The Latin American Pope and the Irish Poet

A great variety of people are looking forward to reading and digesting Pope Francis’s new encyclical, Laudato Si, which the Vatican officially releases today. I am as interested in reading it as the next person, but maybe not immediately. That comment may understandably demand some defense, or at . . . . Continue Reading »

The Return of Catholic Anti-Modernism

Commentators are sure to make the false claim that Pope Francis has aligned the Church with modern science. They’ll say this because he endorses climate change. But that’s a superficial reading of Laudato Si. In this encyclical, Francis expresses strikingly anti-scientific, anti-technological, . . . . Continue Reading »

​Praise Be to You, Lord

The First World War lingers in the memory as humanity’s first encounter with industrialized killing on a mass scale. New weapons of the machine age obliterated forests, villages and fields—an entire way of life. This new type of war also deeply shaped the thinking of men who experienced it . . . . Continue Reading »

Let’s Listen to the Pope on Climate

The Syllabus of Errors, issued in 1864 under the auspices of Pope Pius IX, famously ends by condemning the proposition that “The Roman Pontiff can, and ought to, reconcile himself, and come to terms with progress, liberalism, and modern civilization.”Is Pope Francis a latter day Pio Nono? Such . . . . Continue Reading »

Dear Pope Francis: Remember the Standers

Pope Francis has spoken often about the problem of family breakdown. “The family is the fundamental cell of society,”the Holy Father told bishops, clergy and laypersons during the first year of his tenure. “Marriage and the family are in crisis,” he said shortly after bishops gathered in Rome last fall for the Extraordinary Synod on the Family. No-fault divorce has done more to fuel this crisis than any other factor. Although divorce rates initially skyrocketed after adoption of no-fault in the United States, they remain high. Meanwhile, single motherhood and cohabitation continue to rise, while marriage rates nosedive. And Pope Francis has acknowledged the link between marriage breakdown and society’s ills, including increased poverty, noting that it is children who usually bear the brunt. Continue Reading »

Our Homophobic Pope

The media make a big deal of Pope Francis when this or that utterance seems to signal that the Great Capitulation is imminent. Liberals have long hoped for the moment when the Catholic Church stops being “anti-modern,” which doesn't mean engaged with science, philosophically sophisticated, and . . . . Continue Reading »

Priests Speaking Out

It's not a petition, strictly speaking. It's a statement of fidelity to the Catholic Church's historic teaching on sex and marriage. Originally signed by nearly five hundred English priests in March, it's now being circulated in the United States at credopriests.org and available for priest here to sign. Here's the statement: Continue Reading »

Francis Gives New Hope to Abuse Victims

The Vatican’s recent announcement that Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Bishop Robert Finn, of the diocese of Kansas City–St. Joseph, has given relief and new hope to victims of sexual abuse in the Church. Technically, the Pope didn’t directly “remove” Finn, as the media has . . . . Continue Reading »