“The beautiful month of May dedicated to the Mother of God begins today,” wrote St. Maximillian Kolbe whilst in prison under the Nazis. “At last, here comes the month of the Beautiful Mother,” wrote another true child of Mary, St. Padre Pio, in one of his letters. As children of Mary, this is a month we should always look forward to, a month beyond comparison: the month of the Beautiful Mother.
As the world and the Church mark the centenary of the birth of Pope St. John Paul II on May 18, a kaleidoscope of memories will shape my prayer and reflection that day.
The crisis of sexual abuse of minors coming to light in the past two decades has taught us many things. In so many ways, the Church has learned how to understand and deal with this horrible scourge which harms so many, both victims and the whole Church, the Body of Christ.
As he turned 94 on April 16, Joseph Ratzinger remained one of the most misunderstood and misrepresented men of consequence in recent Catholic history.
Yes, it is Easter time, springtime, and the weather is changing, flowers slowly blooming. And yet, it is a strange time to think of singing an Alleluia!
Given that he was one of the principal planners and prominent leaders of last October’s special Synod on Amazonia, Cardinal Claudio Hummes, OFM, is understandably enthusiastic about the results of that exercise. Cardinal Hummes recently claimed that “The Synod for the Amazon was historic; no previous synod was as synodal and reform-oriented as this one.”
On April 29, 1951, Father Thomas Love, S.J., baptized me in the Church of Sts. Philip and James, near Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore. Family legend has it that I raised such a furor during the proceedings that my cousin Judy hid in a confessional.
This past April 2 marked the 15th anniversary of the passing of Pope St. John Paul II on Divine Mercy Sunday in 2005. I remember that night vividly, watching on television in my apartment St. Peter’s Square fi lling shoulder-to-shoulder with people — many of them young adults — chanting “Santo Subito” in unison, as they called (literally) for John Paul the Great’s immediate canonization.
The unanimous decision by Australia’s High Court to quash Cardinal George Pell’s convictions on charges of “historic sexual abuse” and acquit him of those crimes was entirely welcome. Truth and justice were served. An innocent man was freed from imprisonment. The criminal justice system in the State of Victoria was informed by Australia’s supreme judicial authority that it had gotten things badly wrong.
Brothers and sisters, in the Old Testament, the queen mother in the royal Davidic court had a special role as the advocate of the people and mediator on their behalf with the king.