With war in Ukraine, the global religious landscape is destined to shift even further

Wars always have wildly unforeseen consequences, eviscerating a status quo and violently shaping new realities. While most pundits are pondering the geopolitical, diplomatic and military fallout from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Putin’s war also seems destined to have important consequences on the religious scene. Right now what those consequences may be seems impossible to descry,…

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Italian priest’s legacy shows that in Catholicism, the past is never past

Sunday marked the 63rd anniversary of an important turning point for 20th Century Catholicism, and one with direct relevance for understanding the current occupants of two of the most influential offices in Italy: Pope Francis, head of the Catholic Church, and Sergio Mattarella, the recently re-elected President of the Republic. That turning point was the ordination of…

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Italy’s dumb luck may offer warning for the Church’s next transition

Last night, 80-year-old Sergio Mattarella was re-elected overwhelmingly as Italy’s President of the Republic, a result that triggered joy both inside parliament and in Italian streets. Mattarella is a widely beloved figure here, perhaps the most popular man in the country, someone who’s demonstrated both keen institutional judgment and also a remarkable ability to capture…

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Friendship between cardinal and politician cemented comeback of ‘Bologna school’

When Italy recently celebrated a state funeral for David Sassoli, the President of the European Parliament who died unexpectedly from Legionnaire’s disease on January 11, the Mass was held in Rome’s Basilica of St Mary of the Angels and attended by the President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, Prime Minister Mario Draghi, European President Ursula…

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