Reflecting the Mind of the
Vatican Since 1850

December 2023 Issue
“Everyone, Everyone, Everyone” Welcoming or relativism in the Catholic Church?

The Pope says the Church must know how to welcome everyone, but he does not say – nor can he say – how this will happen on a case-by-case basis. Local communities will have to find ways to help each person. Discernment will be needed but the two false solutions of relativism and sectarianism will have to be avoided, as Fr. Nuno Tovar de Lemos reminds us in “Everyone, Everyone, Everyone”: Welcoming or relativism in the Catholic Church?

 

The Seed of a Church From “Every Tribe, Tongue, People and Nation” is an account of the October, 2023 session of the XVI Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops. The session’s dynamics contributed to a climate of trust in which each person felt free to offer his or her own contribution and to welcome that of others. This affinity made it possible to table even the thorniest issues. Among others: polygamous unions, vocations in the Church, abuse and accountability in the exercise of one’s responsibilities. The author, Fr. Giacomo Costa, is Special Secretary of the 16th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops and President of the San Fedele Cultural Foundation, Milan.

 

Laudate Deum: Ecology in the Light of the Gospel by Fr. Andreas Gonçalves Lind, proposes we read this encyclical from the mysticism of the “poor man,” and, in doing so, understand how the pontiff’s magisterium reaches for the vision of Teilhard de Chardin. Emphasizing the centrality of God as Creator and promoting a “situated anthropocentrism,” the Pope encourages us to respect nature in an ecology that is capable of promoting the development of human life. Francis thus invites us to behave based on dialogue and cooperation, to address today’s environmental and social challenges.

 

Laudato si’ has aroused great interest because it both discusses communication and serves as an example of environmental communication. Communication academics have examined it from many perspectives: its coverage in the press; analyses using different tools of communication studies; its impact on different communities; and, its application to specific communication practices. Laudato si’ as a Communications Phenomenon is by Fr. Paul Soukup, professor of communications at Santa Clara University, CA.

 

The people of Israel are remembered as the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. The Bible also shows how the genealogy of the Promise passes through the maternal. Rachel and Leah were sisters and Jacob’s brides, and are celebrated as the matriarchs of Israel.  Rachel and Leah, Sisters and Mothers of Israel by Fr. Vincenzo Anselmo tells their story of light and shadow, how God’s promise to Abraham is made flesh in countless descendants.

 

Also in this issue

From the ‘Old’ to the ‘New’ Vatican Communications, Federico Lombardi
The Report on Abuse in the Catholic Church in Switzerland, Hans Zollner
The Gaza War and the Ground Invasion, Giovanni Sale
BRICS Plus: An alternative to the current World Order?, Vladimir Pachkov
Dogmatic Developments in Interreligious Dialogue: Postmodern Relativism or Dialogue of Salvation?, Mario Imperatori
When Will There be Real Peace in Sudan?, Jean-Pierre Bodjoko
“It’s a Good Thing There’s Birds” a review of the The Swimmers by Julie Otsuka, Diego Mattei, SJ

 

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