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Morning Catholic must-reads: 10/06/13

A daily guide to what’s happening in the Catholic Church

By on Monday, 10 June 2013

Francis delivers the Angelus address yesterday (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Francis delivers the Angelus address yesterday (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

The Sacred Heart of Jesus is “the highest human expression of divine love”, Pope Francis said at the Angelus yesterday (full text, video).

In today’s world religious freedom is more often affirmed than put into practice,” the Pope said at a meeting with Italian president Giorgio Napolitano on Saturday (video).

The Catholic bishops of Ireland are likely to appeal this week for a free vote on a Bill altering the country’s abortion laws, reports the Irish Times.

Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia has renewed a request to bury the bodies of 47 victims of abortionist Kermit Gosnell.

Anthony Boadle investigates why so many Brazilian Catholics are becoming evangelical Christians.

Influential American evangelical Michael Gerson says Pope Francis is restoring “true authority” to the Catholic Church.

And Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill has urged monks not to expose themselves to temptation by using smartphones to access the internet.

Follow me on Twitter @lukecoppen for updates throughout the day.

  • Sara_TMS_again

    What about Sandro Magister’s latest on the loosening up of Catholic rhetoric on civil partnerships?

  • NatOns

    “Influential American evangelical Michael Gerson says Pope Francis is restoring “true authority” to the Catholic Church.”

    Yet Francis has, in truth, said and done nothing to date to exercise “true” authority; he has reaffirmed the basic orthodox teaching of the Catholic Church for the past 100 odd years; moreover, he has reformed nothing .. least of all the tone of simple, humbled, unshakeable fidelity to the Faith witnessed by Benedict XVI (in his own inimitable way).

    “Francis is not on the verge of ordaining women priests, but a reforming pope legitimizes the idea of reform.”

    It was – and still is – Benedict XVI who reformed so much of the dead-end, stultifying libertinism, and modernist NOW Age-of-Aquarius ideology (with its woeful effects on liturgy, theology and ministry). Not even the Blessed John Paul II – in all his many years of leadership – had so completely altered the way in which Catholics viewed the lived practice of the Faith. In less than ten short years Benedict XVI authored a total realignment of how priestly crime was viewed, dealt with and reported, he stunned hostile media attacks into a much begrudged reassessment of his manner of teaching – in the US, Britain if not elsewhere – and he confronted Catholics at large with the ineluctable importance of the way in which we worship God .. in liturgy, devotion, reason and spirit .. so long neglected or ignored as irrelevant to The Big Mission of Today.

    “Many non-Catholics have found the new pope’s social teaching contradictory and confusing.”

    When Francis once starts to teach, act upon and live out his authority – not just his loving smile – the flesh will find this so much more than “contradictory and confusing”, as it did with Benedict. It will, as it must .. if it is to follow Christ, also be a frank contradiction to the world: as with each pope, not least since the 19th century. For Francis must tell the truth to those in protest against the Catholic Church, if he is as true to his call as Benedict XVI and John Paul II – be it nuns on the run or Sede Vacante schismatics or God-not-church individualism.

    PS: I noted with a wry smile the little piece at Rorate Coeli on Francis’ tongue-in-cheek aside about the pelagianism and antiquarian spirit of a type of Ye-Oldene-Tyme Restorer. Only those who do not recall the misleading works-for-grace, indulgence collecting, protestant nightmare that made up part of the Catholic experience – before the Liturgical Renewal of Pius X and XII began to kick in – could fail to recognise his very proper concern. The renewal of the incomplete First Vatican Council in the Second was not a piece of devilment caught up from Blessed John XXIII’s journey of a soul, it was the (admittedly surprising) outcome of all that Pius XII had sought to achieve – at least by intention if not in fact or consequence; Francis was setting out a truth that some who say they love Sacred Tradition find difficult to deal with: a good deal of Catholic experience (not teaching) before the Second World War could be a weird mix of hemi-demi-pelagianism, Irish (Jansenist) passivism, and sheer dogged determination to be Anti-Modern .. AKA “the siege mentality” .. irrespective of the needs of witnessing the Faith to the world in love and with hopefulness (a world still so much in need of all three in Christ).

    God Bless Our Pope!