- Tide of suffering in an unholy war
Jan De Volder
As the Islamist group Boko Haram is said to be surrounding the city of Maiduguri in the latest stage of its campaign of violence against Christians and Muslims alike, an expert on the country considers why the authorities are powerless to halt its progress
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- Bishop says church hierarchy had no idea of his affair with woman six years ago
- Westminster auxiliary John Arnold appointed new Bishop of Salford
- Pope Francis likens neglect of older people in care homes to ‘hidden euthanasia’
- Iraqi Patriarch condemns US-led air strikes ‘that will prompt mass exodus’
The Church in the World
During a packed one-day visit to Albania last Sunday, Pope Francis affirmed the achievements of the formerly Communist country, while at the same time using the visit to illustrate how the Gospel should be lived today, and how the world’s worst conflicts need to be addressed.
Pope Francis has reportedly invited Chinese President Xi Jinping to his home in Rome, in a move that could thaw relations between Beijing and the Vatican, writes Hannah Roberts.
A close Muslim friend of Pope Francis has urged the West not to play into the hands of Islamic State militants by believing that their acts of terror are part of a religious war, writes Hannah Roberts.
Two major episcopal appointments are being seen as indicators of the direction of the Catholic Church under Pope Francis and, at the same time, as attempts to win back those alienated from the Church.
A Russian Orthodox leader has bitterly attacked Ukraine’s Greek Catholic Church, as a Catholic bishop warned of growing pressure against clergy and laity in the country’s Russian-occupied Crimea region, writes Jonathan Luxmoore.
A Belgian serving a life sentence for murder and rape has won the right to an assisted suicide under the country’s euthanasia law, thus widening the scope of the law’s application and setting a precedent that has prompted about 15 more convicts to request the same option.
Christians were prominent in last Sunday’s climate marches around the world, lobbying this week’s meeting of world leaders at a UN climate summit on 23 September in New York.
Cardinal Kurt Koch, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, has called on Lutherans to recognise the failures of the Reformation, as well as the failures of the Catholic Church at the time, writes Christa Pongratz-Lippitt.
Pope Francis has appointed a commission to study a reform of the process of marriage annulment, writes Hannah Roberts.
The Vatican has placed the laicised papal ambassador Jozef Wesolowski under house arrest as he awaits a criminal trial for sexually abusing young boys, Catholic News Service reports.
In a rare celebration of marriages by a pope, Francis presided over the vows of 20 couples from the Rome Diocese, at St Peter’s last Sunday.
Hopes that the forthcoming Synod on the Family will make radical changes to doctrine may be premature, Bishop Philip Egan of Portsmouth warned this week, writes Joanna Moorhead.
Catholic Social Services Victoria (CSSV) has issued a plea to voters in the state election in November to lobby candidates about families that are struggling to make ends meet, and those on the margins of society, writes Mark Brolly.
During a visit to First World War graves last weekend, Pope Francis said the eight million lives lost in the conflict showed that “war is folly”. “War ruins everything, even bonds between brothers.
Some 10,000 Iraqi Christians have applied for visas at the French Consulate in Erbil, capital of the Kurdistan region where they have taken refuge from Islamic State militants who drove them from their homes, according to the France-based Association for Support of Minorities of the East (AEMO).
Conflict in Iraq, Syria and Gaza has led to the greatest humanitarian crisis since the Second World War, the head of the Catholic Church’s relief and development agencies said, writes Abigail Frymann.
A Catholic priest serving in one of the parishes in the Crimean peninsula, occupied by Russian forces, will have to leave his post in October because the authorities will not renew his residence permit, writes Josef Pazderka.
The diocese of Buffalo, New York, became the latest to implement a “Catholics Come Home” programme designed to bring lapsed Catholics back to the practice of the faith.
Police in Burundi say they are holding the killer of three nuns who were murdered in their convent near the capital, Bujumbura, but nuns and others are questioning the police version of events, writes Fredrick Nzwili.
