church has not been a welcoming, listening place—and that’s something that needs to change.
GOVERNMENT FOR THE PEOPLE NEEDS TO BE FOR EVERYONE
Catholic social teaching asks us to reflect on what it means to be "a people." In Fratelli Tutti, the pope explains that “the people” is not a mere collection of individuals in a physical space.
U.S. BISHOPS PIONEERED A SELF-SERVING INVOCATION OF 'RELIGIOUS LIBERTY'
Today, it seems that within many Catholic circles 'religious freedom' is only invoked by those who wish to suppress the rights and freedoms of others who may disagree with them.
5 IGNATIAN SPIRITUAL EXERCISES FOR JUSTICE SEEKERS
With so many constantly evolving problems, where can we turn to sustain ourselves in the work for justice and the common good?
4 REASONS CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING CAN'T UNITE THE US CHURCH
If the people in the pews are to believe in Catholic social teaching that teaching must be rooted in this path of faith, hope and love.
DEBATES ABOUT MIGRATION HAVE NEVER BEEN SIMPLE
Discussions about migration are always complicated, because migrants’ real-life experiences do not easily translate into simple bureaucratic categories.
THE LONG AND BUMPY ROAD TO SELFLESSNESS
We simply don’t have time to wait for people to develop an ethical backbone. We need to be as realistic as Paul, Jesus, Luke & Matthew.
WE CANNOT BECOME NUMB TO POLITICAL VIOLENCE AND MISINFORMATION
We cannot become numb to the rise in political violence in our country. It should go without saying that our faith decries both lies and violence. Catholics should be forceful in opposing both
WITHOUT THIS VIRTUE, YOUR MORAL LIFE IS UNSTABLE
In the midst of harrowing violence and grave constitutional danger facing the country, the courage of women and men gives both relief and hope. The common denominator in all of these people is courage.
IS IT POSSIBLE TO FIGHT INFLATION WITHOUT PUTTING THOUSANDS OUT OF WORK? HERE’S WHAT CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING SAYS
The church’s preferential option for the poor demands that U.S. policymakers dovetail inflation-fighting with credible investments to sustain the unemployed.
THE LEADERSHIP WE WANTED AND THE LEADERSHIP WE GOT
Perhaps we ought to be praying more for ourselves these days — for mutual respect, for openness to one another, for our common commitment to the needs of the entire country...
BISHOPS NEED TO ACKNOWLEDGE COLLATERAL DAMAGE FROM DOBBS WIN
As the bishops gather in Baltimore next week for their fall meeting, will they acknowledge the collateral damage caused by their tactics?
DENVER ARCHDIOCESE DEFENDS GUIDANCE ON TRANSGENDER STUDENTS
It states that a Catholic school cannot treat gay parents as an “equivalent to the natural family,” and makes it clear that students must act and be treated in accordance with their biological sex.
CATHOLIC BISHOPS A RELIGIOUS OUTLIER IN OPPOSING BILL TO PROTECT SAME-SEX MARRIAGE
In letters, public statements and published articles, the bishops articulated a position that only traditional marriage between one man and one woman is worthy of legal recognition.
AFTER 50 YEARS, ‘LIBERATION THEOLOGY’ IS STILL RESHAPING CATHOLICISM AND POLITICS – BUT WHAT IS IT?
The influential movement is still controversial both inside and outside Catholicism.
CATHOLIC CHARITIES ACCUSED OF BREAKING THE LAW IN ITS BORDER RESPONSE
Catholic Charities USA officials pushed back strongly against allegations from Republican House of Representatives members that its humanitarian responses to the U.S. border crisis were potentially criminal acts.
SEXUAL COMPLEMENTARITY – POPE FRANCIS, SEX AND GENDER
To suggest that the sexes are complementary is to imply that someone of either sex is not, alone, a complete person.
FELLOW BOOMERS: HAVE A LITTLE FAITH IN GEN Z
Parents always think the world is going to hell in a hand basket, and their kids are the hapless passengers in the front. Parents are usually wrong, but not for the reasons they would think.
THE MARCH FOR LIFE HAS ALWAYS HAD ONE MESSAGE: END ROE V. WADE. WHAT IS ITS MISSION NOW?
“The march has always been about an end to Roe, but it’s also about an end to abortion.”
MARCH FOR LIFE COMES BACK TO DC AMID BACKLASH TO ABORTION RULING
"The pro-life movement has just experienced a major victory in the fall of Roe v. Wade, but our work to build a culture of life is far from complete."
AT MARCH FOR LIFE, A JUBILANT CROWD PREPARES FOR STATE-LEVEL FIGHTS
'It's really going to move more towards a local level,' said Fr. Dave Pivonka, who attended the march.
