Wolf Hall is filmed and acted in such a naturalistic style, you might be fooled into thinking it was true. There were abuses, but we know that monasteries were much valued as centres of pilgrimage and sources of spiritual help as well as education and health care. But Cromwell cared nothing for the truth. He was a fanatic. He and his agents made up revolting lies about monks which they spread in lip-smacking pornographic pamphlets, notably The Black Book.
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Thanks to Wolf Hall, more people have now heard of Thomas Cromwell whose life it chronicles, he comes across as a plucky, self-made Englishman, whose quiet reserve suggests inner strength and personal nobility. Back in the real world, Cromwell was a “ruffian” (in his own words) turned sectarian extremist, whose religious vandalism bears striking comparison with the iconoclasm of Islamic State or the Afghani Taliban.
You cannot provoke. You cannot insult the faith of others. You cannot make fun of the faith of others.” Cautioning against provocation he said the right to liberty of expression came with the obligation to speak for “the common good”.
Arriving in Sri Lanka, a country recovering from two-and-a-half decades of ethnic and religious civil war, Pope Francis said reconciliation would require its people to explore their painful recent history and accept persistent differences within their multicultural society.
Speaking to a crowd in St. Peter's Square, the pontiff named each cardinal, noting they came from every continent and "show the inseparable tie with the church of Rome to churches in the world." Five of the cardinals are from Europe, three from Asia, three from Latin America and two each from Africa and Oceania.
School league tables show that two-thirds of the best primaries in 2014 are faith-based institutions, even though they represent just a third of all schools nationally. More faith schools are dominating places at the top of primary league tables.
The Year of Consecrated Life has begun. From 30th November to 2nd February 2016 we will evoke the memory of consecrated life, celebrate its present and dream of its future. We have organised seminars, retreats and encounters. Let's share our lives and awake the world.
A three-year Vatican investigation into America’s 50,000 nuns, which inspired comparisons with the Inquisition, produced an unexpectedly benign report on Tuesday, with a mild rebuke and calls for a careful review of their spiritual practices.
To hand down the amazing gift of prayer to the family, we can start with our own example of praying in the company of our family, showing them that we can offer up prayers at any time, whether there is a particular need or just a desire to thank God for his many blessings.
Pope Francis will travel to Strasbourg to address the European Parliament and the Council of Europe on November 25, 2014. The Council of Europe is the continent's leading human rights organisation. It includes 47 member states, 28 of which are members of the European Union.
Blessed Father Chavara Elias Kuriakose (1805-1871) and Blessed Sister Euphraisa of Sacred Heart of Jesus (1877-1952), both from the Syro-Malabar Church based in southern Kerala state, are set be canonized on November 23. The canonizations come six years after the canonization of India's first woman saint, Sister Alphonsa of the Immaculate Conception.
“We are on the cutting edge of science,” they say, and of course they are. They are probing the deepest mysteries, including the riddle of how life began... What the authors of the Book of Genesis understood is that this question of origins is intimately bound up with the question of purpose. From the dawn of human time, to ask “How did we get here?” has been to ask “Why are we here?”
As it stands, the current annulment process is the equivalent of 'marital archeology' A major dispute at the recently concluded Extraordinary Synod on the Family, described by Tokyo Archbishop Takeo Okada as "white hot", concerned the Church's practice of denying the Eucharist to those who have remarried following a divorce.
Cardinals based in Rome showed ‘lack of awareness’ of what life is really like over homosexuality and divorce
Cardinals closeted in the Vatican are holding out against Pope Francis’s drive to make the Roman Catholic Church more welcoming to gay people and divorcees because of a “lack of awareness” of real life, a leading Anglican bishop has suggested. The Bishop of Durham, the Rt Rev Paul Butler, one of a handful of non-Roman Catholics invited to take part in a global gathering of bishops in Rome to discuss family issues, said he was “excited and intrigued” by much of what he saw.
In his interview with Vatican Radio,Chris Patten stressed that some Vatican budgets are “a little more opaque than one might like,” but he insisted the reform's main goal is to listen to peoples’ concerns and to ensure that the different parts of the Vatican's media work more closely and efficiently together.
Pope Francis has named Bishop Blase Cupich of Spokane, Washington, as archbishop of Chicago, succeeding Cardinal Francis George, who has led the archdiocese since 1997. The appointment was announced in Washington by Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, apostolic nuncio to the United States.
Christians and Muslims thronged the Albanian capital Sunday to greet Pope Francis who arrived in the Muslim-majority country for a one-day visit to praise it as a model of religious harmony.
According to a news release from Elam Ministries, the organization behind the translation, at the time of the Islamic revolution in 1979, there were no more than 500 Christians from a Muslim background in the country. Now Iran is thought to have the fastest-growing church in the world. “A very conservative estimate puts the number of Christians in Iran at 100,000”
Two Catholic churches in two neighboring provinces in China were demolished this week while a third in Zhejiang province had its cross removed. On Monday, Jinxi Catholic Church in Hunan province was forcibly destroyed. When the priest tried to block the demolition, he was handcuffed and taken away.