The story of Dymphna -- the patron saint of the mentally ill -- involves such horrors as incest and decapitation. However, her legacy launched a community of unprecedented and unrivaled compassion for the mentally ill.
Pope Francis' concern for those suffering on the margins and for small Catholic communities that have kept the faith alive through war or repression will take him to Bosnia-Herzegovina in early June.
By making a one-day trip June 6 to Sarajevo, he said he hoped he could "be an encouragement for the Catholic faithful, give rise to the development of the good and contribute to strengthening fraternity, peace, interreligious dialogue and friendship."
The Vatican's decision to recognize Palestine as a sovereign state on Wednesday angered Israeli officials.
The move comes four days before the canonization of two Palestinian nuns and solidifies the standing of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who is scheduled to meet with Pope Francis at the Vatican on Saturday.
The agreement expresses hope for an end to Palestinian-Israeli tensions and supports the existence of two separate, independent nations living side by side in security and peace.
In an open letter, 32 signatories tell Pope Francis that the future of parish life is "massively threatened."
Fr. Martin Schlag is a trained economist as well as a Catholic moral theologian, and when he first read some of Pope Francis’ powerful critiques of the current free market system, he had the same thought a lot of Americans did: “Just horrible.”
But at a meeting Monday at the Harvard Club, Schlag, an Austrian-born priest who teaches economics at an Opus Dei-run university in Rome, reassured a group of Catholics, many from the world of business and finance, that Francis’ views on capitalism aren’t actually as bad as he feared.
Commentary: That Hillary Clinton is accepting money from a controversial Moroccan mining company should be cause for concern.
I landed in Abuja, Nigeria, Sunday evening as part of a delegation from the U.S. Commission on International Religious Liberty just as a thunder storm cleared the area. Perhaps this was symbolic because everyone I met today was rejoicing that the recent national elections took place without the violence that so many people had been predicting. (See my Friday column).
The chapel of Divine Providence Hospital in El Salvador is one of the most visited places by local and foreign pilgrims. They come wishing to learn more about Archbishop Oscar Romero, the controversial archbishop who has become a Salvadoran icon.
Christian leaders in the Holy Land hope two new Palestinian saints will become intercessors for peace and a bridge among faiths.
"I am sure they follow our situation from heaven and will continue to intercede for peace and reconciliation in the Holy Land," Auxiliary Bishop William Shomali of Jerusalem said at a news conference May 6. "Their intercession is strong and efficacious."