The pope's monthly prayer intention for August is for youth to experience a meaningful encounter with each other and with the person of the living Christ. Arise, witness, and haste convey an urgent need for prophetic witness and missionary disciples in "these troubling times".
News in Activities
On Thursday, August 31, 2023, at 6:30 p.m. Pope Francis with his retinue and accredited journalists took off from Fiumicino Airport for Chinggis Khan International Airport in Ulaanbaatar, where he landed at 10 a.m. the next day. The pope was welcomed by the foreign minister, and a young woman offered him a cup with Mongolia’s typical dry yoghurt.
Bishop Henrik Stubkjær, currently head of the Viborg diocese of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Denmark, has been elected president of the Lutheran World Federation (LWF). Delegates attending the 13th LWF Assembly chose the 61-year-old theologian September 16 in Krakow, Poland. He takes over from Archbishop Musa Panti Filibus of the Lutheran Church of Christ in Nigeria (LCCN), who has served as president since 2017.
Doubt can be considered a watchword for people today. It is the premise for the construction of any solid, critical and complete thought based on reason alone without any recourse to authority or tradition that would penalize liberty or autonomy. The key philosopher of doubt is of course Descartes. According to him it is most useful because “doubt frees us from any sort of prejudice; it prepares for us an easy pathway to habituate our spirit to be detached from the senses, and lastly thanks to it we can no longer have any doubt about what we will later discover to be true."
The Nicaraguan interior ministry has removed the legal status of the Society of Jesus in the country and said it will confiscate its assets. It announced on 23 August that it had cancelled the official registration of the “Association Society of Jesus” and that its property would pass to the state.
The East Anglia youth group in Portugal has described “amazing” experiences in the lead up to Pope Francis joining World Youth Day on Wednesday. These included a day in Ponte de Lima, the oldest large town in Portugal, to join with 5,000 other World Youth Day pilgrims being hosted by the Viana de Castelo diocese. They joined a huge Mass in a large exhibition hall, along with pilgrims from France, Spain, Croatia, Venezuela and Argentina, all waving flags.
The 16th century marks the beginning of the Modern Age. In the transition between the Middle Ages and the modern world, a series of completely new developments occurred almost simultaneously: the invention of printing, the discovery of the New World, gunpowder, a new way of keeping time (mechanical clocks), of experiencing it, and the relationship with money (“time is money!”), the development of banking,
Over the last 40 years, communication research has paid increasing attention to religion. Early research in this area – in the 1980s in the United States – focused on the then new phenomenon of the “electronic church” (or television evangelism) as more and more preachers, mostly evangelical, took to the increasingly available cable television channels to provide religious services.
Pope Francis has instructed Archbishop Georg Gänswein, the former private secretary to Benedict XVI, to leave the Vatican by 1 July and move to his home diocese in Germany. The archbishop’s future has been subject to wide speculation since the death of the Pope Emeritus, and he will not have any formal role on his return to the Archdiocese of Freiburg. On 4 June he made his first public appearance in Germany in recent times, saying Mass in the western city of Bochum.
The government has a policy for reducing inflation. It wants to make everybody poorer, except of course the banks. That is what its economic brain tells it to do. It is a version of John Major’s refrain in 1989: “If it isn’t hurting, it isn’t working”. But its political brain cries out for something more congenial. So it assembles a package of measures designed to ease the pain caused by high interest rates, especially that felt by home owners with large mortgages.
Newman House, the home of the Catholic chaplaincy at the University of Birmingham, will close at the end of the academic year. The Archdiocese of Birmingham informed the chaplain, Fr Pavel Baco, and the building manager, on 2 May.
Francis considers schools as being free of geographical boundaries and walls. He calls each school “a platform for drawing close to children and young people” (CV 221). Indeed, a school is not an end in itself; it is a platform, a support area that serves as a base for other operations. Schools are also “privileged places of personal development” .
From bearing the burdens of the Roman Empire to enabling trade over long distances, the humble donkey has been surprisingly influential.They are best known for their remarkable ability to carry heavy loads and a tenacious – almost stoic – approach to toil. In some parts of the world, the donkey has become associated, perhaps unfairly, with terms of insult or mockery.
In a pastoral letter to parishes last weekend, the Archbishop of Westminster, Cardinal Vincent Nichols, has urged parishioners to use the weeks of Lent to refresh and deepen their faith. “A faith that is refreshed and deepened helps us to be gracious, steadfast and even robust in every circumstance,” he said, outlining three ways to renew faith.
Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and her coalition allies secured emphatic election wins in the two wealthiest regions of the country on Monday, strengthening the right's grip on power amid growing voter apathy.
A little-known Mesopotamian poet and priestess, Enheduanna, is the subject of a new exhibition in New York. Diane Cole explores her influence – and looks at how she helped create a common system of beliefs throughout the ancient empire. She was the first author to be named in all recorded history: the Mesopotamian poet, princess, and priestess Enheduanna. Surprised?
Before dealing with the individual cardinal virtues, I had the opportunity to address the subject of the deadly vices. It was clear to see the great interest in the themes, especially as found among the humanities, philosophy, art, literature and spirituality. Such a multiplicity of approaches is an indication of the richness and complexity of human actions.
Published in 1968, the book Men in Dark Times still has something to say in our time. Hannah Arendt wrote it long ago, it is true, and the work consists of a collection of essays devoted to people who lived most of their lives during the first half of the last century, with the exception of Gotthold Lessing.
Debaters from the Jesuit-run Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines won the World Universities Debating Championship for the first time in the history of the Southeast Asian nation. The Filipino debaters beat the world’s top universities including Harvard University and Oxford University on their way to victory in the championship, dubbed World Debate Olympics, at Madrid, Spain held from Dec. 27 to Jan. 4.