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Luke Coppen's Catholic Herald Blog

Morning Catholic must-reads

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Archbishop Celestino Migliore has urged the international community to do more to tackle transnational organized crime (full text).

The oldest known image of the Apostles Andrew and John has been discovered in the Catacombs of Rome.

An Angolan Catholic priest has gone on trial accused of “crimes against state security” in connection with an attack on Togo’s national football team.

The Archbishops of Birmingham and Southwark will be among the 38 metropolitan archbishops receiving the pallium on June 29.

Pope Benedict XVI will greet an estimated 3,000 schoolchildren at an event during his visit to Britain.

The collapse of a masonry firm may hamper restoration work at St Andrews’ Cathedral in Glasgow.

An 83-year-old nun was killed in a collision with a minivan in Harlem yesterday.

Jack Smith urges Helen Osman, the USCCB secretary of communications, to clarify her criticisms of the Catholic News Agency.

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Bishop Kurt Koch of Basel is expected to be named president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, replacing Cardinal Walter Kasper.

Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe of Naples says he has forgiven his accusers after he was implicated in a corruption scandal.

A confidential file accusing Bishop Walter Mixa of alcoholism and sexual harassment has surfaced in Germany.

Caritas says that millions will face hunger in Niger as a result of food shortages.

Giovanni Maria Vian, editor of the L’Osservatore Romano, sums up the Year for Priests.

Edward Pentin says the Arabian peninsula is seeing a remarkable increase in its Christian population.

Valle Adurni hunts for the final, definitive version of the new translation of the Mass in English.

Peter Schineller SJ wonders why Benedict XVI is preparing to venerate the relics of St Celestine V.

The papal visit to Britain now has an official Twitter account and Facebook page.

And Mick Brown urges England fans to pray that the team’s Catholic manager, Fabio Capello, will find divine inspiration.

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The Pope is expected to name Archbishop Velasio DePaolis the Apostolic Delegate to the Legion of Christ.

The Archbishop of Canterbury and the Archbishop of York are reportedly preparing to make a last-ditch effort to prevent thousands of traditionalists leaving the Church of England.

The Vatican’s spokesman expressed “esteem and solidarity” with Cardinal Crescenzio Sepe yesterday as it emerged that police are investigating the Archbishop of Naples for alleged corruption.

Benedict XVI made an urgent appeal for peace in southern Kyrgyzstan and prayed for the world’s refugees after the Angelus on Sunday (full text, video).

Pope Benedict ordained 14 new priests for the Diocese of Rome in St Peter’s Basilica yesterday (hfull text).

A Vatican spokesman has denied reports that the disgraced former Archbishop of Poznań, Juliusz Paetz, is to be “rehabilitated”.

Zenit publishes the final part of Pope Benedict’s question-and-answer session with priests.

Fr Edward Daly welcomes the Saville report into Bloody Sunday.

Commonweal responds to criticism by the US bishops of its stance on the healthcare bill.

John Allen points out the “elephants in the room” of the Catholic debate on healthcare reform.

Kevin O’Rourke looks at “the complicated reasons behind an abortion at a Catholic hospital” in Phoenix.

George Weigel describes the alternative to “Catholic Lite”.

Karl Giberson urges Christians not to vilify the New Atheists.

Joanna Bogle profiles Catholic Voices, which aims to transform the media image of Catholicism during the Pope’s visit to Britain.

Austen Ivereigh applauds Archbishop Vincent Nichols’s efforts to promote the papal visit.

Rocco Palmo reports on the remarkable success of the iBreviary app for the iPhone.

And Fr Z wonders if the iPad will replace the altar missal.

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Cardinal Keith O’Brien has said that the crucifix is “not an imposition but an invitation” ahead of a ruling on its public display by the European Court of Human Rights.

Cardinal Marc Ouellet, the Archbishop of Quebec, is emerging as the new favourite to replace Cardinal Giovanni Battista Re as prefect of the Congregation for Bishops.

The Irish bishops have appealed for a free vote on the country’s civil partnership bill.

Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala of Los Angeles says the US bishops are “very troubled” by some Catholic blogs.

Zenit publishes the third part of Pope Benedict’s question-and-answer session with priests.

James Preece wonders how much influence Archbishop Vincent Nichols will have over what the Pope says in Britain.

Cristina Odone says church schools could be key to reducing Britain’s teenage pregnancy rate.

And Archbishop Nichols says he doesn’t want to hear vuvuzelas during Pope Benedict’s visit to Britain.

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Archbishop Vincent Nichols of Westminster has urged Catholics to get behind the papal visit to Britain.

Cardinal Francis George, President of US Conference of Catholic Bishops, has said Sister Carol Keehan and her colleagues “are to blame” for the passage of the healthcare bill in March. John Allen offers analysis.

Pope Benedict insisted again that faith “protects reason from every temptation to mistrust its own capacities” at his general audience yesterday (full text).

The Apostolic Nuncio to Kyrgyzstan has described the fighting in the country as an “absolute catastrophe”.

Apostolic visitors have toured 35 US female religious communities so far and have 80 to go.

Scientists claim to have solved the mystery of Caravaggio’s death.

Cuban blogger Yoani Sanchez assesses the rise of the Catholic Church in the country.

A Reuters blogger feels uneasy about the Pope’s visit to Britain.

Fr Christopher Phillips considers whether papal infallibility will prove an obstacle to the success of Anglicanorum coetibus.

Matthew Warner asks if we need a new apologetics after Vatican II.

And Ross Douthat wonders if the Catholic Church is finished.

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The Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales has launched a booklet explaining the purpose of the Pope’s visit to Britain in September (PDF and press conference audio here).

Pope Benedict focused on the teaching of St Thomas Aquinas at his general audience today (video).

The Holy See and Israel have failed again to resolve the dispute over the Church’s legal and tax status in the Holy Land.

The Latin Patriarch has called for the blockade of Gaza to be lifted.

The German press agency dpa is reporting that Bishop Walter Mixa may ask the Pope to reinstate him as Bishop of Augsburg.

Zenit has begun to publish the full English translation of the Pope’s question-and-answer session with the world’s priests.

Damian Thompson says that Cardinal Pell is the victim of a smear campaign designed to stop him reforming the world’s bishops.

Anna Clark of Salon considers whether better ultrasounds prevent abortion.

And members of Germany’s World Cup squad have received cards personally signed by the Pope offering encouragement in the tournament.

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Cardinal Seán Brady has said he accepts an opinion poll which found that 76 per cent of Irish adults believe that he should resign from office.

Catholic employees at a Chinese factory making iPhones have accused the Church of failing to support migrant workers following a string of suicides since January.

Benedict XVI has urged future diplomats of the Holy See to be distinguished by their full adhesion to the Pope and the Magisterium (video).

Cardinal Francis George of Chicago is reportedly planning to lead a delegation to Cuba.

President Barack Obama has praised Sister Carol Keehan for her support in passing health care reform.

A video of the Christopher Hitchens-John Haldane debate in Oxford on the public role of religion is now online.

David Clohessy, executive director of SNAP, explains why he doesn’t accept the Pope’s latest apology for clerical abuse. Mathew Schmalz, a professor at the College of the Holy Cross, offers a different point of view.

Deacon Greg Kandra asks whether Hyundai is mocking the Catholic Church.

And Sherry Weddell discusses the rise of “socially Catholic” Protestants.