Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

U.S. Scholar Expounds on Role of U.N., and More

by Delia Gallagher

ROME, MAY 28, 2004 (Zenit) - George Weigel is one of the foremost American Catholic thinkers involved in the current debate on the Catholic just war tradition and modern warfare.

Weigel was one of the featured speakers and organizers of a conference last month on "Catholic Thought and World Politics in the 21st Century," at the Gregorian University.

I asked Weigel to expound on some of the arguments he raised at the conference, particularly concerning the Church's position on just war, the role of the United Nations and the Holy See's current position on armed intervention.

Q: How did the idea for the conference evolve?

Weigel: In the late spring of 2003, Archbishop Celestino Migliore, the Holy See's representative at the United Nations, and I began to talk about certain problems in the state of Catholic thinking about world politics.

Both of us were concerned about the condition of what used to be called "Catholic international relations theory," and we agreed that a series of programs in Rome that would put European scholars, American scholars and Vatican officials into conversation on the future of Catholic thought about world politics would be in everyone's interest.

The April 2004 conference was, we hope, the beginning of a multiyear process that will lead to a clarification of thought for all who are involved.

So, at the beginning of the process, it seemed best to focus on some very basic questions: the very idea of "Catholic international relations theory"; the current state of the just war debate in the Church; and the nature, prospects and limits of international law.

Q: In your talk, you touch on the difficulties of the role of the United Nations, an organization which in some instances is at odds with the teaching of the Catholic Church, yet one which the Holy See nonetheless says should have decision-making authority on matters such as war. How does one reconcile sovereignty of states with participation in an international organization? Do you think that sovereign states can act to secure peace without assistance or agreement from an international organization; and perhaps that such an organization may not have any significant role to play in securing world peace? Is there an alternative to the U.N.?

Weigel: These are some of the most urgent questions requiring careful thought today. They often come down to the question, What is the locus of moral authority in world politics at the beginning of the 21st century?

Since the modern notion of state sovereignty emerged in the 17th century, the Catholic Church has cautioned, rightly, against absolutizing this idea. The 20th-century popes, in continuity with this concern, were strong advocates of international organizations, with Pope John XXIII proposing a "universal public authority" to handle those global questions that could only be handled at the global level.

At the same time, Blessed John XXIII made clear that he was not supporting "world government," or international structures that would impinge on the legitimate prerogatives of national governments or local governments.

So, from a Catholic point of view, this is a both/and, not either/or, matter. Both the U.N. and sovereign states are facts of international public life, and Catholic international relations theory has to take account of both.

On the question of the U.N.'s authority, and as I indicated in my paper at the April conference, it would be hard to say that, as a matter of fact, the world's nations have agreed that the only entity that can authorize the use of armed force is the U.N.

Here is what I wrote: "Since 1945, 126 out of 189 U.N. member states have been involved in 291 armed conflicts in which some 22 million people have been killed. Given this record, it is difficult to argue that the 'international community' has agreed in practice to be bound by the U.N. Charter and its rules on the use of force. It is even more difficult to argue that the 'international community' has ceded an effective monopoly on the use of force to actions sanctioned by the Security Council. Perhaps it should; perhaps it someday will. But to assert as a matter of fact that this transfer of authority has taken place seems counterfactual today."

That's one dimension of our current situation. On the other hand, the nations of the world are obliged, morally, to build a world of "order," which is Augustine's understanding of the meaning of "peace," and that has to be done, politically at least, through transnational and international organizations.

Work to reform the U.N. system is thus a moral and political imperative. But while that work goes on, it doesn't make much sense to me, from a moral-theological or political point of view, to ascribe to the U.N. capacities it doesn't have and a moral authority it has rarely demonstrated in practice.

Q: One of your arguments at the conference was that Catholic teaching does not contain a "presumption against war," as the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops claims it does. Some at the Vatican equate the Pope's messages against war -- "War is always a defeat for humanity" -- with a presumption against war. If Catholic teaching in the 20th century were to include a presumption against war, would that be wrong? Why?

Weigel: The phrase "presumption against war" obscures far more than it illuminates. Of course Catholic thinking about war and peace begins with a "presumption against war," if by that we simply mean that war should not be the first recourse in an international conflict.

