By Their Vocabulary, You Shall Know Them

By their vocabulary, you shall know them? Well, to a considerable degree. And in these early November days, when the Church celebrates all the saints in glory and prays for those who yearn to join them in the Father’s House, it’s instructive to ponder the vocabulary that dominated the just-completed first assembly of the Synod … Read more

Bishop Wilmer Calls for ‘Significant Changes in Sexual Morality in the Catholic Church’

The bishop of Hildesheim, Germany, who may still be named prefect of the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith, recently published a letter stating that “it has become clear that we need significant changes in sexual morality in the Catholic Church.” Shortly before Christmas 2022, it seemed likely that Dr. Heiner Wilmer, SCJ, bishop … Read more

The “Synodality” Masquerade

The mechanisms of consultation that exist in the Church—from parish councils through diocesan pastoral councils to the Synod of Bishops—exist to strengthen the governance of the Church by its pastors: priests in their parishes, bishops in their dioceses, the Bishop of Rome in terms of the universal Church. The Synods of 2014, 2015, 2018, and … Read more

There’s a Pony in Here Somewhere: A Post-Synodal Reflection

According to his longtime consigliere, Edwin Meese, President Ronald Reagan must have told the “pony joke” at least a thousand times. The story involves the super-optimistic child whose parents take him to a psychiatrist, along with his super-pessimistic twin, so the doctor can evaluate their extreme personalities. The pessimistic little boy is brought into a … Read more

The Ratzinger Diagnosis

Published a week short of his 92nd birthday, Joseph Ratzinger’s essay on the epidemiology of the clergy sex-abuse crisis vividly illustrated his still-unparalleled capacity to incinerate the brain circuits of various Catholic progressives.  The origins of the text written by the Pope Emeritus remain unclear: Did he initially write it to assist the bishops who … Read more

Weigel’s Open Letter to Cardinal Reinhard Marx

Your Eminence: I noted with interest your recent announcement of a “binding synodal process” during which the Church in Germany will discuss the celibacy of the Latin-rite Catholic priesthood, the Church’s sexual ethic, and clericalism, these being “issues” put on the table by the crisis of clerical sexual abuse. Perhaps the following questions will help … Read more