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Insightful and in depth analysis of issues important to Catholics.
Updated: 46 min 24 sec ago

Original Sin: What is it really and why does it matter?

05/16/2017 - 10:12am

I had a very interesting exchange over the weekend with a man who raised two important questions: First, does the Church teach that the human soul is created at conception? Second, how does the soul contract original sin from Adam? A great deal can go wrong in considering both of these questions.

How can the laity renew the Church?

05/02/2017 - 12:12pm

In March and April I suggested that what the business world calls rightsizing is absolutely critical to the renewal of the Church. My point was that if the Church does not learn once again to exclude those who, within her own ranks, have rejected her official teachings on faith and morals, then she is doomed at best to spiritual lethargy. But I also pointed out that the laity have provided the chief impetus for renewal in the Church for the past fifty years, which means that those most active in this quest have no ecclesiastical authority.

Cardinals who take up the slack

04/20/2017 - 12:34pm

During a pontificate that is often confusing and even self-contradictory, we are fortunate to have two outstanding cardinals in charge of two key congregations. The Guinean Robert Sarah leads the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, and the German Gerhard Müller has charge of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. We are also fortunate that Ignatius Press has published book-length interviews with both men, in which they each respond to a long series of significant questions.

Reading the news between the lines

04/07/2017 - 11:24am

For someone who covers the news every day, it’s frustrating to read a story and know that important information has been left out. In such cases, when I have no good way to dig out the missing details for myself, I’m left with the uneasy feeling that I don’t know the real truth; I only know that I haven’t seen it yet.

Let’s get this straight: Concern about Pope Francis is not rooted in dissent, but in dismay.

03/17/2017 - 10:38am

One wonders where Pope Francis finds the people who provide articles to L’Osservatore Romano which attack those who raise questions about his leadership. The latest is Father Salvador Pié-Ninot, who has criticized what he calls “dissent in the form of public criticism” of the apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia. Of course, I do not know that the Pope actively recruited Fr. Pié-Ninot. As evidenced by the broadside released by Cardinal Donald Wuerl of Washington, there are plenty of churchmen who are happy to preach tradition and orthodoxy when those who can promote them are traditional and orthodox, and to condemn those who value tradition and orthodoxy when those who can promote them are not.