Posts in Society
Vatican's soccer team had little choice but refuse to play in Austria

(COMMENTARY) The women’s soccer team representing the Vatican — yes, the Vatican has a women’s soccer team — canceled its planned international debut in Austria when sports, religion and politics made for a bad mix.

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How churches are saving forests in Ethiopia

We spoke with award-winning photographer Kieran Dodds about his project capturing the gardens of Eden cultivated by Ethiopian churches. The conservation is an act of worship to save their forests and provide an oasis for their congregations. Listen to the full podcast or read the edited transcript here.

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Can French politicians make Notre Dame great again?

Rebuilding Notre Dame will be a painstaking task. Estimated to cost in the billions, the cathedral has also become a political pawn in a broader fight between traditionalists and secularists. In a country divided politically — the recent European election was another reminder of this — the fate of Notre Dame very much rests in the hands of the country’s warring lawmakers.

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Pope vs. populists: European election results highlight Catholic divisions

(NEWS ANALYSIS) Never shy about brandishing a rosary or invoking God’s help, Italy’s Matteo Salvini has provided voters in the recent European elections with an alternative to Pope Francis’ pro-migrant stance and the church’s traditional social teachings.

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5 inspiring commencement speeches that focused on faith

There can’t be talk of the future without God and faith. Depending on the speaker (or the college/university), God can often be the focal point of a commencement address. This spring has been highlighted by a few notable speeches, including Vice President Mike Pence’s at Liberty University and Peggy Noonan at Notre Dame.

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Nationalism and Catholicism collide in run-up to the European elections

(NEWS ANALYSIS) Matteo Salvini, who leads the League party, could take his anti-immigration stances to Brussels if opinion polls prove correct. His hardline stance on the issue has put him at odds with the Catholic church in Italy as well as with Pope Francis, who has repeatedly spoken in favor of refugees seeking asylum in Western Europe.

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Journalists often fail to see the 'outrage' in anti-Catholic comedy

(COMMENTARY) At a time when humor is struggling with political correctness and fallout from the #MeToo movement, there’s little material for late-night hosts and stand-up comedians to work with. However, the people you’re allowed to pick on (at least from the material you see on TV) are Christians across all denominations.

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Why Joe Biden's history with Catholicism matters to voters

(COMMENTARY) The religion of presidential candidates and history with the dogma of their respective faiths — what they believe, why they believe it and, in some cases, when they changed their minds — is an issue many Americans care about.

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Burkini-wearing SI model draws ire from across the political spectrum

There’s one thing people on the left and right can agree on in this contentious political climate: showcasing a Muslim woman in a hijab and burkini in the pages of Sports Illustrated can be a controversial concept.

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7 Holy Week traditions from across the globe

While the death and resurrection of Jesus marks the holiest time on the Christian calendar, different cultures and nations celebrate in very unique ways. Here’s a look at seven international traditions from Bermuda to the Philippines.

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Pope Benedict and Cardinal Sarah provide leadership in the age of Francis

(COMMENTARY) Again, it was conservative Catholic media that proved to be the preferred mouthpiece for Cardinal Robert Sarah and Pope Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI over the past week. Both men — with help from right-leaning news organizations — have been very vocal about the problems plaguing the church.

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Searching for Catholic symbolism in 'The Godfather'

(COMMENTARY) Amid all the immorality, crime, violence and ultimately Michael Corleone’s final despair (for anyone who could sit through The Godfather III), this isn’t just a series of mob movies. The Godfather book and movie trilogy is loaded with religious symbolism.

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March Madness 2019: Finding God at the NCAA basketball tournament

(COMMENTARY) These God connections aren’t always easy to spot during March Madness. The TV coverage or your local newspaper’s sports section aren’t always there to point them out. It’s often something a player or coach will say in postgame news conferences — and highlighted by Christian news organizations — that thrusts faith into the limelight.

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Brenton Tarrant’s Mein Kampf: Inside the manifesto of New Zealand’s mosque shooter

Brenton Tarrant is becoming a sickeningly familiar figure in the modern West: an angry, disaffected,  lone wolf who finds purpose and community online with extremists who offer an escape from the wrenching dislocations of modernity through a blood-soaked path to redemption. His manifesto resembles a ISIS recruitment video, giving a heroic and cosmic meaning to an apocalyptic act of terror.

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Jackie Robinson's forgotten Christianity: How being a devout Methodist impacted his life

A lot has been said and written about Jackie Robinson. The baseball legend — famous for breaking baseball’s color barrier — was known for many things. His athletic abilities, courage in the face of racism and the dignity with which he went about it all remain the focal points. What is often ignored — even forgotten — is Robinson’s Christian faith.

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'Tropical Trump' Bolsonaro beholden to Catholic-Evangelical alliance

(NEWS ANALYSIS) Brazil’s Jair Bolsonaro — dubbed by some political commentators as the “Trump of the Tropics” — has been dogged by controversy and scandal. The result? That Christian coalition of supporters, a U.S.-style religious right, could very well abandon Bolsonaro if he ultimately fails to deliver.

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