Vatican News

Love and truth are central to mercy, says CDF chief

Mercy is a grace that comes from on high and changes our lives, taking us as we are but not leaving us as we are, according to Cardinal Gerhard Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF). Speaking in an interview, the cardinal described Confession as “paradigmatic of mercy”, saying that “each time that we confess, we get closer to the Lord with a gaze burdened by our sins and we can leave rejoicing, affected by his gaze upon us, a gaze that is just and good at the same time, which doesn’t give cheap discounts, yet never abandons us to the mercy of our miseries”.

It is possible to be merciful while ensuring that the Church’s teaching is protected, he said, remarking that “a father who doesn’t help his children to recognise their mistakes doesn’t really esteem them and doesn’t have trust in their ability to change”.

Love and truth are indelibly inscribed in the nature of mercy, he explained, saying that it has always been central to Christian teaching “that love and truth go together, or together they fall: it isn’t love without truth and it’s not authentic truth without love”. 


Witness to Jews should be personal, not institutional

Evangelisation towards Jews should be conducted in a different manner to that towards members of other non-Christian faith groups, according to a major new document released by the Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with Jews.

The Gifts and Calling of God are Irrevocable, issued to mark the 50th anniversary of Nostra Aetate, the Second Vatican Council’s declaration on the Church’s relations with non-Christian religions, was presented at a press conference in the Vatican by Cardinal Kurt Koch and the commission’s Fr Norbert Hofmann.

Describing the “mission to the Jews” as “a very delicate and sensitive matter” for Jews, the document says that while in concrete terms, “the Catholic Church neither conducts nor supports any specific institutional mission work directed towards Jews”, Christians are nonetheless “called to bear witness to their faith in Jesus Christ also to Jews”. In bearing witness, the document says, “they should do so in a humble and sensitive manner, acknowledging that Jews are bearers of God’s Word, and particularly in view of the great tragedy of the Shoah”.


Laudato Si’ conference more ‘profound’ than Paris one

Experts from around the world have gathered in Rome to discuss Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si’ and consider especially whether free markets can help in caring for Creation.

The conference, sponsored by the US-based think-tank The Acton Institute, was held in the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross on the theme, “In Dialogue With Laudato Si’: Can Free Markets Help Us Care For Our Common Home?” 

Aiming to engage with such issues as environmental challenges, engagement between science and religion, and gaps between scientific and popular language, the conference drew on the principles of Catholic social teaching and on scientific insights. 

Speakers at the conferences included Bishop Marcelo Sánchez Sorondo, Chancellor of Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences & Pontifical Academy of Sciences, Riccardo Cascioli, President of the European Study Centre on Population, Environment and Development, and Dr Philip Booth, Professor of Finance, Public Policy and Ethics at St Mary’s University, Twickenham.






Pope Francis celebrates Mass after opening the Holy Door at Rome’s Basilica of St John Lateran on December 13, when holy doors opened at city cathedrals, major churches and sanctuaries around the world as part of the Jubilee of Mercy. Photo: CNS