Wed 22nd Oct 2014 | Last updated: Wed 22nd Oct 2014 at 18:57pm

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Francis Phillips

Francis Phillips

Francis Phillips reviews books for the Catholic Herald.

Confession must once again be seen as the normal practice of a Catholic life

Priests hear Confessions at World Youth Day in Madrid (Photo: CNS)

Confession may be in decline in many areas, but some parishes – usually seen as ‘traditional’ – are reversing the trend

Pro-lifers cannot win the debate by bargaining over the lives of the unborn

Nellie Gray, founder of the March for Life. Her motto was 'no exceptions, no compromises' (Photo: CNS)

Gaining some lives at the cost of others is to surrender the principle that every life is of equal value

The signs of decay in the Church were evident well before Vatican II

The opening of the Second Vatican Council in October 1962 (AP)

The Church was just not ready to face the changes the 1960s threw at it

Religious leaders must join forces to defend marriage

Religious leaders including Lord Sacks address crowds in London (Photo: PA)

Cardinal O’Brien has set up a commission to support marriage; the Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks, meanwhile, says it lifts humanity ‘from biology to poetry’

Am I the only person unhappy about women boxing?

London Olympic Games - Day 13

Sports like wrestling and boxing are training women to be as aggressive as men

Professor Lejeune – a patron saint of Down’s syndrome?

The French geneticist’s Cause is needed more than ever

The lesson that Jesuits could give aid organisations in Africa

Nigerian women wait for antiretroviral treatment outside a clinic at a Catholic hospital (CNS photo)

Catholic charities, of course, provide 25 per cent of all HIV treatment

Even people who aren’t religious want Sunday to be different

In the Netherlands shops are closed on Sunday but cafes are open (Photo: PA)

If I were in power I would bring in the Dutch system with a dash of the French: only corner shops open and lots of outdoor activities

Single women should focus on God rather than themselves to achieve fulfillment

Helen Gurley Brown

The single life of Sister Wendy Beckett is more fulfilling than that of feminist Helen Gurley Brown

What would Amnesty’s Catholic founder think of AI now?

Aren’t there enough prisoners of conscience without the human rights group bowing to feminist pressure?