John Paul II

Money, Scandal, and Rome

It was virtually inevitable that the media firestorm over Benedict XVI’s handling of sexually abusive clerics — even if the insinuations against the Pope were unsubstantiated and unfair — would

The Limits of the Papacy

During the preparation of the Second Vatican Council’s Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, Pope Paul VI proposed that the constitution’s discussion of papal primacy include the affirmation that the Pope

Spreading the Big Lie

If Irish singer Sinead O’Connor wishes to denounce her mother publicly as an abusive parent, that is her privilege. If Ms. O’Connor wishes to shred a photograph of John Paul

Advice for Europe – And For Us

At an international symposium in honor of the late Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger, held in Paris on February 11, I offered closing remarks on what the Church might do to combat

The Weakland Memoirs

In A Pilgrim in a Pilgrim Church: Memoirs of a Catholic Archbishop [Eerdmans], Archbishop Rembert Weakland, O.S.B., offers an account of, and an apologia for, his dramatic life. One reader,

Freedom, Sanctity, and the Future

CRACOW. We’ve been doing this for seventeen years now, my colleagues and I — running an intensive, three-week, Cracow-based  immersion course in Catholic social doctrine, centered on John Paul II’s

Benedict XVI and the Truth About Charity

Pope Benedict XVI’s social encyclical, Caritas in Veritate (Charity in Truth), is a complex and occasionally obscure document, replete with possible implications for the future development of Catholic social doctrine.

"Caritas in Veritate" in Gold and Red

In the often unpredictable world of the Vatican, it was as certain as anything could be in mid-1990 that there would be a 1991 papal encyclical to commemorate the centenary

President Reagan and John Paul II

They were two of the giant figures of the last half of the twentieth century — Ronald Reagan and John Paul II — and they had many things in common.

June 1979 – The Nine Days of John Paul II

Thirty years ago this week, the Bishop of Rome returned to Poland for the first time since his recent election to the papacy. America’s premier Cold War historian, John Lewis

Defending Human Dignity

Before tackling Dignitas Personae [The Dignity of a Person], the recent instruction from the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith on contemporary bioethical questions, I’d suggest re-reading the first

Giving Thanks for America

The vagaries of scheduling put me in Europe for the week before the November 4 election. In conversations in both Rome and Cracow, I was struck by the frequency with

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