MEXICO CITY - Pope Francis demanded forceful denunciations of drug violence in Mexico from the country's bishops, who have preferred timid pronouncements instead of speaking prophetically on a tragedy that has claimed more than 100,000 lives over the past 10 years and left an another 25,000 Mexicans missing.

Published in International
October 29, 2015

Synod success

In his closing address at the Synod of Bishops on the Family, Pope Francis said the meeting of Church leaders was never intended to solve all the problems that afflict modern families. The Synod, he said, was a forum to study the family and assess its many challenges “fearlessly, without burying our heads in the sand.”

Published in Editorial

VATICAN CITY - One of the most repeated themes during the Synod on the Family was the need for a more biblically based approach. The original working document for the Synod — the Instrumentum Laboris — came in for repeated and severe criticism for taking as its starting point sociological data rather than the Word of God.

Published in Fr. Raymond de Souza

The Synod is not over. Synod delegates may have returned home after three weeks of intense work that produced 94 paragraphs of advice to Pope Francis, including three vaguely worded paragraphs concerning communion for divorced and civilly remarried Catholics and what sort of welcome the Church extends to gay Catholics. But that’s not the last word.

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - If the Catholic Church did more to recognize and promote women it could help their status across society, said the Synod of Bishops on the Family.

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - The first task of the Church “is not to hand down condemnations or anathemas, but to proclaim the mercy of God,” Pope Francis said in a blunt address to delegates at the Synod of Bishops on the Family.

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - A momentous and divided gathering of global bishops ended Oct. 24 by endorsing ways that could lead to greater participation by divorced and remarried Catholics — a major source of friction here — while the 270 bishops declined to take up the even more controversial issue of how and whether to be more welcoming to gays.

Published in Faith

Sunday 25 Oct. Lines of faithful spiraled around St. Peter's Square from early on Sunday awaiting their chance to enter St. Peter’s Basilica for the closing Mass of the Synod on the Family. The Mass, presided over by Pope Francis, marked the end of the second gathering of the Synod of Bishops to discuss "The Mission and Vocation of the Family in the Church and Contemporary World."

Published in Reflections

Pope Francis delivered the homily at Mass being offered on Sunday morning, the 30th Sunday in Ordinary Time, to mark the close of the XIV Ordinary Assembly of the Synod of Bishops, who have been gathered in Rome for the past three weeks to reflect on and discuss the vocation and mission of the family in the Church and in the contemporary world.

Published in Reflections

VATICAN CITY - The first task of the Catholic Church "is not to hand down condemnations or anathemas, but to proclaim the mercy of God," Pope Francis told members of the Synod of Bishops on the family.

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - While not specifically mentioning the controversial proposal of a path toward full reconciliation and Communion for the divorced and civilly remarried, members of the Synod of Bishops on the family handed Pope Francis a report emphasizing an obligation to recognize that not all Catholics in such a situation bear the same amount of blame.

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis announced he is establishing a new office for laity, family and life, which combines the responsibilities of two pontifical councils.

Published in Vatican

Inside the Synod hall, things look very different from media reports about conservatives debating liberals over communion for divorced and remarried Catholics, said theologian and Synod auditor Moira McQueen.

Published in Vatican

VATICAN CITY - Observers told the Synod of Bishops on the Family to discourage Christian women from marrying Muslim men, urge priests not to tell women to return to abusive husbands, share the truth of Church teaching about marriage and embrace single mothers who are alienated from the Church.

Published in Vatican

ROME - The eight American bishops taking part in the Synod on family life stay at a huge seminary built high on a hill overlooking St. Peter’s Basilica and the rest of the Eternal City. It’s a lovely place with spacious apartments for each bishop and any amenity they might need.

Published in Vatican