Category: Pope Francis

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In-Flight presser from Romania: Francis on Tradition and Benedict

UPDATE 6/3/19 CNA has published an English translation of the entire press conference. Here are Francis’s comments in fuller context. On ecumenism: I always have this idea: Ecumenism is not reaching the end of the game, of the discussion. Ecumenism is walking together, walking together, praying together… The ecumenism of prayer. In history, we have the ecumenism of blood. When they killed Christians they did not ask: Are you Catholic? Are you Orthodox? Are you...

61

“I pray for them because they are wrong”

Pope Francis recently gave a 40-minute interview to a Mexican TV station, the full transcript of which has not been released in English (full Spanish transcript here). Several English-language outlets have translated portions, including America magazine, CNA, and Vatican News. Much is covered in the wide-ranging interview, including abortion, immigration, sexual abuse, Amoris Laetitia, homosexuality, China, Theodore McCarrick, and Archbishop Viganò. This interview also contains what appear to be his first public comments on the...

43

The Harmony of Amoris Laetitia and Veritatis Splendor

You often find the charge among critics of Pope Francis that his apostolic exhortation, Amoris Laetitia, is opposed to Pope John Paul’s encyclical Veritatis Splendor. The differences between the two are exaggerated in order to set these two documents of the papal magisterium against each other; Amoris Laetitia against Veritatis Splendor, Pope John Paul II against Pope Francis, Pope Francis supposedly against tradition. Veritatis Splendor, according to this narrative, is the strong, bold, defense of...

6

Our Father

For the past week, and up until just a couple days before Pentecost, the Gospel readings for daily Mass are from John’s recounting of the Last Supper. Here Jesus repeatedly speaks about, and prays to, “the Father.” I want to step back and reflect on that for a minute. God is completely and utterly beyond us. Take a second and try to imagine something, anything, that isn’t bound by space, time, and matter. We can’t...

39

Why we do what we do

Back in 2017, when I began planning this website, many of my fellow Pope Francis-supporting friends weren’t entirely enthusiastic about my idea. After all, why should I give any attention at all to the pope’s detractors? Doing so, they asserted, would give credence to their claims and conspiracy theories, as well as their faulty understanding of the Magisterium and papal primacy. Wouldn’t it be better to simply ignore them and let them fade away into...

38

When I know better than the pope

During the papacy of Saint Paul VI, both traditionalists and progressives made the same mistake: they thought they understood things better than the Church. The former said that Pope Paul VI shouldn’t have changed the liturgy because they couldn’t square his teaching with they believed to be true. The latter said that Paul VI should have changed the ban on contraception because they couldn’t square his teaching with they believed to be true. As Catholics,...

26

The Anti-Francis Vortex

Most of us have at least a passing familiarity with the oft-quoted opening stanza of William Butler Yeats’ apocalyptic poem, “The Second Coming“: Turning and turning in the widening gyreThe falcon cannot hear the falconer;Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhereThe ceremony of innocence is drowned;The best lack all conviction, while the worstAre full of passionate intensity. Yeats‘ imagery entered the realm of...

What to make of Benedict’s essay on the crisis?

This Thursday, Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI published an article in a German newspaper about the sexual abuse crisis. In it, the Pope Emeritus takes some hard stances against the decline in sexual morality that took place following the 1960s in general, and the Second Vatican Council in particular. Francis’ detractors, unsurprisingly, have read it as a vindication of their claims that the root cause of the abuse crisis is the Church’s sexual decay. They see...

The Remnant: it is not what you’ve been told

From the crisis of today the Church of tomorrow will emerge — a Church that has lost much. She will become small and will have to start afresh more or less from the beginning. She will no longer be able to inhabit many of the edifices she built in prosperity. As the number of her adherents diminishes, so it will lose many of her social privileges (…) And so it seems certain to me that...

The Real Papolaters

On Monday I wrote a short piece on Pope Francis’s trip to Loreto, where he visited the Holy House that is believed to have been Mary’s home when she was visited by the angel Gabriel at the Annunciation. My piece focused on his address (in which he defended the traditional Catholic teaching on marriage and the family), and the fact that he officially signed his new apostolic exhortation on young people, entitled Christus vivit (“Christ...

Forsaking the Fountain of Living Water

“Access to safe drinkable water is a basic and universal human right, since it is essential to human survival and, as such, is a condition for the exercise of other human rights” (Laudato Si’, 30). The problem of the scarcity of clean drinking water in many regions illustrates the need for an international organization with “real teeth” that can properly serve, with the consent of nations, as an agent for justice (cf. Caritas in Veritate,...

Kiss the person, not the office

“Hypocrites, well hath Isaias prophesied of you, saying: This people honoureth me with their lips: but their heart is far from me. And in vain do they worship me, teaching doctrines and commandments of men” — Mt 15:7-9 (DRV) As Mike Lewis noted yesterday, during a pilgrimage to Loreto, Pope Francis made a beautiful address about the significance of family, based on the traditional understanding of marriage as a union between a man and a...

Getting it Half-right: Sedes and SSPX

In recent days, a number of articles defending the legitimacy of Francis’s papacy have appeared on websites that are usually critical of the Holy Father, including a two-part blog post on One Peter Five by Robert Siscoe (click to read parts 1 and 2). Siscoe, who co-authored a 2015 book entitled True or False Pope? Refuting Sedevacantism and Other Modern Errors, appears to be a member of what is colloquially known as the “Recognize and...

China’s “other” cardinal

With all the attention Cardinal Joseph Zen has been getting with regard to his protests against the China/Vatican deal, most American Catholics probably aren’t aware that Hong Kong has two retired cardinals. Taking a much different approach than his predecessor, Cardinal John Tong, has offered his support for the agreement, and has spoken of the hope that a unified Catholic Church in China represents. While the bishop of Hong Kong does not have jurisdiction over...

Habemus Papam!

March 10-16, 2013 I don’t think I could ever forget this whirlwind week. I had been Catholic eight months and was on a road trip with some college friends in my ’92 Buick Century station wagon (complete with wood paneling). We went to Philly, Manhattan, Pittsburgh, the Trappist Abbey of Gethsemani in Kentucky, and finally Cleveland. We arrived at the Mistake on the Lake the day before the Pope’s election. Pope Benedict’s resignation had crushed...