Three groups of Christians: Where do you fall?

Showroom Christians — whether selfish, businessmen, worldly or rigorists — try to push away people seeking Jesus. Pope Francis warned of this temptation during Mass at Santa Marta on Thursday morning, 28 May. Inviting each person to perform “an examination of conscience”, the Pope recalled that Christians must be able to hear the people’s “cry […]


Letter #19, 2015: Ukraine

May 26, 2015, Tuesday — Dry Tinder On May 24-25, the IX sessional meeting of the Ordinary Council of the Secretariat of the Synod of Bishops of the Catholic Church was held at the Vatican. The meeting was chaired by Pope Francis. The meeting agenda included preparation of a draft text Instrumentum Laboris (“Guideline of […]

Letter #18, 2015: The Irish Vote

May 24, 2015, Sunday — Follow the Money? “Multinational companies like Twitter and Google have their headquarters in Ireland and they supported the ‘Yes’ campaign.” —Dublin’s Archbishop Diarmuid Martin, in an interview yesterday with Vatican Insider on the outcome of the Irish vote approving same-gender “marriage” in Ireland “So what happened? First, foreigners spent a […]


Letter #17, 2015: The News Stories Keep Coming

May 23, 2015, Saturday — Thinking about Francis The news stories keep coming: — the Irish referendum yesterday on marriage (the Irish voted “Yes,” to allow same-gender marriage); — the upcoming papal encyclical on the environment (June); — preparations for the Pope’s trip to Cuba and the USA (September); — the “Bishops’ Synod, Part #2″ […]


Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi at the February 14 consistory and, below, on the same occasion, Francis and Benedict XVI

People: May 2015

Pope Nominates Head of Economic Affairs as Prefect of Education Congregation Cardinal Giuseppe Versaldi, who until now has been the president of the Holy See’s Prefecture for Economic Affairs, will be the new head of the Congregation responsible for the Vatican dicastery dedicated to Catholic education, the Vatican announced March 31. The Congregation for Catholic […]


Urbi et Orbi: Communiqué

Dear friend, Welcome to our inaugural issue of Communiqué, the newsletter of Urbi et Orbi Communications. Many of you have been subscribers to Inside the Vatican magazine, which I began 23 years ago. So, the first thing on my mind as I write this letter is simply gratitude. Thankfulness. I feel humbled by the trust […]

Statement by Archbishop Charles Chaput on the death of 
Cardinal Francis E. George, OMI, Archbishop Emeritus of Chicago
I  was deeply saddened today to learn of the death of Cardinal Francis E. George, Archbishop Emeritus of Chicago.
Cardinal George was a close friend over many years, from the time I was a young bishop in Rapid City. We talked often. He was a constant source of good counsel and encouragement. As a fellow religious, he was a model for me of living the Beatitudes well, despite the daily crush of leading a large local Church. As a bishop and a scholar, he was the finest intellect the Church in America has seen in many decades. The only consolation in losing him is knowing that he served the Lord well, and the Lord has welcomed him home.
On behalf of the Church in Philadelphia, I extend prayerful condolences to Cardinal George’s family and many friends as well as Archbishop Blase J. Cupich and the priests, religious, and lay faithful of the Archdiocese of Chicago.
I ask the people of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to offer prayers for Cardinal George, and our priests to offer Masses for the repose of his soul. All of us are very grateful for the gifts of his life and service to the Universal Church. May God grant him the gift of eternal life, and give peace and consolation to all those who loved, admired, and respected him.

In Memoriam

Cardinal George dies April 17 after long battle with cancer By Inside the Vatican Staff, with CNS Reports Cardinal Francis George, the retired archbishop of Chicago who was the first native Chicagoan to head the archdiocese, died on April 17 at his residence after nearly 10 years battling cancer. He was 78. Statement by Archbishop […]

A Luxury Resort in the Heart of the City

Food For Thought

By Mother Martha During the 1970s, I was the associate editor of The American Academy in Rome’s ancient studies and archeology publications. Twice a day on the no. 41 bus (now no. 870), on the Vatican-side slope of the Janiculum Hill, I would pass by a huge abandoned cream-colored building with gaping windows just across […]

(CNS photo/L'Osservatore Romano)

From Domus Santa Marta

By Maria Pia Carriquiry Gomez In the last issue, we once again took up some of the meditations Pope Francis made at Casa Santa Marta, speaking to us about Divine Mercy: the Mercy of a God Who loves us, Who loves me. In this issue, we want to propose another beautiful homily, on the second […]

Resurrection Icon of Jesus Christ— “Descensus Christi ad Inferos,” or the descent of Christ into hell

Urbi et Orbi: Catholicism and Orthodoxy

We continue our series on the spirituality and practices of Eastern Christianity By Robert Wiesner The Resurrection of Jesus Christ was the ultimate victory of God over the Evil One. As God, of course, Christ exercised complete dominion over all creation. But there were weapons in the hands of the enemy, weapons called sin, suffering, death, all […]

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Books, Art & People


Vatican Watch: May 2015

MARCH  SUNDAY 15 Pakistan Attack and Growing Wave of Anti-Christian Violence Condemning deadly terrorist attacks against a Catholic and an Anglican church in Pakistan, Pope Francis said today that “the world is trying to hide” a wave of anti-Christian persecution in various parts of the globe. “With sadness, with much sadness, I learned of the […]

Lasagna is usualy the first course in a typical Italian Easter lunch.

Food for Thought

Decorating eggshells, especially those of ostriches, predates the Christian tradition by at least 3,000 years. The ancient Sumerians and Egyptians commonly placed decorated eggs, or their representations in gold and silver, in graves. Thus the Christian adaptation of decorating eggs can be traced to early Christians of Mesopotamia, who stained eggs red in memory of […]

From the Domus Santa Marta; the Words of Pope Francis.

The Words of Pope Francis

The Greatness of the Love of God Who Comes to Meet Us in Our Littleness During Lent, in many of his morning homilies in the Domus Santa Marta, Pope Francis has spoken about the love of God. But he has not spoken of a generic love for human beings, nor of theological concepts regarding divine […]

St. Peter's Square, Ash Wednesday, February 18, General Audience: Pope Francis greets a Polish family from Ruda Slaska. Their son was born prematurely and declared dead by doctors. After receiving baptism in the hospital from a nurse, he began to breathe.

Vatican Watch – April 2015

MONDAY 16 Following an ecumenical meeting with Pope Francis on February 16, the moderator of the Church of Scotland, John Chalmers, said the gathering could signal the end of its tensions with the Catholic Church. “Meetings like today, talking to each other on a very significant level means almost the end of that sectarian divide,” Chalmers […]

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