Church

I saw his collar. It was a sun-splashed late morning and parking spaces were hard to come by for the lunch hour crowd at the Westfield Annapolis Mall in Maryland. For some reason, I squinted into my rearview mirror and saw that the driver trailing was a Catholic priest. Five minutes later, he was five [...]

I saw his collar. It was a sun-splashed late morning and parking spaces were hard to come by for the lunch hour crowd at the Westfield Annapolis Mall in Maryland. For some reason, I squinted into my rearview mirror and saw that the driver trailing was a Catholic priest. Five minutes later, he was five [...]

“Tomorrow I’m leaving for Mexico,” Bishop Bernard Fellay tells me, “and then on to Cuba.” I balk. “What’s in Cuba?” The question seems to confuse him. “The faithful,” he explains. “They need Confirmation, too.” What’s the SSPX presence in Cuba like? “Small,” he tells me, “and mostly underground. They’re still badly persecuted by the communists.” [...]

The Amazon synod touches directly or indirectly on many issues that will have repercussions far beyond the river basin. Among them is democracy and its relationship to the Church of Rome. The current Vatican regime claims that the principle of “synodality” in ecclesiastical government is both legitimate and valuable. Bishops are in closer contact with [...]

The faithful laity had reason to be wary of the Amazon synod before it even began—if only because a well-known ally of liberation theologians like Cláudio Cardinal Hummes was appointed first to the pre-synodal council and then as relator general of the synod itself. And yet, at least outside Latin America, such concerns have focused [...]

“These liberation theologians are promoting the idea that the Indians who still live in a primitive way are very happy, living in paradise,” said Macuxi tribal chief Jonas Marcolino Macuxí, referring to bishops at the pan-Amazon synod. “But that’s not true.” He’s right. The myth of the noble savage is alive and well at the [...]

The raid by Vatican police on the Holy See’s Secretariat of State and its Financial Information Authority on October 1, followed by the alleged dismissal of five Vatican employees, made headlines around the world. An official statement from the Holy See issued on the same day declared that the Vatican chief prosecutor Gian Piero Milano [...]

In his spiritual autobiography, Apologia pro Vita Sua, Blessed John Henry Newman informs us: “When I was fifteen (in the autumn of 1816), a great change of thought took place in me. I fell under the influences of a definite Creed, and received into my intellect impressions of dogma, which, through God’s mercy, have never [...]

The Synod of Bishops on the Amazon is off to an ominous start. Each day, as more bizarre, jarring, and revolutionary developments emerge, I keep coming back to a line from Cormac Cardinal Murphy-O’Connor: “When the cardinals elected Bergoglio they did not know what a Pandora’s box they were opening.” Shortly before the synod started, [...]

This past June I was in the Munich area for four days, giving a public lecture on Evangelical Catholicism and doing a lot of media interviews. My hosts were exceptionally gracious, but it was also obvious that the Catholic Church in what was once Germany’s most intensely Catholic region is in terrible shape. The numbers [...]

Much ink has been spilled debating the merits and even the orthodoxy of the Instrumentum Laboris (or working document) of the Amazon Synod, which begins on October 6. We’re now less than one week out from the main event and, curiously, there has been no close reading of the Instrumentum itself. So, let’s begin with [...]

Analytical psychology provided a virtually limitless opportunity for Carl Jung to play with the canonical vocabulary, expanding it to describe what he thought to be wider realms of human consciousness. An example of his creativity was his concept of Synchronizität. This “synchronicity” described what he perceived to be “meaningful coincidences,” by which he meant events [...]

Those who are dismayed by the dramatic transformation of the John Paul II Institute for Marriage and Family in Rome can find no comfort in the newest faculty appointments. Longtime faculty members such as Livio Melina and Stanislaw Grygiel have been fired and the Institute’s mission has been redefined under the leadership of Archbishop Paglia, [...]

The cracks in the Axis powers became clear when the Armistice of Cassibile was announced on September 8, 1943, after the Italian government broke with the Nazis and joined the Western Allies. The National Socialists under the codename Unternehmen Alarich tried to take over the Italian zones of occupation in southern France and the Balkans [...]

Pope Francis boldly declared last week that he’s unafraid of “pseudo-schismatics”: a clique of (mostly American) rigorist prelates and journalists whom Francis regards as a kind of loyal opposition to his papacy. But why should he have been afraid to begin with? A pseudo-schismatic is, by definition, not a schismatic. Pontiffs need no more fear [...]

Bad bishops are hardly a novelty in the history of the Church. Historians estimate that, when the Arian heresy rocked Christendom in the fourth century, four out of five bishoprics succumbed to apostasy. When Henry VIII ordered England’s bishops to swear the oath of succession, all of them complied—all, save one. For his refusal to [...]

Jonah began his journey through the city, and when he had gone only a single day’s walk announcing, “Forty days more and Nineveh shall be overthrown,” the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast and all of them, great and small, put on sackcloth.  When the news reached the king of Nineveh, he rose [...]

It was only a year ago that the Pennsylvania grand jury released its report on sexual abuse by priests. It was only a year ago that allegations broke about Theodore McCarrick and the network of sexual abusers who have infiltrated the highest levels of the Church. It was only a year ago that Archbishop Viganò’s [...]

“If I must speak the truth, I feel disposed to shun every conference of Bishops: for never saw I Synod brought to a happy issue, and remedying, and not rather aggravating, existing evils...” — St. Gregory of Nazianzus, 382 A.D. Heedless of St. Gregory’s warning—or perhaps unaccountably ready to entertain openness to “existing evils”—Vatican II [...]

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was roundly mocked last week for saying that Millennials are, in fact, the Greatest Generation. And rightly so. By and large, my generation is a waste of its fathers’ seed and a drain on their resources. Culturally, we’re vapid. Socially, we’re maladjusted. Spiritually, we’re lost. Politically, we’re just plain silly. Had Ms. Ocasio-Cortez [...]

Imagine what Church historians of the future will say about the Jesuits: “The Society of Jesus was founded in 1540 by St. Ignatius of Loyola and played a crucial role in the Church’s efforts to extinguish the nascent Protestant heresy. Over the centuries, however, it became the stronghold of another heresy—Modernism—and was eventually suppressed on [...]

Devotees of the Medjugorje apparitions often quote Scripture in their defense: “By their fruits you shall know them.” It’s now 38 years since the alleged apparitions began. Decades of disapproval from the local hierarchy have not sufficed to suppress enthusiasm about the so-called visionaries. Today, the Medjugorje issue seems to boil down to one question. [...]

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