NCR In Conversation

In Conversation is an in-depth look at the week's Catholic news as seen by the staff at National Catholic Reporter. Hosted by NCR engagement editor Brittany Wilmes, In Conversation features the top thinkers and journalists who report on the life of the Catholic church in the world. National Catholic Reporter is an independent newspaper based in Kansas City, Missouri. Read more at
RSS Feed
NCR In Conversation


All Episodes
Now displaying: Page 1
Jun 15, 2018

Released by Pope Paul VI in 1968, Humanae Vitae, or “Of Human Life,” established church teaching on family planning and artificial contraceptives. In this episode, NCR columnist Jamie Manson and Todd Salzman discuss the encyclical and its effect on generations of Catholics. Todd is the Amelia and Emil Graff Professor of Catholic Theology at Creighton University and co-author with Michael Lawler of The Sexual Person.

Jun 8, 2018

Sr. Mary McGlone, a contributor to NCR’s column Scripture for Life, talks about the liturgical season of Ordinary Time and its significance to the Catholic faith.

Jun 1, 2018

NCR staff writer Brian Roewe's three-part series "Reducing Waste" looks at the challenge posed by plastic pollution — the theme of Earth Day 2018 — and how Catholic parishes and communities are taking steps to reduce the waste and change lifestyles.

May 25, 2018

NCR Vatican correspondent Joshua McElwee and Fr. James Connell, a retired priest in the Milwaukee Archdiocese, canon lawyer, and a founding member of Catholic Whistleblowers, discuss recent news developments in Chile, including Francis’ recent meetings with victims of clergy sex abuse and the resignation of 34 Chilean bishops.

May 18, 2018

Sr. Joan Chittister, recently joined NCR staff and friends to ask Tom Roberts to reflect on his decades in Catholic journalism. Tom served over the years as editor, managing editor and editor-at-large. He retired at the end of 2017.

May 11, 2018

Dan Morris-Young, a reporter for our Field Hospital beat, covers Catholic life across the country, reporting on the ministries, issues and people that make American parishes tick. He recently visited and profiled Dolores Mission, a tiny Jesuit parish in East Los Angeles known for its big heart and vibrant ministries.

May 4, 2018

NCR Bertelsen intern Maria Benevento reports on the modern developments of the Catholic Worker movement. Jim Forest, author of "At Play in the Lions’ Den: A Biography and Memoir of Dan Berrigan," talks about Berrigan's legacy as a writer and activist.

Apr 27, 2018

In a newly released book, former presidents of the Leadership Congregation of Women Religious, members of the organization's executive staff and members of a lay support group share their experiences and insights from the doctrinal assessment of LCWR by the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Annmarie Sanders, a Sister, Servant of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and communications director for LCWR, and Betty Thompson, a founding member of Solidarity with Sisters, talk about the process of writing the book and reliving this critical moment in the organization's history.

Apr 20, 2018

With spring comes baseball—and this year, two brand-new columns on The Gospel of Sports, by Mike Jordan Laskey, will publish every six weeks and looks at the intersection of faith and sports. Theology en la Plaza will focus on matters impacting church and society with columns by four public theologians writing from distinctly Latin@ perspectives.

In this episode, Mike and columnist Carmen Nanko-Fernández talk about how they and others look at the intersection between baseball and faith.

Apr 13, 2018

On Monday April 9, the Vatican announced the release of a new papal document titled Gaudete et Exsultate, or “Rejoice and Be Glad!” NCR's Vatican correspondent Joshua McElwee and Marymount University theologian Brian Flanagan discuss the document on the call to holiness in today's world.

Apr 6, 2018

NCR contributors Patricia Lefevere and Alex Mikulich talk about Martin Luther King, Jr.’s life and legacy and the shared inspiration that drove King and Thomas Merton to do parallel work for equality.

Mar 30, 2018

NCR columnist Melissa Musick Nussbaum and her daughter Anna Keating are the co-authors of The Catholic Catalogue: A Field Guide to the Daily Acts That Make Up a Catholic Life. Published by Image in 2016, the book breathes fresh life into the Catholic calendar. Melissa and Anna share their traditions of keeping the Triduum and the Easter season and talk about how these practices have strengthened their families and their faith lives.

