NCR Today: Parish opened, parishes closed; The media and Pope Francis' agenda; G. Weigel's agenda.
NCR Today is the group blog of NCR. Each member of our diverse team of bloggers writes on different topics, including the politics of the church and secular society (and the interaction between the two), culture, management of the church and more.
A strong and vital official dialogue between Catholics and Lutherans continues yet remains one of the best-kept secrets in Christianity. The common understanding of the doctrine of justification is a case in point.
NCR Today: Sr. Dorothy Stang's murder suspect granted a new trial; priest politicians in Zambia and the Philippines; Schönborn had signs Bergoglio was 'the chosen.'
"There is a need for financial reform along ethical lines that would produce in its turn an economic reform to benefit everyone," Pope Francis told a group of ambassadors Thursday. "Money has to serve, not to rule."
"Tthe majority of the men and women of our time continue to live daily in situations of insecurity, with dire consequences," Francis said. "... People have to struggle to live and, frequently, to live in an undignified way."
Check out a photo that captures a happy spirit. Pope Francis is drawing crowds to St. Peter's Square in numbers not seen in decades. Some 100,000 pack the square weekly for his Wednesday audience. Yesterday a woman handed him a bird cage with two doves in it. He asked if he could release the birds. Then, reached in, taking one out. The first went to flight. The second perched on the papal hand for a bit, checking out the scene, before taking to flight.
NCR Today: San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone not only disapproves of Minnesota's move, but dislikes that the law came just after Mother's Day.
I've gotten my share of letters from Mrs. Abacha in Nigeria, wanting to share her gold bullion with me if only I would send her my bank tracking number. Then as we all got the hang of making requests by email, I, like you, enrolled in MoveOn.org or perhaps NRA.org. Those group email lists opened the floodgates to political parties and candidates and national causes. I even learned to send out my own petitions to cut military spending.
Today, as usual, my spam box contained about 16 email messages begging for my IMMEDIATE ATTENTION or URGENT RESPONSE. The scams and hoaxes are easily recognizable and have been around for decades. Thirty years ago, we received small brown envelopes from faraway countries asking for permission to transfer huge sums of money into our bank account. In return, we were promised a large financial recompense.
The context is the same today, while the methods are changing to keep up with the times. And they are becoming increasingly sophisticated.
The bishop-free and oft-scandal-ridden Bridgeport, Conn., diocese announced it has offered retirement buyouts to 60 members of its 130-person staff.
The Roman Catholic Diocese of Bridgeport is offering an early retirement incentive to almost half of the 130-person staff at its nerve center on Jewett Avenue because of financial pressures.
NCR Today: Connecticut diocese cuts back staff; Long Island Catholics scrutinized (and that isn't part of RCIA); Philippines elections: What happened to the Catholic vote?