Family and Lifestyle

Irish young people are moving ever-further away from faith. However, new approaches to Confirmation could help change that. The Irish Confirmation season is in full swing. In preparing for Confirmation, the emphasis has moved away from rote-learning, and towards a deeper understanding of the sacrament and the responsibilty it brings. Pre-...

Before leaving for World Youth Day (WYD) in Cologne Pope Benedict said it was “providential” that his first visit abroad as Pope should be to his homeland (Pope John Paul II had originally scheduled the trip). It was on this trip to Germany that Catholics first saw how much Pope Benedict differed from John Paul. Shortly before leaving Germany, he...

Asked how he got on at the Second Vatican Council, one Irish bishop is reported to have replied: “Well, it was really all a bit of a waste of time. They talked about nothing but theology.” To what extent this comment reflected the general attitude of Irish bishops who attended the Council, I am unable to judge. But the remark would seem to reflect...

Some parishioners of Magh Éne, Bundoran in the Diocese of Clogher have been using Share the Good News, the National Directory for Catechesis (SGN) to great effect over the last number of months in simple yet inspirational ways. Providing some background information on the parish, Mr Paddy Donoghue, chairperson of the newly formed Parish Pastoral...

Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger works in a modest enough building just beside St Peter’s Square in Rome. Modest that is, when one considers the power and influence the cardinal wields in the Catholic Church worldwide. He is arguably the most important man in the Church, apart from the Pope himself. As Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the...

Our pilgrimage to Lourdes was a very peaceful and uplifting experience. At the very beginning we felt quite apprehensive meeting the other students, but soon we began to feel more comfortable, and we formed many great friendships during the week. On the first visit to Accueil Notre Dame Hospital, little did we know how helping the sick pilgrims...

Depending on one’s perspective, Bishop Michael Smith’s presence in Rome when the Second Vatican Council was announced was either a case of good or bad timing. As a seminarian at the Irish College in 1959 when Pope John XXIII made his surprise announcement of a Council, Michael Smith and his fellow students were immediately pegged for stenographer...

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