NEW PORTLAND GUIDELINES DIRECT CATHOLIC LGBTQ STUDENTS TO USE BIRTH NAMES, PRONOUNS
The document doesn't seem to be written "with much care for the children who are questioning their genders, parents who are accompanying them, or the friends, families and staff working to love these children amid their struggles.
WHAT DOES GOD REVEAL IN TRANSGENDER BODIES?
An informative conversation on Catholic teaching and gender by two noted female professors of theology with backgrounds in gender studies. The comments that follow the article are just as informative.
TALK TO TRANS PEOPLE BEFORE ISSUING DIOCESAN LGBTQ SCHOOL POLICIES
Ideally, before any policy like this goes in place, the bishop or administration of the school should consider going on a retreat with young people struggling with their identity, just to listen to them.
FOR THE CHURCH, INCLUSION CAN’T BE JUST A BOX TO CHECK
Instead of focusing on who’s inside our boundaries, the pursuit of anti-racism should push us out to where the work for justice is already being done.
GIVING TO THE POOR IS NOT CHARITY. IT’S JUSTICE
We are called to imitate this divine impartiality, as Jesus did, when he took his place with the least of these and literally had no place to lay his head.
AMID POPE FRANCIS' ANNIVERSARY, CATHOLICS NEED A NEW 'FAITHFUL CITIZENSHIP'
Since the early Church Fathers, Christianity has taught that politics must be for the common good of the whole community. The measure of the common good is the lived life and dignity of the poor.
CATHOLICISM, AUTHENTIC COMMUNION AND THE WAY OUT OF OUR POLARIZATION TRAP
The responsibility for choosing frameworks of understanding applies not only to questions of belief in God, but also to how we understand meaning itself and how we envision human nature and goodness.
NEW STATEMENT ON TRANSGENDER HEALTH CARE LACKS SOUND SCIENCE AND TRANS VOICES
U.S. Catholic bishops issued a document dated March 20 rejecting gender-affirming medical treatments for transgender individuals and reasserting that such procedures must not be performed by Catholic providers.
U.S. BISHOPS CONDEMN HEALTHCARE FOR TRANS, NONBINARY & INTERSEX CATHOLICS
In the latest blow to trans rights and justice, a doctrinal committee of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops released a new document forbidding gender-affirming procedures to treat gender dysphoria.
US BISHOPS' DOCUMENT AGAINST TRANSGENDER HEALTH CARE IS A DISASTER
That the bishops assume they understand in totality the incomprehensible complexity of God’s creation generally and the human person particularly is a consistent and errant attitude.
AMERICANS CARE MORE ABOUT MONEY THAN MARRIAGE, CHILDREN AND COUNTRY. CAN CATHOLIC EDUCATION CHANGE THAT?
Are we putting money before God, self-interest before the common good, partisan ideology before the task of building a more perfect union?
CHICAGO PARISHES CO-SPONSOR GUN BUYBACK
Cardinal Cupich invites local elected officials, faith communities, businesses and individuals to join in supporting a Gun Buyback Event to reduce the scourge of gun violence, heeding Pope Francis’ appeals against arms trafficking.
CATHOLIC NUNS’ LETTER DECLARES TRANS PEOPLE ‘BELOVED AND CHERISHED BY GOD’
The letter follows a recent statement from U.S. Catholic bishops discouraging Catholic health care groups from performing various gender-affirming medical procedures.
STATES RETHINK CONFESSIONAL SEAL
Debate over clergy exemption to mandatory exemption laws pits sanctity of confession against chld safety.
ANY RELIGION ALLIED WITH NATIONALISM IS DANGEROUS
While faith should always be an inspiration for our political engagement as citizens, it is corrupted and deformed by efforts that make it a political program.
POPE FRANCIS WANTS THE TRUTH OUT ON COLD CASE OF THE MISSING ‘VATICAN GIRL’
Francis has given him free rein to investigate the 1983 disappearance of Emanuela Orlandi, a 15-year-old Vatican resident. The case has fueled conspiracy theories for close to 40 years and inspired a Netflix series in 2022.
ANTI-TRANS LAWS HURT CHILDREN. JESUS HAD PLENTY TO SAY ABOUT THAT
We cannot call ourselves followers of the one who so boldly said ‘let the children come,’ when we pass laws that push them away.
THERE’S A MENTAL CRISIS AMONG TEENS. THE CATHOLIC CHURCH NEEDS TO RESPOND
The crisis for teens is both psychological and spiritual, and it demands a response from both mental health and faith communities. How do we make our church again a place of belonging for young people who are hurting?
US BISHOPS' TRANSGENDER DOCUMENT FAILS MORALLY, THEOLOGICALLY AND IS POORLY ARGUED
It provides no real guidance to Catholic health care professionals who will continue to face practical questions as they accompany real persons and seek "to mitigate the suffering of those who struggle with gender incongruence."
