The National Catholic Review


  • Twice I have received the sacrament of the anointing of the sick. The first time was four years ago, when I was diagnosed with breast cancer; the second, a couple weeks ago when I learned that the breast cancer had metastasized.

    The sacrament involved both the sacrament of reconciliation and the anointing of my head and hands. It immersed me in the love of the church, a profound experience that drove home the fact that as part of the Christian community, I do not stand alone when...

  • Many Catholic dioceses are going through the difficult journey of merging two or more parishes into a single entity.  Usually, after a long process of planning for the change, the moment arrives for the parishes to give up their identity and form a new entity. It is a heart-wrenching experience for many long-time parishioners, no matter how much preparation has gone into the transition.

  • In a post titled “When Campaigns Poison Compromise,” Cook Political Report’s Amy Walter looks at this year’s congressional campaigns and worries that the way “both sides have boxed themselves in on tough issues like immigration, entitlements, and climate change on the campaign trail ultimately leaves little room for any meaningful compromise in a 2015 Congress.”

  • What is gratitude? It's been on my mind a lot recently. It's on my mind everyday, actually, because in addition to teaching, a big part of my job is showing gratitude. In my role as director of advancement, I have the privilege of thanking benefactors.  

  • On Sept. 18, the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria began a military offensive outside of the Kobane area in northern Syria, and in no time they had terrorized and seized 60 of the surrounding villages. Over the next three days an unprecedented flight of 160,000 refugees escaped across Turkey’s southern border. The sudden exodus put the refugee issue back on the international diplomatic front burner, but this time, as one official noted, “The pot is now boiling over and the water is spilling...

  • As the situation deteriorated in Hong Kong following police crackdown on protestors over the weekend, Cardinal John Tong Hon, the local bishop, issued “an urgent appeal” to the government there “to put the personal safety of fellow citizens as her prime concern” and “to exercise restraint in the deployment of force.” 

    The leader of Hong Kong’s 374,000 Catholics urged the government “to listen” to the voice of the 7.1 million inhabitants of this autonomous region on the southern coast...

  •  Not since the Second Vatican Council has a gathering of representatives of the world’s Catholic bishops sparked such interest and controversy as the extraordinary synod of bishops on the family which opens in the Vatican on October 5. While the agenda is very wide, public interest has mainly focused on how this synod, and the follow-on synod in October 2015, will address the situation of Catholics who are divorced and remarried, and whether they can be re-admitted to communion.

  • Pope Francis issued a heartfelt call to his brother Jesuits worldwide to “row together” with him, as he rows with considerable effort in ‘the barque of Peter,” and to “pray a lot,” because “the night and the powers of darkness are always close.” 

    He issued his call during the thanksgiving ceremony in Rome, Sept. 27, for the 200th anniversary of the restoration of the Society of Jesus (‘the Society’), as the Jesuit order is called.

  • From the Vatican:

    "Jesuits 'brave and expert rowers' in barque of Peter...Row then!  Row, and be strong, even in the headwind!"

    Pope Francis celebrated a special liturgy of thanksgiving in the Church of the Gesù in Rome on Saturday, to mark the 200th anniversary of the restoration of the Society of Jesus. Please find, below, Vatican Radio's English translation of the prepared text of the Holy Father's homily for the occasion.

    Dear brothers and...

  • In the aftermath of the Scottish Independence referendum last week, it is becoming clear that for many on the defeated “Yes” side, this was only Round One. On the day following the vote, U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron declared, in an early-morning statement delivered outside 10 Downing Street, that the question was now settled “for a generation.” Yet the referendum result was decisive; there was a much larger majority for “No” than anyone, even the polls, had predicted. This has not...