The 15th August (the day that I’m writing this blog) is the Feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary. In the Catholic Church it’s the Feast of the Assumption of Mary, in the Orthodox Churches it’s the Dormition (or Falling asleep) of Mary, but in the Church of England it is just the Feast of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
There can be no doubt that the place of Mary in the piety of the church has been a bone of contention, especially between Catholics and Protestants, for centuries. Today, in the C of E some churches will call today the Assumption, others the Falling Asleep, others will probably ignore it altogether. Continue reading “Magnificat”
Pope Francis has declared 2016 (December 8th – November 20th 2016) to be a Holy Year of Mercy, with the slogan, Merciful like the Father. Holy Years come around about every twenty five years and they represent a period of remission from the penal consequences of sin, granted under certain conditions. As part of this year of mercy the Pope has indicated in a pastoral letter that priests may absolve those who have had abortions, the condition being that they have a profound sorrow for their actions. Up until now it has not been possible for abortion to be forgiven (except in exceptional circumstances) as it is considered a grave or mortal sin. Continue reading “Merciful Like the Father”