Pope Attacked Over Motu Proprio; Cardinal Kasper Reasserts His Proposal

09/11/2015 Comments (125)
EP

– EP

Reports have emerged that a seven-page dossier, obtained by the German newspaper Die Zeit, is circulating around the curia in which senior Vatican officials have voiced discontent with the recent change in Church law on annulments, and an absence of consultation over the matter.

On Tuesday, the Pope made sweeping reforms to make the process of obtaining a declaration of nullity simpler, quicker and cheaper.

According to Die Zeit, the officials juridically “picked apart” the Pope’s motu proprio (papal decree) on annulment reform, accuse the Holy Father of giving up an important dogma, and assert that he has introduced de facto “Catholic divorce”.

Further concerns mentioned in the document...READ MORE

Filed under annulments, humanae vitae, marriage, motu proprio, pope francis, synod on the family, veritatis splendor

A Child's Profound Reflections on 9/11

09/11/2015 Comment

The "Tribute in Light" memorial was in remembrance of the events of Sept. 11, 2001, in honor of the citizens who lost their lives in the World Trade Center attacks. The two towers of light were composed of two banks of high wattage spotlights that pointed straight up from a lot next to Ground Zero. This photo was taken from Liberty State Park, N.J., Sept. 11, 2006, the five-year anniversary of 9/11. (U.S. Air Force photo/Denise Gould)

I saw the World Trade Center only once. It was 1998 or 1999. It had been a number of years since I’d visited New York City; but when our youngest son Jerry began working at an airline, I took advantage of my “parent privileges” (in those innocent pre-9/11 days, parents of employees could fly for $30/roundtrip) and the two of us set off for a day trip to the Big Apple. We planned to see the sights, visit a museum, enjoy lunch and dinner—then head back home to Michigan.

At some point—was it when our plane landed, or when we got off the subway?—I spotted the towers rising into the clouds, all but obliterating the landscape of Lower Manhattan with their twin shadows. “What Is That?!” I...READ MORE

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14 Years Later, the Fires From 9/11 Still Burn

09/11/2015 Comments (4)

Ground Zero Memorial District of lower west side Manhattan, New York City (By Bjoertvedt (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 - http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0], via Wikimedia Commons)

It took fire fighters 100 days to extinguish all of the fires ignited by the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.

Fourteen years later, there still are fires burning.

They burn in the hearts of all those who lost relatives, friends, and co-workers when 19 men affiliated with Al-Qaeda killed nearly three thousand people with hijacked airliners. Of the four planes, one crashed in Philadelphia, one in Washington DC, and two slammed into the World Trade Center North and South Towers, leveling them and changing our world forever.

All these years later, I remember with perfect clarity being at home with our four children and preparing to start another school day....READ MORE

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According to the Bible, Here's What Scandal Is Really All About

09/10/2015 Comments (36)

A reader writes:

I was recently thinking about prayers for Bin Laden — and felt I had butted up against the scandal of the Gospel. Specifically, I found it difficult to pray for Osama Bin Laden after his death, because I felt that lots of people would, and why should this mass murderer who did evil get all these worldwide prayers when others lived decent lives and didn’t get them because we don’t know about them. You know, because they didn’t commit mass terrorism. The best I could do is pray for everyone who died that week.

I think I understand the general concept — that what Christ really asks from us as far as mercy that it seems scandalous. But I’m confused by how that fits in with...READ MORE

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Why Does the Church Make Things So Complicated?

09/10/2015 Comments (19)

Bartolomé Esteban Murillo (1617–1682), "The Good Shepherd"

 Here's a letter from a reader:

I hear so much in NCRegister about things like Purgatory, the Rosary, Prayers for the Dead, Confession, Indulgences, etc.  Valid and invalid marriages.  All this discussion, some of it quite bitter, about whether any given ceremony or ordinance is "valid".  Whether or not such and such "counts" ...

Wouldn't it be better to simply focus in on Christian belief, the idea that we are all imperfect, that that lack of perfection is already paid for in the blood of the Risen Christ, and that in Christianity we no longer have to worry, that our sins are forgiven, and that we should try to live as best as we can according to the Bible?  

First, he is onto...READ MORE

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New Polish Documentary Examines "Crisis" Ahead of Synod

09/10/2015 Comments (6)

Polonia Christiana, a bimonthly Catholic publication in Poland, has produced an incisive, informative, and timely documentary on the Synod on the Family.

Called “Crisis: Where Will the Synod Lead Us To?”, it focuses on the extent of the crisis in the Church uncovered during the synod, and includes interviews with Cardinal Raymond Burke, Bishop Athanasius Schneider, and Polish analysts on the Church.  

Cardinal Burke warns that the Church is facing "a critical moment" in which "we may have to give our all to safeguard and promote the truth of the faith, not only for own salvation but for the salvation of our world and for the generations to come.”

Bishop Schneider, auxiliary bishop of...READ MORE

Filed under cardinal burke, church, crisis, heresy, synod on the family

7 Ways the Prophetic Benedict XVI Has Pointed Us Toward Renewal

09/10/2015 Comments (11)

By Peter Nguyen [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

I am astonished, and also somewhat heartened, by the buzz generated by Rod Dreher’s writing on the Benedict Option. Dreher truly struck a chord with many of us as we try to conceive the way forward out of the devastating position of cultural decline in which we find ourselves. How do we begin the renewal? What is the right balance between withdraw from and engagement with society?

Dreher’s focus on the Benedict Option springs originally from the conclusion of Alasdair MacIntyre’s monumental work, After Virtue. This passage has been commented on widely and I would encourage everyone to read it. MacIntyre also, however, emphatically reaffirmed this passage in a new preface written in 2007:

...READ MORE

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Selfies Aren't Just Fun and Games Anymore

09/10/2015 Comments (2)

By Kunstkenner2305 [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.

Stop right where you are. The selfie you’re about to take could kill you.

It could, if you’re one of the millions of cell phone users who are smitten by the reckless trend of taking dangerous selfies.

Selfie-taking has become so popular that Google Trends labeled 2014 as “The Year of the Selfie.” Also on the rise is the attraction to taking selfies while in precarious and even life-threatening situations.

Consider, for example, the 19-year-old Texas father of two who died on September 2 after shooting himself in the neck during a selfie. Now his two children are fatherless.

Or, the two men in the Ural Mountains who died after posing with a live hand grenade. They were just supposed to...READ MORE

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