The Lutheran Reformation: Gnosis against Logos.


Speech delivered on 21 October in Salerno at the Conference on “2017, Four centennials: the challenge of history, the Eternal One’s response”   I’ve been asking myself what may be the key element in the events being celebrated this year, 2017: the Lutheran Reformation, the birth of Free Masonry, the Communist revolution, and the apparitions in Fatima. Quite briefly, I […]

CHURCH/WORLD AND APOSTOLATE/PASTORALISM: brief theological considerations.


During Benedict XVI’s last interview with the German journalist Peter Seewald, he said that the correct interpretation of Vatican II and the relationship existing between the Church and the world were two issues as of yet unresolved in the Church of today. I am of the opinion that the questions in the book-interview of Crepaldi-Fontana about the social apostolate in […]

The danger of the new social pastoralism in the latest book of Archbishop Crepaldi


Often heard repeated by bishops are exhortations like these: needed is “a new class of Catholic politicians”, “a new season of political Catholicism”, “a new generation of Catholics engaged in politics”. All this is very true. Nonetheless, wherever “could a layperson go in order to receive the necessary formation” since “lacking” is the actual teaching of the Social Doctrine of […]

The new Church of Karl Rahner in the critical essay by Stefano Fontana


Stefano Fontana, the director of the International Observatory ‘Cardinal Van Thuân’ for the Social Doctrine of the Church, has written a book on Karl Rahner’s thinking, or, to be more explicit, on Rahnerism as “new Catholicism, new doctrine of a “new Church”. Published by ‘Fede & Cultura’ (2017), this book is concise, well written, intended for the general public and […]

The italian Church and the future of the Social Apostolate


Now available in bookstores is the new book-interview (with Stefano Fontana) of Archbishop Giampaolo Crepaldi entitled “La Chiesa italiana e il futuro della pastorale sociale” (Cantagalli, Siena 2017) . In the text below the archbishop himself highlights the essential points in his new book. ***** Does the social apostolate still need the Social Doctrine of the Church, and, if yes, […]

Humanae vitae and the modern social issue.

Crepaldi rosso

Considering the discussion underway in the Church regarding sexual morals, matrimony and the family, we offer anew the following text written in 2008 by Archbishop Giampaolo Crepaldi, president of our Observatory, and which is more timely today that it was back then. Established in these considerations is the very close connection between the teachings on sexual morals in the encyclical […]

Thus does the Social Doctrine of the Chuch change.


A change is underway in the communication style of the Social Doctrine of the Church. A symptom of this can be seen in Pope Francis’ recent Message for the Day of Migrants and Refugees. To do what the national press did yesterday and argue that in this message the Holy Father takes a stand in favor of ius soli, and […]

Charlie Gard was killed: the State decides about life and death, and the special tribunals of totalitarian regimes are back on the scene. Statement by the Observatory Cardinal Van Thuân on the Social Doctrine of the Church.


On 28 July 2017 the machinery ventilating Charlie Gard’s lungs was turned off and he died. This induced death took place in a room of a hospice for terminally ill patients whose address was not rendered public pursuant to a court decision. Practically all the mass media, unfortunately including Catholic ones as well, duly reported this infant’s death almost as […]

Theologians according to the Instruction Donum veritatis”. A rereading useful for the Social Doctrine of the Church


Our Observatory has dealt numerous times with the way the Social Doctrine of the Church is taught in seminaries and theological institutes, and has never ceased to manifest its concerns. Since the Social Doctrine of the Church is formally “moral theology”, how it is taught depends on how people understand moral theology, theology as such and the role of theologians. […]