Viewpoint

Personal opinion pieces on a wide range of Catholic issues by different writers.


Viewpoint: Toppling statues: What can we learn from Amoris Laetitia?

St Louis IX, Sacré-Cœur Basilica, Paris Flickr -  Larry Johnson - Wiki Image

Pedro Gabriel writes in Where Peter Is: As the struggle for racial justice in American society expanded to include calls for the removal of statues honouring historical figures who perpetuated institutional racism (including slaveowners and Confederate soldiers,) statues of other figures have also been called into question. Some of these include two canonized saints, like Junipero Ser...

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Viewpoint: Lockdown over seventy

Jo Jacques

As lockdown began I hit 70. In other times it would have been a pause to party and then continue with life, continuing with my other responsibilities as school governor, helping with child care and the other activities those in their 70s and more carry out in our society.

However lockdown meant a complete cessation of this. Suddenly I had been defined as elderly and vulnerable. I was unab...

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Viewpoint: The shocking conversion of a Mayfair church

Beer barrels on the Sanctuary

It always saddens me when I see places of worship - of any faith - being remodelled for other purposes as a result of changes in demographics, a drop in public worship or growing secularism in some societies.

That being said I have seen some wonderful examples of places of worship duly transformed into community outreach centres, homeless shelters, schools and nurseries and public housing...

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Viewpoint: Debate the issues; don't destroy the statues

Vandalised statue of the great Spanish author Cervantes, in San Francisco. He spent five years as a slave in north Africa.

Michael Sean Winters writes in the National Catholic Reporter:

"History is written by the victors," we are told and of course that is true in one sense. But history is actually written by historians, and their interpretations and reinterpretations of events change. It is why a consequential historical personage like Queen Elizabeth I or Habsburg Emperor Maximilian I or Abraham L...

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Blogger reflects on Vigano's letter to Trump

Archbishop Vigano

In a piece yesterday entitled 'The extremist reactionaries have all the oxygen they need' Where Peter Is blogger Mike Lewis writes:

'This evening, the President of the United States of America amplified a voice that is basically calling for the downfall of the entire Catholic hierarchy.

With this one Tweet, the nature of the division in the Church has come into sharp focus,...

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Food Safety

Leela Ramdeen

At the end of a week in which the Telegraph has reported that Boris Johnson has given in to President Trump's demand that the UK accept food produced to the US's lower welfare standards, (no longer following EU ban on hormone-fed beef, chlorinated chicken etc) our correspondent Leela Ramdeen writes:

Sunday, June 7, is World Food Safety Day. The theme is: 'Food safety, everyone's ...

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Viewpoint: The racism that surrounds us

Fr Shay Cullen

The world is seeing once again the upsurge of a vicious "virus" that has spread to every corner of the world. This time, the "virus" is that of social, cultural, economic, political, institutional, legal and religious discrimination against people of different skin colour, social status and historical origins. Racism is everywhere and people around the world are on the streets once again protes...

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South African Viewpoint: Don't go to church…?

Dr Anthony Egan SJ

Now that we are allowed to go to church, subject to certain restrictions, should we? This question admits no easy answers. On balance, my position is (and this may surprise you): No!

We could say: If business can resume, why can't we? I'm unconvinced. They are two different categories. If we don't restart companies the economy collapses and everyone starves. Emergency foo...

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Denouncing and combatting racism

Leela Ramdeen

"When injustices around the world are screaming 'your life is of no value', the Church cannot remain silent. Apathy makes excuses. Love finds a way." (Nicky Gumbel)

Racism is a vile worm that continues to eat away at the soul of humanity. I don't think any right-thinking person can watch the video of the way in which George Floyd died without raging for justice.

44 year old...

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Viewpoint: Charity or Justice - we need both

Outside St Thomas' hospital in south London, an artwork has been created of artificial flowers with the message: I (big heart) NHS.

This captures the sentiments of so many who have been clapping on their doorsteps every Thursday, placing rainbows in their windows, acknowledging in personal messages their admiration and support for those who work in hospitals and care homes. An important h...

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Promoting family life

Leela Ramdeen

"It's necessary to rediscover the plan drawn by God for the family, to reaffirm its greatness and irreplaceability at the service of life and society" (Pope Francis).

On Friday, May 15, the world will observe The International Day of Families; a day that "provides an opportunity to promote awareness of issues relating to families and to increase knowledge of the social, economic ...

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London: Hope and humanity in lockdown

Vauxhall Farm Llamas

Like many people, living alone during these strange days can be difficult. My daily walks help. Tramping around the streets of Kennington I'm aware of the inequalities in our wealth and our living arrangements. It's Iceland not M&S that has the queues outside. Most people live in blocks of flats and estates, only a few have patchwork gardens. The parks offer a breathing space and escape for the...

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Viewpoint: Remember the poor, the vulnerable, and migrants

Leela Ramdeen

Leela Ramdeen writes:

"Preventing or delaying outbreaks, particularly among the most vulnerable, is the most important action we can take right now...coronavirus will also undoubtedly test our principles, values and shared humanity." (UNHCR)

As Michelle Bachelet and Filippo Grandi, UNHCR, have rightly said: "If our response to coronavirus is grounded in the princi...

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Viewpoint: Angels in our midst

Giotto Flight into Egypt: WikiArt

On Friday evening my husband and I went to the last Mass in our parish for the next weeks, perhaps months. It was a bittersweet occasion which brought to mind all those who have been deprived of the Eucharist over the centuries due to religious persecution or even nowadays in remote parts of the world where vast distances mean Mass may be celebrated infrequently. A stark reminder of what we oft...

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