Thompson: “Fears for the health of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI”

Damien Thompson at the Telegraph is reporting that concerns have emerged for Pope Emeritus Benedict’s apparently rapidly fading health. Thompson writes: I think all of us were distressed by the fragility of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI when we saw him greet his successor, Pope Francis. The footage was almost too painful to watch. Now, according to the excellent Fr Ray Blake, a Spanish newspap... More


“It is a dangerous time. Pray for us.”

In certain Catholic circles, there has been no small amount of alarm over Pope Emeritus Benedict’s abdication, and the possible circumstances that precipitated it. Those who have always looked to Benedict as a dauntless pillar of strength in a very tumultuous period for the Church found it suspicious that he would step down from his duties unless in some way, his hand was forced. To many, h... More

There Is No Pope

There is no pope. There is no pope. There is no pope. The phrase didn’t occur to me as the bell of St. Benedict’s Abbey  tolled over and over again for 10 minutes starting at 1:00 pm (8:00 pm in Rome) to mark the resignation of the Pope. The phrase occurred to me when the bell stopped tolling and the Abbey grew silent. St. Benedict’s Abbey tolled its bells as the Pope stepped down. Ther... More

What Barack Could Learn from Benedict

There is an ancient Jewish proverb that, “The world is a staircase; some are going up and some are coming down.” This is especially true of men entrusted with great power. In the case of President Obama and soon-to-be Pope Emeritus Benedict, the contrast of the two men’s fortunes is especially instructive. Whereas the latter is descending the proverbial staircase with grace and self-... More

Is Pope Benedict’s resignation a catastrophe?

In a visit to the Rome-based Community of Saint’Egidio home for the elderly in 2012, Pope Benedict told residents that senior citizens “are an asset to society, even in suffering and disease.” If only someone had whispered those same words in his ear before he stepped down as the 265th successor of St. Peter, Pope Benedict might not have resigned. Most commentators have spent the past sever... More


The liturgy via the “hermeneutics of politics”

I’ve seen a few references online to the unscripted “chat” by Pope Benedict to priests and clergy of the Diocese of Rome (e.g., Fr. Z here). And while I admit I didn’t read it all (I should be grading assignments right now, actually) I was blown away by a section on the liturgy. Photo by Catholic Church (England and Wales) Most folks have pointed to the section near the end... More


The story of two eight-year terms

Pope Benedict, 2005-2013 vs. President Obama, 2008-2016 I know, the comparison is hardly equivalent for many reasons: Ratzinger was well-known worldwide as a leading scholar and hardly raised any eyebrows when selected as Pope; Obama was a little-known Chicago senator who advanced politically probably because his ideological leanings were kept under wraps. Benedict XVI shepherded an institution w... More


Subsidiarity, The Catholic Church, and Social Justice

Subsidiarity is a big idea from the Church. Hopefully our video can give you enough information to understand basically what it is and why it is important. But a few minutes is not enough time to thouroughly explain the philosophy. So, if you would like to learn more about Subsidiarity, and other ideas the Church teaches about how we can best structure a just society, please use the following lin... More

B16 on Religious Liberty & Us

This is a helpful highlight reel from Pope Benedict’s recent meetings with U.S. bishops. In particular, pass this part of it onto any and every Catholic you know: on January 19, Pope Benedict turned his attention to the rapidly changing context in which the Church in the United States must proclaim the Gospel. He conveyed his alarm that the consensus about the nature of morality and the common g... More

Reader: Blame Bush for bad 2012 field, Brownback enacting Tea Party policies in Kansas, The coming Latino majority

Welcome to the Lunchtime Reader, where we assemble important stories to keep your eyes on. Don’t like the 2012 Republican presidential field? Blame George W. Bush, says conservative columnist Philip Klein. Do you still support Herman Cain-style harsh anti-immigration rhetoric? Here’s your wake up call: “The Coming Latino Majority” in the U.S. Catholic Church. ... More



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