Over New Year's, 45,000 people -- mostly young adults -- in the Taize ecumenical community made a pilgrimage to Rome for prayer and reflections on scripture.
Faith & Parish
We say: There have been many stories of darkness recently, but we hope the sun of justice can return.
We say: Notre Dame, with the approval of its local bishop, has decided to establish a student organization for LGBT students, a move that deserves recognition.
A new report on global religious identity shows that those with no religious affiliation -- including atheists and agnostics -- are now the third-largest "religious" group in the world.
Largely a change in structure and staffing, the plan will maintain each parish's identity while pushing parishes toward a renewed focus on evangelization.
Seven in 10 Mass-goers say the new English translation of the Roman Missalis a "good thing," yet a strong minority, including bishops and priests, remain hesitant.
More than a third of Americans believe the severity of recent natural disasters is evidence that we are in the "end times" described in the New Testament -- a period of turmoil preceding Jesus' Second Coming and the end of the world.
"There is a significant proportion of Americans who see these phenomena through a theological lens," said Daniel Cox, research director at the Public Religion Research Institute, which released a poll on religion and climate change on Thursday in partnership with Religion News Service.
A papal astronomer gave his reassurances that the world will not end Dec. 21.
While the universe eventually will come to a "cold and dark" demise billions of years from now, Christians know God is always with his creation and welcomes everyone to eternal life, said Jesuit Fr. Jose Funes, the head of the Vatican Observatory.
The Vatican newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, published the priest-astronomer's article Wednesday under the headline "The end that won't come -- at least for now."
Commentary: Several statements in a recent blog post by Michael Sean Winters show some misunderstandings about the relationship between the church and reforms of Vatican II.
Speakers from a local interfaith spirituality center, including two Dominican sisters, and materials from the center are banned from the Madison diocese's parishes and schools.