TRANS KIDS ARE CREATED AND LOVED BY GOD
As members of the body of Christ, we cannot be whole without the full inclusion of transgender, nonbinary, and gender-expansive individuals.
IT'S NOT THE LIGHT WE'RE MISSING; IT'S THE FOCUS
The real question is: What has happened to us as a people? Has reckless force become our only protection? Is America as a country coming apart?
WHAT FRANCIS AND CLARE CAN TEACH US ABOUT WHITE SUPREMACY AND RACISM
Poverty for Jesus was a means to an end, a framework for living in the world that recognizes interdependence with others and does not put up barriers to relationship.
READING ‘PACEM IN TERRIS’ IN 2023
Reading Pacem in Terris today reveals how politically impotent Catholics and the papacy have become since then.
ANGER MANAGEMENT AND GUNS
Whether for random shootings or the horror of war, individuals or entire nations are picking up guns to solve their real or imagined disputes.
FOR PEOPLE TO REALLY KNOW US, WE NEED TO SHOW UP
Over time, what starts out as obligation becomes less about something we have to do and more about something we want to do.
LOOKING FOR LOVE IN ALL THE WRONG PLACES
Vatican Media presents a story by Dale Recinella, a former Wall Street finance lawyer who, along with his wife Susan, acts as a chaplain for prisoners in Florida.
HOW CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOLS CAN ADDRESS THE TEEN MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS
Life-threatening mental health concerns affecting U.S. teens have reached a crisis point, complicated by a laundry list of social issues.
CATHOLIC PRIDE MONTH EVENTS FACE INCREASING BACKLASH
In recent months, corporations and nonprofit organizations supporting L.G.B.T. Pride events have faced increased scrutiny from some conservative activists. Catholic celebrations aren’t immune.
LET'S HEAR TRANSGENDER PEOPLE TELL THEIR OWN STORIES
Too many other people, including transphobic and hateful people, are attempting to tell false stories about trans folks to stir up fear, win political capital, to feel superior or simply to be mean.
HEAD OF USCCB CRITIQUES REPUBLICAN GOVERNORS TRANSPORTING MIGRANTS
'I suppose if they're transporting them to make a statement, then that seems to me to be problematic,” said Archbishop Timothy P. Broglio.
TRANSGENDER TREATMENT AT CATHOLIC HOSPITALS: U.S. BISHOPS VOTE
U.S. bishops vote to begin process that could formally ban medical procedures and therapies sometimes collectively described as gender-affirming care.
POPE FRANCIS’ MESSAGE FOR PEACE NOW ORBITS THE EARTH, TO BE HEARD ACROSS ALL BORDERS
A nanobook version of the pope’s words of unity during the pandemic are now orbiting Earth.
BISHOPS JUMP ON ANTI-TRANS BANDWAGON WITH GRATUITOUS VOTE TO AMEND HEALTHCARE DIRECTIVES
They went along with the moral panic du jour, in which attacking trans people is a popular means of flexing one’s right-wing, dominionist Christian bona fides.
DID US BISHOPS REALLY LISTEN TO TRANS CATHOLICS?
High-profile sister contests claim that bishops extensively consulted trans Catholics before vote on health care directives.
CONSCIENCE AND CATHOLIC HEALTH CARE - CATHOLIC HOSPITALS NEED A NEW APPROACH
If the best defense of Catholic health care is conscience rights, Catholics must answer: Whose conscience?
AFFIRMATIVE ACTION IS CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING IN ACTION. WE STILL NEED IT.
Thoughtfully administered affirmative action, as endorsed by the U.S. bishops decades ago, is an incontrovertible part of our shared task to fight racism and promote equal opportunity.
CATHOLIC UNIVERSITIES SAY THE END OF AFFIRMATIVE ACTION THREATENS THEIR VALUES AND RELIGIOUS LIBERTY
Calling the 6-to-3 decision handed down Thursday “more than disappointing,” the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities said that the court “ignores the more-than-apparent effects of continued racism in our society.”
WHY ALL CHRISTIANS SHOULD SUPPORT LGBTQ PERSONS
The Catholic Church, while officially upholding its longstanding sexual teaching and ethics, varies largely in its approach to LGBTQ issues and support of LGBTQ persons.
OCTOBER CONFERENCE TO REVISIT ‘PIUS WARS’ OVER ROLE OF WARTIME PONTIFF
The conference will focus not only on Pius XII’s role during the Holocaust, but more broadly on Catholic-Jewish relations “at multiple levels,” with both historians and theologians taking part.
FROM SOLITUDE TO SOCIAL POETRY: THE INVITATION OF THE INSTRUMENTUM LABORIS
The working document invites a renewal of the "common Priesthood" and articulates the way of spiritual listening.
