Giancarlo Pani SJ


Four centuries ago, on September 17, 1621, Cardinal Robert Bellarmine’s earthly life ended in Rome. He was almost 79 years old and his name was known throughout Europe. In 1599, Clement VIII, during a consistory in which he announced the names of cardinals, pronounced what one might well consider an apt eulogy: “We choose one… Read the full article


The 16th century marks the beginning of the Modern Age. In the transition between the Middle Ages and the modern world, a series of completely new developments occurred almost simultaneously: the invention of printing, the discovery of the New World, gunpowder, a new way of keeping time (mechanical clocks), of experiencing it, and the relationship… Read the full article


Pope Francis has dwelt at length on the “pastoral conversion” of the parish. In Evangelii Gaudium (EG), quoting Vatican II, he wrote, “‘Every renewal of the Church essentially consists in an increase of fidelity to her own calling […] Christ summons the Church as she goes her pilgrim way… to that continual reformation of which… Read the full article


“With a father’s heart […] Joseph loved Jesus”: so begins the Apostolic Letter Patris Corde, which commemorates 150 years since Pius IX proclaimed Saint Joseph “Patron of the Universal Church” on December 8, 1870, to emphasize “his central role in the history of salvation.”[1] Pope Francis speaks from “the abundance of his heart.” In this… Read the full article


On January 3, 1521, the Bull Decet Romanum Pontificem, declared Martin Luther a heretic and excommunicate for he had not made the retractions required by a previous Bull, Exsurge Domine, of 1520.[1] Since then, in the Catholic world, he has been identified as the heretic par excellence, the one who tore apart Christian unity and… Read the full article


When thinking of the Middle Ages, many will hold that the essence of asceticism was rejection of the world and complete condemnation of life lived in the world. This judgment is sometimes found in history books, but it is not entirely true. Suffice it to look at the few remaining letters of St. Francis of… Read the full article


On November 29, 2014, during his apostolic trip to Turkey, Pope Francis visited the Hagia Sophia Basilica in Istanbul. Hagia Sophia – in Turkish Aya Sofya – is an ancient monument that dominates the entire city, the Bosphorus and the Golden Horn. At the end of the visit he wrote in Greek characters in the… Read the full article


The Catechesis of the Good Shepherd was developed in the 1950s in Rome by Sofia Cavalletti, a scholar of the bible and Judaism, with Gianna Gobbi, a Montessori educator, who were preparing together a small group of children for First Communion. They had been asked to do so  by Adele Costa Gnocchi, one of Maria… Read the full article

1 2 3