"I prefer a Church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a Church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security. I do not want a Church concerned with being at the centre and then ends by being caught up in a web of obsessions and procedures. If something should rightly disturb us and trouble our consciences, it is the fact that so many of our brothers and sisters are living without the strength, light and consolation born of friendship with Jesus Christ, without a community of faith to support them, without meaning and a goal in life. More than by fear of going astray, my hope is that we will be moved by the fear of remaining shut up within structures which give us a false sense of security, within rules which make us harsh judges, within habits which make us feel safe, while at our door people are starving and Jesus does not tire of saying to us: 'Give them something to eat' (Mk 6:37)." (Pope Francis, Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium (November 2013), #49)

 

Reflections 2015

Clint Eastwood's "Sniper"

A review by Lee C Camp

JLeeCCampThis is a dangerous film, if not morally perverse. This is true because of what it leaves unsaid, and because of what it assumes. Read more

Synod's Genie May Be Out of the Bottle

JFrankBrennanThe Vatican has now released the official English translation of the relatio synodi, the concluding document from the Synod of Bishops convened by Pope Francis to consider "pastoral challenges to the family in the context of evangelization." Read more

 

Am I Charlie?

Jandrew hamiltonThe Martin Place killings and the Paris murders had one thing in common. They both generated hashtags. #Illridewithyou and #JesuisCharlie (or #IamCharlie) focused popular response to the atrocities. Their simplicity allowed people to express instantly their solidarity with victims and their rejection of violence. But they also raised complex questions. Read more.

Je Suis Charlie?

JFreespeechAccording to large sections of the electronic and print media, "we" are all Charlie now. While it is absolutely right that we stand with the victims and their families in grief and outrage at these terrible acts, predictably we have been told that we should, as a corollary, also defend people's rights to say what they like, no matter how hurtful it may be. Read more

Love Creates Space for Restorative Justice

Reflection by Andrew Hamilton SJ

Jandrew hamiltonOne of the notable developments in the justice system in recent years has been the attention given to the victims of serious crime. Those directly affected and their relatives have been given a chance to speak and so to influence sentencing. As a result the consequences of crime receive wider publicity. Read more

 

Divorce: What Does the Gospel Say?

JDivorceIn an article in the latest issue of the theology quarterly "Urbaniana University Journal," Fr. Gargano shows how Jesus' words about marriage are mainly prompted by what God says through the mouth of the prophet Hosea: "I desire mercy, and not sacrifice." Read more

 

Sisters Deserve an Apology for Apostolic Visitation

JUSReligiousWomenNow that the quaintly named apostolic visitation of U.S. women religious is over and the current leadership of the Vatican agency that oversees religious orders has decided that the women are worthy of praise, admiration and gratitude, it is quite appropriate to ask: "What was that all about?" Read more.

 

What Is "Free Speech"?

JDrZaganoMurder is never the answer, and terrorism is the most cowardly of acts. But physical violence will continue as a reaction to real or imagined emotional violence. Read more.