Nawras Sammour, S.J., the director of Jesuit Refugee Service Middle East and North Africa, talks with America's Kevin Clarke. The Jesuit agency is serving thousands of internally displaced Syrians in Damascus, Aleppo, Homs and other sites. Find out more here.
Most Rev. Thomas J. Gumbleton, the retired auxiliary bishop of Detroit and founding bishop president of Pax Christi USA, speaks about the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela, who died on Dec. 5. In this interview, Bishop Gumbleton suggests that a truth and reconciliation commission, like the one championed by Mandela in South Africa, could be a source of healing and reconciliation as the church seeks to address the ongoing sexual abuse crisis.
Picture: Depiction of former South African president Nelson Mandela seen at Regina Mundi Church in Soweto
Chris Lowney chairs the board of Catholic Health Initiatives, one of the nation’s largest health care systems. He previously served as a Managing Director at J. P. Morgan and is a former Jesuit seminarian. He speaks widely on leadership, corporate ethics and decision making, and is the author of four books. He recently stopped by America House to discuss bis newest book, Pope Francis: Why He Leads the Way He Leads, which considers the lessons learned from the first Jesuit pope.
America's Washington Front columnist John Carr analyzes Pope Francis' apostolic exhortation "Evangelii Gaudium" and its implications for the church and the world.
Jon Fuller, S.J., looks back at the beginning of the AIDS crisis and assesses the church's response then and now. Father Fuller's article "The Continuing Crisis" appears in the December 2 issue.
Richard Stolley, a former reporter and editor at Life Magazine, talks about meeting with Abraham Zapruder to obtain the rights to his film documenting the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
Veronica Mary Rolf has spent much of her life in the professional theatre, as a playwright and actress. She also has trained and directed professional actors around the globe. However, her interest in teaching extends beyond the stage. Rolf is also a certified teacher of Christian meditation and has designed and taught a three-year course on the history of Christian mysticism. She offers workshops, meditation groups, and retreats, including "Mornings with Julian of Norwich," and “A Retreat with Julian," inspired by the words of the 14th century mystic. Rolf visited America House to discuss her new book, Julian’s Gospel: Illuminating the Life and Revelations of Julian of Norwich.
On the 50th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy, James W. Douglass talks about why more people are reconsidering the traditional explanation for the president's murder. Douglass is the author of "A President for Peace" in the Nov. 18 issue of America and JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters.
I.J. Chan-Gonzaga, S.J., a native of Tacloban, talks about the devastation wrought by Typhoon Hiayan. Father I.J. is currently studying law at Ateneo de Manila University. Find out more about the crisis at Catholic Relief Services.
Picture: People carry supplies as they walk street in typhoon-battered city of Tacloban (CNS Photo/Reuters)
Robert Briggs, executive vice president of the American Bible Society, talks about "The Living Word: Scripture in the Life of the Church," a new two-year collaboration between America and the American Bible Society.
The fate of Detroit and its archdiocese are deeply entwined. Archbishop Allen Vigneron talks with Editor Kevin Clarke about the Catholic Church's presence in the struggling city and what happens now that Detroit has declared bankruptcy. Clarke reports on his visit to Detroit in the November 4 issue of America. He also conducted a video interview with Paul Gibson, a Detroit resident who has been helped by the Capuchins and their "On the Rise Bakery." Watch the video here.
Photo: Homeless family looks through clothing at St. Dominic Outreach Center in Detroit (CNS/Jim West).
Kevin Clarke talks with Chris Prater at the Great Lake Coffee Shop about the city's future in wake of its decision to declare bankruptcy. Clarke reports on his visit to Detroit in the November 4 issue of America.
He also conducted a video interview with Paul Gibson, a Detroit resident who has been helped by the Capuchins and their "On the Rise Bakery." Watch the video here.
Joan S. Dawber, S.C. is the Executive Director of LifeWay Network, Inc. Lifeway Network is a non-profit organization that works as part of a coalition in New York City to combat human trafficking through the provision of safe housing and education. She lives in community with survivors of human trafficking and with women religious from other congregations.
Bishop Robert W. McElroy talks about his article in America, "A Church for the Poor," which argues for a change in the Catholic political conversation in the United States.
Tom Leopold is a comedy writer who has written and produced for classic shows including "Seinfeld" and "Cheers," as well as for the shows honoring Tina Fey and Will Ferrell for the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor. Three years ago Leopold converted from Judaism to Catholicism. He chronicled that spiritual journey in a one-man show, "A Comedy Writer Finds God." The show also explores how his family coped with his daughter's struggle with an eating disorder. Tom can also be found cohosting the radio show "Entertaining Truth" with Fr. Leo Patalinghug on SiriusXM's The Catholic Channel. Here he talks with Managing Editor Kerry Weber.
David Cortright of the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame talks about UN week in New York and small steps toward peace in Syria in Iran. In 1965, Pope Paul VI called for an end to war in a landmark speech to the United Nations. You can read Professor's Cortright blog on peacemaking here.
