Lex Cordis Caritas - The law of the heart is Love

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February 08, 2015
Pope Francis recently gave his annual address to the judges of the Apostolic Tribunal of the Roman Rota, which serves as a court of appeals principally for marriage annulment cases. In his remarks on Jan. 23, the Holy Father said, “Sacraments are free of charge. The sacraments give us grace. And marriage processes touch on the sacrament of marriage. How I would like all marriage processes to be free of charge!”
January 25, 2015
On April 1, 2005, the day before the death of Pope John Paul II, then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich issued an “emergency rule” that required pharmacies that sell contraceptives to fill prescriptions for birth control without delay. There was no provision for pharmacists who objected in conscience to filling prescriptions for contraceptives as a matter of their religious beliefs. In fact, the reason Blagojevich issued his executive order was precisely because some pharmacists had refused to fill such prescriptions as a matter of conscience. It was the former governor’s position that pharmacists had no rights of conscience, saying, “Just fill the prescription.”
January 11, 2015
Four years ago at my first Midnight Mass at the Cathedral in Springfield I spoke in my homily of the plight of Christians who are being persecuted and killed in the Middle East, saying that “we should count our blessings that we enjoy the freedom to [celebrate Christmas] in relative safety. But we should not forget our Christian brothers and sisters in other parts of the world that are not so fortunate and for whom Christmas is not so joyful.” Then and on some subsequent occasions that I have spoken or written about the persecution of Christians by radical Islamist extremists, my remarks have been criticized as being anti-Muslim. So let’s take a look at what others have been saying about this.
December 28, 2014
My prayer for this new year is that racial hatreds will be overcome, that ethnic prejudices and discrimination among all races may stop, that violence everywhere may cease, that lawful authority may be respected, that employment and educational opportunities may abound, that families and communities may abide in harmony, and that everyone will be able to live together in peace.
December 14, 2014
Last September in the Catholic Times newspaper I wrote about the Diocese of Wichita’s model of stewardship, which is nationally known and recognized as effective. Since that visit, it has been my hope that we could also become a diocese where people are deeply committed to a stewardship way of life.
November 29, 2014
As bishop of the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois, I am grateful for this opportunity to offer my reflections on the results from the online surveys of active and inactive Catholics in central Illinois conducted by researchers from Benedictine University in Lisle and published under the title, Joy and Grievance in an American Diocese. I am especially thankful to Dr. William Carroll, president of Benedictine University, for authorizing this study, and to Dr. Phillip Hardy of the Department of Political Science and Dr. Kelly Kandra and Dr. Brian Patterson of the Department of Psychology, Sociology and Criminal Justice, for gathering, analyzing and summarizing the survey responses from several hundred participants.
November 16, 2014
What happens when we die? This question was the topic of my presentation for “Theology on Tap” at the Knights of Columbus Hall at Lake Springfield on Oct. 29. The answer to this question is given by the Word of God as revealed to us in the Holy Bible and handed down authoritatively by Sacred Tradition in the Catholic Church. God’s revelation has been definitively revealed to us in Jesus Christ, so we should not expect or be looking for something new or different to be revealed to us.
November 02, 2014
There was a lot of publicity, much of it misleading, about the Extraordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops that took place last month on the topic of “The Pastoral Challenges of the Family in the Context of Evangelization.” The title itself is the source of some of that confusion, so it will help to explain some of these terms.
October 19, 2014
In the previous issue of Catholic Times, I wrote about the plight of Christians and other religious minorities who are being slaughtered or forced to flee from their homes in the Middle East by the terrorist militants known as the Islamic State. Some Muslim leaders have spoken out against the Islamic State, but their statements have not received widespread media coverage or their statements have been ambiguous.
October 05, 2014
As the genocide of Christians by the Islamic State (ISIS or ISIL) militants continues, our government and several countries of the international community, including some nations in the Middle East, have begun to mobilize against the terrorists accused of indiscriminate killings, abductions and rapes. The Islamic State militants are also killing other religious minorities and even fellow Muslims whom they do not consider to be true Muslims.

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