Sexual-abuse Crisis

Polarization, Church and Country

What do the Roman Catholic Church and the American political system have in common? Both are divided into factions that neither trust nor understand each other, and...

Shock Therapy

Benedict's resignation forced the church to allow something that has been thought unacceptable for centuries, setting the stage for his predecessor to do likewise.

After Benedict

With the concentration of power in Rome, perhaps the responsibilities of the papacy are not simply too much for a person of Benedict's age, but for any one person.

Benedict's Act of Humility

Benedict’s resignation was a self-denying act of personal humility. What we need now in Rome are acts of institutional humility and self-denial.

Looking Back

Four contributors, all of whom wrote for a previous series called "What Next?" which reflected on the start of Benedict's papacy, now reflect on its conclusion.

Exit Signs

The unique features of the modern papacy must be considered when analyzing Benedict's resignation -- including issues of collegiality, age, and secular power.

The Paradoxes of Pope Benedict

Pope Benedict's resignation shouldn't have surprised us as much as it did. As an institutionalist who believes in the Roman Catholic Church as the carrier of truth...

Orthodoxy & Dissent

St. Pius X, in his encyclical Vehementer (1902), wrote: “By its very nature the church is a society of unequals; it is composed of two categories of persons: the...

What We’ve Learned

In the summer of 1958, when I turned seventeen, I discovered and reported a case of an adult sexually abusing minors. For me the episode had some of the melodrama...

A Cherished Accommodation

On April 12, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops published “Our First, Most Cherished Liberty,” its latest statement decrying alleged governmental attacks on...

Sex Abuse in the Dutch Church

I hate this subject. I have hated it since 1988, when, in the springtime of my own faith, I learned that a priest in my hometown parish had abused altar boys there...

Simplifying Scandal

In July, Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny delivered a stinging indictment of the Vatican’s handling of the sexual-abuse scandal in his country. Referring to a new...
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