Issue 2007

‘A New Imagination of the Possible’: Seven Images from Francis for post-Covid-19

The first global pandemic of the digital age arrived suddenly. The world was stopped in its tracks by an unnatural suspension of activity that interrupted business and pleasure. “For weeks now it has been evening. Thick darkness has gathered over our squares, our streets and our cities; it has taken over our lives, filling everything with a deafening silence and a distressing void that stops everything as it passes by. We feel it in the air, we notice in people’s gestures, their glances give them away. We find ourselves afraid and lost.” These are the words Pope Francis used to...

By: Antonio Spadaro, SJ

The Letter to The Galatians: ‘The Truth of the Gospel’

The Letter to the Galatians is an exceptional New Testament document. It was written by Paul at a time of great anguish, because a fervent community that the Apostle had worked hard to establish and to which he remained closely attached, found itself being misled by Judaizers. These had come from the People of Israel and had accepted faith in Christ Jesus, but had not abandoned the observance of the Law, Jewish traditions and circumcision as indispensable conditions of salvation. For them, it is the Law that saves, not Christ. They considered him a marginal agent in the economy of...

By: Giancarlo Pani SJ

Death in the Digital Age

Our ambivalent relationship with death A revealing test of how much digital technology has changed our way of life is our relationship with time. It has been established that our awareness of time diminishes as we navigate; we find ourselves at the end of the day without being aware of its actual duration, just as it is equally difficult to remember what we saw during the hours spent in front of the screen. Everything seems to flatten out in the instant, with no memory and no sense of duration. This concentration on the present dimension of time was not born...

By: Giovanni Cucci, SJ

Modi’s India: Between Hindu Traditionalism and Coronavirus

Two serious emergencies are currently rocking India. One is medical, the coronavirus emergency. The other is political, and involves changes to citizenship laws. They are of a different nature and concern different areas, even if somehow connected. They are dangerous, insidious developments challenging the survival and unity of the second most populous country in the world and he third largest economy in Asia, after China and Japan. India has a population of about 1.3 billion people, half of whom are under 25 years old. The country has a volatile economy and a large part of the population (mainly rural) lives...

By: Giovanni Sale, SJ

Rembrandt, the Artist in the Mirror of the Word

Als Ich Can (How can I): these are the words engraved on the frame of the first self-portrait in history, a work by Jan van Eyck.[1] Three words and a challenge to generations of artists to measure themselves against this challenging artistic claim. In the case of the great Dutch painter Rembrandt van Rijn (1606-69), his success was exceptional; the painter brought this painting genre to a level of perfection that had never been reached before in the art of self-portraiture. As a beggar, or as the Prodigal Son, a monarch with a scepter in his hand or in military...

By: Lucian Lechintan, SJ

Syria and Turkey Battle for Idlib Province

Nine Years of War in Syria Nine years have passed since the Syrian conflict began, since the optimism of the 2011 Arab Spring turned into tragedy. For Syria, it all began on March 15 of that year, when protesters took to the streets in Daraa, in the southwest of the country. Soon protests – mostly peaceful – spread throughout the country, demanding an end to the 40-year rule of the Assad family. The state police, as always, reacted violently against unarmed people, and within a few weeks the death toll was in the hundreds. In response, many opponents of the...

By: Giovanni Sale, SJ

Church Numbers in the World

The vitality of the Church and, above all, the faith that animates her pastors and her faithful cannot be measured by numbers and statistics. Only God knows the mysterious and unique relationship that unites him to people who profess themselves Catholic. This is what constitutes the essence of the faith. Yet the Church, like every visible human reality, cannot live outside the dimensions of space and time and should not refrain measuring her own quantitative dimensions in some way, without expecting them to convey more than they can offer. For this reason the Central Office of Statistics of the Church...

By: GianPaolo Salvini, SJ

John Paul II Communicator

Karol Wojtyla was born on May 18, 1920. On the hundredth anniversary of his birth, memories and tributes have rightly multiplied for this great witness of faith, already raised to the honors of the altars. I wish to add a small voice to this great choir by remembering with simplicity and emotion some experiences lived in his service in the Vatican communications field.   A confident vision of communication and the media John Paul II showed himself to be a great communicator from the very first moment of his pontificate, as soon as he appeared at the Loggia of the...

By: Federico Lombardi, SJ
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