Mar 23, 2018

One national ministry has had massive success reaching out to college-age Catholics: the Fellowship of Catholic University Students, or FOCUS. Today on the show, Heidi Schlumpf and Kevin Ahern, assistant professor of religious studies at Manhattan College and the editor of the forthcoming “God’s Quad: Small faith communities on campus and beyond,” discuss FOCUS and its influence on American Catholic students.

Mar 16, 2018

NCR's Joshua McElwee and Michael Sean Winters talk about Pope Francis' leadership and the legacy of his papacy, five years in. 

Mar 9, 2018

NCR contributor Kelly Stewart and Episcopal priest Kira Schlesinger discuss Kira's book “Pro-Choice and Christian: Reconciling Faith, Politics and Justice.”  Later in the show, we share excerpts of stories told by Catholic sisters during Standup Sisters, an annual event held during National Catholic Sisters Week.

Mar 2, 2018

On Tuesday, hundreds gathered on Capitol Hill for a Catholic Day of Action for Dreamers where they spoke, prayed, and sang. NCR contributor Julie Bourbon talks about the event in Washington, D.C. and how it might create momentum for immigration reform.

Later, film critic Sr. Rose Pacatte shares her favorite films of the year and her predictions and hopes for the Academy Awards.

Feb 23, 2018

NCR books editor Jamie Manson talks about three upcoming books from prominent theologians: "The Unmoored God," by Paul Crowley, SJ; "Creation and the Cross" by Elizabeth Johnson and "Resurrecting Easter" by John Dominic Crossan.

Feb 16, 2018

Nancy Sylvester, founder and director of the Institute for Communal Contemplation and Dialogue, talks today about contemplative reflection. She talks about why this practice is more important now than ever, and she’ll teach the setup for starting your own contemplative practice.

Feb 9, 2018

Chris Herlinger traveled to Haiti last year, where he met Sisters of St. John the Evangelist who run a shelter for children in danger of being trafficked. Chris also shares some updates from the United Nations, where Catholic sisters advocate for anti-trafficking laws and regulations.

Franciscan Sr. Sarah Kohles and St. Joseph Sr. Susan Francois are two of the 13 contributors to a new book written for young women contemplating vowed religious life. The book, In Our Own Words, was published Jan. 25 by Liturgical Press

Feb 2, 2018

Today on the show, Dr. Tim Uhl, the superintendent of Montana Catholic Schools and host of the podcast Catholic School Matters. We talk about how he started his podcast and what about Catholic education challenges and inspires Tim.

Jan 26, 2018

NCR contributor Julie Bourbon reports on a study of "nones" — that is, n-o-n-e-s, or young adults who don’t identify with any organized religion. Later, NCR Bertelsen intern Maria Benevento and Suzanne Gladney, founder of the Migrant Farmworkers Assistance Fund provide an update on immigration issues, including chain migration and the latest on the DACA debate and those living in the U.S. under Temporary Protected Status.

Jan 19, 2018

NCR staff writer Brian Roewe has been reporting on an excommunication case in Nebraska with a lot of history behind it. Last year, members of the Lincoln chapter of Call to Action met with Bishop James Conley in a series of dialogue sessions. These sessions have led to an agreement of sorts to have the 1996 censure lifted for individual members.

Jan 12, 2018

NCR’s Vatican correspondent Joshua McElwee talks about Pope Francis' upcoming trip to Chile and Peru. The papal trip takes place January 15-21, 2018. Joshua also recaps the pope’s recent State of the World address to diplomats. Later, sociologist Michele Dillon explains the trends in a new survey of American Catholics and talks about how the data show a refreshed enthusiasm among American Catholic women.

Jan 5, 2018

Retired priest Bill O'Malley shares some of his resolutions for 2018. Now 86, Fr. O'Malley draws on his decades of creativity and teaching experience to reflect on what the coming year may hold. 

Dec 29, 2017

Today, Sr. Linda Romey talks about how “bad theology” perpetuates gender inequality and the role that women religious play in this #MeToo moment. Later, NCR columnist Jamie Manson and film critic Sr. Rose Pacatte talk about the dangers of unchecked power in any system and what they envision happening next in Hollywood and the Catholic Church. 

1 2 3 Next »