THE PROMOTION OF JUSTICE
This month marks the 50th anniversary of Fr. Pedro Arrupe’s famous address in which he challenged Jesuit school alumni to form what we now embrace as “people for others.”
US BISHOPS BACK BILL TO HELP IMMIGRANT CHILDREN, AND ALSO RELIGIOUS WORKERS
In essence, it would exempt tens of thousands of children from annual employment-based visa caps.
HOW CAN WE ACCOMPANY THOSE FIGHTING ADDICTION?
Addiction affects a staggering number of people in the United States, and Father Dave welcomes Keaton Douglas, founder and executive director of the iTHIRST Initiative.
DOBBS, ABOLITION AND WOMEN'S RIGHT TO BODILY INTEGRITY
We are failing fully to recognize pregnant women's bodies not simply as objects of compassion but as dignified subjects of justice
IN TARGETING CATHOLIC CHARITIES, REPUBLICANS AMPLIFY RIGHT-WING CATHOLIC FRINGE
A handful of Republican lawmakers are threatening to reduce or eliminate funding for Catholic Charities and other faith-based groups who offer aid to immigrants at the Southern border.
THE COURT PROTECTS PRIVILEGE - IT’S TIME FOR A “PUBLIC OPTION”
It would open up education pathways to many of those currently shut out of the system, including many students of color and would help turn education into the public good it should be, instead of the hoarded commodity it now is.
10 YEARS AFTER POPE FRANCIS SAID ‘WHO AM I TO JUDGE?,’ WHAT HAS CHANGED FOR LGBT CATHOLICS?
Indeed, the debate is still ongoing as to what degree L.G.B.T.Q.+ individuals can participate in the life, activities, and sacraments of the church.
SOCIAL JUSTICE IS A VITAL PART OF A PRIEST’S VOCATION
Pastoral community must be involved in the life of the community and seeking the common good, says this priest.
WHERE OPPENHEIMER AND POPE FRANCIS AGREE
No Western myth of human aggrandizement can account for the evil brought forth by the race for the atom bomb. The road from having nuclear weapons to using them is too short.
5 WAYS FOR CATHOLICS TO RESIST FAKE NEWS
People of faith may be tempted to embrace conspiracy theory thinking. Here are some resources for resisting that temptation.
CONFLICTING THOUGHTS ON PEACE
Peace is a lovely, restful word. It evokes tranquil thoughts. But when we pray for peace it is usually to ask for the end of a terrible war or of inner turmoil of spirit.
WHAT DOES 'RESPECT LIFE' REALLY MEAN?
Too many clerics have replaced the Gospel with their personal politics. Until they demonstrate respect for all life, they will continue to be ignored.
CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING IN ACTION: HOW TO FOLLOW IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF HOLY MEN AND WOMEN
Often referred to as “the best-kept secret of the Church,” Catholic Social Teaching is central to our Christian faith.
THE CATHOLICS WORKING TO REVIVE PEACEMAKING IN THE CHURCH
Peace doesn’t just happen. Working to bring it about is something to which all Catholics are called.
HOW TO ABOLISH POVERTY
The fact that nearly 40 million Americans live in poverty is a national embarrassment. But it’s also a choice. If poverty exists, it’s because we “wish and will it to.”
CATHOLICS HAVE TO TALK ABOUT BOTH: JUSTICE FOR MIGRANTS AND BORDER SECURITY
To reach Catholics in the pews—and to influence public policy on immigration—church leaders should make it clear that they are not advocating for “open borders.”
DON’T TAKE SCISSORS TO THE SEAMLESS GARMENT
Like everything else about discipleship, being pro-life isn’t as simple as checking a box. The more our discernment costs us, the more valuable and genuine it will likely be.
WELCOMING THE STRANGER
It is no surprise that many people, including many who call themselves Christian, have bought into the idea that immigrants are to be equated with “danger.”
THE MORAL DISEASE OF DOMINATION - A STRUGGLE FOR OUR SOULS
The function of the peacemaker is not to shirk combat with evil. The function of the peacemaker is to find ways to confront evil without becoming evil.
REFLECTING ON THOMAS MERTON'S 'THE ROOT OF WAR IS FEAR' TODAY
Given the recent atrocities in Israel and Gaza, the terrorist actions of Hamas and the state of Israel's initial retaliation and plans for a massive ground attack, war and escalating violence has been on the minds and hearts of many around the world.
HOW WE WRITE OUR HISTORY SHAPES HOW WE THINK ABOUT THE ISRAELI-PALESTINIAN CONFLICT
Some humility about how much we really know can help prevent toxic rhetoric when we talk about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with family, friends and colleagues of different faiths.
7 PRACTICAL STEPS TO END VIOLENCE IN ISRAEL AND PALESTINE
Human life and dignity are precious, writes peace activist Mubarak Awad — and vengeful attacks only deepen hatred and mistrust.
