When Benedict XVI stunned Catholics by announcing that he would resign, it immediately sparked concerns – which were dismissed just as quickly – that having an ex-pope around could undermine the legitimacy of his successor. Now those fears are emerging again as conservative Catholics continue to express doubts about the agenda of Pope Francis while Benedict remains a player in intrachurch debates.
VATICAN CITY (RNS) There are so few Christians in this overwhelmingly Muslim country that Pope Francis is leaving the armored popemobile at home. So why is he going at all?
STRASBOURG, France (RNS) Europe seems “somewhat elderly and haggard” and feels “less and less a protagonist” in the world, Pope Francis warned the European Parliament.
BELEM, Brazil (RNS) Brazil’s National Conference of Bishops is considering a proposal to ordain married community elders as a way to ease the shortage of Catholic priests in rural areas.
VATICAN CITY (RNS) Advocates hope that Pope Francis’ lending his support to autism awareness can give hope to weary parents and chip away at some of the stigma.
ROME (RNS) “The hungry remain, at the street corner, and ask to be recognized as citizens, to receive a healthy diet,” the pope said.
(RNS) But the Boston archbishop, one of Pope Francis’ closest advisers, said the Vatican needs a system of accountability and must “avoid crowd-based condemnations.”
VATICAN CITY (RNS) “We want to focus next year not just on the neuralgic sexual issues that seem to dominate the American media,” Philadelphia Archbishop Charles Chaput said.