Pope Francis Is Tearing the Catholic Church Apart

In the summer of 2001, I drove up to Poughkeepsie, N.Y., to find what we called “the traditional Latin Mass,” the form of Roman Catholic worship that stretched back centuries and was last authorized in 1962, before the Second Vatican Council changed everything. Back then, conservative Catholics called people who sought it out “schismatics” and … Read more

Former French Priest Convicted of Abusing Dozens of Boy Scouts

Bernard Preynat, 75, received a five-year sentence after admitting to assaulting boys over a 20-year period, a scandal that embroiled a top cardinal. A former Roman Catholic priest in France was convicted and sentenced on Monday to five years in prison for sexually assaulting dozens of Boy Scouts several decades ago, in a case that … Read more

Pope Compares Anti-LGBT Politicians to Hitler

He said Friday that politicians who are enraged against homosexuals, gypsies and Jews remind Hitler. It is no accident that sometimes there is a resurgence of typical Nazi symbols, Francis said in a speech to the participants of an international conference on criminal law. And I must confess that when I hear a speech (from) … Read more

The Slow Road to Catholic Schism

Some years ago, when I was younger and somewhat more excitable, I wrote a series of essays about Pope Francis’s liberalizing efforts, arguing that the supreme pontiff’s choices risked a schism in the Catholic Church. At the time my argument was criticized by Catholics on both sides of the church’s theological-political divides. Liberal Catholics accused me of hysteria, disloyalty … Read more

They Hoped the Catholic Church Would Reveal Their Abusers. They Are Still Waiting.

She has watched as diocese after diocese has identified Catholic priests accused of sexually abusing children. She saw the victims who, after confronting decades of church silence, could edge toward a sense of closure as bishops apologized and publicly named clergy members who abused them. Yet for Janet Cleary Klinger, the silence has continued. She said she … Read more