Pope Francis on Apologizing to Gays (And More): 6 things to know and share

06/28/2016 Comments (72)

Pope Francis recently weighed in on the question of whether Catholics should apologize to gays--and several other issues. Here are 6 things to know and share . . .

During his recent plane flight back from Armenia, Pope Francis gave a press conference in which he discussed a number of issues, including the question of whether Catholics should apologize to homosexuals.

Here are 6 things to know and share . . .


1) Where can I read the full text of the press conference?

You can read it here.


2) What did the pope discuss during the press conference?

He answered questions dealing with:

  • His impressions of Armenia and his hopes for it.
  • What he plans to do in a forthcoming trip to Azerbaijan
  • Why he chose to describe the massive Turkish slaughter of Armenians in the early 20th century as a “genocide,” knowing that this word would displease...READ MORE

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9 things you need to know about the prophecy of St. Malachy

06/27/2016 Comments (116)

Who was St. Malachy, what was his mysterious "prophecy of the popes," and what should we think of it?

[Editor's Note: In a recent interview with Paul Badde, Archbishop Georg Gänswein—Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI's personal secretary and Prefect of the Papal Household—briefly discussed a collection of predictions purported to have been made by St. Malachy in the 12th century. Due to the renewed interest in the alleged “Prophecy of St. Malachy” that resulted from the interview, the Register is re-running this article, which originally appeared on February 24, 2013.]


With the announcement of Pope Benedict's resignation, many people have been talking about the "prophecy of the popes" attributed to St. Malachy.

Who was he, what is the prophecy, and what should we think of it?

Here are 9...READ MORE

Filed under benedict xvi, peter the roman, popes, prophecy, prophecy of the popes, prophesy, resignation, st malachi, st malachy, st. malachi

Pope Francis on Invalid Marriages: 11 Things to Know and Share

06/21/2016 Comments (41)

What did Pope Francis say about invalid marriages and what significance does it have? Here are 11 things to know and share . . .

Pope Francis recently made some remarks regarding invalid marriages, and I’ve received a large number of requests for comment, so here goes . . .


1) When did Pope Francis make his remarks?

During a Q & A session on Thursday, June 16. He was answering questions at the opening ceremony for a diocesan congress dealing with his apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia (i.e., the document that he released after the two synods of bishops).

His remarks were, therefore, unscripted.


2) What did he say?

Unfortunately, the Vatican doesn’t yet seem to have a full transcript available in English. The Italian, however, is here.

Without an English transcript to quote, we switch over to news...READ MORE

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Pope Francis’s Commission on Women Deacons: 12 things to know and share

05/12/2016 Comments (33)

Pope Francis has agreed to have a commission study the question of women deacons. Here are 12 things to know and share . . .

Pope Francis has agreed to create a commission to study the possibility of women deacons.

Here are 12 things to know and share . . .


1) What has happened?

On Thursday, May 12, Pope Francis was meeting with a group of women religious who asked him about the possibility of creating a commission to study the possibility of women deacons, or deaconesses.

Edward Pentin reports:

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...READ MORE

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The Pope’s New Document on Marriage: 12 Things to Know and Share

04/08/2016 Comments (40)

What does the new papal document say about Communion for the divorced and civilly remarried?

Pope Francis’s much anticipated document on the family has now been released.

Here are 12 things to know and share . . .


1) What are the basic facts about the document?

It is called Amoris Laetitia (Latin, “the joy of love”), and it is what is known as a “post-synodal apostolic exhortation.”

An apostolic exhortation is a pastoral document in which the pope exhorts the Church. Although it contains doctrine, its primary focus is on pastoral care. (Apostolic exhortations are different than encyclicals, which do focus primarily on doctrine.)

When a pope issues an apostolic exhortation in response to a meeting of the synod of bishops (a gathering of bishops from around the world), it is...READ MORE

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When were the New Testament authors born?

04/05/2016 Comments (2)

Let's figure out when the authors of the New Testament were born!

It's surprising, but with a little sleuthing, we can get good estimates of when the authors of the New Testament were born.

Let's put on our detective hats and see what we can learn about Paul and his circle of New Testament authors.

(Yesterday we looked at the Twelve and the brethren of Jesus.)



We first meet Paul in Acts 7:58, at the stoning of Stephen, where Luke describes him as “a young man named Saul.”

Since the Jewish authorities were imposing the death penalty on Steven—something they were normally forbidden by the Roman authorities to do (cf. John 18:30), this event likely occurred during the period immediately after Pontius Pilate’s dismissal as governor in A.D. 36,...READ MORE

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When were the apostles born?

04/04/2016 Comments (4)

Let's put on our detective hats and see what we can discover . . .

Wouldn’t it be neat to know more about the apostles?—like when they were born?

How about members of Jesus' family?

It turns out, we can figure that out with more reliability than you might suppose.

Let’s put on our detective hats and see what we can discover . . .


A Key Insight

I was a child in the 1970s. It was a tumultuous time. It followed the youth rebellion of the late 1960s, and there were many, similar youth rebellions and protest movements in different parts of the world in the ’70s.

Listening to TV and radio reports of everything that was happening, I couldn’t help but notice that—over and over again—the people involved in these movements were young. It didn’t matter where...READ MORE

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UK’s Mirror Incompetently Botches Easter Pope Story

03/27/2016 Comments (6)

Why did the UK's Mirror incompetently botch a story about the pope on Easter Sunday?

On Easter Sunday Matt Drudge was carrying the following headline:

POPE: Defeat ISIS with ‘weapons of love’ . . .

The link was to this story by the UK’s Mirror, which itself carried the headline:

Pope Francis says defeat Islamic State 'with weapons of love' during Easter message

The headline is utterly false—as well as an example of incompetent journalism.

The headline makes it look like the pope was advocating some kind of nonviolent approach to ISIS, and that’s simply not what he was doing.

Here are the facts . . .


1) What message was the story referring to?

Although the story did not say so, it was the pope’s Easter Urbi et Orbi message.

Every Christmas and Easter, pope...READ MORE

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About Jimmy Akin

Jimmy Akin
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Jimmy was born in Texas, grew up nominally Protestant, but at age 20 experienced a profound conversion to Christ. Planning on becoming a Protestant pastor or seminary professor, he started an intensive study of the Bible. But the more he immersed himself in Scripture the more he found to support the Catholic faith. Eventually, he entered the Catholic Church. His conversion story, "A Triumph and a Tragedy," is published in Surprised by Truth. Besides being an author, Jimmy is the Senior Apologist at Catholic Answers, a contributing editor to Catholic Answers Magazine, and a weekly guest on "Catholic Answers Live."