Author: Mike Lewis

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The Pianist and the Pope

I feel certain that this book will be helpful to families. I pray for this.” — Pope Francis Preface, Pope Francis, the Family, and Divorce from the Vatican, August 2017 Back in August, Where Peter Is published a two-part interview with our friend and British author Stephen Walford, as well as a review of his new book, Pope Francis, the Family, and Divorce: In Defense of Truth and Mercy (order directly from publisher here, Amazon...

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Are we really talking about “Vatican censorship”?

Although we are still awaiting the official English translation of the final document of the 2018 Synod, journalists and other commentators have been publishing translations of individual sections with their commentary. One of the passages that has been receiving a great deal of attention is paragraph 146, on the need for the Church to contribute fruitfully to digital culture and to create new tools and systems for evangelization and encounter. The document also suggests that...

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A Church at odds over Viganò’s “core charges”

As the drama of the Viganò testimony continues, two competing interpretations have developed regarding whether Viganò’s most important accusations have been discredited or substantiated. Since the initial document was released on August 22, Viganò has released two additional “testimonies,” and Cardinal Marc Ouellet issued an impassioned response with papal approval on October 7. Catholic pundits seem to be at odds over whether Viganò’s core allegations hold up against the factual record, and whether Pope Francis...

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Why does Pope Francis pick on “rigid Christians”?

Be careful around those who are rigid. Be careful around Christians – be they laity, priests, bishops – who present themselves as so “perfect,” rigid. Be careful. There’s no Spirit of God there. They lack the spirit of liberty. And let us be careful with ourselves, because this should lead us to consider our own life. Do I seek to look only at appearance, and not change my heart? Do I not open my heart...

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Printable Rosary Guides – Full Page and Wallet Sized

As those who have been following our site know, Pope Francis has called for all to pray the Rosary every day during the month of October, as well as the Prayer to St. Michael and the Sub Tuum Praesidium. For those who would like to join in this prayer with the Holy Father but might be a little out of practice with praying the rosary, I’ve laid out a few printable resources that can assist you...

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Perspective on the China/Vatican deal

On Saturday, September 22, a long-anticipated “provisional agreement” between the Chinese government and the Vatican was announced regarding the process of appointing bishops in the Catholic Church in China. Officially, this agreement puts an end to the decades-long division between Chinese Catholics who worship in state-sanctioned churches whose bishops are appointed by the Chinese Patriotic Catholic Association (CPCA), and the “underground” Church whose bishops have Vatican approval. In reality, the situation is much more complex....

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Fake news and seething contempt for Pope Francis

Some Catholics disagree with much of what Pope Francis says and does — this is undeniable. Believe it or not, I don’t think there is anything intrinsically wrong with criticizing a pope on prudential matters, at least when done thoughtfully and when consideration is given to the context and circumstances around the pope’s decision or action. In recent months, however, I have noticed that some papal critics appear to respond immediately to anything he says...

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Polarized over the pope, Viganò style

More than two weeks after the release of the sensational “Testimony” of former US apostolic nuncio Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, in which he calls for the resignation of Pope Francis, the Church finds itself in a period of intense polarization that’s difficult to assess. First, if you haven’t read it, I wholeheartedly recommend Greg Daly’s recent piece in the Irish Catholic, in which he heroically attempts to parse out what we know and what we...

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Yes, the background is relevant: Behind Viganò’s “Testimony”

Two important stories broke on Saturday night (or Sunday morning, depending on where you are), and journalists and commentators around the globe have weighed in from all angles. There’s the story, and then there’s the story of the story. The first story is the most readily obvious: an 11-page “Testimony,” authored by retired Archbishop and former US Nuncio Carlo Maria Viganò, was released on the eve of the closing Mass for the World Meeting of...

Walford presents Francis with a Southampton football jersey. 1

Interview with Catholic author Stephen Walford, Part 2

(Click here to read Part 1) Today we continue our interview with Stephen Walford, author of the upcoming book Pope Francis, The Family and Divorce: In Defense of Truth and Mercy, which will be released by Paulist Press on August 28. In part 1 we discussed the abuse crisis, Walford’s background as a musician and a writer, and began to discuss the division in the Church that has followed Pope Francis’s teaching on marriage and the...

Walford with the pope 2

Interview with Catholic author Stephen Walford, Part 1

Ever since he burst onto the the scene in January 2017 with a 5000-word essay in La Stampa entitled “Amoris Laetitia: Where Truth and Mercy Embrace,” Catholic writer Stephen Walford has found himself at the center of the often heated debate in the Church over Pope Francis and his teachings. Coming on the heels of the publication of five questions (or dubia) from four cardinals who have openly challenged the orthodoxy and authority of the...

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The wounded in need of a field hospital

If the American Church ever needed to resemble the field hospital that Pope Francis described in the early days of his pontificate, that time is now. The scope of the horrors inflicted upon over 1000 victims described in the Pennsylvania grand jury report released yesterday and the amount of negligence and deliberate cover-up by Church leaders in the past 70 or so years is staggering. In 2002, we thought the worst was over. Sixteen years...