J.K. ROWLING may be taking over the universe – Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is the latest film in her World of Magic to follow the Harry Potter ones – but quality control is another matter.

As a journalist covering religion, I often see the Catholic priesthood up close and personal – usually over a cup of tea, or something stronger, in the presbytery kitchen.

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Spain is not, I think, poorer than 30 years ago, in the sense of so many people living in unheated, dark houses with no mod cons. But gaps are evident in the benefits some need to meet the demands of urbanised living.

In a recent column I suggested that the Third Rite of Reconciliation should become the norm in parishes so that vulnerable priests and bishops would be protected from activists wanting to entrap them for breaching the legal requirement to disclose an admission of child sexual abuse in Confession. It set off a minor firestorm.

I’VE HAD TWO ODD conversations with old ladies this week. One thought I knew her, but I never discovered her name.

The setting is King’s Cross Station on the Saturday morning of the weekend when talks in Brussels were intended to craft the choreography that would dance its way to the Brexit endgame.

THE BRITISH MUSEUM’S new Albukhary Foundation Gallery of the Islamic World

ON THE WAY home from the dry cleaners I was cut off by a demonstration.

There’s a story about Teresa of Avila, who is one of my favourite saints, as well as being since 1970 one of the two women, together with Catherine of Siena, who are officially “Doctors of the Church”

THE SENATE judicial committee hearing featuring Brett Kavanaugh

An excessive interest in the Church’s “current affairs” can leave one fearing (as a number of Church Fathers warned) that the road to hell is paved with the skulls of the clergy.


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