Posts Tagged John Allen

Abuse survivor wants papal panel to push back on Vatican resistance /

On Saturday, Pope Francis called Marie Collins, an abuse survivor who recently quit his Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors citing Vatican resistance to reform, a “great woman” and said she’s “right on some things.” In a Crux interview, Collins expressed gratitude but also said that the Church still needs uniform global standards and a way to hold bishops accountable.”

By John Allen, Ines San Martin and Claire Giangrave, — Read more …

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Cardinal O’Malley sets timetable for accountability

Following up on hints given during a CBS “60 Minutes” interview last fall, Cardinal Sean O’Malley told John Allen of The Boston Globe on Monday, Feb. 16, that the Pontifical Commission for the Protection of Minors will present “proposals for new accountability mechanisms to the pope within two months’ time.”

Church reform movement Voice of the Faithful® has been calling for bishops to be held accountable for coverups of clergy sexual abuse since 2002 and for penalties to be applied to those who continue failing to follow even basic standards. We are encouraged that there is at least a proposed deadline for presenting accountability procedures.

But the Vatican has often promised changes, reform and accountability without implementing such plans effectively and consistently. It seems that Cardinal O’Malley recognizes how damaging this record is. In the interview, he told Allen, “a lack of accountability for bishops who fail to make ‘zero tolerance’ policies stick has damaged the church’s credibility.”

It remains to be seen whether these new proposals will be realistic in terms of justice and whether they will be adopted and then implemented. If not, it will be yet another missed opportunity to demonstrate that the Church no longer will tolerate clergy sexual abuse and its coverups and that justice is more important than a hierarch’s position.

Voice of the Faithful®: Voice of the Faithful® is a worldwide movement of faithful Roman Catholics working to support survivors of clergy sexual abuse, support priests of integrity and increase the laity’s role in governance and guidance of the Church. More information is at

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Cardinals’ Summit Shapes Up As Potential Turning Point / National Catholic Reporter

Francis’ papacy only just reached the six-month mark, so it’s probably premature to be talking about make-or-break moments for his legacy. That said, the Oct. 1-3 maiden summit of eight cardinals from around the world, tapped by the pope to advise him on governance and reform, profiles as a potentially critical turning point.” By John Allen, National Catholic Reporter

Read the rest of John Allen’s story about the Pope’s upcoming meeting with his cardinal advisors by clicking here.

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Archbishop Chaput’s Right-Wing Funk / National Catholic Reporter

Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia put into words the anxiety many right-wing Catholics must be feeling at the extraordinary popularity Pope Francis has been enjoying. In an interview with John L. Allen Jr., Chaput, speaking on behalf of his conservative followers, said that members of the right wing of the Catholic church ‘generally have not been really happy about his election.’ The pope, Chaput stated, will ‘have to care for them, too.'” Commentary by Charles Reid in National Catholic Reporter

You can read all of Reid’s commentary by clicking here. This commentary originally was posted to the blog.

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Pope Francis’ Revolution

Some in the media are calling Pope Francis’ way of leading the Church a revolution, or at least a revoluton in the making. Here are three recent articles written from that point of view. To read each entire article, click on the title.

Revolutionary Pope Francis Gets Mixed Reviews
“The Francis Revolution is under way. Not everyone is pleased. Four months into his papacy, Francis has called on young Catholics in the trenches to take up spiritual arms to shake up a dusty, doctrinaire church that is losing faithful and relevance. He has said women must have a greater role — not as priests, but a place in the church that recognizes that Mary is more important than any of the apostles. And he has turned the Vatican upside down, quite possibly knocking the wind out of a poisonously homophobic culture by merely uttering the word “gay” and saying: so what?” By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press in The Detroit News

A Revolution Underway with Pope Francis
“Revolutions can be hijacked by others, quickly become a smokescreen for hypocrisy, or fizzle out. It’s too early to know which trajectory will apply to the upheaval launched by Pope Francis, in part because at the level of structures and personnel he still hasn’t made many sweeping changes, and in part because the parallels are inexact anyway — Catholicism, after all, is a family of faith, not a political society.” By John L. Allen, Jr., National Catholic Reporter

The Pope’s ‘Culture of Solidarity’
“It’s not that Pope Francis speaks positively about gay people, as he did earlier about atheists. Nor is it his simple lifestyle, his accessibility to the press, or his personal modesty. The accumulation of surprises coming from the new pope points to something deeper: the possibility of historic change with implications reaching far
beyond the Catholic Church.” By James Carroll, The Boston Globe

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Pope Francis’ First 100 Days: Is Style Substance?

In June 17th National Catholic Reporter, John L. Allen, Jr., writes:

Francis seems determined to function as a pastor, at least as much as a primate or politician, so the right model may not be the one used to assess chief executives. Rather, it’s how Catholics tend to think about a parish priest. Their basic question usually isn’t what his policy positions are, but whether he inspires. Perhaps the root lesson of Francis’ first 100 days is that when it comes to spiritual leadership, sometimes style really is substance.

Read Allen’s entire article, “Francis at 100 Days: ‘The world’s Parish Priest,'” by clicking here.

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Hard Questions about Pope Francis in Argentina and a Lesson from Chile / National Catholic Reporter

National Catholic Reporter’s John L. Allen, Jr., has been in Argentina reporting on Pope Francis’ tenure there as Archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio. He says that, while there, he asked the following questions and found the best answers he could:

  • Bergoglio’s response to two priests accused of sexual abuse, where critics have suggested he dropped the ball
  • Why Argentina’s conference of Catholic bishops did not finish a set of sex abuse guidelines while he served as president
  • Bergoglio’s relationship with Argentina’s military dictatorship as a Jesuit provincial during the 1970s
  • Bergoglio’s attitude toward liberation theology
  • Confusion over where Bergoglio stood on the question of civil unions during a contentious national debate on gay marriage in 2009 and 2010

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