A TWO-STATE SOLUTION IS THE ONLY ANSWER
Calls for a ceasefire in Gaza, including from the Vatican, are growing in volume. Without recognising the fundamental causes of the conflict, however, such calls are unlikely to be heeded.
THE VIOLENCE AND GRIEF ARE OVERWHELMING
Perhaps the latest horrors in Israel and Gaza will convince the world that a concerted effort to address root causes toward a comprehensive just peace.
DOROTHY DAY INSPIRES A NEW MEANING OF “SAINT”
When Day said all people are called to be saints, she meant all are called to revolutionary holiness. Less often related is that she would also have us get over our narrow churchy notions of what it means to be a saint.
HOW TO PREPARE FOR NEXT YEAR’S ELECTIONS?
Many of us go back and forth between ignoring politics and getting angry about it. Here are 3 tips to keep you spiritually sane.
CHRISTIAN LESSONS WE MAY LEARN ONLY FROM POVERTY
Countless people are living in poverty. And it would be a mockery of their condition to trivialize the difficulties they are going through.
THOMAS MERTON'S WISDOM IS STILL TIMELY AND PROPHETIC FOR TODAY'S CHRISTIANS
In addition to his works on prayer and contemplation, Thomas Merton's lesser-known writing on nonviolence, Christian life, contemporary virtues and racial justice may be just what we need today, writes Fr. Dan Horan.
THE CATHOLIC PRINCIPLE OF SOLIDARITY CALLS FOR EQUITY
While there is no official church teaching on equity, there are surely reasons why Catholics should think in equity terms.
POPE FRANCIS TEACHES US BY HIS ACTIONS
Christians are called to be minister's of Christ's peace to the world, working with Christ to bring the world together as one.
WAKE UP TO INJUSTICES
Christians should confront the systems of sin, and the powers that be which created them, bringing to them the justice established by Christ.
ADVENT IN A TIME OF WAR
One central problem for Christians now is how to reconcile two of the beatitudes in our lives as citizens—how to be peacemakers while also thirsting for justice.
DDF RESPONDS TO LETTER ON SINGLE MOMS AND COMMUNION
In a letter written in a pastoral tone, Cardinal Fernández clarifies that these women must "have access to the healing and consoling power of the sacraments."
POPE FRANCIS ALLOWS BLESSINGS OF COUPLES IN SAME-SEX RELATIONSHIPS
In a significant new development, Pope Francis has given permission to priests to offer blessings to couples in same-sex relationships “without officially validating their status or changing in any way the Church’s perennial teaching on marriage.”
5 THINGS THE CHURCH’S DOCUMENT ON SAME-SEX BLESSINGS DOES (AND DOESN’T) SAY
What’s clear is that gay couples, but also those living outside of the traditional understanding of marriage in the Catholic faith — “couples in irregular situations” — can now be blessed by a priest. But there are a few caveats.
INCONVENIENT TRUTHS AT CHRISTMASTIME
There are too many hurting people frightened today. Can we not quietly and with respect focus on their needs this season and discard the noise and disrespect that fuels the wars large and small? Can we not seek peace?
ON SAME-SEX BLESSINGS, SOME CATHOLICS CELEBRATE CHANGE WHILE OTHERS POINT TO LIMITS
The Vatican’s declaration allowing blessings for ‘irregular’ couples seems to have deepened an already strong divide between conservatives and progressives in the church.
BLESSINGS: A PASTORAL DEVELOPMENT ANCHORED IN TRADITION
The Declaration Fiducia supplicans of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith as almost revolutionary and a return to the Church's origins and the missionary presence of Christ in human history.
FRANCIS CALLS FOR PEACE BETWEEN ISRAEL AND PALESTINE, AND THROUGHOUT THE WORLD
Speaking from the central balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica, Pope Francis delivered his Christmas message to the estimated 70,000 people gathered in St. Peter’s Square — many of whom waved Palestinian and Ukrainian flags.
CARDINAL BERNARDIN’S ‘CONSISTENT ETHIC OF LIFE’ STILL DIVIDES CATHOLICS 40 YEARS LATER
Depressingly, 40 years since Cardinal Bernardin first proposed the consistent ethic of life, the ethic remains mired in the same senseless, polarized partisanship that Bernardin proposed the ethic to overcome.
THE HOLINESS OF ASKING FOR HELP
By letting others in, we enable them to do the work of God. We can enact the holiness of asking for help. Through being the face of God to others, perhaps we can finally accept that God’s love is for us, too.
POPE DECRIES 'APPALLING HARVEST OF INNOCENT CIVILIAN VICTIMS' IN HOLY LAND WAR
During his annual Christmas Day message, Pope Francis decried the "appalling harvest of innocent civilian victims" in the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas, while reiterating his calls for an immediate ceasefire.