But those who use that phrase today often mean much more. They mean that the use of proportionate and discriminate armed force is always morally suspect, and this has not been the stance of the Catholic just war tradition for 1,500 years.

The classic tradition believed that the morality of the use of armed force depended on who was using it, why, to what ends, and how. Thus the classic just war tradition begins with a presumption in favor of justice: legitimate sovereign authority has the moral obligations to defend those for whom the public authorities have assumed responsibility.

There are many ways to fulfill that obligation; in certain circumstances, proportionate and discriminate armed force can be one of those ways.

If you begin your analysis this way, with the responsibility of sovereign authority to advance the peace of order, you can bring the full riches of the tradition to bear on the situation; if you begin somewhere else, you can get confused. And your vision can become blurred.

Q: Similarly, you question whether the Holy See's position on war isn't a type of "functional pacifism -- a way of thinking that retains the intellectual apparatus of the just war tradition of moral reasoning but that always comes down, at the bottom line, in opposition to the use of armed force." If the Vatican's line on war were to be a type of functional pacifism, could that be accepted as a legitimate development in Church teaching or would it be an error, in your opinion?

Weigel: We have to distinguish here between the moral teaching of the Catholic Church and the diplomacy of the Holy See, acting as an extension of the global mission of the Bishop of Rome, the Pope.

The moral teaching of the Church is aptly summarized in the Catechism, which I do not believe can be read as endorsing what I termed in my Rome paper "functional pacifism."

As for the diplomacy of the Holy See, it seems to me that the Holy See should constantly press for non-military solutions to conflicts.

It would be inappropriate for the Vatican's secretary for relations with states -- the "foreign minister" -- or officials like the president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace to announce, publicly, and in so many words, "These are the good guys, these are the bad guys; good guys, go to it, and God bless you." The diplomats of the Holy See should press for non-military solutions; that's their job.

Similarly, the moral witness of Pope John Paul II has been directed, appropriately, toward pressing the nations to resolve their conflicts without violence. We can be sure that future popes will do the same thing.

That witness and that diplomacy should be conducted in such a way that it does not suggest that the Church has, as a matter of moral principle, adopted a stance of "functional pacifism," which it has not.

How to do that is a delicate matter that requires, among other things, careful coordination of statements from all the organs of the Holy See. It also requires a measure of self-discipline on the part of senior churchmen in Rome.

American and other reporters falsely assume that every senior official of the Holy See speaks "for the Vatican." They don't. In this kind of media environment, senior churchmen have to be very careful to let the Holy See speak in its own voice, through its own appropriate organs.

All of these questions, which touch on the meaning of the rich, complex just war tradition for today, will be among the issues discussed as the process I began discussing with Archbishop Migliore a year ago unfolds.

Q: You say, "Catholics whose countries experience a particular burden of responsibility in world affairs and who understand the distinctive way that Catholic social ethics once thought about the moral dimensions of world politics, ought to play a significant role in the Roman conversation and might well be consulted more regularly by the appropriate dicasteries of the Roman Curia." I assume here that you refer to Americans Catholics, at least as one of the major groups, and ask why, if they make up only 6% of worldwide Catholics, should they be given a majority voice in Rome?

Weigel: No one is asking for a "majority voice." As Archbishop Migliore and I both recognized, there is considerable expertise in the relevant disciplines -- just war theology, international legal theory, human rights theory, etc. -- in the United States.

Those specialists should be in more regular conversation with European intellectual colleagues, with the Roman intellectual milieu, and with the appropriate offices of the Holy See. Everyone will benefit from such a conversation, in both directions across the Atlantic.

* * *

The Lean Team

When a public dignitary or head of state travels, an "advance team" normally precedes him, to arrange everything from security to dietary needs. Advance teams for presidents and pop stars can number in the hundreds.

John Paul II has an advance team of two. One of them is Bishop Renato Boccardo, recently named secretary of the Pontifical Council for Social Communications and a longtime organizer of papal trips.

In anticipation of the Pope's June 5-6 trip to Switzerland, I sat down with Bishop Boccardo, who had just returned from Bern.

"When I go to speak with a government to prepare a visit, there is always great surprise when they see there are only two of us," Bishop Boccardo said. "They always ask, 'And when will the group be coming to prepare the trip? Isn't there a committee?'"

"I tell them we are the committee and we'll return a month prior to the trip for the last-minute details," he said.