“The number of Catholics in some of our dioceses has tripled or even quadrupled”, the secretary of the Nordic bishops’ conference, Sr Anna Mirijam Kaschner CPS, told journalists at the Hamburg Diocese’s annual meeting on 10 September, writes Christa Pongratz-Lippitt.
Catholics “must not be afraid of change in the Church”, Francis has warned, as speculation mounts on the question of reforms in the lead-up to next month’s Extraordinary Synod on the Family.
Pope Francis may visit Turkey on 29-30 November with the aims of strengthening links with the Orthodox Church’s Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, and of supporting the cause of peace in the region, writes Jonathan Luxmoore.
Six Christian patriarchs from the Middle East joined scholars, politicians and activists this week at the In Defense of Christians (IDC) Inaugural Summit in Washington DC.
The Bishops’ conference of Switzerland insists that all Muslim organisations in the country publicly condemn the persecution of Christians and religious minorities in Iraq and Syria, writes Christa Pongratz-Lippitt.
ope Francis has shown apparent support for a proposal by former Israeli President Shimon Peres for a United Religions organisation who said it is “high time religious leaders cooperate to resolve conflicts.”
Three elderly Catholic nuns have been savagely murdered in their convent in Burundi for motives that have not yet been explained.
ON TUESDAY, the Vatican announced 26 papally appointed voting members of the 5-19 October Synod of Bishops on the Family, writes James Roberts.
Leaders of the Catholic Church in north-eastern Nigeria fear the Government is losing its grip on the region where the Islamist terrorist group Boko Haram has declared an “Islamic caliphate”, writes Fredrick Nzwili.
Just one month before the start of the Synod of Bishops on the Family, the Vatican Secretary of State has indicated that the main focus of the synod may not be the reforms that some in the Church hope for, but the legal and cultural threats to the family itself.
The Pope’s most senior adviser on refugees has compared attacks on Christians in Iraq to the Holocaust, write Hannah Roberts and Jonathan Luxmoore.
On his first official visit abroad since he was elected president of the German bishops’ conference, Cardinal Reinhard Marx and a delegation from the German Church spent three days in Poland commemorating with Polish bishops a number of key moments of the Second World War.
The official publication of the Archdiocese of Sydney, The Catholic Weekly, has refused to publish advertisements for an address by former Irish President Mary McAleese.
Cardinal Antonio Cañizares Llovera, pictured right, the prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship (CDW), is to leave the Roman Curia and return to his native Diocese of Valencia as archbishop, writes James Roberts.
Deaths by euthanasia rose by 55 per cent in Belgium in 2012-13 compared to the previous two-year reporting period, the federal commission monitoring compliance with the law said, writes Tom Heneghan.
Dutch seminary rectors have been discussing the consolidation of the country’s six seminaries into one or two after a newspaper reported there were only 76 seminarians, two-thirds coming from abroad, writes Tom Heneghan.
Poland’s Catholic bishops have warned their country faces a threat from events in neighbouring Ukraine, as church representatives in the war-torn region highlighted the plight of local Catholics.
Russian officials have approved plans for a major “Basilica of new martyrs and confessors” on the site of Moscow’s notorious Lubyanka prison, which was used by the Soviet Union’s NKVD and KGB secret police, writes Jonathan Luxmoore.
The group that calls itself the Islamic State (IS) has carried out ethnic cleansing on a vast scale in northern Iraq, Amnesty International found in a report released this week entitled “The Islamic State’s Systematic Targeting of Minorities”, writes James Roberts.
The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk of Kiev-Halych, says that the Church is being persecuted in two eastern Ukrainian cities in which pro-Russian separatists have been very active, writes Ellen Teague.
Pope Francis has chosen the theme of slavery for the 2015 World Day of Peace, writes Hannah Roberts.
Following the rape of a 12-year-old Christian girl in Lahore, a lawyer supporting her family has pointed out that in Pakistan “rape is used as an instrument of arbitrary power over Christian girls from poor backgrounds”.
Pope Francis is more of a prophet than a revolutionary who will introduce reforms but these may not be reforms Western society would like to see, according to Cardinal Christoph Schönborn, writes Christa Pongratz-Lippitt.