Brother Joe Hoover, S.J., talks about his vision for America's poetry pages under his editorship. Brother Hoover is a playwright, actor and teacher living in New York City.
Matt Malone, S.J., talks about the first in the history of America: an interview with the pope.
James McCann, S.J., talks about the work of the Pontifical Oriental Institute and how the school's students have been affected by the turmoil in the Middle East. This interview was recorded in May 2013.
Kevin Spinale, S.J., the moderator of the Catholic Book Club, discusses Francis of Assisi: The Life and Afterlife of a Medieval Saint, with Rev. Michael Cusato, the book's English translator. Francis of Assisi is the Catholic Book Club selection for July and August, 2013.
J.P. speaks about why her family moved from South Korea to the United States, the challenges she faced as an undocumented immigrant and how gaining temporary legal status changed her life. She also discusses immigration reform legislation, the subject of this week's editorial in America.
Andrea Vicini, S.J., of the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry discusses the ethics of the National Insitute of Health's BRAIN Initiative. The initiative promises the possibility for medical breakthroughs in the field of neuroscience, but who will benefit from these technologies? And could they be put to questionable purposes?
Former Major League Baseball Commissioner Fay Vincent speaks about the need for greater moral leadership in baseball in wake of the latest steroid scandal. In an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal on August 5, Mr. Vincent called for a lifetime ban for all players who use performance enhancing drugs.
Hans Zollner, S.J., the director of the Centre for Child Protection at the Gregorian University, talks about the Vatican's efforts to stop sexual abuse and the challenges of adapting Vatican policy in different cultures worldwide. For more on the centre's e-learning curriculm, visit www.elearning-childprotection.com.
William T. Cavanaugh, discusses his article, "The Root of Evil: Does Religion Promote Violence?" Cavanaugh is the author of The Myth of Religious Violence (Oxford University Press) and the director of Center for World Catholicism and Intercultural Theology at DePaul University.
Mark Naison, a professor of history and African American studies at Fordham University, talks about the tragic death of Trayvon Martin and the state of race relations in the United States today.
Tim Reidy, America's digital editor, and James Martin, S.J., editor at large, meditate on the Catholic themes in this season of their favorite series, "Mad Men." Take a look at Don, Peggy, Betty, Roger, Betty, Pete, Bob and Joan through the lens of confession, fidelity, family, honesty, poverty and redemption.
Maxine Margolis, author of Goodbye, Brazil: Émigrés from the Land of Soccer and Samba, talks about causes of the widespread protests in Brazil.
Paul Elie talks with Kevin Spinale, S.J, about the Catholic Book Club selection for June, Flannery O'Connor's The Violent Bear It Away. Elie is the author of The Life You Save May Be Your Own and Reinventing Bach. His essay on "Love and Violence" in the work of Caravaggio appears in the new book, Not Less Than Everything:Catholic Writers on Heroes of Conscience, from Joan of Arc to Oscar Romero. Kevin Spinale's introduction to The Violent Bear It Away and the conversation that followed can be found here.
Events on the ground in Egypt are moving rapidly. As Senior Editor Kevin Clarke spoke with Dr. James Zogby this afternoon, Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi was removed from power by the Egyptian military. Zogby talks about why Egypt's Arab Spring revolution appears heading into a different phase and what may come next.
Zogby is the author of Arab Voices (Palgrave Macmillan, October 2010) and the founder and president of the Arab American Institute (AAI), a Washington, D.C.-based organization which serves as the political and policy research arm of the Arab American community. He is also Managing Director of Zogby Research Services, which specializes in groundbreaking public opinion polling across the Arab world. Zogby is a lecturer and scholar in Middle Eastern affairs and a Visiting Professor of Social Research and Public Polling at New York University in Abu Dhabi.
George A. Lopez discusses the future of Syria and the ethics of intervention in an interview with associate editor Kevin Clarke. Professor Lopez is a professor of peace studies at the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies at the University of Notre Dame.
John Sexton talks about his book Baseball As a Road to God: Seeing Beyond the Game, which was co-written by Thomas Oliphant and Peter J. Schwartz. Sexton is the president of New York University and a graduate of Fordham University and Brooklyn Prep. Learn more here about Charlie Winans, one of Sexton's teachers at Brooklyn Prep.
Rob Weinert-Kendt talks with Associate Editor Kerry Weber about the year in New York theater. In addition to reviewing theater for America, Rob is an associate editor at American Theatre magazine and runs the blog The Wicked Stage. His article on the spirituality of theater for America appeared in May 2011. You can read his recent theater reviews for America here.
James Martin, S.J., discusses his new e-book, Together on Retreat: Meeting Jesus in Prayer. Father Martin is a contributing editor at America and author of The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything and Between Heaven and Mirth. You can find him on Twitter @jamesmartinsj or www.facebook.com/frjamesmartin.
Naomi Schaefer Riley is a former editor for the Wall Street Journal and a writer whose work focuses on higher education, religion, philanthropy and culture. She is the author, most recently, of the book 'Til Faith Do Us Part: How Interfaith Marriage is Transforming America.