HOW TO READ ‘FIDUCIA SUPPLICANS’
The news coverage of Fiducia supplicans has focused, understandably, on the blessings of same-sex couples. Few have noticed that it also allows blessings to be given to Catholics who are divorced and remarried without an annulment.
JOY AND ALARM IN BISHOPS’ RESPONSES TO FIDUCIA SUPPLICANS
Many bishops issued clarifications following local reaction to the document, but these varied considerably in their explanation of the text.
HOMELESSNESS CRISIS SHOWS OUR COUNTRY NEEDS A NEW NATIONAL STORY
We need a new story in which we are bound in love and justice to the tens of thousands of persons living and dying on our streets, writes commentator David DeCosse.
THE REAL SIGNIFICANCE OF ‘FIDUCIA SUPPLICANS’
The Vatican's new declaration stating that priests can bless people in same-sex unions is less radical than many imagine, but it opens a door to greater inclusivity.
VATICAN PUBLISHES DEFENSE OF SAME-SEX BLESSINGS DOCUMENT IN REBUKE TO CRITICS
By issuing this five-page clarification, the D.D.F. is seeking to eliminate much of the confusion that has arisen either through a hasty reading of the original document, from insufficient communication in its initial presentation or from its misrepresentation in some of the media.
DON'T OVERLOOK THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE LGBTQ+ COMMUNITY BEING SEEN
What has not received much attention over these last few weeks is the importance of LGBTQ+ people finally being seen and acknowledged by the institutional church.
HOW POPE FRANCIS RECONCILED CHURCH TEACHING WITH BLESSINGS FOR SAME-SEX COUPLES
Francis focus the church’s attention on the pastoral needs of same-sex couples while still advocating for the church’s doctrine of marriage. This turn to pastoral needs is both necessary and welcomed.
LAY DOWN YOUR STONES: FIDUCIA SUPPLICANS AND THE BIBLE
The Vatican’s cautious opening to couples in relationships disapproved of by the Church is "faint-hearted and measly" compared to the expansive generosity Jesus showed to those the religious leaders of his day considered sexual sinners.
BLESS THIS POPE FOR BLESSING THE BLESSING OF SAME-SEX COUPLES
The spirit of tolerance and the sharing of grace are alive among the people of the church, and regardless of whether they are listening to the pope, at last a pope is listening to them.
VATICAN DOCUMENT ON SAME-SEX BLESSINGS DOES NOT CONFUSE CHURCH TEACHING — IT DEEPENS IT
It may be precisely in what we misunderstand as confusion that God is drawing us close. This is not a confusion of the church’s teaching, but a deepening of it.
CAPITALIZING ON HIS TEACHINGS ON SEX, POPE FRANCIS’ CRITICS SHAME THEMSELVES
The mere asking for a blessing reveals hearts that want to be in a positive relationship with God and the church. Turning such people away is cruel and un-Christian.
HOW YOU CAN ACT ON CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING EVERY DAY
Catholic Social Teaching is rich with resources about providing corporal and spiritual works of mercy and the Church reminds us that these acts should constantly sustain our faith.
THE GOOD NEWS ABOUT FIDUCIA SUPPLICANS
Fiducia Supplicans does, as Cardinal Fernández and Pope Francis hoped it would, provide clarity; it just isn’t the clarity they wanted.
PASTORAL PRACTICE AFTER FIDUCIA SUPPLICANS
One of the most beautiful—and yet also the most confusing—aspects of Fiducia is its willingness to see goodness, truth, and beauty in “irregular situations.”
THE POPE OF BLESSING – FIDUCIA SUPPLICANS
The declaration that a same-sex couple can receive a blessing does not change church teaching – but it is the latest sign of the fundamental change of tone and perspective that has marked the papacy of Francis.
PARISHES TURN FORMER CONVENTS INTO AFFORDABLE HOUSING FOR TEACHERS
Around the country Catholic schools are struggling to retain and recruit educators, and real estate experts and church leaders say the reasons include escalating housing prices, particularly in coastal states and urban areas.
HUMAN TRAFFICKING – LISTEN, DREAM, ACT
A network led by women Religious that supports victims and survivors is also educating young people to recognise how trafficking involves us all.
KEY POPE ALLY SAYS US BLOWBACK ON FIDUCIA IS FUELED BY ANTI-GAY ‘ANIMUS’
Oopposition to Fiducia focuses overwhelmingly on blessing those in same-sex relationships, rather than those many more men and women who are in heterosexual relationships that are not ecclesially valid.
WHAT CATHOLICS NEED TO MODEL THIS ELECTION SEASON
We are tasked with bringing new energy to this political melee, while trusting that God is unifying and energizing the world. As Catholics, we have the responsibility to model this reality of unity and energy.
