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The television version of Hilary Mantel’s novel Wolf Hall is the latest account to challenge St Thomas More’s reputation as a courageous defender of the rights of conscience. Was he, in truth, a liberal icon, a religious fanatic or something in between?
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Texts, speeches, homilies
The Vatican Secretary of State accused the United Nations of systematically failing to deal with the profound crises the world faces today. Addressing the UN General Assembly in New York Cardinal Pietro Parolin said the UN body, tasked with saving “generations from the horrors of war” was remaining “passive in the face of hostilities suffered by defenceless populations”.
A female Catholic theologian has been banned by the Archbishop of St Andrews and Edinburgh from speaking on Church property in his diocese.
Conflict in Iraq, Syria and Gaza has led to the greatest humanitarian crisis the world has faced since the Second World War, the head of the Catholic Church’s relief and development work said. Cardinal Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, president of the Caritas Internationalis federation of Catholic charities, was speaking in Rome on Monday at a meeting of clerics and aid experts to discuss the crises in the Middle East.
Bishop of Antwerp Johan Bonny relates his hopes and expectations in advance of the Synod on the Family.
Full transcript of the Q+A from the Papal Plane
More restraint is being urged by the Vatican on the faithful when offering the sign of peace during Mass. The Congregation for Divine Worship (CDW) has instructed bishops to draw up new guidelines so that the gesture can be performed with more sobriety and less “excess”. It advised bishops to find alternatives to “familiar” or “profane” greetings. In a circular letter, the CDW said it would offer practical guidelines better explaining the exchange of peace “and to moderate excessive expressions that give rise to disarray in the liturgical assembly before Communion”.
On Thursday in the House of Lords the former Chief Rabbi described the persecution of Christians in the Middle East and elsewhere around the world as "one of the crimes against humanity of our time", adding that he was "appalled at the lack of protest it has evoked".
Pope Francis and the Governor of the Bank of England both stressed this week that the human person must be at the centre of the global economy. Francis was addressing a closed-door conference organised by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace in Rome. His remarks were later echoed in a statement signed by almost 70 financial experts including Mark Carney.
Archbishop Diarmuid Martin of Dublin said the sexual abuse crisis in the Church was not a chapter of past history as abuse “can and does still take place”. He was addressing the “Anglophone Conference” in Rome, which brings together child safeguarding experts and representatives from the English-speaking Church.
Pope Francis met six victims of clerical sex abuse today to beg forgiveness for the “sacrilegious” crimes committed by the “sons and daughters of the Church, who betrayed their mission to abuse the innocent.”