Pope Francis: Have the Humility of the Poor in Heart

Recalls parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector at today's weekly general audience.

06/01/2016 Comment

Pope Francis continued his catechesis for the Jubilee Year of Mercy today, stressing that true prayer is born of “a heart which repents of its faults and failings, yet pleads for the grace to live the great commandment of love of God and neighbor.” 

The Holy Father was referring to the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector in which Jesus contrasts the arrogance and self-righteousness of the Pharisee’s prayer with the tax collector’s humble recognition of his sinfulness and need for the Lord’s mercy.

The Pope recalled that the Pharisee despised people commonly seen as “impure,” sinners such as the tax collector, but God “loves all men and does not despise sinners.”

“It is not...READ MORE

Filed under arrogance, catechesis, general audience, humility, pope francis, pride, sacred heart of jesus

Details Released of Reformation Commemoration in Lund, Sweden

Joint statement says aim of the event is to "express the gifts of the Reformation and ask forgiveness for division perpetuated by Christians from the two traditions.”

06/01/2016 Comments (11)
Edward Pentin/NCRegister.com

Pope Francis greeting pilgrims today in St. Peter's Square. The Holy Father will lead a common prayer service in Lund's Lutheran cathedral, together with Lutheran leaders.

– Edward Pentin/NCRegister.com

Pope Francis’ visit to Lund, Sweden, to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation will comprise “two parts” beginning with a “common prayer” service in Lund's Lutheran cathedral and continuing with a public event at Malmö Arena that will be open to wider participation, Vatican and Lutheran leaders have announced.

In a joint statement issued today by the Lutheran World Federation (LWF) and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, they reiterated that the Oct. 31 event will be centered on the themes of “thanksgiving, repentance and commitment to common witness".

It also said the overall aim of the ecumenical event “is to express the gifts of the Reformation and ask...READ MORE

Filed under lutheran, lutherans, pope francis, protestants, reformation

Cardinal Müller Expects SSPX to Recognize Disputed Council Teachings

05/24/2016 Comments (25)
Daniel Ibáñez/Catholic News Agency

Cardinal Gerhard Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.

– Daniel Ibáñez/Catholic News Agency

Cardinal Gerhard Müller has said he expects the Society of St. Pius X, which has always opposed the Second Vatican Council's declarations on religious freedom and ecumenism, to “unreservedly recognize” freedom of religion as a human right, and an obligation to ecumenism. 

In an interview in the June edition of the German publication Herder Korrespondenz, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said that if one “wants to be fully Catholic, one must recognize the Pope and the Second Vatican Council.”

Cardinal Müller said he expects a recognition of all the Council declarations that deal with these issues, according to the interview, reported on the Austrian Catholic...READ MORE

Filed under bishop bernard fellay, cardinal gerhard muller, cdf, pope francis, society of st. pius x, sspx

Archbishop Gänswein: Benedict XVI Sees Resignation as Expanding Petrine Ministry

Prefect of Pontifical Household also recalls "dramatic struggle" of 2005 Conclave.

05/23/2016 Comments (48)
CNA

Archbishop Gänswein delivering his speech at the Pontifical Gregorian University, May 20.

– CNA

In a speech reflecting on Pope Benedict XVI’s pontificate, Archbishop Georg Gänswein has confirmed the existence of a group who fought against Benedict’s election in 2005, but stressed that "Vatileaks" or other issues had "little or nothing" to do with his resignation in 2013.

Speaking at the presentation of a new book on Benedict’s pontificate at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome May 20, Archbishop Gänswein also said that Pope Francis and Benedict are not two popes “in competition” with one another, but represent one “expanded” Petrine Office with “an active member” and a “contemplative.”

Archbishop Gänswein, who doubles as the personal secretary of the Pope Emeritus and...READ MORE

Filed under archbishop georg gänswein, benedict xvi, conclave, pope emeritus, st. gallen group, vatileaks

Father Tom Uzhunnalil 'Safe', Release Could Be 'Imminent'

But Bishop Paul Hinder urges caution and prudence.

05/19/2016 Comments (1)

An Indian Salesian priest kidnapped in Yemen in early March is “safe”, efforts to release him are in their “final phase”, and he is thought to be in the hands of anti-government rebel forces rather than ISIS, according to both Indian government and Church sources.

Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj, quoted by Asia News May 18, said that Father Tom Uzhunnalil is alive and "safe", and at the moment "last efforts" are being made to "ensure his release".

The news that he is safe is “reliable”, according to The New Indian Express. It added that some Church officials who have been part of the rescue efforts “could speak to Father Tom over the phone.”

The reports have raised hopes of his...READ MORE

Filed under al qaeda, father tom uzhunnalil, isis, middle east, missionaries of charity, terrorism, yemen

VIDEO: SSPX's Bishop Fellay Speaks Exclusively to the Register

05/18/2016 Comments (25)

The interview transcript has now been added to the end of this post. 

Here below is video of a May 13th interview with the superior general of the Society of St. Pius X, Bishop Bernard Fellay. My write up on the interview can be found here
 
 

Part 1/3: The Superior General of the Society of St. Pius X gives a rundown of the reconciliation process and explains that the SSPX is at a "very interesting" but "more confusing" stage in its relations with the Holy See. He says the Pope and the CDF have a different approach to the Society, but the same conclusion: to give the SSPX recognition. He also responds to whether Archbishop Lefebvre's insistence that reconciliation would only be...READ MORE

Filed under bishop bernard fellay, holy see, pope francis, second vatican council, society of st. pius x, sspx, vatican

VIDEO: Pope's 'Mercy Friday' Visit to L'Arche Center in Rome

05/16/2016 Comments (2)

Pope Francis’ much loved human touch was on display on Friday when he made a surprise visit to a community in Italy which houses and cares for persons who have severe mental disabilities.

CNA provided the above video of the visit which was part of the Pope’s “Mercy Friday” initiative, in which he carries out one act of mercy a month on a Friday throughout the Jubilee of Mercy.

The Holy Father sat at table and ate with the volunteers and the disabled, and listened to their testimonies.

The Il Chicco center, located in Ciampino, a town just outside of Rome, was founded in 1981 by L'Arche, a federation dedicated to making known the gifts of persons with intellectual disabilities. It houses...READ MORE

Filed under jubilee of mercy, pope francis

Pope to Set Up Commission to Study Possibility of Women Deacons

05/12/2016 Comments (67)

Pope Francis said today he would set up a commission to study women deacons in the early Church, a proposal that has often been discussed by modern theologians such as Cardinals Carlo Martini and Walter Kasper. 

Speaking to around 900 members of the International Union of Superiors General today, representing half a million religious sisters from 80 countries, the Pope was asked if he would establish “an official commission” to study the question of women deacons.

He replied: “I accept. It would be useful for the Church to clarify this question. I agree."

The Church reintroduced the permanent diaconate for males after the Second Vatican Council. Deacons cannot celebrate the Eucharist,...READ MORE

Filed under cardinal carlo martini, pope francis, women deacons, women priests

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About Edward Pentin

Edward Pentin
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Edward Pentin began reporting on the Pope and the Vatican with Vatican Radio before moving on to become the Rome correspondent for the National Catholic Register. He has also reported on the Holy See and the Catholic Church for a number of other publications including Newsweek, Newsmax, Zenit, The Catholic Herald, and The Holy Land Review, a Franciscan publication specializing in the Church and the Middle East. Edward is the author of "The Rigging of a Vatican Synod? An Investigation into Alleged Manipulation at the Extraordinary Synod on the Family", published by Ignatius Press. Follow him on Twitter @edwardpentin