Fact and fiction in Catholic news
Today’s theme seems to be the problem of getting at the truth surrounding the actions of key players at the Vatican.
Distressingly, many outlets distributed legitimately distressing but also error-ridden stories last week. None of this is pretty, but on Friday Phil Lawler let us know The truth about the Vatican sex-and-drugs scandal.
Another difficult topic to learn the full truth about is the decision by Pope Francis not to renew Cardinal Müller’s term as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
Phil rightly points out that the officially disclosed reason doesn’t ring true. See Cardinal Müller’s exit: the official ‘term-limits’ explanation strains credulity.
On the other hand, there are bizarre reports about this as well (reports which other sources we trust say are false). That’s one of several reasons I’ve written this warning: Avoid despair over Church problems, even those made worse by the Pope.
Happily, there is some good news out of Rome as well. For example, at the request of Pope Francis, the Congregation for Divine Worship has circulated a letter to bishops urging vigilance over the matter used for confecting the Eucharist. (Many of us have encountered doubtful matter here and there over the years.)
Here’s the story: Vatican letter to bishops urges vigilance on valid matter for the Holy Eucharist.
And here’s the document: Circular Letter to Bishops on the Bread and Wine for the Eucharist
Pope Francis has also decreed that “Offering of life” is a proper path to sainthood. This adds “laying down one’s life for one’s friends” to martyrdom and heroic virtue as normal grounds for canonization.
Another piece of good news directly confronts some of the bad news. In A Letter to the Romans, Archbishop Charles Chaput challenges Father James Martin, a Jesuit recently appointed as a Vatican advisor, to stop misleading the faithful on the question of homosexuality.
Finally, some great feasts are coming up this week. Tomorrow we have the canonized parents of the Little Flower, Louis and Zélia Martin. On Friday, in the United States, we have the first American Indian saint, Kateri Tekakwitha.