The Encounter with Christ: “I felt that Jesus was looking at me”

Each man and woman has a personal encounter with the Lord. A true and actual encounter that can radically change one’s life. The secret lies not only in being aware of it, but also in never forgetting it, so as to preserve its freshness and beauty. Pope Francis shared these thoughts during Mass at Santa […]


Letter #13, 2015: Quiet Day in Rome

April 23, 2015, Thursday — Quiet Day in Rome Feast of St. George “St. George is a reminder that sometimes good people are called upon to bother to be brave and offer that protection in place of Jesus.”— Father Peter Fleetwood, commenting on the Feast of St. George, which was celebrated in Rome today with […]


“Today the Church is the Church of martyrs”

“Today the Church is the Church of martyrs”. And among these martyrs are “our brothers whose throats were cut on the beach of Libya; that young man burned alive by companions for being a Christian; those immigrants on the high seas thrown overboard for being Christians; those Ethiopians assassinated for being Christians”. In the chapel […]


Letter #12, 2015: Vespers in Norcia

April 18, 2015, Friday — Vespers in Norcia “I pray that I and all those God has given me to know and love here might live in such a way that God’s will for the salvation of the world will be realized.” —Prayer of Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, who died yesterday at the age […]


Pope Francis Becomes A Sommelier So Can You

Food For Thought

Pope Francis received a delegation of some 180 Italian wine producers, vintners, sommeliers (wine stewards) and wine writers on January 21 at his Wednesday morning general audience in Vatican City’s Palazzo Nervi. The meeting was organized by Franco Ricci, head of the Fondazione Italiana Sommelier (The Italian Sommelier Association). “The idea of asking for a […]



In these homilies, Pope Francis encourages us to renew our faith. He encourages us to go out to be “workers for the Kingdom.” He encourages us to go on a search for Christ, to have “restless hearts” until we find Him. Each of us needs to ask: What do I seek? Am I truly in […]

People display signs in Los Angeles at a demonstartion before the National Human Traffickin Awareness Day  last month.

Vatican Watch March 2015

MONDAY 26 Just as Mary gave the world Jesus, women hand on the faith, pope says Why is it, Pope Francis asked today, that so many women are the ones who hand down the faith generation after generation? “Quite simply, because it was a woman who brought us Jesus,” he said. “It’s the path Jesus […]

Archbishop Bruno Musaro.

People March 2015

New Apostolic Nuncio to Egypt appointed Pope Francis has named 66-year-old Italian Archbishop Bruno Musarò to be the new Apostolic Nuncio to Egypt and Delegate to the League of Arab States. Archbishop Musarò was formerly the Apostolic Nuncio to Cuba from August 2011 to February 5, 2015. He takes over his new office from Archbishop […]

The anthropid Coffin of Butehamon, an Egyptian royal scribe during the 21st century.

The Vatican Mummy Project and its Discoveries

The art treasures of the Vatican — from all ages and of many cultures — are to be found in 10 pontifical museums, often erroneously referred to as the “Vatican Museum” in the singular. Less well-known than the Raphael Rooms, Borgia Apartments and the world’s largest collection of ancient Greek and Roman art, but nonetheless […]

Could Putting “Mercy First” Ahead of “Rules and Doctrines” Be Dangerous?

There is, in Buenos Aires, a “papal tour” bus that takes visitors around places linked to the life of Jorge Bergoglio, from those of his youth—his baptismal church, family home, and schools—to those of his adulthood: a seminary where he recuperated after his life was saved at age 21, and the cathedral seat of once-Archbishop Bergoglio. Austen Ivereigh is well […]

A Superficial and Biased Book on the Vatican Bank

Gerald Posner has published what he claims is an “extensively researched” study of the Vatican’s bank. However, the first 14 chapters of the book (out of 43) deal with the pontificates of Popes Pius XI (1922-1939) and Pius XII (1939-1958) and their banker, Bernardino Nogara, a period of history I have studied for many years. […]

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Books, Art & People

Francis of Assisi: “Never Will I Cease”

The Compilatio Assisiensis, or Assisi Compilation, is a hagiographic work from the 13th century, generally thought to be “difficult” because of its fragmentary nature and the particular structure of its text. But it is a document of inestimable worth, being one of the most authentic testimonies concerning St. Francis of Assisi and the origins of […]

Urbi et Orbi Section

We continue our series on the spirituality and practices of Eastern Christianity by looking at liturgical themes of the penitential season of “Great Lent” The Crucifixion Icon – By Robert Wiesner Any time is a good time to contemplate the saving cross of Jesus Christ, but Lent is an especially appropriate season to take a close […]

Pope Francis during one of his in-flight conferences.

“Ideological Colonization” in Lord of the World

Monsignor Luigi Negri comments on Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson’s apocalyptic novel, repeatedly cited by Pope Francis. On his way home from the Philippines in January, Pope Francis made time, as is his habit, to speak with journalists. Responding to one question about the concept of “ideological colonization” he had mentioned during his meeting with families […]

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