During its time it was supposed to be the largest of the West Slavic churches, but the structure which archaeologists have found at Prague’s Vyšehrad was never finished, hinting at a surrounding story. The results of the most recent excavations are set to be made public in upcoming publications on the subject.
Czech and Moravian bishops have called on believers to mark the Easter
Vigil this year by lighting a candle in their windows after dark. They have
also appealed for believers to respect the government restrictions on
movement and watch the Holy Mass online.
The restrictions will also affect the pagan traditions that millions of people observe on Easter Monday. The Central Crisis Staff has asked people to celebrate Easter at home and refrain from carolling, visiting relatives and other community activities which could increase the spread of the coronavirus.
Carpenters are completing a replica of a rare 16th century wooden church from the village of Guty in Silesia, which was ravaged by fire more than two years ago. The church was intentionally set ablaze by three youths, who are now serving time in prison. The replica of the church will be disassembled and erected in Guty as soon as it receives safety approval from fire officers.
The opening up of the archives of Pope Pius XII by the Vatican is seen worldwide as an opportunity to find answers to long-term questions about the secretive pontiff who was in charge of the Holy See between 1939 and the early stages of the Cold War. There are also hopes that the documents could shed light on the Vatican’s position towards Czechoslovakia in many of the key moments of the country’s history.
The history of the Communist-era is filled with tales of martyrs, but few of them are as well-known and distressing as the story of Father Josef Toufar, who died on February 25, 1950. When a miracle was reported at his church in an eastern Bohemian village, the secret police tortured the priest mercilessly – and forced him to take part in a macabre video “re-enactment”.
The Bohemian town of Kladruby is famous worldwide for its horse stud farm, founded by the Habsburg emperor Rudolf II. It is also home to a spectacular 12th century Benedictine monastery where the martyred saint of Bohemia, John of Nepomuk, was tried and tortured. An effort is now afoot to have the cloister and Czech Baroque Gothic style church named a European Heritage site.
The Vatican has banned a Czech priest who served in Pelhřimov from
practising due to allegations he sexually abused two women during the
1990s, ČTK reports.
Local Catholic Church officials opened their own inquiry some three years ago. The allegations against him are of sexual harrassment and inappropriate contact with two women in his parish between 1991 and 1999.
This autumn, Cardinal Dominik Duka was investigated by police after having been accused of covering up a case of sexual abuse in the Dominican Order.
Duka has until recently tended to downplay the problem, claiming such allegations were rarely justified and part of a wider “media campaign” against the Catholic Church.
Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš joined world leaders from 49 countries at the Fifth World Holocaust Forum in Israel, commemorating the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp. During the visit the prime minister held a series of bilateral negotiations and met with Czech Holocaust survivors.
Teplice, the oldest spa town in the central Europe, this autumn plans to send the relics of a clergyman martyred in the 4th century to Dubai. The skull of St. Clari – the patron saint of spas and so-called ‘hot healing’ – will feature prominently at the Czech national pavilion at Expo 2020. While Teplice is a popular destination also for visitors worldwide, the hope is St. Clari could also make the town a site of pilgrimage.
The Czech Roman Catholic Church may in future create the country’s first
church-owned bank, Czech Television reported on Sunday. Church officials
are preparing for a situation under which it will cease to receive state
contributions in a decade’s time, the station said.
The České Budějovice bishopric has acquired almost 10 percent of the shares in the Artesa credit union and is now considering whether to become the majority owner. If it does so, it will seek to convert Artesa into the country’s first church bank.
Dioceses are at present investing money in securities, while the Catholic Church has bought two small hospitals in Prague.
In line with a restitution law, church groups have been regaining control of some properties seized under communism. They are also receiving repayments of over CZK 60 billion over a 30-year period for properties that are not being returned.
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