(RNS) Ever since Pope Francis was elected, he has faced strong opposition to his push for church reforms — and the face of that opposition has often been Cardinal Raymond Burke.
CHR Comment: Burke’s change in service has raised questions about the relationship between this conservative American Cardinal and Pope Francis.
Source: Cardinal Burke insists he is serving Francis, not opposing him | Religion News Service
Church attendance may be falling in Poland as elsewhere across Europe, but the victory of conservative opposition Law and Justice (PiS) party in Sunday’s election will likely advance the role of Roman Catholic values in public life and government.
CHR Comment: The comparisons are made with the high point in church attendance and Catholic piety in the 1980s. The changes are compelled by reactions to life issues such as in vetro fertilization, immigration, and materialism. A number of politically vocal priests are named.
Source: Polish vote marks resurgence of conservative Catholic values
The topic of Ross Douthat’s Erasmus Lecture for First Things magazine this week was “The Crisis of Conservative Catholicism,” a timely one given the recent public tussles over the Synod of the Family in Rome. On the same evening, a group of prominent Catholic theologians released an . . .
CHR Comment: Kaya Oakes looks at the divide in Roman Catholicism, which the writer characterizes as liberal Catholics v. conservative Catholics. New York Times columnist Ross Douthat is the conservative, whose recent article drew criticism. Toward the end of the article Oakes characterizes conservative Roman Catholics by certain liturgical practices rather than by specific doctrinal views or moral views.
Source: “Own Your Heresy”: The Argument Over Who Gets to Do Public Theology Takes a Sharp Turn | Religion Dispatches
The Catholic Church’s increasing diversity has deepened the rift between conservatives and progressives as Pope Francis pushes increasing acceptance for marginalized church members.
CHR Comment: Africans now comprise 16% of the Roman Catholic Church, which gives them greater influence. However, European and North American Catholics (“westerners”) still have 32% of the members and set the agenda for church discussions.
Source: African bishops criticize Vatican’s priorities as ‘Eurocentric’ – CSMonitor.com
A brief interview with the retired German cardinal who makes Francis understandable to Catholic theologians, especially to conservatives. Cardinal Walter Kasper, ‘The Pope’s Theologian,’ Reveals The Brains Behind Francis’ Heart.