- Nov 26, 2020
A Catholic priest has baptized the infant son of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
Robert K. Merton, a famous American sociologist, was, by all accounts, a smart guy. Among other things, he popularized the expression “law of unintended consequences” to refer to situations when a person does something for one reason, but he or she finds that it produces all sorts of other unexpected results.
For the whole Catholic world, August 15 means the Feast of the Assumption. In Italy, it also means ferragosto, the traditional summer holiday that sees the whole country head to either the beach or the mountains, or both, roughly from the second week of August until early September.
On Thursday the Vatican issued a response to a question about the validity of baptisms using a modified formula, insisting that any baptisms celebrated with a formula other than the one approved and in the Church’s liturgical books are invalid.
With increasing numbers of people confined at home with no access to Mass or confession, pastors everywhere, Pope Francis included, have turned to some little-known, or at least little-used, concepts and practices, including “spiritual communion,” indulgences and general absolution.
Every Christian should be grateful for the gift of his or her baptism, and that gratitude should draw them together to recognize that they are brothers and sisters and called to pursue holiness together, Pope Francis said.