Michael Kennedy, S.J., talks about the Jesuit Restorative Justice Initiative and his work with youth in the California prison system. Father Kennedy is the author of Eyes on Jesus and Eyes on the Cross, among other books. He spoke to Associate Editor Luke Hansen, S.J., at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress. After the interview, several juvenile inmates who Father Kennedy works with in Los Angeles wrote powerful letters to Pope Francis, thanking him for washing the feet of juvenile prisoners in Rome on Holy Thursday.
Bishop Nicolas Djomo of Democratic Republic of the Congo explains why 15 years of unrest have left his fellow citizens exhausted and asking for assistance from the international community. Interview by Associate Editor Kevin Clarke.
Peter Eisner talks with Kevin Spinale, S.J., about his book The Pope's Last Crusade: How an American Jesuit Helped Pope Pius XI's Campaign to Stop Hitler. Mr. Eisner's book tells the story of America editor John LaFarge, S.J., who was brought to Rome to help Pius XI write an encyclical condemning Nazi ideology. The Pope's Last Crusade is the Catholic Book Club selection for April.
Greg Boyle, S.J., is founder of Homeboy Industries, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year. He is also the author of Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion, which made the New York times bestseller list. Homeboy industries serves high-risk, formerly gang-involved men and women with free programs like tattoo removal, legal services, and mental health services. It also operates seven social enterprises that serve as job-training sites, including Homeboy Bakery, Homegirl Café and Homeboy silkscreen and embroidery. We spoke with Fr. Greg at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress in New York after he offered a talk about his work to a large crowd, moving many to tears.
Scott W. Hahn, a professor of theology at Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio, and author of Consuming the Word (Doubleday, 2013), is the author of this week's cover story in America, "Mass Evangelization: Sharing Faith with the Eucharist." In this week's Podcast, he speaks with Luke Hansen, S.J., and describes the role of friendship in the work of evangelization.
Speaking with Luke Hansen, S.J., from the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress, Maureen Sullivan, O.P., discusses the achievements of the Second Vatican Council, whether the church needs a Vatican III and what her students think of the council.
Kathleen Norris is a poet and author of several books including The Cloister Walk and Acedia and Me. She recently spoke at the Los Angeles Religious Education Congress on the spirituality of our everyday lives.
Raymond A. Schroth, S.J., discusses his article "America at War," which traces the magazine's support for the Vietnam War until an editorial reversal in 1971. Father Schroth served as a young editor at America during some of this time. You can read through a collection of editorials from the period here.
David Nasaw, author of The Patriarch: The Remarkable Life and Turbulent Times of Joseph P. Kennedy, talks to Kevin Spinale, S.J., about the life of one of the wealthiest and most influential men of the 20th century. Nasaw's book is the Catholic Book Club selection for March. Read Kevin's introduction to the book here. Kevin will be answering questions about the book online on Friday March 22.
Matt Carnes, S.J., of Georgetown University talks about the future of Latin America and U.S. relations with Venezuela after the death of Hugo Chavez.
James Hanvey, S.J., talks about the church's "ecclesial desolation" and what it can do to regain its Easter eyes and rediscover the Spirit of the Second Vatican Council. Father Hanvey's article "Quo Vadis?" appears in the March 18 issue of America.
Mark Burnett and Roma Downey discuss their new History Channel miniseries, "The Bible."
Thomas J. Reese, S.J., the former editor in chief of America, answers common questions about the upcoming papal transition. John W. O'Malley, S.J., reviews the history of Celestine V and Gregory VI, two popes who resigned.
Luke Hansen, S.J., talks about America's controversial editorial "Repeal the Second Amendment."
Is "Zero Dark Thirty" immoral? Does "Beasts of the Southern Wild" make sense? Can Russell Crowe sing? And most of all, which Philadelphia Catholic knows more about "Silver Linings Playbook"? All this in our annual Oscar podcast featuring Bill McGarvey, James Martin, S.J., and Tim Reidy.
Chris Haw talks about his new book From Willow Creek to Sacred Heart: Rekindling My Love for Catholicism. Haw is a carpenter, painter, theologian and potter. He, his son Simon and his wife, Cassie, are members of Sacred Heart Catholic Church and Camden Houses, a small Christian community in Camden, New Jersey. Here he talks about his return to the Catholic Church and his involvement with the "new monastic" movement.
The Rev. J. Bryan Hehir talks about the legacy of John Courtney Murray, S.J. What would have Murray said about today's battles over abortion, or the controversy surrounding the mandate that requires Catholic institutions to pay for contraception for their employees? Father Hehir is the Parker Gilbert Montgomery Professor of the Practice of Religion and Public Life at Harvard University and the Secretary for Social Services for the Archdiocese of Boston.
Kevin Clarke reports on his visit to Haiti shortly before the third anniversary of the earthquake that devastated the country. You can read Kevin's reporting from Haiti here, including the story of the deaf boy discussed on the podcast, pictured left.