R.R. Reno is editor of First Things.

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After the Scandals

From Web Exclusives

Last year, the Irish government published the Murphy Report detailing sexual abuse cases among the clergy, and more damningly, cover-ups by the bishops. Then there was the dustup over a cleric from Pope Benedict’s old diocese in Germany, who was reassigned while in sexual rehab. Now we see very sad and ugly revelations about a Belgian bishop, along with the usual history of negligent oversight … Continue Reading »

The Conspiracy of Silence on Islamic Riots

From First Thoughts

Am I the only one who reads stories from Europe and scratch my head over the conspiracy of silence? Consider this little news item about riots in the French city of Genoble . It seems the BBC, Reuters, and others can’t bring themselves to mention that the fleeing suspect shot by the police was . . . . Continue Reading »

Hammering on Rome

From First Thoughts

Wow. The New York Times can’t stop itself. In an editorial on Saturday , the Grey Lady deemed last weeks changes to the motu proprio concerning crimes against the holy sacraments worse than inadequate. “Among all the defensive posturing and inept statements,” write the editors, there . . . . Continue Reading »

Never Change — Until We Change

From First Thoughts

As Meghan noted earlier this week, it seems that the YMCA will be dropping the MCA from their name. Men? That became politically incorrect ages ago. Christian? Hardly a factor in their programming for decades. Association? No problem there, but YA doesn’t make any sense. I’m fine with . . . . Continue Reading »

New Norms From Rome

From First Thoughts

The Vatican has put forward new norms for handling clerical sexual abuse. The spin in the AP story in the New York Times offers occasion for reflection. Thought #1: The story says, “The bulk of the new document merely codified the ad hoc norms for dealing canonically with pedophile . . . . Continue Reading »

Another Problem for the Church?

From First Thoughts

Italians newspapers are reporting intensified investigative interest in Cardinal Sepe of Naples. (For English language reporting, see a recent article in the Irish Times .) Cardinal Sepe may, perhaps, be a true son of southern Italy, using his position to distribute goodies funded by the massive . . . . Continue Reading »

Burqa Ban

From First Thoughts

As predicted, the French lower house passed a largely symbolic measure that bans full face coverings in public . In a posting last week , I pointed out that whatever one thinks of the French ban, it fits into a more than one-century-long tradition of enforcing (or at least trying to enforce) a . . . . Continue Reading »