Latest Issue: 26 April 2014
26 April 2014
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24 April 2014 by George Osborne

Prime Minister David Cameron caused a stir last week with his comments about the importance of Christianity in British society. Here, the Chancellor of the Exchequer pays tribute to the role cathedrals play in communities and explains why he has set up a special fund to assist in financing their restoration

24 April 2014 by James Macintyre

or Britain’s cathedrals, the marking of the centenary of the First World War has turned out to be a Godsend, writes James Macintyre.

24 April 2014 by Daniel O’Leary

From the Good News of Easter Day, everything is born anew. What once seemed dead bursts into life as spring enfolds us. A crocus in the mud can transform our understanding of God – this evolving planet is his body and our true home

24 April 2014 by Jonathan Romain

For the Jewish people it is entirely fitting that the two popes should be honoured together by being canonised at the same time, for both transformed the relationship between Catholics and their ‘older brothers’, the Jews

24 April 2014 by Brendan Walsh

This weekend Jean Vanier will see two friends raised to the altars. The founder of L’Arche talks to Brendan Walsh about the peasant shrewdness of Angelo Roncalli, the confidence of Karol Wojtyla – and Pope Francis’ revolution of tenderness

24 April 2014 by Elena Curti

The Catholic sculptor Arthur Fleischmann was unique in executing busts of four popes, among them John XXIII and John Paul II. Here, his widow explains how the work came about and recalls the couple’s encounters with two future saints

24 April 2014 by Michael Walsh

The history of popes who have been canonised is full of inconsistencies. Here a church historian looks at the very few popes who perhaps deserved to be honoured in this way and the many more who almost certainly did not

24 April 2014 by Gabriel Daly

Making John XXIII and John Paul II saints on the same day brings together two very different men representing two very different strands of Catholicism. It also highlights how diversity can enrich, not damage, the Church, says a leading theologian

24 April 2014 by Cormac Murphy-O'Connor

In his long career, the Archbishop Emeritus of Westminster met John Paul II on a number of occasions, before and after his election as pope, and once attended a Mass celebrated by Angelo Roncalli. Here, in a personal memoir, he recalls his experiences with the two men

24 April 2014 by Guy Consolmagno

Previous issues

16 April 2014 by Jonathan Luxmoore

Support shown by Russia’s Orthodox Church for President Putin’s annexation of Crimea has seriously damaged its relationship with other Churches in Ukraine. Historical enmities have been revived as the region’s Christians fear a new era of persecution may be about to unfold

16 April 2014 by Richard Finn

A reforming Pope has been at the helm for over a year but change seems too slow in coming for the liking of some. Yet renewal could unfold as gradually as the Good News of Christ’s Resurrection among his disciples

16 April 2014 by Gerald O’Collins

Accounts in the gospels of Jesus’ Resurrection have been pored over endlessly by scholars but the Easter story means much more in the light of lived experience, argues a leading theologian, viewing it as the practical key to understanding in three contemporary contexts

16 April 2014 by Ruth Burrows

To inflict our bad temper, frustrations and unhappiness selfishly on others at work or at home is not merely unchristian and deeply uncharitable but is a denial of Jesus amounting to a refusal to believe his love, argues a leading Catholic spiritual author

16 April 2014 by Oliver Llewellyn

What draws people to Catholicism? It’s a question that is keenly debated. Here, a one-time atheist who is being received into the Church at the Easter Vigil recounts how the path of his life led him to the Gospel

16 April 2014 by Michael Glover

Poets often celebrate this time of year, but some also lament its vigour, particularly if it clashes with their own dark mood. Whether their verses be about renewal, beauty or over-abundant energy, nature’s vernal regeneration is a rich source of inspiration

16 April 2014 by Fr Luke Bell OSB

The light that gradually fills the darkened church at the Easter Vigil is the light that illuminates the world, Luke Bell explains