HOW TO VAULT CATHOLIC SOCIAL TEACHING FROM 'BEST KEPT SECRET' CATEGORY
At a time when our politics is so polarized, the need to present Catholic social teaching as pre-political has never been greater.
CATHOLICS MUST HAVE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY TO ‘MEET MIGRANTS’ NEEDS’
The ability of Catholic and other faith-based groups to “meet migrants’ basic human needs” at the U.S.-Mexico border is a religious liberty issue and must be defended, U.S. bishops said in recent statements.
HOW THE CATHOLIC WORKER MOVEMENT STAYS GRASSROOTS ONLINE
As the Catholic Worker movement enters the digital world, it confronts questions about its place in the real one.
MISSING THE MESSAGE ON SAME-SEX BLESSINGS
There are still going to be clergy and laity who will equate a blessing for a same-sex couple with somehow affirming same-sex marriage. It does not. Yet, trying to make people understand that seems to be a Herculean task.
THE ELUSIVE CATHOLIC VOTE
In these fraught times, the Catholic Church could be a source of stability and disinterested wisdom. Instead, the Church is as divided as the country.
LESSONS OF NONVIOLENT CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE - MORE RELEVANT NOW THAN EVER
The Berrigan brothers’ idiosyncratic engagement with the world bucked the norms of both the institutional Church and American society.
MOTHER CABRINI IS THE PATRON SAINT OF IMMIGRANTS. WOULD HER STORY BE POSSIBLE TODAY?
Mother Cabrini became America’s first saint. But was she herself a legal U.S. immigrant? And would her story be possible today?
THE US IS AT A CROSSROADS ON IMMIGRATION. WHAT SHOULD THE CATHOLIC CHURCH DO NEXT?
The issue of immigration has risen to be a top concern for many U.S. voters, writes Kevin Appleby. How should Catholic advocates, including bishops, react to the shifting political landscape?
BISHOP GUMBLETON, LONGTIME SOUL OF THE US CATHOLIC PEACE MOVEMENT
Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, the Detroit prelate who for many American Catholics defined faith-based social justice activism in the post-Vatican II church, died April 4. He was 94.
NEW VATICAN DOCUMENT COMBINES MODERN TRANSPARENCY WITH ETERNAL TEACHING
Pope Francis summons all people to defend human dignity in every moment of human existence.
DEVELOPING OUR UNDERSTANDING OF HUMAN DIGNITY
Christians have been slowly developing their understanding of human dignity, leading them to revise the way human dignity is to be promoted.
WHEN YOUR FAITH IS ALL ABOUT EXCLUSION, IT’S NOT OF GOD
The Catholic faith should never be used as a fence to keep others outside.
'DIGNITAS INFINITA' AND THE LIMITS OF PASTORAL CARE
Dignitas Infinita "is a painful missed opportunity for the church to signal its willingness for dialogue," writes Stephen McNulty. "It didn't have to be this way."
DIGNITY AND GENDER - EVALUATING ‘DIGNITAS INFINITA’
Most of the Declaration is cogent and compelling. The sections on gender theory and sex change, however, have triggered critical reactions...
CONSULT THE FAITHFUL ON MINISTERIAL COVENANTS FOR CATHOLIC SCHOOL TEACHERS
When determining covenantal expectations for Catholic school educators — including what "conduct or lifestyles" should be grounds for termination — bishops should listen to the faithful.
DIAGNOSING DISADVANTAGE IN AMERICA
Poverty researchers Kathryn Edin, H. Luke Schaefer, and Timothy Nelson explain how centuries of resource extraction and racism have impoverished rural regions.
WHOLE LIFE RISING PODCAST
From Millennial, featuring Catholic writers on the most pressing issues of our times in politics, religion, and culture.
CHURCH EMPLOYEES ARE VULNERABLE TO WORKPLACE INJUSTICE
Can the church be trusted to use the ministerial exception to federal discrimination laws responsibly?
LET’S TALK ABOUT IMMIGRATION
The subject of immigration is one that immediately elicits passionate responses from people. Often the issue is met with questions such as these: “Why can’t they just wait in line and come here legally like our ancestors did?” and “Why should we let them in? Most of them are drug dealers and criminals.”
HOW MIGHT GOD BLESS A DIVIDED AMERICA?
America, like the church, shouldn’t be about where we’re all separately coming from. It should be about where we’re all together going.
WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE LANGUAGE OF PEACE?
Pope Francis finds himself almost entirely alone among world leaders in urging humanity to beat swords into ploughshares; and how, among elite Western opinion especially, his calls are greeted with indifference – that is, when they aren’t met with outright hostility and accusations of “appeasement".
DISTORTING THE GOSPEL: GENDER-BASED EXCLUSION AND COLONIAL VIOLENCE
The subordination of women is intimately intertwined with the colonial mindset of the Church. How can we address both together?
