SPIRITED THINKING SINCE 1888
August 19, 2022
One of the most dispiriting things about the recent Vatican-China deal, and its looming second renewal (in spite of the fact that renewal will essentially green light ongoing persecution of Christians within China) is how remarkably chilled out so many Western Catholics appear to be. One would have thought Catholics would be up in arms
August 19, 2022
Earlier this week Canadian media reported that Canada’s Cardinal Marc Ouellet – a potential successor to the Pope and a noted conservative – has been accused of sexual misconduct as part of a class-action lawsuit brought against the Archdiocese of Quebec, one of two high-profile cases being brought against Catholic bodies in Canada. In the
August 19, 2022
The Irish Catholic bishops, as part of the Irish Synodal Pathway, released their synthesis report of a wide-ranging listening phase on 16 August. Prepared after countrywide consultations across the 26 dioceses of Ireland, the document is presented as an amalgamation of the reports from each diocese, 29 additional submissions and the results of a National Synodal
August 19, 2022
Amid an increasingly leftwards turn by the Synodal Path in Germany, and calls for upending Catholic tradition in Ireland, is it time to ignore the Pope’s Synod on Synodality? The consultation process – which has been a rather hit-and-miss affair, with huge variance by diocese in terms of engagement – will culminate in a major
August 18, 2022
Despite protests from the Latin American Church and an appeal from the Vatican for dialogue a understanding, the Nicaraguan government continues to raise tensions with the local clergy.  Since August 4, President Daniel Ortega’s regime has been forbidding Bishop Rolando Alvarez of Matagalpa to leave his rectory, along with a group of five members of
August 18, 2022
Changing the outer circumstances of who we are is no guarantee of a change at a deeper level, where most of our pain is to found
August 18, 2022
As rumours abound about the possible resignation of Pope Francis, the Pope’s appointment of 16 new voting cardinals will further stack the odds in favour of a future pontiff made in his image. Little wonder speculation is rife about the “Asian Francis” – Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle – who bookmakers now have at 6/1. But
August 18, 2022
Cardinal Joseph Zen – a long-standing critic of the Vatican’s accommodation with the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) – has now has his trial date set for September 19, following his earlier arrest under China’s national security law. He and four others face charges of failing to properly register a now-defunct fund to help anti-government protesters
August 17, 2022
Pope Francis could have his influence curtailed under proposed reforms to what a retired pope could look like. Pope Francis has, of course, done little to downplay rumours of a looming departure, recently telling reporters he can no longer travel like he once did, and one day may have to quit. Pope Francis repeated a
August 17, 2022
A famous London theatre is facing criticism over a forthcoming production about St Joan of Arc which presents the Catholic heroine as a as a non-binary “queer” who refers to herself using “they/them” pronouns. The Shakespeare’s Globe will stage “I, Joan” from August 25, promising to tell St Joan of Arc’s “story anew”. It envisages
August 16, 2022
The Holy Father’s vision of Christian politics doesn't account for the realities of governing a nation state
August 16, 2022
The US state of Idaho is set to begin a near-total ban on abortions after a court late last week refused to stop a state law from criminalising nearly all abortions in the aftermath of the US Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade in Dobbs vs. Jackson. In all, about half of US
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