- Feb 24, 2021
Among other issues, the Filipino bishops object to a new tendency of local governments to offer rewards for killing criminals, saying that it’s “never morally permissible to receive reward money to kill another” person and that those who kill suspected offenders for a reward are no different from a “mercenary, a gun-for-hire.”
The next time Catholics get upset about some spontaneous off-the-cuff comment by Pope Francis, they need to take a deep breath and take the long view. Yes, we’ve had bad popes in Church history, but he’s not one of them.
With every papal trip, the intended audiences and agenda items can usually be understood in terms of concentric circles, starting at the outer level and working one’s way in. That’s clearly the case with regard to Pope Francis’s June 24-26 outing to Armenia, which makes a statement about this pontiff’s priorities on the peripheries, ecumenism, geopolitics, and pastoral concern for a tiny Catholic minority.
Pope Francis has written a prologue to a book about his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, in which Francis says that Catholic priests everywhere should learn from Benedict’s “kneeling theology,” and also says his resignation was a “lesson for the Church.”
A new web site about Pope Francis’s eco-encyclical Laudato Si’ “witnesses not only to the impact of the encyclical, but also the creativity and generosity of the people of God everywhere in the world,” according to Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana, President of the Vatican’s Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace.
In a message to a world conference against the death penalty in Oslo, Norway, Pope Francis says capital punishment “contradicts God’s plan for individuals and society, and his merciful justice” and says that growing opposition to the practice is a “sign of hope.”