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Luke Coppen's Catholic Herald Blog

Morning Catholic must-reads

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The weekend’s big story was the Vatican’s response to the unprecedented police raid on the Belgian Church. Pope Benedict XVI described the police’s methods as “deplorable” and Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone said they were “unbelievable”. A lawyer for the Mechelen-Brussels archdiocese said the Church was considering legal action. But Belgian anti-paedophilia campaigner Fr Rik Devillè insisted the raids were “a good thing”. Rod Dreher says the Pope was wrong to speak out. And Fr Tim Finigan considers the state of the Belgian Church.

Archbishop Angelo Amato beatified the Maronite monk Estephan Nehmeh in Lebanon yesterday.

Pope Benedict urged the faithful to “contemplate the divine-human heart of the Lord Jesus” at his Angelus address yesterday (full text).

Cardinal Walter Kasper has confirmed his imminent retirement as president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.

Ann Widdecombe will be the next British ambassador to the Holy See, the Sunday Telegraph reports.

The Pope has turned down an offer to appear on BBC Radio 4’s Thought for the Day programme, the Telegraph suggests.

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Holy See’s permanent observer to the UN in Geneva, has addressed the Human Rights Council on maternal mortality (full text).

Rocco Palmo says the Vatican’s year is ending on a diplomatic high note.

Valle Adurni wonders what will happen to church buildings if Anglicans accept the Pope’s offer.

John Coleman SJ hails an “almost perfect” film.

And James Preece predicts that the Pope will beatify Cardinal Newman in a red telephone box.

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