- Now the talking really begins
Pope Francis wanted frankness and openness and that is what he got. But there is also the sense that the real debate in the Church about marriage and families is only just starting
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From the editor's desk
The Extraordinary Synod of Bishops in Rome ended with a superb exposition of Catholic teaching on marriage and family life by Pope Francis, which rightly received a standing ovation. That was a much clearer demonstration of a consensus around fundamental principles than the voting on the various clauses of the final report.
Nigel Farage, the leader of the United Kingdom Independence Party (Ukip), has called the forthcoming by-election in Rochester and Strood “the most important for 30 years”. He has a point. The then Conservative candidate, Mark Reckless, won this Kent parliamentary constituency by nearly 10,000 votes in 2010, and the by-election ...
True to its name, the synod of bishops in Rome has been extraordinary. By this weekend, the meeting of senior church leaders in Rome will be reaching its end, but whatever happens, things can never be the same. What has been said cannot be unsaid.
Industrial action by staff in the National Health Service this week sends two stark warning messages to the Government. The first concerns low pay. Even with inflation falling, wage rates have not kept pace and large swathes ...
Ebola is a nightmare disease. In countries with few healthcare workers, their number has been further reduced because some of those caring for Ebola sufferers have caught the disease and died. Even before the disease arrived, the two countries worst affected, Sierra Leone and Liberia, had health services ranging from poor to non-existent.
Tablet readers have been generous in their praise of the pastoral gifts of Kieran Conry, who has resigned as Bishop of Arundel and Brighton after admitting sexual misconduct. But there has to be a balance. Such behaviour can cause great distress and lasting emotional damage to the people immediately involved.
At least in the West, expectations are high that the extraordinary synod of bishops which Pope Francis will open in Rome tomorrow will move the Catholic Church in a more liberal direction on a range of issues, not least regarding divorce and remarriage.
The Catholic Church normally prefers an image of serene and seamless unity, where decisions are reached at the top by prayerful consensus. The current situation is shockingly different. It seems even the Pope’s closest advisers are happy to conduct their disputes in public.
World leaders gathered in New York this week had to face two serious challenges to the well-being of the people of this planet, especially its poorest and most disadvantaged members – climate change, and jihadist terrorism in the name of Islam.
Climate change often means less rainfall. Less rainfall often means crop failure. And that is when people starve. This was the warning given by Archbishop Zacchaeus Okoth, chairman of the Kenya bishops’ conference’s Justice and Peace commission,...