Articles on Catholicism

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Jean Vanier, founder of L'Arche communities, poses for a photograph after he received the Templeton Prize at St. Martins-in-the-Fields church in London, U.K., in May 2015. (AP Photo/Alastair Grant)

I once thought Catholic humanist Jean Vanier a hero. Now I’m wrestling with his coercive legacy

Jean Vanier, Catholic founder of L'Arche International, allegedly had abusive sexual relationships. Religious tolerance for the veneration of male leaders may be partly to blame.
Madonna with child and angels by Giovanni Battista Salvi da Sassoferrato, 1674. The cult of the Virgin is emblematic of the way the church silences women and marginalises their experience. Wikimedia Commons

How the cult of Virgin Mary turned a symbol of female authority into a tool of patriarchy

Belief in the eternal virginity of Mary has inflicted damage to women, who can never attain her sexless motherhood or unsullied 'purity'. Yet in the Gospels, Mary is strong-minded and courageous.
Revelers dressed as Catrina, an iconic Day of the Dead skeleton, at a holiday parade in Mexico City, Oct. 21, 2018. Reuters/Andres Stapff

Day of the Dead: From Aztec goddess worship to modern Mexican celebration

It may sound like a solemn affair, but the Day of the Dead – which blends indigenous and Catholic ritual – is a convivial celebration that allows Mexicans to reconnect with deceased loved ones.
A 2012 photograph of the Sunrise Church of Christ in Buffalo’s East Side. The building has since been demolished. AP Photo/David Duprey

A new solution for America’s empty churches: A change of faith

In up-and-coming neighborhoods, old churches are often converted to apartments or offices. But what about the vacant or underused churches in areas that aren't attractive to developers?
Whitlanders in the 1940s. Established in 1941 near the base of Victoria’s Mount Buffalo, this Catholic community celebrated the ‘dignity of manual labour’ and was led by a charismatic athlete and former judge’s associate, Ray Triado. Joe Pisani

Friday essay: the Australians who pioneered self-sufficiency, generations before Nimbin

Long before 70s hippies and hipster artisans, Australians were seeking solace by going back to the land. They ranged from anarchists to suffragists to Catholic agrarians.
A man dressed as Saint Patrick blesses the crowd in Dublin as the parade makes its way through the Irish capital in 1998. AP Photo/John Cogill

The truth about St. Patrick’s Day

The Irish continue to express gratitude for St. Patrick's unselfish commitment to their spiritual well-being, even as the rest of the world celebrates by drowning in booze.
A religion sociologist discovers that his criticism of the Church is based on lies. Shutterstock

The Catholic Church is a rich male collective

The real lessons of Jesus Christ as outlined in the Bible are socialist. But the Church, a veritable old boys club, doesn't teach us that.
Argentina’s pro-choice movement, which began in 2003, hopes that the Senate will vote in favor of legalizing abortion on Aug. 8, 2018.

Facing a groundswell of support for legal abortion, Argentina’s Catholic Church moderates its tone

Abortion support is high in Argentina, even among Catholics. That puts the church, which opposes an abortion bill up for vote on August 8, in the awkward position of fighting a law its members demand.

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