Sunday, November 27, 2011


15th November, the feast of St Albert the Great, patron of scientists, saw the launch of the new (free) online review HUMANUM: Issues in Family, Culture, and Science, edited by Stratford Caldecott for the John Paul II Institute in Washington. It is all about “the human”: what makes us human, what keeps us human, and how to rescue our humanity when this is endangered. Our aim is to pick our way with discernment through the flood of publications (some good, some confused, some pernicious) that claim to tell us about ourselves, about family, marriage, love, children, health, and human life.
Humanum has a particular concern with issues that directly affect the poor and the vulnerable in our society. Each issue will have a main theme around which the reviews and articles cluster, and we begin with an issue on THE CHILD, because this reveals the foundation of our perspective on humanity: the child is the purest revelation of man and his relationship to Being. The lead article is a major piece by the Editor of Communio, Prof. David L. Schindler, which goes right to the heart of our present cultural malaise.
The Press Release reads as follows:
The Center for Cultural and Pastoral Research, a recently founded subsidiary of the American session of the Pontifical John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, is launching its new online review Humanum in November 2011. 
This free quarterly journal is one of several expressions of the Center's effort to bring sustained anthropological and theological reflection to the pressing cultural issues of our time, particularly as these affect children and the most vulnerable members of society, including the aged and infirm. 
Humanum will engage contemporary themes – childhood, bioethics, education, work, issues concerning ecology, medicine, health, and so on – through major articles and also reviews of important and influential books. 
The theme of the first issue is The Child – the first and purest expression of what it is to be human. After that, we begin a four-issue cycle on "Recovering Origins," looking at the ways in which the origin of the child in marriage may be compromised by divorce, artificial reproduction, same-sex unions, and delinquent fatherhood. In each case we want to offer a Christian reflection on human experience. 
Humanum is offered as a free service to researchers and students in the social sciences, medicine, and theology, as well as to pastoral and health-care workers, catechists, parents, teachers, and anyone concerned with the renewal of a culture of life in our time.
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