16 April 2014 by Isabel de Bertodano

Debate is deeply polarised within the Catholic Church of England and Wales over the Government’s flagship policy to encourage schools to become academies. Some dioceses have embraced the idea while others fear that academies deprive other schools of state funds

16 April 2014 by Nina Lakhani

Hundreds of people from Latin America are robbed, raped or killed every year in their attempt to cross the United States border in search of a better life. In the last safe house in Mexico, a courageous priest does all he can to prepare migrants for the perilous journey north

16 April 2014 by Philip Crispin

The Apostleship of the Sea’s centre at the UK’s biggest cargo port is in ruins after it was engulfed by a giant tidal surge last winter. But the charity’s vital work of welcoming sailors from some of the world’s poorest countries continues

16 April 2014 by John Pontifex

Prime Minister David Cameron has pledged to intercede on behalf of people who have been condemned to death after being convicted of violating Pakistan’s blasphemy laws. Prosecutions are escalating, with vulnerable Christians among the accused

16 April 2014 by Philippa Hitchen

Theologians drawn from the wide variety of rooms of the global Christian mansion met earlier this month to try to break down the barriers that have divided them for centuries. All agreed their mission has been eased by the words and deeds of Pope Francis

16 April 2014 by Tom Clarke

A leading Catholic charity boasts more than 100 supporters who, by undertaking to write to their MPs about issues concerning international development, form a highly effective lobbying group, as the chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Friends of Cafod explains

16 April 2014 by John Morrish

There was a charming, thoughtful piece about ageing in The New Yorker recently, by 93-year-old sports writer and essayist Roger Angell.

10 April 2014 by Bernard Hogan-Howe

The Metropolitan Police commissioner this week attended a Vatican conference on human trafficking chaired by Cardinal Vincent Nichols. Here, the commissioner sets out his hopes for London to become a centre of good practice for the prevention of the crime and the care of victims

10 April 2014 by Liam G. Walsh

The exclusion of divorced and remarried Catholics from Communion has distressed many of them and been at the centre of recent debate about their pastoral care. Here, in the week commemorating the Last Supper, a leading Aquinan theologian looks at the theology of St Thomas and his understanding of God’s forgiveness which always impels people towards Communion

10 April 2014 by Karen Kilby

Like Auschwitz or the killing fields of Cambodia, today’s memorials in Rwanda to the almost unimaginable horrors of the genocide there 20 years ago are testimony to those who died – a reminder of an unintelligible evil we must confront

10 April 2014 by Linda Woodhead

Vocal minorities get more attention in the media than they deserve by drowning out religious moderates. The most recent event in a series of public debates examined this thorny problem

10 April 2014 by Fr Luke Bell OSB

In his sixth reflection for Lent, Luke Bell links the story of Christ’s Passion with God’s compassion for humankind, a message that resonates especially in Holy Week

10 April 2014 by Conor Gearty

Charges have been stayed against a prime suspect in one of the IRA’s most notorious atrocities in England following the disclosure of a letter from the authorities promising that he would not be prosecuted for the crime. Here, an authority on human rights looks at the background

10 April 2014 by Sally Read

Veronica offered comfort to Jesus when she wiped his face on the path to Calvary. Her gesture is a reminder of the huge benefit that the laying on of a gentle hand can bring not only to those suffering great pain but also to those who are lonely or afraid

10 April 2014 by Jonathan Tulloch

He is the Good Thief crucified on the right hand of the Son of Man with a cameo role in St Luke’s gospel, but the brief exchange he has with Jesus speaks volumes and reminds us yet again that it is the alienated who often come closest to Christ

10 April 2014 by N. O'Phile

More and more supermarkets seem to be producing wines that don’t claim to be more than simply red or white, often labelled as the equivalent of “house wine”. Last month, I mentioned the red and white from Asda that are marked simply Italia rosso and Italia bianco and are really very good value.

