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The Artist Abroad

All Hail to Those Who Hold Up Half of Heaven


I suppose it was bound to happen but I was hoping it would happen much, much later on in Francis’s tenure as the pontiff of the Roman Catholic Church. The revival of a crackdown on American nuns, specifically the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR), however, by the Vatican-appointed Cardinal Gerhard Mueller, head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of Faith, lets us in on the good cop/bad cop dual role that Francis has started to exhibit. It’s a kind of balancing act apparently, so no faction of the church is completely happy or unhappy with his policy decisions.

Posted: May 19th, 2014 in Blogs,Columnists | Read More »

Canonization rites: Greatest show on earth, a spiritual feast

Pope John XXIII (left) convened the liberalizing Vatican II in the 1960s; John Paul II guided the Church during the end of the Cold War. AP

Some 800,000 people will fill St. Peter’s Square up to Castel Sant’Angelo and tens of thousands more are expected to swamp the areas around St. Peter’s Basilica when two of the most beloved popes of the modern era—Blessed John XXIII and Blessed John Paull II—are declared saints today in what stands to become the biggest canonization rites in history.

Posted: April 27th, 2014 in Featured Gallery,Headlines,Photos & Videos | Read More »

The Artist Abroad

Glasnost at the Vatican?

Pope Francis might just visit typhoon-devastated Leyte, which has more than 1 million Catholic faithful. AP FILE PHOTO

A “small chapel” is how Pope Francis describes what the Roman Catholic Church might wind up becoming if it keeps playing the role of morally superior know-it-all.

Posted: September 24th, 2013 in Blogs,Columnists | Read More »

Cardinal Tagle: Pope Francis thought I had just come from kindergarten

Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, the Archbishop of Manila, makes a sign of the cross on the foreheads of devotees during a mass in observance of Ash Wednesday which ushers the 45-day Lenten Season Wednesday February 13, 2013 in Manila. AP FILE PHOTO

Attending a meeting in Rome two weeks ago, Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle got a dose of Pope Francis’ sense of humor.

Posted: June 30th, 2013 in Features,Latest Global Nation Stories,Philippines | Read More »

Filipinos rooting for Manila Archbishop Tagle

By ,
Roman Catholic devotees receive Holy Communion during a Mass at the start of the prayer vigil Tuesday, March 12, 2013 at the Manila Archbishop chapel in Manila, Philippines, to coincide with the conclave at the Vatican to select a new Pope.  AP PHOTO/BULLIT MARQUEZ

On the eve of the papal conclave, Catholics rooting for Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle got an unexpected boost with the release of the Italian translation of his 8-year-old book intended to re-ignite the “value of community in a divided world.”

Posted: March 13th, 2013 in Features,Latest Global Nation Stories,Philippines | Read More »