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Religion

  • Death as stranger

    Today’s readings: 2 Maccabees 7, 1-2.9-14; 2 Thessalonians 2, 16 - 3,5; Luke 20, 27-38. Persecution is a word we normally attach to first-century Christians when the Christian religion, still in its formative years, was refuted in the wake of...

  • We are all sinners called to be saints

    We are all sinners called to be saints

    Recently, when asked to define himself, Pope Francis, who is addressed by all as ‘His Holiness’, said he sees himself as a sinner. As we celebrated the feast of All Saints, we realise we are all called for sainthood but there is a tension that...

  • Quotes and news

    Last week, the Vatican published the document that will form the basis for the discussions at the extraordinary general assembly of the Synod of Bishops, which will meet in October 2014 to discuss the family. Archbishop Bruno Forte, the special...

  • Our deepest desires

    Today’s readings: Wisdom 11,22 - 12,2; Thessalonians 1,11 - 2,2; Luke 19, 1-10. St Luke constantly tells stories of people who are lost, whom Jesus restores to life, and who eventually accept the good news of liberation. These stories are normally...

  • Modernising the Church

    Modernising the Church

    Few would disagree that the Church, at least in the Western world, is tired. Adherence to the Church is falling every year. Catholic Austria loses around 40,000 members each year. Mass attendance in Catholic Malta has also been diminishing. The...

  • Quotes and news

    Ten million people follow Pope Francis’s multi-lingual Twitter account. In fact, the Pope’s words are being tweeted in nine languages, including Spanish, English, and Latin. The popularity of the account is rising at the rate of one million new...

  • Being with God

    Today’s readings: Ecclesiasticus 35, 12-14.16-19; 2 Timothy 4, 6-8.16-18; Luke 18, 9-14. The Pharisee and the tax collector in today’s parable set the scene for us to revisit different ways of understanding how religion can block or unblock our...

  • What makes a good homily?

    What makes a good homily?

    The first topic that usually crops up when speaking to people, irrespective of whether they happen to be Catholics estranged from the Church or regularly attend Sunday Mass, is the homily. Many are those who feel irritated at the type of homilies...

  • Quotes and news

    In a homily at his early morning Mass, Pope Francis said: “When intelligence tries to explain a mystery, it always – always – becomes crazy. (The mystery of salvation) can only be understood on one’s knees, in contemplation. “For me, what comes to...

  • A fragile faith

    Today’s readings: Exodus 17, 8-13; 2 Timothy 3, 14 - 4,2; Luke 18, 1-8. The key question in the gospel today is whether the Lord is going to find faith on earth when he comes. It is a provoking question which may have a myriad of answers depending...

  • The State needs the Church

    The State needs the Church

    The Independence Day homily of Archbishop Paul Cremona triggered a reflection on the role of Church and State and their inter-relationship. There was insistence on the separation of Church and State. Unsurprisingly, the Archbishop’s message was...

  • Quotes and news

    During October 2014 an extraordinary meeting of the Synod of Bishops is expected to meet in the Vatican at the request of Pope Francis. There have only been two extraordinary session of the Synod. One was in 1969, which discussed the role of...

  • True humaneness

    Today’s readings: 2 Kings 5, 14-17; 2 Timothy 2, 8-13; Luke 17, 11-19. The good news of the gospel is all about celebrating life. That news, as St Paul writes to Timothy in the second reading, cannot in any way be chained to boundaries of any kind.

  • Church rituals void of apostolic relevance

    Church rituals void of apostolic relevance

    Rituals and traditions are those patterns of behaviour that occur with regularity. They help us communicate meaning, values and relationships that exist between people and with God. They are like signs that are meant to point beyond themselves to...

  • Quotes and news

    The majority of American Catholics support same-sex marriage, are in favour of the ordination of women and have a favourable opinion of Pope Francis. These results were given by Quinnipiac University after conducting a survey, the results of which...

  • A God to argue with

    Today’s readings: Habbakkuk 1,2-3. 2,2-4; 2 Tim. 1,6-8.13-14; Lk 17,5-10. True faith never induces us to live in denial. Reality has to be faced and called by its name. Very often our problem as believers is that not only is our faith not bold...

  • Vatican II, Act 2

    Vatican II, Act 2

    Since Pope Francis was elected Pope on March 13, there has been a lot of jaw-dropping, especially among those “on the right-wing” – to use an expression the Pope used – but also those ‘on the left’, both Catholics and non-Catholics. The immediate...

  • Quotes and news

    The following are more quotations from Pope Francis’s interview featured in various Jesuit periodicals. Love Mary “This is how it is with Mary: If you want to know who she is, ask theologians; if you want to know how to love her, ask people. Mary...

  • Where we stand

    Today’s readings: Amos 6, 1.4-7; 1 Timothy 6, 11-16; Luke 16, 19-31. It is not just a matter of pick and choose, but there are items in our belief system which seem to either inflame our imagination or block it. Today’s parable transposes the...

  • Pope Francis’s interview

    Pope Francis’s interview

    Pope Francis recently gave a long interview over three meetings to the editor of the Jesuit review La Civiltà Cattolica, Fr Antonio Spadaro SJ. The Pope does not feel comfortable with interviews: he prefers to have time to think and qualify what...

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