Catholic universities in the United States used to serve as beacons of academic freedom and intellectual curiosity. They explored a variety of ideas and points of view from across the spectrum of thought. Under Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI, the American bishops have little by little proceeded to exert more and more control over the operation of Catholic institutions of higher learning. They seem more interested in demanding a Catholic identity than in promoting a rigorous and vibrant intellectual community.
NCR Today: The Vatican's spokesman told an Irish paper that women could become cardinals in the church, calling such a move "theologically and theoretically" possible.
One of Cardinal Borgoglio's notable comments on the eve of his election was that Jesus is itching to get out of the church into the wider world.
His intent seems perfectly clear. The Catholic church had become so inwardly looking that it had forgotten its mission. Catholics surely get the message and it's a good one as far as it goes. To this non-Catholic Christian, however, it also reflects the nagging problem seized upon by the Reformation.
Did you know that perhaps no mother, other than the Virgin Mary herself, is considered to have had so much influence on the early Catholic Christian Church, as Monica of Tagaste, Africa?
Did you know that the only saint, of African origin, in the Western Hemisphere to date, is Saint Martín de Porres of Lima, Peru?
Did you know that among the 265 popes of the Catholic Church, between Saint Peter and the current pope Benedict the XVI, are three popes know to be of African descent?
A Catholic nonprofit in the D.C. area is offering to collect responses from Catholics to a Vatican survey asking their opinions on church teachings on contraception, same-sex marriage and divorce.
Most NCR readers have by now heard of the so-called "bishop of bling," the name much of the media have given to Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst of Limburg, Germany. Pope Francis authorized a leave of absence for him for high living: spending $42 million to renovate his official residence.
As we all know by now, this level of luxury does not reflect either the style or the values of Pope Francis.
Here's a rundown of the most-read stories on NCRonline.org for the month of October. The list is compiled with the help of Google Analytics. Miss any of these stories? Now's the time to get caught up.
5. "Germany; Lefebvrists; papal cold calls; Legionaries; and Lampedusa" by John L. Allen Jr., posted Oct. 18. In his "All Things Catholic" column for the week, Allen reviewed the goings-on in Germany and what they could mean for the church at large as well as a couple of other news events that happened in the week.
Blacks in Catholic Christianity have a long and vibrant history.
Much of that history is generally unknown to Black Catholics as well as to the rest of the faithful. On July 24, 1990, the National Black Catholic Clergy Caucus of the United States designated November as Black Catholic History Month to celebrate this long history and proud heritage of Black Catholics. During this month we celebrate the presence of our ancestors who kept the faith and are models of living the Gospel life.