03 April 2014 by Imelda Poole

Heed the words of Pope Francis on today’s slave trade, implores a sister of Loreto. Her extensive experience of helping its victims will be on hand for senior priests and police chiefs at an international conference on human trafficking led by Cardinal Vincent Nichols in Rome next week

03 April 2014

My life changed after the death of my parents; they died when I was still a teenager. My younger brother and I were entrusted to the care of our paternal uncles.

03 April 2014 by John Hall

The Queen’s visit to Pope Francis this week forms part of a wider picture of growing friendship between the Church of England and the Roman Catholic Church. It also, says the dean of Westminster, highlights the Queen’s own deep Christian faith

03 April 2014 by Fr Luke Bell OSB

When Jesus restored his friend Lazarus to life, the miracle signified much more than bodily resurrection, as Luke Bell explains in his fifth reflection for Lent

03 April 2014 by Cardinal Walter Kasper

When cardinals from around the world gathered in Rome in February for the consistory, they heard a lengthy exposition from Cardinal Walter Kasper, reproduced in part here, on the importance of the family – and of mercy when all is not well

03 April 2014 by Mark Molden

“Conscious uncoupling” – two words you would have thought were straight of out of the Railway Operator Guide for Dummies – have now entered the marital breakdown lexicon, writes Mark Molden. They have been made famous by their use in the recent announcement that movie actress Gwyneth Paltrow and Coldplay lead singer Chris Martin are to separate.

03 April 2014 by Seán Donlon

On Tuesday the Irish President, Michael D. Higgins, begins a four-day state visit to the UK, the first since the founding of the Irish state 92 years ago. Here, a seasoned diplomatic observer reflects on how far both countries have come to reach this high point in their relations

03 April 2014 by Rose Prince

WHEN NEWS of the merger between the world’s two largest banana producers reached my ears, I looked at my hands. A cupped hungry hand is comparable to the shorter, curled bananas from small farms on islands in the Caribbean. The long, large bananas grown on mainland South America speak of giant plantations run by great corporations.

27 March 2014 by Mark Hoban

Recent criticism by Cardinal Vincent Nichols of the Government’s welfare reform heralded to many a new low in relations between the Catholic Church and the Conservative Party. Here, a Tory MP and former Minister lays out the steps Church and politicians should take to narrow the gap of understanding

27 March 2014 by Edward Kessler

Modern Jewish scholarship of the New Testament is concerned with how Christ’s teachings are nurtured by Judaism and stem from it. According to one expert in the field, this can serve to further understanding between the two religions

27 March 2014 by Michael Williams

An Anglican father, married into a Jewish family and bringing up his children in the faith of his wife, Michael Williams describes his pride and apprehension as he prepares for his role in his son’s bar mitzvah – the traditional coming of age ceremony when boys become men

27 March 2014 by Christopher Lamb

The new Archbishop of Liverpool will be installed on the Feast of St Joseph the Worker at the city’s Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King. He told Christopher Lamb about his passion for social justice and concerns about the Government’s welfare reforms

27 March 2014 by Anne McHardy

An odd set of coincidences in May 1976 made me, a journalist newly sent by The Guardian to Belfast, a regular supper-table visitor at St Dominic’s Priory, on Haverstock Hill, north London, writes Anne McHardy.

27 March 2014 by Fr Luke Bell OSB

In this Sunday’s second reading, St Paul asks the Ephesians to be “like children of light”. In his fourth reflection for Lent, Luke Bell examines how the transformative qualities of natural light reveal something of God himself

27 March 2014 by Ulla Gudmundson

Pope Francis’ appointment of four women to the Holy See’s commission on child protection makes concrete his intention to give females positions of responsibility in the Church. Here a former ambassador to the Holy See, who is Lutheran, reflects on how ‘feminine genius’ can further Francis’ mission

27 March 2014 by John Morrish

THE INTERNET is constantly throwing up ­little campaigns, put together by a handful of activists using Twitter, Facebook and all the rest. The “Ban Bossy” campaign, which has spread from the maelstrom of social media into newspapers and television, is different.