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Religion

  • The Church of Pope Francis

    The Church of Pope Francis

    Few doubt that Pope Francis is different from his two immediate predecessors. His unexpected style took everybody by surprise the very first moment he greeted the crowd as Pope with a “Buona sera.” However, the difference in approach goes much...

  • Quotes and news

    At a general audiences on the family, Pope Francis said: “Children are the joy of family and society. They are not a problem of reproductive biology, or one of many ways to realise oneself in life, let alone their parents’ possession. Children are...

  • Cure of the soul

    Today’s readings: Job 7, 1-4.6-7; 1 Corinthians 9, 16-19.22-23; Mark 1, 29-39. Suffering is always an issue for all of us, whether one is a believer or not. It uncovers the truth of our human condition; it puts into question the meaning of life;...

  • Co-believers in the one God

    Co-believers in the one God

    Sadly, fundamentalism using the Muslim religion to legitimate violence has reared its ugly head in the horrendous actions of members of the Islamic State and of Boko Haram in Nigeria, as well as in the killings in Paris in January (clearly to be...

  • Quotes and news

    Nova Scotia’s supreme court in Canada has decided in favour of Trinity Western University law school in a controversy it had with the state’s Barristers’ society. The latter was barring students who graduate from the Christian university from...

  • The need for prophets

    Today’s readings: Deuteronomy 18,15-20; 1 Corinthians 7,32-35; Mark 1,21-28. Prophets were always needed and are still needed. They provoke, they shake the foundations, they voice what many would feel but lack the courage to express. Churches...

  • Standing in judgement

    Standing in judgement

    One of the problems facing society today is the lack of clarity in determining what is right or wrong. We are being conditioned to avoid making value judgements. Even the injunction of Pope Francis: “Who am I to judge?” has been used without...

  • Quotes and news

    In an interview with Jesuit magazine America, Cardinal Reinhard Marx of Munich said Pope Francis’s pontificate has opened new paths. “The gospel is not new, but Francis is expressing it in a new way and is inspiring a lot of people, all over the...

  • Reason to hope

    Today’s readings: Jonah 3,1-5.10; 1 Corinthians 7,29-31; Mark 1, 14-20 There have always been raging debates about the relationship between religion and politics since the inception of Christianity. The public engagement of believers of all faiths...

  • Restorative justice

    Restorative justice

    In a recent Restorative Justice Week organised by the UK Justice Ministry, it was surprisingly revealed that restorative justice reduces the frequency of criminals reoffending by 14 per cent. Research funded by the ministry also found that victims...

  • Quotes and news

    Following Saudi Arabia’s decision to condemn a blogger to 1,000 lashes, 10 years imprisonment and a fine of €250,000, the Austrian government is considering closing the King Abdullah International Centre for Interfaith and Intercultural Dialogue...

  • Turning point

    Today’s readings: 1 Samuel 3,3-10.19; 1 Corinthians 6,13-15.17-20; John 1,35-42. We have problems today with institutions that regulate our lives. Where belief, values and style of life are concerned it seems we shun parameters and prefer to give...

  • Dignity of migrants and refugees

    Dignity of migrants and refugees

    The Catholic Church today celebrates the World Day of Migrants and Refugees. The commemoration aims at increasing awareness of the phenomenon of migration, as contemporary movements represent the largest movement of individuals, if not of peoples,...

  • Quotes and news

    The following quotes are taken from Pope Francis’s address last Monday to the members of the diplomatic corps accredited to the Holy See. Culture of rejection “Rejection is an attitude we all share; it makes us see our neighbour not as a brother...

  • Beyond old ways

    Today’s readings: Isaiah 55, 1-11; 1 John 5, 1-9; Mark 1, 7-11. In his version of Jesus written for later generations, St Mark wanted to highlight the difference between the old and the new, between ritual baptism and the real anointing with the...

  • A return to basics

    A return to basics

    “The Church is an evangeliser, but she begins by being evangelised herself… She is the People of God immersed in the world, and often tempted by idols.” This exclamation was made by the Blessed Pope Paul VI in the apostolic exhortation Evangelii...

  • Quotes and news

    During a December 28 meeting with the Italian Association of Large Families in the Vatican’s Paul VI hall, Pope Francis offered praise for large families: “Motherhood and fatherhood are a gift from God, but to receive the gift, to wonder at its...

  • The right standpoint

    Today’s readings: Isaiah 60,1-6; Ephesians 3,2-3.5-6; Matthew 2,1-12 “Though night still covers the earth, the glory of the Lord is rising on you.” These are the words of Isaiah which we need so much to hear in these times. For the umpteenth time...

  • Recalculating

    Recalculating

    While abroad with my family and looking at the beautiful scenery of Toscana and Umbria I was struck by the GPS voice of ‘Ema’, who every time we took a wrong turning or missed an exit onto a slip road would tell us: recalculating! Amazingly, it...

  • Quotes and news

    The following are extracts from Pope Francis’s message for the World Day of Peace celebrated on January 1. The theme of the message is ‘No longer slaves, but brothers and sisters’. The slavery scourge Millions of people today – children, women and...

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