The second surprise for governments is that the Pope's entourage consists of not more than 30 people: cardinals, the Vatican secretary of state, the "sostituto," master of ceremonies, some priests from the Secretariat of State to assist with languages, a physician, the directors of L'Osservatore Romano, the press office, and Vatican Radio and six security staff -- two Swiss guards and four Vatican police -- unarmed.

"It's another great surprise for the governments: The Pope's security does not carry weapons," said Bishop Boccardo. "'What kind of security is that?' they say to us."

He explained: "The Pope prefers that the people closest to him don't carry weapons. Security is entrusted to the host country."

The Pope views his travels as a true pilgrimage, not just a trip abroad.

"He has the attitude of a pilgrim when he travels," said Bishop Boccardo. "When in the car or a helicopter he always has the rosary in his hand. It's as if he were sowing prayer in the lands where he visits."

When on the papal plane, the Pope often looks out the window and makes a gesture of benediction on the land below.

Before he begins his daily activities, the Pope spends two hours in morning prayer.

"During the trips, and still today, the Pope is in prayer from just before 6 in the morning until 8," said Bishop Boccardo.

"Before, there was often a chapel in the house he was staying. Now, we try to find a place near his apartment or when possible, even in the apartment, to avoid major movement," he said.

"His personal prayer consists of the breviary, Eucharistic adoration and then scriptural readings from the Mass of the day," the bishop said.

John Paul II's great strength is precisely this "profound intimacy" with God, as well as his "humanity in small gestures," said Bishop Boccardo.

"We are used to the official image of the Pope, but behind this officialness, there is a profound spirituality and humanity," said the Vatican official.

"I remember when we were in Azerbaijan, during a Mass in this closed stadium," said Bishop Boccardo, "at a certain point, a man gets up and starts running toward the Pope. Naturally, he was stopped by the security services and taken away."

"But then the Pope whispered to me, 'I want to see this man,'" recalled the bishop. "I asked the head of security who told me, 'It's not possible. We don't know who he is -- there is a risk he might attempt something -- we've already isolated him.'

"So I told the Pope that the head of security thought it wasn't safe for him to see this man.

"'No, I really want to see him, it's important that I see him,' the Pope said to me."

"So I insisted with security, and at the end of the Mass we brought this man to the Pope, who greeted him and embraced him," Bishop Boccardo said. "He was a man without a home, with a wife and children, who wanted to tell the Pope of his desperation and the Pope welcomed him.

"The Pope can be very insistent -- even the head of security had to give in to his request."

The Pope's great skill in communication lies also in his ease in front of enormous crowds and his ability to deviate from his prepared remarks and joke with the crowd.

"I remember in Cuba, for example," said Bishop Boccardo, "at a certain point during the homily, the people began to cheer and the Pope said, 'I thank you for your cheering, it allows the Pope to catch his breath.'

"Another time in Manila for World Youth Day, there was a huge spotlight that illuminated the scene and every so often it would go out for a few moments and then come back on. The light would go out and the young people would start singing and then the light would come back on and the Pope would continue speaking. This continued for quite some time and at a certain point the Pope said, 'Hmmmm -- light, darkness, light, darkness ...'"

At the beginning of his pontificate, the Pope's desire to travel was misunderstood by the Vatican, according to Bishop Boccardo.

"They did not see his trips as a pastoral strategy," he said. "In the beginning, the interpretation was that a papal trip was the exception, and then we get back to normal life.

"I think for the Pope, the trips were never an exception, but in continuity with what came before and after.

"There was a difficulty in accepting these trips as part of a larger project, but for the Pope papal trips are an ordinary part of being Pope and he has marked an era through this form of communication."

Contact

Catholic Online
http://www.catholic.org CA, US
Catholic Online - Publisher, 661 869-1000

Email

info@yourcatholicvoice.org

Keywords

War, Iraq, Pope, Weigel

More Catholic PRWire

Showing 1 - 250 of 4,718

A Recession Antidote
Randy Hain

Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

The Why of Jesus' Death: A Pauline Perspective
Jerom Paul

A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell

My Dad
JoMarie Grinkiewicz

Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell

Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Catholic Online

Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Catholic Online

Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
Catholic Online

State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Catholic Online

Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
Catholic Online

2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Catholic Online

Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Catholic Online

Franchising to Evangelize
Catholic Online

Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Catholic Online

Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Catholic Online

Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Catholic Online

Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Catholic Online

Full Circle
Robert Gieb

Three words to a deeper faith
Paul Sposite

Relections for Lent 2009
chris anthony

Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell

World Food Program Director on Lent
Catholic Online

Moral Clarity
DAN SHEA

Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Catholic Online

A Prayer for Monaco: Remembering the Faith Legacy of Prince Rainier III & Princess Grace and Contemplating the Moral Challenges of Prince Albert II
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe

Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Sally Connolly

Glimpse of Me
Sarah Reinhard

The 3 stages of life
Michele Szekely

Sex and the Married Woman
Cheryl Dickow

A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Cheryl Dickow

Modernity & Morality
Dan Shea

Just a Minute
Sarah Reinhard

Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Hugh McNichol

Edging God Out
Paul Sposite

Burying a St. Joseph Statue
Cheryl Dickow

George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Catholic Online

Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell

Action Changes Things: Teaching our Kids about Community Service
Lisa Hendey

Easter... A Way of Life
Paul Spoisite

Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Hugh McNichol

Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Hugh McNichol

Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Catholic Online

Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Catholic Online

Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Catholic Online

Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Catholic Online

Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Catholic Online

Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
Catholic Online

Holy Saturday...anticipation!
Hugh McNichol

Priestly Identity: Crisis and Renewal (Part 1)
Catholic Online

Al Qaeda...afraid of Benedict's message!
Hugh McNichol

Benedict XVI...calling all to hope...
Hugh McNichol

Perfect Women
Cheryl Dickow

Papal Palm Sunday Address - 'Enough With the Bloodshed'
Catholic Online

Spotlight on China
Catholic Online

Papal Homily for Palm Sunday
Catholic Online

Holy Week...Holy Time!
Hugh McNichol

Mary and Motherhood
Cheryl Dickow

The Void
Paul Sposite

Islamic violence wounds the global community!
Hugh McNichol

The Seven New Deadly Sins!
Hugh McNichol

Catholic benefits include Catholic principles!
Hugh McNichol

Remembering Father Alfred Kunz
Matt C. Abbott

David vs Goliath
Theresa Lisiecki

Happy Lent!
Paul Sposite

Diplomacy...Vatican style!
Hugh McNichol

Sub umbra Petri! (Under the Shadow of Saint Peter)
Hugh McNichol

Cuba...a neonascent Church!
Hugh McNichol

Kids in Conflict
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On the Writings of St. Augustine
Catholic Online

The Relevance of Lourdes at 150
Catholic Online

Hillary...what would Saint Norbert say!
Hugh McNichol

Lent...questions, answers and involvement!
Hugh McNichol

Mary, Mother of all Humanity, Hic et Nunc!
Hugh McNichol

Catholics...WAKE UP!
Hugh McNichol

Catholic Brotherhood with the People of the Covenant
Hugh McNichol

Have mercy on us O Lord! - Ash Wednesday
Hugh McNichol

Vote early, vote Catholic!
Hugh McNichol

Christ, our global Alpha and Omega!
Hugh McNichol

Being Catholic means...total affirmation of being Catholic!
Hugh McNichol

Seeing the World through New Eyes
Sarah Reinhard

Emulating the Angelic Doctor!
Hugh McNichol

Priests defend, commend Archbishop Raymond Burke
Matt C. Abbott

Saint Paul...a continued example of radical conversion!
Hugh McNichol

A renaissance of faith, reason and global cooperation....
Hugh McNichol

Cardinal Rigali's Homily at Life Vigil
Catholic Online

Angelus: On Christian Unity
Catholic Online

Silencing the Pope
Catholic Online

Papal Homily on Feast of Christ's Baptism
Catholic Online

Education and Gender
Catholic Online

The ignominy of Roe vs. Wade
Hugh McNichol

Papal Message for World Day of the Sick
Catholic Online

Angelus: On Christian Unity
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Planned Lecture at La Sapienza
Catholic Online

