National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Global

Pope Francis urges prayers for China, persecuted Christians over Pentecost

 | 

Pope Francis asked Catholics worldwide to show solidarity through their prayers for Catholics in China and for persecuted Christians over the Pentecost weekend.

The World Day of Prayer for the Church in China is observed each year on the feast of Our Lady Help of Christians, May 24, which this year falls on Pentecost.

Catholics in China invoke Mary, venerated at the Marian Shrine of Sheshan, near Shanghai, each May 24, the pope noted.

Ireland's gay marriage referendum a sign of Roman Catholic decline

 | 

"In Ireland," says a character in a 1904 George Bernard Shaw play, "the people is the Church, and the Church is the people."

But not so much anymore.

On Friday, voters in this once deeply Roman Catholic country will decide whether the country's constitution should be amended to allow for gay marriage. If the amendment passes, Ireland will become the first country to legalize same-sex civil marriage by popular vote.

Whither the Middle East?

 | 

Authors' note: This blog post is part two of a two-part series. Read part one: "A Middle Eastern House of Cards."

Great uncertainty hovers over discussions of the shape of the new order that will emerge from the violence and chaos sweeping through the Middle East today. The old order, unnaturally born from the Sykes-Picot Agreement 100 years ago, is coming to an end, dealt a death blow by the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, and alternative visions for the region have proved misguided.

Mother Teresa's canonization in 2016 only hypothetical, says Vatican

 | 

Despite reports in the Italian press that Blessed Teresa of Kolkata's canonization has been set for Sept. 4, 2016, a Vatican spokesman says the date is only hypothetical and cannot be confirmed.

Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi issued a statement Tuesday in response to media reports that the founder of the Missionaries of Charity, who worked among the poorest of the poor, would be canonized before the end of the upcoming Holy Year of Mercy.

To the ends of the earth

 | 

No matter what the Gospel says, picking up snakes is never going to be part of my mission plan. Now that I think about it, I'm also pretty reluctant to pick fights with demons, so the commentaries that say Mark didn't really write this ending to his Gospel offer me a welcome justification for avoiding those adventures. Most scholars think that the Gospel of Mark ended at Verse 8 of Chapter 16, which states that the women who discovered Jesus' empty tomb "said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid."

Pages

Laudato-Si_ff3.png

NCR Email Alerts