Christian de Cherge, the Trappist Abbott who was martyred in Algeria in 1996, tells this story of his first communion. He grew up in a Roman Catholic family in France and on the day of his first communion he said to his mother: “I don’t understand what I’m doing.” She answered simply: “It’s okay, you don’t have to understand it now, later you will understand.”

Published in Fr. Ron Rolheiser

WARSAW, Poland - Poland's Catholic bishops pledged to resist changes to Catholic teaching on marriage and family life at October's synod on the family at the Vatican and rejected demands for reform by German-speaking Catholics.

Published in International

ROME - Australian Cardinal George Pell expects the upcoming Synod on the Family in October will uphold traditional Church teaching.

Published in Faith

NEW YORK - It used to be that just saying the words “liberation theology” around Catholics was enough to start a schism-level fight, or at least raise a red flag in Rome.

Published in International

VATICAN CITY - The dignity of human life, family, marriage and sexuality are "urgent" issues that "cannot be silenced or ignored for fear" of threatening ecumenical achievements, said Pope Francis during an audience with Archbishop Antje Jackelen of Uppsala, Sweden.

Published in Vatican

GUELPH, ONT. - In increasingly secular Ontario, the debate about the real or perceived distinctiveness of Catholic education rages on.

Published in Catholic Education

VATICAN CITY - Eradicating male and female identities does nothing to solve the problem of unfair or disrespectful treatment based on people's gender, Pope Francis said.

Published in Vatican

TORONTO - The Toronto Focolare organization and its friends want to confront divisions within politics with ideals of unity and communion.

Published in Canada

VATICAN CITY - Gay marriage was never on the agenda at the recent Synod of Bishops on the Family and the subject “did not cross our minds,” Pope Francis said in a new headline-grabbing interview.

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - The author of a controversial proposal to make it easier for divorced and civilly remarried Catholics to receive Communion says he believes Pope Francis backs the measure but would not apply it without support from bishops at two upcoming synods on the family.

Published in Faith

28th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A) Oct. 12 (Isaiah 25:6-10a; Psalm 23; Philippians 4:12-14, 19-20; Matthew 22:1-14) 

Modern people climb great mountains simply because they are there and they want to prove themselves. In the ancient world, mountains were frightening and awesome places where human beings encountered God. Isaiah painted a prophetic picture of the encounter for which so many people had yearned. 

Published in Fr. Scott Lewis

Public disagreements over whether the Roman Catholic Church can change its teachings on Communion for remarried Catholics are growing sharper on the eve of a major Vatican summit, with conservatives led by U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke making another push against loosening the rules.

Published in International

There’s not a lot of wiggle room in what Jesus had to say about divorce in the Gospel of Mark. 

Published in Features

ROME - Catholic politicians and judges who support laws in conflict with Church teaching on abortion, euthanasia, marriage and related issues commit "sacrilege" and cause "grave scandal" if they receive Communion, said the U.S. cardinal who heads the Vatican's highest court.

Published in International

Pope Francis likes to say that he prefers to raise questions rather than issue edicts or change doctrine, and he has certainly generated plenty of debate with his off-the-cuff remarks about gays and his cold-call chats on topics like divorce and Communion, as happened recently with a woman in Argentina.

Published in International