"If I cannot listen to the subtle manifestation of rich reality in my environment, I will necessarily try to impose my wilful codes on others. If I am not open to reality and do not obey the voice of reality, a terrible distortion takes place. Sooner or later I will turn the whole relationship around: Instead of listening to reality in people and events, I become convinced that reality in people and events should listen to me."

[Adrian van Kaam, The Art of Existential Counseling, Dimension Books, 1966, 80.]

News

Communion for the Remarried?

JPopeFrancis01The pope has given the go-ahead for discussion. He doesn't say whether he is on the side of those in favor or those against, but he appears to be much closer to the former than to the latter. An Australian theologian explains why. Read more

 

Church Must Welcome Unconventional Couples

JPopeFrancisandBishopGalantinoThe 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 and an ally of Pope Francis said this week. "Couples in irregular matrimonial situations are also Christians, but they are sometimes looked upon with prejudice," said Bishop Nunzio Galantino, an apparent reference to divorced and remarried Catholics. Read more.

 

Oscar Romero to be Beatified Soon

JOscarRomeroPope Francis opened the way Monday to a quick beatification for Oscar Arnulfo Romero, saying there are no more doctrinal problems blocking the process for the slain Salvadoran archbishop who is one of the heroes of the liberation theology movement in Latin America. Romero, the archbishop of San Salvador, was gunned down in 1980 while celebrating Mass. He had spoken out against repression by the Salvadoran army at the beginning of the country's 1980-1992 civil war between the right-wing government and leftist rebels. Read more.

 

Pope Francis and the Papacy - Opinions of Two Leading Catholics

JBainchiwithPopeFrancisThe prior of Bose, Enzo Bianchi, and archbishop emeritus of San Francisco John R. Quinn are presenting it as a given that Francis will completely overhaul the role of the pope. But some acts of this pontificate contradict their expectations. Read more

 

Mary McAleese in Sydney in September

JMaryMcAleese04The former president of Ireland, Mary McAleese, will be the guest of Aquinas Academy and Catalyst for Renewal in Syndey in September. There will be a forum with Maryin the Sydney Town Hall on Sunday September 7 at 2pm. Entry by ticket only. Book now. For more information about Mary McAleese click here. To watch a video of Mary McAleese click here. Mary will also be the guest of the Global Irish Studies Centre at UNSW - click here for details.

US and UN Silent On Plight of Christians in Iraq

JRep Frank R Wolf R Virginia CNA US Catholic News 7 11 12Christians are facing genocide in Iraq while the US government and the United Nations are silent, Rep Fran Wolf (R-Va) said on the House floor Thursday. "I believe what is happening to the Christian community in Iraq is genocide. I also believe it is a crime against humanity," Wolf said on July 31. Read more.

Pope Francis and the Pentecostals

JPentecostalsHe is not Catholic, but Pentecostal, a part of those Christian communities which are in breathtaking expansion all over the world. Little by little the pope is meeting with their leaders. From rivals he wants to become friends, to the point of asking their forgiveness. Read more.

 

Pope Francis' Moves for Cultural Change in the Vatican

Jvatican1It was possibly a watershed moment in Holy See media relations. The scene was the Sala Stampa of the Holy See some 10 days ago. Australian Cardinal George Pell was presenting the New Economic Framework for the Holy See, a document which outlines proposed major reforms not only to IOR (the Vatican bank) and to APSA (the Vatican City treasury), but also to all the various Vatican-run media. Halfway through the press conference, a reporter from Milan newspaper Corriere Della Sera asked a question. She wanted to know why, among the six new lay members of the board of IOR, there was no Italian representative. For a brief moment, almost the entire press room started to laugh. Read more.

 

Irish Priests Back Francis' Comments on Celibacy

JpopefrancisThe organisation representing Catholic priests in Ireland has called for an end to the Vatican's celibacy rule. The Association of Catholic Priests in Ireland warmly welcomed recent comments by Pope Francis hinting that priests may be able to marry in the future. Read more.

