Benedict XVI's Full Schedule for the Fall

08/20/2010 Comments (3)

Pope Benedict XVI waves from the balcony during his Angelus prayer Aug. 15, the feast of the Assumption of Mary, at his summer residence in Castel Gandolfo, Italy. (CNS photo/Alessia Giuliani, Catholic Press Photo)

Pope Benedict XVI and the Vatican have a busy schedule this fall, filled with papal visits, a synod of bishops and possibly even a consistory.

The Holy Father will be staying at his summer residence of Castel Gandolfo at least until the end of September but before he returns to Rome he has three important engagements: 

• First is his traditional ‘Schülerkreis’ Aug. 27-29. The meeting with the Pope’s former students, which dates back to when he was a theology professor in Regensburg, Germany, will be held as usual at Castel Gandolfo and this year will focus on the hermeneutic of the Second Vatican Council: whether the Council texts represent ‘discontinuity and rupture’ with tradition or...READ MORE

Filed under benedict xvi, consistory, leo xiii, middle east, papal visit, vatican

Footage of Holy Father on Vacation

07/23/2010 Comments (7)

Some rare footage of Benedict XVI during his current vacation in Castel Gandolfo, outside Rome, courtesy of Rome Reports.

During his summer holiday which ends next week, the Holy Father has been working on the third volume of his book, Jesus of Nazareth. The next volume will be dedicated to the ‘Gospel Infancy Narratives’. The manuscript for the second volume on the Passion and Resurrection has been completed and is currently with translators.

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The Church's Purification Continues?

07/23/2010 Comments (4)

The cover of this week's issue of Panorama

Yet more scandalous revelations for the Church to deal with: the current issue of Italian magazine Panorama is making headlines after it conducted an undercover investigation of suspected practising homosexual priests in Rome.

In a sensationalist cover story which hit the newsstands today entitled “The Wild Nights of Gay Priests”, the article’s author, together with an accomplice who was homosexual, claims to have documented the double lives of a number of priests using a hidden camera.

The Berlusconi-owned weekly doesn’t give precise numbers of Rome priests involved, saying only that there are “numerous cases”, but it claims to have compromising evidence of three priests. In the...READ MORE

Filed under homosexuality, priests, rome, scandal

Who's the Holy See's New Man at the UN?

07/21/2010 Comments (1)

Archbishop Chullikatt meeting King Abdullah of Jordan (Jordanian embassy, Netherlands)

The appointment on Saturday of Archbishop Francis Assisi Chullikatt as the Holy See’s new permanent observer at the United Nations looks to have been an inspired choice by the Holy Father.

His previous postings, both at the UN and in the Middle East, appear to have primed him well for the post which will require standing up to radical feminist and pro-abortion groups in New York, as well as continuing cooperation with the UN on common issues of concern.

Originally from Bolghatty, India, Archbishop Chullikatt has been apostolic nuncio to Iraq and Jordan since 2006, during which time he fought hard to protect Christians in the region from persecution. He was particularly outspoken earlier...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, archbishop chullikatt, iraq, permanent observer, united nations

Drawing the Line on Scandals in the Church

07/19/2010 Comments (11)

Hardly a week has gone by this year without the Holy Father having to deal with some crisis or scandal. He has had the clerical sex abuse scandals of course, but also ongoing corruption allegations involving a few Vatican officials, some very senior.

And we are told more revelations are to come.

As a Catholic journalist, it’s made me wonder how much scandal, particularly in the Vatican, do we need to know? To what extent is disclosing them beneficial to the Church and the building up of each person’s faith? And how much should scandalous revelations be shared outside the family of the Church?

The danger of reporting on the sins of those within the Church is, of course, that not only...READ MORE

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Vatican Releases Revised Norms on Clerical Sex Abuse

07/15/2010 Comment

The Vatican today published revised canonical norms that deal with the crimes of sexual abuse of minors by members of the clergy.

Many of the innovations had already been made known through various unofficial Vatican sources, but some unexpected revisions were revealed today, all of which are aimed at speeding up legal processes and making them more efficient.

These include making it easier to laicize priests found guilty of such crimes, admitting lay people onto tribunal staff and extending the statute of limitations from 10 to 20 years (and possibly longer). The document also introduces paedophile pornography as a delicta graviora, and it establishes parity between the abuse of...READ MORE

Filed under benedict xvi, clerical sex abuse, congregation for the doctrine of the faith, sexual abuse crisis

Cardinal Bergoglio Hits Out at Same-Sex Marriage

07/08/2010 Comments (24)

Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio

A Jesuit cardinal has become the latest Church leader to speak out forcefully against a government’s push towards same-sex marriage, and has called on his nation’s contemplatives to pray fervently to prevent such laws.

According to an article in tomorrow’s L’Osservatore Romano, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, the Archbishop of Buenos Aires and Primate of Argentina, has said that if a proposed bill giving same-sex couples the opportunity to marry and adopt children should be approved, it will “seriously damage the family.”

He made the statement in a letter addressed to each of the four monasteries in Argentina, asking the contemplatives to pray “fervently” that legislators be...READ MORE

Filed under argentina, cardinal jorge mario bergoglio, carmelites, civil unions, same-sex marriage

Benedict XVI's Crucial Words of Guidance

07/07/2010 Comments (8)

Pope Benedict XVI arrives in an open car to bless a statue of St. Annibale Di Francia before his general audience at the Vatican July 7. The 18-foot statue is in a niche on an exterior wall of St. Peter's Basilica. (CNS photo/Paul Haring)

Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi has said that the Holy Father’s words and deeds in recent days have been “exceptionally intense and crucial” for the life of the Church.

He stressed Benedict XVI’s attempts to heal tensions and misunderstandings and preserve unity during these difficult times. And he singled out this quotation from a papal statement as particularly significant, given after a meeting with the Bishop Emeritus of Augsburg, Walter Mixa:

“In a time of contrasts and insecurity, the world expects Christians to show harmonious witness on the basis of their encounter with the Risen Lord, with which they help one another and the whole of society to find the right path to...READ MORE

Filed under benedict xvi, pastoral guidance, sexual abuse crisis

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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. Follow on Twitter @edwardpentin