Vatican Corner 01-19-2020

Pope Francis’ Apostolic letter of Sept. 30, 2019 established that “the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time is to be devoted to the celebration, study and dissemination of the “Word of God.” This will be the first time the “Sunday of the Word” will be celebrated and it will be on January 26th. Pope Francis says it is an invitation to Catholics around the world to...

Vatican Corner 01-12-2020

The Vatican Observatory in partnership with the University of Arizona operates a 1.8 meter telescope built in the 1980s named the Vatican Advanced Technology Telescope or VATT. It is located 10,000 feet high on Mount Graham, AZ where the skies are among the clearest, steadiest, and darkest in continental North America. The primary mirror of the telescope...

Vatican Corner 01-05-2020

After the time of Galileo, when the Catholic Church wrongly condemned him for his astronomical proof that the sun and not the earth was the center of the solar system, the Church developed a keen interest in astronomy. The papacy founded three early observatories: Roman College (1774-1878) , the Capitol (1827-1870), and Specola Vaticanna 1789-1821). Father...

Vatican Corner 12-29-2019

More than 400 books have been written about the Star of Bethlehem and how its story could fit within modern astronomy. In a recent article in Evening Standard Magazine, Guy Consolmago, the director of the Vatican Observatory, an American Jesuit brother with a doctorate in planetary science, addressed the question “Can science explain the mystery of the...

Vatican Corner 12-22-2019

On the first day of Advent on Dec. 1, 2019, Pope Francis traveled to the Italian town of Greccio – where St. Francis of Assisi in the year 1223 created the first nativity scene. Pope Francis issued an apostolic letter on the meaning and importance of nativity scenes, calling this “wonderful sign” to be more widely displayed in family homes and public...

Vatican Corner 12-15-2019

Telling about when he was a young Jesuit, Pope Francis In the book “El Jesuita”, published in 2010, said that “over time, I felt the desire to go as a missionary to Japan, where the Jesuits have always carried out a very important work.” In 1549 Jesuit missionary St....

Vatican Corner 09-29-2019

The Amazonian synod entitled “New paths for the Church and for an integral ecology”, is the name of the upcoming meeting of bishops that is to be held at the Vatican from October 6th through 27th, 2019. The gigantic 2,700,000 square miles Amazon rainforest contains...

Vatican Corner 09-22-2019

The 140th anniversary of the Apparition at Knock, Ireland was on August 21, 2019. That is where the Blessed Virgin Mary, St. Joseph, St. John the Baptist and Christ (as the Lamb of God) appeared to 15 local townspeople on the parish church’s gable wall. The shrine...

Vatican Corner 09-15-2019

Pope Francis had said that when he became Pope he didn’t want to travel very much because it was not in his nature. But a'er his first trip, a refugee camp, he realized the importance of his fatherly encounters where he can meet the people, hear their testimonies and...

Vatican Corner 08-25-2019

In 2013 when Pope Francis was in Rio de Janeiro for World Youth Day, he visited a hospital run by the Fraternity of Saint Francis of Assisi in the Providence of God. He asked the Fraternity if they had members in the Amazon. The reply was “no” and Francis simply...

Vatican Corner 07-28-2019

On July 20, 2019 America and the world celebrated the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11. It was the NASA space mission which for the first time attempted, and was successful in landing two men on the surface of the moon and returned them safely to Earth. Like millions of...

Vatican Corner 07-21-2019

After returning from his discovery of the New World, Christopher Columbus in February 1493 wrote a letter to Spanish King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella, the patrons of his exploration, telling them what he saw during his travels. The letter was written in Spanish and...

Vatican Corner 07-14-2019

… continued One of the strangest spectacles that was ever seen at the Vatican took place in 1890 when William Cody - (Buffalo Bill) was invited there. Two years earlier, he and his Wild West Show had traveled for the first time to Europe, having great success, and...

Vatican Corner 06-30-2019

One of the strangest spectacles that was ever seen at the Vatican took place on March 3, 1890. It was the 12th annual thanksgiving of the coronation of Pope Leo XIII and it was also when Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show came to the Vatican. American William Frederick...

Vatican Corner 06-22-2019

Among the best known Christian prayers is the Lord’s Prayer or the Our Father, and it is found in the Bible in Matthew 6:9- 13. It has been translated from the Latin vulgate, which was translated from ancient Greek, which was translated from Aramaic, the language...

Vatican Corner 06-16-2019

Popes wear a miter on their head during liturgical celebrations, but at official ceremonies, popes of the past centuries as well as modern day popes, have worn the papal crown or tiara for the purpose of highlighting their authority. At coronations the tiara has been...

Vatican Corner 06-09-2019

For nearly 900 years the Church has forbidden priests to marry or have sex, but it has never spelled out rules for what priests or bishops must do when a clergyman fathers a child. Canon law, the church’s legal system, is silent on the issue of priests becoming...