Pope's Letter to Jesuits' 35th General Congregation
Catholic Online

Fr. Cantalamessa - Behold, the Lamb of God!
Catholic Online

That We May Be One, and Never Lose Heart
Catholic Online

Sowing Hope in Sierra Leone
Catholic Online

God-incidences are the gift of kairos moments
Mary Regina Morrell

St. Augustine's Last Days
Catholic Online

Liturgy: When There's a Medical Emergency
Catholic Online

Marriage and Celibacy: Love's Link
Catholic Online

Developing a Global Catholic Awareness
Hugh McNichol

Rooms in My Father's House
Cheryl Dickow

Resolutions for New Year 2008
Chris Anthony

Keep teaching Holy Father!!!
Hugh McNichol

Dangers of anti-Catholic academic extremism....
Hugh McNichol

The liturgy war
Matt C. Abbott

Some Answers to a Few Common Questions about Vocations
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Developing a Global Catholic Awareness
Hugh McNichol

Christmas reflections
Chris Anthony

The Lasting Contribution of The Servant of God Pope John Paul II
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

No more bobble-head Jesus'!
Hugh McNichol

Pope's Address to Baptist World Alliance
Catholic Online

The Virgin Without Sin
Catholic Online

Cardinal Vingt-Trois on His New Mission
Catholic Online

Archbishop Forte on Religion & Freedom: Part 1
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Chromatius of Aquileia, Pope, Benedict
Catholic Online

Pope's Address for Consistory of Cardinals
Catholic Online

Trafficking in Lives
Catholic Online

Pope Benedict - On Hope
Catholic Online

The Hidden Costs of Gambling
Catholic Online

A Vital, Life-Giving Message
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Christianity's Contribution
Catholic Online

Youth and Fashion's Modest Twist
Catholic Online

Papal Homily at the Consistory
Catholic Online

Love, Marriage and Happy Kids
Catholic Online

The Virtue of Obedience: Our Duty, Our Crown
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Vere dignum et justum est!
Hugh McNichol

Pope's Address to Bishops of Kenya
Catholic Online

Democracy in Danger in Venezuela
Catholic Online

The Life-Sapping Human Virus
Catholic Online

'You Alone Are The Lord': A Brief Summary of Catholic Teaching
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Sacred Time...Come Lord Jesus!
Hugh McNichol

How Christ-like are we in our lives?
Chris Anthony

A Retreat for Today's Christian Woman
Cheryl Dickow

Pope Benedict - On Trust in God
Catholic Online

God and Caesar Seen From Down Under
Catholic Online

Praying the Luminous Mysteries for our Clergy
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Culture's Pressure on Our Girls
Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle

Papal Message on the Common Good
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - St. Jerome on the Bible
Catholic Online

What Every Parent Should Know About 'The Golden Compass'
Catholic Online

Cardinal Poupard on 'Populorum Progressio'
Catholic Online

A Richer Liturgical Translation: Interview With Bishop Roche
Catholic Online

U.S. Bishops' Statement on War in Iraq
Catholic Online

The 'Golden Compass' is no treasure for children
Mary Regina Morrell

Bishop Skylstad's Address to U.S. Bishops' Fall Meeting
Catholic Online

Rewarding Failure
Catholic Online

On St. Martin of Tours
Catholic Online

Undermining Parents
Catholic Online

God...our theological E.F.Hutton!
Hugh McNichol

The Secular Vs. Religion?
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Jerome
Catholic Online

The Scourge of Poverty
Catholic Online

Sons and Daughters of God...EQUALLY!
Hugh McNichol

On Zacchaeus the Tax Collector
Catholic Online

Why Dads Matter
Catholic Online

Archbishop Chaput on Citizenship and Evangelization
Catholic Online

God Created Man for Life, Not Death
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for November
Catholic Online

Imposing 'Tolerance'
Catholic Online

Evangelizing a Digital World
Catholic Online

A Turn to the Fathers: Interview With Father Robert Dodaro
Catholic Online

Aborting Viable Lives
Catholic Online

Women Religious on Human Trafficking
Catholic Online

Chicago law firm fights for civil rights, against death culture
Matt C. Abbott

Fr. Cantalamessa - The Pharisee and the Publican
Catholic Online

Media Benefits and Dangers
Catholic Online

On the Call to Martyrdom
Catholic Online

'You Alone Are The Lord': A Brief Summary of Catholic Teaching
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

John Crosby on Von Hildebrand's Understanding of the Person
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Ambrose of Milan
Catholic Online

