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Religion

  • Hope in distress

    Today’s readings: Daniel 12, 1-3; Hebrews 10, 11-14.18; Mark 13, 24-32. Hope is the virtue that dominates today’s Scripture readings which practically bring us to the end of the yearly liturgical journey. If we take today’s gospel text, it seems...

  • God’s hidden Church

    God’s hidden Church

    On March 14, 2013, both China and the Catholic Church announced their new leaders to the world – Xi Jinping in Beijing and Francis in the Vatican. This might have been a sheer coincidence but it definitely is a good starting point for the two...

  • Quotes and news

    At the ordination of Bishop Angelo De Donatis, Pope Francis said: “Let your words be simple so that everyone can understand. Don’t give long homilies. Allow me to ask you to remember your dad and how very happy he was to have found another parish...

  • Rooted in people’s lives

    Today’s readings: 1 Kings 17, 10-16; Hebrews 9, 24-28; Mark 12, 38-44. There are many people who have no status in Church or society and yet count a lot in God’s eyes. Throughout the gospels, Jesus up­holds the genuine piety and faith of...

  • A Church in transition

    A Church in transition

    The biggest obstacles for the universal Church to respond to the promptings of the Holy Spirit are a closed heart and a chained mindset. The Church is in transition, albeit a painful one for many who cannot tolerate its transformational process.

  • Quotes and news

    In a speech to pilgrims from El Salvador, Pope Francis defended the memory of Archbishop Oscar Ro­me­ro, who was assassinated in 1980 while celebrating Mass. Romero used to strongly criticise abuses against human rights committed by the government...

  • Secularised holiness

    Today’s readings: Apocalypse 7, 2-4. 9-14; 1 John 3,1-3; Matthew 5, 1-12. In our common imagination, we have always been brought up to think of saints as heroes, people of heroic faith who have lived out fully and impeccably their commitment to...

  • Called to be holy?

    Called to be holy?

    Today the Church celebrates All Saints’ Day. Our mind immediately goes to outstanding Church figures over the centuries such as St Peter and St Paul, St Augustine, St Dominic, St Francis of Assisi, St Ignatius Loyola, St John Bosco, Maximilian...

  • Quotes and news

    Paragraph 84 of the final message of the Synod of Bishops states: “The baptised that are divorced and remarried civilly must be integrated into Christian communities in the various possible ways. The logic of integration is the key of their...

  • The light within

    Today’s readings: Jeremiah 31, 7-9; Hebrews 5, 1-6; Mark 10, 46-52. The gospel story of the blind man Bartimaeus meeting Jesus on his way out of Jericho focuses more on the struggle of Bartimaeus to regain his sight than on the action or teaching...

  • Good, socially responsible business

    Good, socially responsible business

    It is frustrating that we need to qualify a certain business or investment as being ‘socially responsible’. This qualification implies that most of the other business is socially irresponsible. Indeed, anyone following the financial media will...

  • Quotes and news

    At an event marking the 50th anniversary of the institution of the synod by Blessed Paul VI, Cardinal Christoph Schönborn of Vienna described the Council of Jerusalem (Acts 15) as the “model for the method of synod”. He said the first synod was...

  • Conflict resolution

    Today’s readings: Isaiah 53, 10-11; Hebrews 4, 14-16; Mark 10, 35-45. As Timothy Radcliffe once said, the Church is deeply fragmented. This is the face of the Church that is emerging from the synod of bishops under way in Rome. It is also what...

  • Running on reserve fuel tank

    Running on reserve fuel tank

    I will never forget the smiling expression of a middle-aged Ethiopian after I cleaned some of his wounds when he was on his death bed. It touched me to the core: It was one of deep gratitude, joy and inner freedom as he lay there suffering. His...

  • Quotes and news

    Two Syrian prelates have spoken in very positive terms about Russia’s involvement in Syria. Archbishop Jacques Hindo of Hassake-Nisibis said US policies in Syria contributed to the growth of Islamic State, while Russian air attacks have forced IS...

  • Wise in the spirit

    Today’s readings: Wisdom 7, 7-11; Hebrews 4, 12-13; Mark 10, 17-30. Eternal life, for what that can mean to the modern mind, is the key to today’s readings, particularly to the gospel story of a man who, however pious he may have been, lacked the...

  • US Congress called to task

    US Congress called to task

    Pope Francis is a Pope who has made many ‘firsts’. The first Jesuit to become a Pope, the first successor of Peter to choose the name Francis, the first Pope to make the widest possible consultation for the synod of bishops through a questionnaire...

  • Quotes and news

    The 14th ordinary general assembly of the synod of bishops dedicated to ‘The vocation and mission of the family in the Church and the contemporary world’ has started at the Vatican. These quotes are from some of the Pope’s interventions so...

  • Soul of marriage

    Today’s readings: Genesis 2, 18-24; Hebrews 2, 9-11; Mark 10, 2-16. There is a picture of marriage that is familiar to most of us and that in our culture has become a question of perception. The stability that was part and parcel of the...

  • Christianity’s fiercest enemies

    Christianity’s fiercest enemies

    A few weeks ago The Malta Independent reported that the Islamic Call Society approached the Prime Minister, asking him to help them find land for a mosque and a school. Of the 156 online comments to this news item, all were opposed to the idea,...

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