APOSTOLIC JOY - JOY IS APOSTOLIC. IT IS ‘A CLEAR INDICTOR OF GRACE.’
Just because the circumstances change, the lens through which we view the circumstances shouldn’t. Joy is a fruit of the Holy Spirit. Joy is a result of knowing God.
IS IT SOLIDARITY WITH THE POOR IF I DIDN’T CHOOSE IT?
Solidarity doesn’t amount to much if it never hits the ground; it does not exist in the abstract. For the Millennial middle class, poverty offers new perspectives on solidarity.
NEW YORK'S ST. FRANCIS XAVIER REDEFINES ACCEPTANCE IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
It has stood out among others in the New York Archdiocese for its pastoral activities aimed at LGBTQ parishioners' inclusion, its constant liturgical and eucharistic renewal, and its mission to fight racism, poverty, hunger and homelessness.
WE NEED TO RECLAIM THE LEGACY OF CHRISTIAN NONVIOLENCE
How might this recovery, and reinvention, of Christian nonviolence shape the church in the future? And what impact will it have on the world? It remains too soon to tell.
POPE FRANCIS DISAPPOINTS PROGRESSIVES. HE WILL DO SO AGAIN
Moving too quickly may blow up the church. Moving too slowly means losing the young. This is especially critical among women, which is why issues like birth control and women priests and deacons are so important.
WELCOMING THE STRANGER SHOULD NOT BE POLITICIZED
Demonizing refugees and attacking those who help them is contrary to church teaching as well as international law.
THE QUESTIONS WE DON'T ASK ARE THE REASONS WE CAN'T CHANGE ANYTHING
We need leaders now with personality profiles equal to the human needs before us. Our questions must surely be: What does this country need to do to save the future? For everyone? For all of us?
NO MATTER THE VERDICT, TRIAL BY JURY IS A BLESSING
No political regime exists that fulfills the promise of human dignity. All fall short of the kingdom of God. But it is a great blessing to live in a country with trial by jury.
THE CHURCH IS ALSO “MIGRATING,” SAYS POPE FRANCIS
In his message for the World Day of Migrants, the Pope connects the synodal experience with migration and reminds us that God is both with and within migrants.
TOO MANY ABSTRACTIONS - ‘DIGNITAS INFINITA’ & CHURCH TEACHING ON ‘GENDER THEORY’
The contrast between the document’s sound reasoning on many issues and its nonsensical pronouncements in other important areas is both the most interesting and the most disappointing aspect of the declaration.
GENDER DIVERSITY HAS ALWAYS BEEN PART OF THE CHURCH
Insistence on rigid gender binaries contradicts the church’s own rich history.
THIS ORGANIZATION TURNS GUNS INTO GARDEN TOOLS
RAWtools supports survivors of gun violence by melting guns into garden tools and fostering restorative justice.
US CATHOLIC BISHOPS SHOULD STAND UP AND PROTECT THEIR ANTI-POVERTY GROUP
The real scandal is people who do not support the mission of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development using this moment to try to persuade bishops to abandon their commitment to the campaign's mission promoting human dignity and respect for life.
EUROPEAN VOTERS DEAL BLOW TO POPE’S AGENDA ON MIGRATION, CLIMATE CHANGE
Serious challenges for the Vatican’s diplomatic and political agenda under Pope Francis, who has repeatedly warned against the rise of the very sort of nationalist and populist forces who scored major gains.
HOW THE CATHOLIC CHURCH IS RESPONDING TO GLOBAL WARFARE
Pope Francis has been trying “to put Catholic social teaching, and in particular, the teaching on war and peace, very much at the center of our faith. Our long-term vision for peace calls on all of us to do what we can, where we can.
UNDER OLIVE TREE PLANTED AS SIGN OF PEACE, POPE BEGS GOD TO HELP HOLY LAND
Sitting in the Vatican Gardens with the dome of St. Peter's Basilica as a backdrop, Pope Francis told cardinals and diplomats, including the ambassadors of Israel and Palestine, "Every day I pray that this war will finally end."
‘PRAY FOR ME… NOT AGAINST!’ FRANCIS TELLS STAR-STUDDED CAST OF GLOBAL COMEDIANS
“In the midst of so much gloomy news, immersed as we are in many social and even personal emergencies, you have the power to spread peace and smiles,” the pontiff told the gathering.
WITH CATHOLIC ANTI-POVERTY PROGRAM UNDER ATTACK, BISHOPS AND ACTIVISTS MOUNT DEFENSE
The CCHD has long been the target of a conservative campaign, which has asked bishops to shut the program down for allegedly working with groups advocating for positions contrary to Catholic teaching.
CATHOLIC WORKER CONTINUES TO SHARE HOSPITALITY AND HOPE
If you’re curious what Catholic Worker is all about, let’s look at the history of this movement and what it's doing today.
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