We say: For a community whose narrative is woven with symbols, those advanced by Pope Francis became more awe-inspiring as the days wore on.
“One of the last presidents to balance the budget was Herbert Hoover.” Thus did Republican Congressman Peter King of New York warn his fellow Republicans that their current fixation on cutting government spending and balancing the federal budget might not be an economic winner for the country or a political winner for them.
Austerity plans have failed in every country they have been tried. During tough economic times, it is bad policy to shrink the government sector. It is even worse policy to allow the mindless “sequester” cuts to begin to take hold.
In the opening days of the general congregations, the series of meetings the College of Cardinals convene in the lead-up to the conclave that will choose the next pope, an idea was floated in the Italian press about a way to clean up the governance issues that have plagued the Vatican under Pope Benedict XVI’s reign. The idea was to elect one of the over-80-year-old cardinals as pope. Such a pope, a curial old hand, would have a clear understanding of how the Curia actual works and could rein it in.
We say: This is a critical time for the church. Can the global church, mired in an outdated governing system, be effectively managed?
Editorial: The "We didn't know" defense in sex abuse cases wears thin in the light of the recently released documents from Los Angeles.
We say: The continued objections say more about a division within the U.S. bishops' conference than the administration's willingness to accommodate.
We say: The rebuke of L.A. Cardinal Mahony and release of documents are a moral victory -- an imperfect victory, but a victory nonetheless.
We say: What the church finds deserving of its wrath in light of what it will tolerate to preserve the clerical culture is increasingly inexplicable to anyone outside that culture.
We say: Gun control is a pro-life issue and the time has come for U.S. Catholics to weave strong gun control legislation into the list of life issues demanding our attention.
Our person of the year is circumspect and has a reputation for being an active Catholic who attends his children's sporting events.