First, lasts and heeding the coronavirus realities

As my wife and I emerged from Italy's strict, nine-week-long Coronavirus lockdown in May, we tentatively began to mark the "firsts." First time we went for a walk outside. (During the lockdown, we could only walk in circles on our building's roof.) First time I went back to the Vatican press office. (After about 90 days away… by far the longest I'd not seen the place since we moved here six years ago, thanks to the wild reality we call the year 2020.)ve been sharply rising in past weeks. Italy's Civil Protection a

'Vos Estis' at one year: Some question pope's process for investigating bishops

It is a bit early to assess the effect of Pope Francis' new global system for how the Catholic Church evaluates reports of clergy sexual abuse or cover-up by individual bishops, say canon lawyers who spoke to NCR. They also raised questions about the new process, first established in May 2019, which involves the empowering of archbishops to conduct investigations of prelates accused in their local regions.

An Australian bishop speaks about a national church 'fraught with division'

Like many Catholics in Australia, Bishop Vincent Long speaks about the upcoming plenary council as something of a final chance for the national church to show it has both reformed on clergy sexual abuse and can still be culturally relevant in the 21st century. In an emailed NCR interview focused on how the quashing of Cardinal George Pell's convictions might affect the gathering, which has been in preparation for two years, Long called the assembly "the last throw of the dice."

'Grace comes through': Three bishops on ministering during a pandemic

Beyond the myriad health and economic anxieties caused by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Catholics across the United States are also struggling with being unable to physically attend Mass or otherwise gather in person together for worship or prayer. In separate NCR interviews focused on their message for Catholics in this unprecedented time, three of the country's bishops urged lay faithful to do what they can, despite the unique difficulties of the moment, to develop their prayer lives and help those in need.

Noted Irish theologian and ecumenist Gerard Mannion dies at 48

Mannion's sudden death left theologians on several continents struggling to evaluate the life and work of a colleague and friend often remembered for his gregarious nature and as the lively heart of national and international theological gatherings. Gerard Mannion, who had been a senior research fellow at Georgetown University's Berkley Center since 2014, died Sept. 21 after apparently collapsing during a morning jog in the Washington area. He was 48. A young Irish theologian with a global rep
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