Pope’s resignation was his most important act

FOR MOST people, the reckoning with the infirmities of advanced old age is a poignant but mundane part of the life cycle. Not so for popes, as this week’s global astonishment suggests, for they are thought to hover over human affairs just as the church itself does. “The church is distinguished from civil society,” Pope Leo XIII solemnly declared in 1885. “It is a society chartered as of divine right, perfect in its nature.” This perfect society, Leo wrote, cannot “be looked on as inferior to the civil power, or in any manner dependent upon it.” This manifesto hints at the larger significance of Pope Benedict XVI’s decision to resign his office: If a pope can come and go so easily, then how is the church different from a country or a company?

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Farewell to an Uninspiring Pope

POPE BENEDICT XVI quit. Good. He was utterly bereft of charm, tone-deaf and a protector of priests who abused children. He’d been a member of the Hitler Youth. In addition to this woeful résumé, he had no use for women.

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Los Angeles' Archbishop Gomez wins the Renault Shocked, Shocked Award

Archbishop Jose Gomez has earned and retired the Shocked, Shocked Award based on the response of Captain Louis Renault, played by Claude Rains in the movie "Casablanca," who, when pressed for his reasons for closing down Rick's Café, says indignantly as he is handed his winnings for the night, that he is "shocked, shocked," to learn that gambling has been going on there.

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Amy Smith's persistence brings justice in John Langworthy clergy abuse case

Reading a news report about a church camp counselor in Missouri convicted of molesting children, Amy Smith’s thoughts shot back more than 20 years.

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A Convenient Morality

Last week, the Obama administration proposed a further tweak to its rules about insurance coverage of contraception, trying to quiet religious organizations’ complaints that the edict tramples on their beliefs. Roman Catholic officials have been especially vociferous. Their moral conviction, they insist, cannot be slave to secular convention.

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Newark Archdiocese under fire for letting priest convicted of groping boy serve as cleric

Critics accused the Newark Archdiocese on Monday of violating a bishops’ agreement to bar abusive priests by allowing a former Wyckoff assistant pastor to serve as a cleric years after he admitted to fondling a teenager.

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Review: 'Mea Maxima Culpa' looks at Catholic Church's abuse cover-up

As horrifying as it is to note, the timing of the HBO documentary "Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God," which premieres Monday night, could not have been better if divine intervention were involved.

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Leading U.S. cardinal punished for role in abuse scandal

One of the most powerful Catholic leaders in the USA, Cardinal Roger Mahony, the retired archbishop of Los Angeles, has been relieved of his public roles for covering up for sexually abusive priests — a role the current archbishop called "evil."

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Will release of priest abuse files affect you?

A Superior Court judge has ordered the release of thousands of documents held by the L.A. Archdiocese identifying Roman Catholic priests who have been accused of molesting children.

If you are Catholic or have been involved with the Catholic Church, how does this information release affect you, your family and the Church?

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Guilty verdicts in priest sex abuse trial

A jury has found a Catholic priest and a former parochial school teacher guilty of charges involving the serial sexual assault of a 10-year-old altar boy at St. Jerome's parish school.

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