Issue 1808

Ecumenism and Global Governance: Pope Francis in Geneva

Ecumenism against the backdrop of global governance At 8.30 a.m. on Thursday, June 21, 2018, flight AZ4000 departed Fiumicino airport heading for Geneva with Pope Francis, his entourage and accredited members of the press on board. This was Francis’ 23rd international journey. He is the third pope to have set foot in Switzerland, following Paul VI and John Paul II. For the first time, a Chinese correspondent was among the journalists on the plane. As Francis said when he wished the journalists a pleasant flight, this was “a journey toward unity.” The voyage marked the 70th anniversary of the foundation...

By: Antonio Spadaro, SJ

Ethical Discernment and Economic-Financial Questions

On May 17, 2018, in the Holy See Press Office, a Vatican document was presented titled Considerations for an ethical discernment regarding some aspects of the present economic-financial system. It was prepared jointly by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. It was approved by the pope.[1] As the title indicates, two of the most important dicasteries of the Holy See engaged in a sector that touches on very technical mechanisms of the financial and monetary spheres of the modern economy, convinced that the Church has the duty to express its...

By: GianPaolo Salvini, SJ

Power in the Bible

What does the Bible say about “power”? The subject is current and of great interest,[1] but not at all simple. Anyone searching for the word “power” in the Old Testament would be disappointed: it does not exist in Hebrew. Is that because Sacred Scripture does not provide any cause for reflection about power? Far from it. However, we do not find any theoretical statement about it since the biblical tradition is a lived experience that becomes clearer over the course of the narration. It is necessary, therefore, to bear in mind that conceptualizations and language have evolved over time, and...

By: Giancarlo Pani SJ

Net Neutrality and the Technology Environment

In mid-December 2017, the United States Federal Communication Commission (FCC) voted to reclassify Internet Service Providers (ISPs) as information services rather than common carriers or public service providers. ISPs are those services that connect companies and individuals to the internet: telephone companies, cable companies and so on. Though debated from at least 2003, the common carrier designation was assigned only in 2015 by the FCC under the Obama administration. The current membership of the FCC, with a majority reflecting the views of the Trump administration, chose the former designation of information service. This decision, controversial in American political circles, offers...

By: Paul A. Soukup, SJ

Multitasking: Opportunity or Weakness?

A significant feature of contemporary culture is the wealth of opportunity available to us, not least due to the increasing speed and power of technology. A term often used in this sphere is multitasking, which symbolically expresses both a mentality and an ideal: the possibility of carrying out concurrently an ever greater number of tasks, commitments and relationships. This is a wonderful possibility that was unthinkable until a few decades ago. The multiple opportunities of multitasking Examples to illustrate multitasking abound, to the extent that it is difficult to specify them in all possible aspects because they have become part...

By: Giovanni Cucci, SJ

The War in Syria

Even though it is still unclear where and when lasting peace negotiations will take place,[1] some analysts believe that 2018 could be the year the civil war in Syria ends. Successive rounds of talks – in Geneva, Astana and Sochi – have so far proven, for one reason or another, unable to resolve this grave situation. While further unforeseeable upheavals are still possible, it now seems clear that Bashar al-Assad and his Russian and Iranian allies have won militarily, although these forces are still engaged throughout the country in their attempt to eliminate the last anti-regime resistances. According to various...

By: Giovanni Sale, SJ

"The Shape of Water" A film by Guillermo Del Toro

Winner of the Golden Lion at the 2017 Venice Film Festival and four Oscars at the 2018 Academy Awards (Best Picture, Best Director, Best Production Design and Best Original Score), The Shape of Water by Mexican film director Guillermo Del Toro is a fairy tale in a real historical context. The terms “fairy tale” and “reality” do not appear meant to converge, but this is just one of the many paradoxes that typify the film. Between reality and imagination The film is set in the United States, in 1962, at the height of the Cold War. The world is divided...

By: Virgilio Fantuzzi, SJ

Father Angelo Secchi, Jesuit and Scientist

This year marks 200 years since the birth of the Jesuit Fr. Angelo Secchi (Reggio Emilia, June 28, 1818 - Rome, February 26, 1878). He was an astronomer, geodesist and founder of spectroscopic astronomy. From the year 1849 he directed the Observatory of the Roman College, completely rebuilding it with the construction of the first astrophysical observatory in Europe: for this he is considered the founder of stellar and solar astrophysics. On February 26, 2018, a solemn celebration in his memory was held in the church of Saint Ignatius of Loyola in Campo Marzio. Here we present the homily of...

By: Cardinal Luis Ladaria, SJ
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