Tom Petty Album Rocks the Catholic Church

Jtom pettyIn new song titled "Playing Dumb," famed rocker Petty and his band the Heartbreakers -- who together have produced classics such as "Runnin' Down a Dream," "Free Fallin'" and "Mary Jane's Last Dance" -- address their outrage with the church's decade-long abuse scandal. Read More

 

Francis Speaks, Scalfari Transcribes, Brandmuller Shreds

JVaticanCuriaPriestAs a Church historian, the German cardinal refutes the notion according to which clerical celibacy was an invention of the 10th century. No, he objects: its origin is with Jesus and the apostles. And he explains why. Read more.

 

Pope Francis Meets Victims of Sexual Abuse

JPopeFrancis03Pope Francis met for the first time Monday with people sexually abused by priests, saying Mass with six survivors and then meeting privately with each for half an hour. Read more

 

Peacemaking Calls for Courage - Much More So Than Warfare

JPopeFrancisMiddleEastPeacemakingThis was Pope Francis message to his guests Sunday evening – the Israeli and Palestinian Presidents Shimon Peres and Mahmoud Abbas – as he welcomed them to his home for an Invocation for Peace in the Holy Land. Read more

"Still I Rise" - Remembering Maya Angelou

JMayaAngelouMaya Angelou, born Marguerite Annie Johnson on April 4, 1928, died May 28, 2014. She was an American author and poet who published seven autobiographies, three books of essays, and several books of poetry, and was credited with a list of plays, movies, and television shows spanning more than 50 years. Watch her recite her most famous poem.

 

Adult Bible Classes Standing Room Only

JSisterCarolToday, people around the world view Sr Carol Perry's 10 a.m. Sunday Bible study class, live through the church's website. A gifted storyteller, she makes the Bible's ancient people seem like relatives remembered from childhood. "They're our ancestors," she said. Read more

Mary McAleese in Sydney

JMaryMcAleese04The former President of Ireland, Mary McAleese, will be the guest of Aquinas Academy and Catalyst for Renewal in Sydney in September. On Sunday September 7 there will be a Public Forum in the Sydney Town Hall where Mary will be interviewed by Andrew West of Radio National Religion and Ethics Report. Bishop Geoffrey Robinson will introduce Mary. The Forum will begin at 2pm. All welcome - tickets $20. Book online now.

Read more ...

Sister Heads for Syria in Response to Pope Francis' Call

JSister Maria Nazareth Credit Aid to the Church in Need CNA 4 29 14Gaza City, Apr 30, 2014 / 04:19 am (CNA/EWTN News).- A religious sister from Argentina, who has been serving for four years in the Gaza Strip, is preparing to go to the Syrian city of Aleppo, in response to Pope Francis' call to aid those who are "forgotten." Read more

 

Pope Francis is not so Popular with Some in the Curia

JPopeFrancisandcrowdPope Francis is seeking to build a "new way of being church" for Roman Catholics in a similar way to how St. Francis of Assisi reported being told by God to repair the church during the 13th century, a cardinal who is one of the pontiff's closest advisers said.


"There is a new concept of church here" in how the pope is governing the Vatican, said Honduran Cardinal Oscar Rodríguez Maradiaga, speaking April 8 in St. Petersburg, Fla. "There is a new way of thinking, including the way of governing in the church, here." Read full article.

 

In Defence of Cardinal Pell

JFrankBrennan

On April 2 2014 Elizabeth Farrelly wrote in the Fairfax Press that "George Pell wants to insure priests againts being sued for child sex abuse". Farrelly got it wrong. Read Frank Brennan's piece in Eureka Street.

Jesuit Priest Martyred in Syria

 

JFr Frans van der LugtDays after Dutch Jesuit priest, Franz van der Lugt, was murdered in Sydria, a close young friend spoke of his life and commitment to the people he served in Homs. In particular, he spoke of the extraordinary contribution he made to Christian-Muslim relations there. When the rebels took over Homs, Fr van der Lugt said, 'I can't leave my people, I can't leave my church, I am director of this church, how can I leave them?' Read full report