On Peace, Missions and Justice
Catholic Online

Address of Holy See on Religious Liberty
Catholic Online

Recovering subtle signs of our Catholic Identity!
Hugh McNichol

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin on 'Populorum Progressio'
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Eusebius of Vercelli
Catholic Online

Christ's Parable About the Need to Pray Always
Catholic Online

Prostitution: Legal Work or Slavery?
Catholic Online

Escaping Poverty: Interview With Archbishop Silvano Tomasi
Catholic Online

Congratulations to His Eminence John Cardinal Foley!
Hugh McNichol

Giving Ourselves Completely to Mary
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

The 'Courage' to go 'Beyond Gay'
Matt C. Abbott

When Bioethics Turned Secular
Catholic Online

Confession Comeback
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On Hilary of Poitiers
Catholic Online

Reemergence of Global Catholic Identity!
Hugh McNichol

Father Cantalamessa on the Leap of Faith
Catholic Online

Month of the Rosary
Catholic Online

Why Technology Needs Ethics
Catholic Online

Cardinal Lozano Barragán on Future of Health Care
Catholic Online

How Can Catholics Understand Mary as Co-Redemprix, Mediatrix of All Graces and Advocate?
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

New Saint Book is Visually Stunning and Filled with Detail
Lisa M. Hendey

Papal Homily in Velletri
Catholic Online

Father Cantalamessa Analyzes Relationship
Catholic Online

Wednesday'a Audience - On St. Cyril of Alexandria
Catholic Online

Holy See Address to U.N. General Assembly
Catholic Online

Homily From Red Mass in Washington
Catholic Online

Pope Remembers Cardinal Van Thuân
Catholic Online

Faith in Politics
Catholic Online

The brave monks of Myanmar
Chris Anthony

On Lazarus and World Hunger
Catholic Online

Fighting the Good Fight: Resisting Temptation
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Media frenzy buries U.N. goals

Holy See Statement on Climate Change
Catholic Online

China's Seven Sorrows
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On Chrysostom's Social Doctrine
Catholic Online

Vatican Message to Muslims for Ramadan
Catholic Online

Father Cantalamessa on the First World and Lazarus
Catholic Online

Angels, God's Messengers in a world of fragile peace and Broken promises!
Hugh McNichol

Memo to Mrs. Clinton: Why Not Baby Bonds When Life Begins?
Deacon Keith Fournier

Reorienting the Mass
Catholic Online

Report Card on Religious Freedom
Catholic Online

On Wealth and Poverty
Catholic Online

A Response to Hitchens' 'God Is Not Great'
Catholic Online

Vetoing children's health care?

The ideal family
Joseph Sinasac

Who does the judging?
Dennis Heaney

One mistake away

The Big House ban

In praise of the parish

Text of the USCCB statement for Respect Life Sunday 2007

The Outstanding Purity of Our Blessed Mother
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Educated flock

Religion and politics

Facing a door to the future
Dennis Heaney

A long debate

Who Are the True Progressives?
Deacon Keith Fournier

Petraeus offers a dose of reality

Insurgence
Robert Storr

Papal Address at Vespers
Catholic Online

Papal Coat of Arms Still Relevant
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Address at Heiligenkreuz Abbey
Catholic Online

On Loving Jesus as Mary Did
Catholic Online

Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos on 'Summorum Pontificum'
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On the Trip to Austria
Catholic Online

Father Cantalamessa on the Joy of Fatherhood
Catholic Online

Commentary on Artificial Hydration and Nutrition
Catholic Online

Vatican on Nutrition to Patients in Vegetative State
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Q-and-A Session With Youth in Loreto
Catholic Online

Take a Risk, Follow Your Call: the challenge of a lifetime!
Sisters of Bon Secours

Papal lessons

Family matters

Lessons from a tragedy
Dennis Heaney

Shopping blues
Joseph Sinasac

Marriage Breakdown: Expensive and Divisive
Catholic Online

Her darkness was a warning

Wednesday'a Audience - Gregory of Nyssa on Perfection
Catholic Online

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jeremiah 26:11-16, 24
11 The priests and prophets then said to the chief men and all the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 69:15-16, 30-31, 33-34
15 Let not the waves wash over me, nor the deep swallow me up, nor the ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 14:1-12
1 At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the reputation of ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 30th, 2016 Image

St. Peter Chrysologus
July 30: St. Peter Chrysologus, Bishop and Doctor of the ... Read More