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Bishops Unbound

In Before Church and State, Andrew Willard Jones describes a time when Christendom’s lay rulers were leaders in building the City of God. They “wielded the secular, temporal sword . . . bestowed on the Christian people by Christ himself.” In the medieval era, before sharp categorical . . . . Continue Reading »

Getting Formation Right

I heard a bishop recently describe what his formation team does at his seminary: “They’re there and they keep an eye on the guys.” And I cringed. Priests assigned to seminary formation are not hallway monitors. They are intended to be mentors, teachers, and guides—nuances all captured in . . . . Continue Reading »

Peter Damian’s Counsel

Sometime during the second half of the year 1049, Peter Damian, prior of the hermitage of Fonte Avellana in what is now the Italian region of Marche near the Umbrian border, wrote a lengthy letter to newly installed Pope Leo IX. The letter concerned “the befouling cancer of sodomy,” which Peter . . . . Continue Reading »

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