- Trying to square the circle
The opening days of the Synod on the Family have revealed distinct differences of opinion between the participants. How can their commitment to church teaching be matched with compassion for those who struggle with it?
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- Nobel Prize: Nomadic priest that migrants call for help Fredrick Nzwili
- Synod's division bell rings for the devolution of power Christopher Lamb in Rome
- The Synod of tough words spoken softly Paul Vallely
October will mark the second anniversary of the Vatican issuing its unprecedented questionnaire asking Catholics their view about the family. It explored issues such as marriage preparation, marriage, marital breakdown and remarriage, and other relationships.
Ann Dummett, a Catholic academic and a member of the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants, tellingly entitled one chapter of her 1973 book, A Portrait of English Racism, “What I say three times is true.”
The London School of Economics’ recent study of the kinds of social activities that help to overcome depression has shown up religion observance as the only activity to make a positive difference to mental wellbeing over time, outranking voluntary work and joining political parties, sport and social clubs.
According to the Bishops of England and Wales, in 1979, “Homosexuals have the same need for the Sacraments as heterosexuals ... and the same right to receive the Sacraments.” Twenty years later a monthly Mass welcoming LGBT Catholics, families and friends began in London.
The policy positions outlined by Labour leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn seem to have much in common with the recent utterances of Pope Francis and the social teachings of the Church.
Where do Pope Francis’ remarks today on the divorced and remarried leave the debate?
US media has been all agog about the latest Gallup Poll numbers alleging that Pope Francis' popularity has waned in America, just prior to his historic visit to Congress and the White House in late September. Is this just a storm in a teacup, or is the fuss justified?
In 2015, UN member bodies will replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) with a new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). One “goal” that is already attracting controversy, especially among religious groups, is SDG 5: “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”.
Most of Washington’s allies have been reluctant to join its anti-Islamic State (IS) bombing campaign. One of the most conspicuous holdouts, NATO member Turkey, has now reluctantly yielded to American pressure. But its rulers have exacted a stiff price: the right to bomb the region’s most effective anti-IS fighting force – the Syrian and Iraqi-based Kurdish militias.
David Cameron has unveiled his strategy for tackling extremism. Whilst targeted at the Muslim community, the broad nature of the strategy – and its emphasis on enforcing “British values” – effectively means that counter-extremism measures could be used against individuals or organisations who “spread, incite, promote or justify hatred” against others on all sorts of grounds, including sexual orientation.