I have a lot of good to say about Life Site News. Unfortunately, I also have several warnings about the website and news service. This review covers my impression from Sept 2019 to Aug-2020.
First the positives. They promote pro-life views and bring to light many great news stories that may have been left in the dark without them. The website serves as a great way to stay on top of pro-life news. They also do promote pray and other charitable deeds.
The negatives. I feel that sometimes Life Site News pushes articles that critique bishops and Popes too often on some issues. Instead of having both pro and counter arguments expressed on defending and accusing bishops and Popes they seem to focus on the negative ones. I don’t think this is a proper attitude to have.
Many of their articles critiquing Pope Francis for example have much more balanced and less negative counterparts in other Catholic news services that I would recommend over Life Site News such as EWTN. Honestly, some of their negative articles on Francis can easily be proven wrong when you dig a little deeper on other websites. It is not our place to critique a Pope when we can so easily find a defense/explanation by looking at the issue is another light as other websites or Catholic Answers does!
I also feel Life Site News has published articles explicitly stating that communion on the hand is a sin for well informed Catholics, (or at least a bad practice) (see this one for example https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/when-receiving-communion-in-the-hand-can-be-sinful) Several articles don’t call it a sin but give the impression that communion on the hand should be avoided as a bad practice or one that it leads to a loss in faith.
On defendingvatican2.ca we defend the church teaching on communion on the hand. (see our article https://defendingvatican2.wordpress.com/defending-vatican-ii/1-0-communion-on-the-hand/) We hold that because communion on the hand has been supported in many documents throughout several papacy by the majority of bishops in the modern and early churches it falls under the teaching authority of the ordinary magisterium. As such it is guarded against error by that very fact. Thus, to claim communion on the hand is a sin or grave error leading to loss of faith denies the fact that Christ said he would protect his church and the teaching on the ordinary magisterium developed by Vatican II. It is not a valid or helpful teaching to say communion on the hand is grave error or sin.
I also note that Life Site News publishes more negative comments on Vatican II than it does positive. It has supported several claims in the last year that Vatican II needs to be revised or edited. Yet, as this link from Word on Fire clearly shows ( https://www.wordonfire.org/vatican-ii-faq/?fbclid=IwAR3epR-2qyxNVxJ5nAaWTomDY7QX4n2tYohkWZ1wxw-aL3iBm96kwLEGpCU#infallible ) you can not disregard or edit an ecumenical council that requires an religious assent because it is part of the ordinary magisterium of the church. It is guarded from error by that very fact.
I also feel that the website can at times focus on negative aspects of secular society. Sometimes (not always) the majority of articles are just hit pieces or information on how un-religious/catholic society is or politicians. We do need to know these things so at times this is okay to read. Yet, I think that when I read to much of this it is not beneficial spiritually. Always focusing on the negative of others does not get you very far. Does the website need to publish some more non-negative connect? Perhaps, but maybe not as it is just the news. What I do recommend is not reading all the negative stuff too often. Especially when the negative articles are about bishops, you an get the feeling that all bishops or a lot are bad simply because the majority of articles are negative when in fact a majority of bishops are great.
Overall because of the websites more negative than positive views on Pope Francis, Vatican II and other acceptable teachings of the Catholic church, that the faithful should not be critiquing because they are guarded from error, I think that it would be better to get pro-life news from a different provided. I also feel that the website may instill a slight disobedience to bishops and authority which is not healthy. Please discern the spirits as you read. Then next time go to a different pro-life website (EWTN) and see if you discern the same negativity. Do you get angry, jostled up, depressed, saddened when you listen to Bishop Baron talk about the same scandals that LifeSite News covers? Or do you become hopeful, joyful with a sense of direction. The website does do a lot of good, but it can be hard to separate the good and not get caught up in some of the disobedience.
My hope is that the many hard working Catholics on the website change some of their theological stances to line up with the Papacy. Then — what a power they would be!!!
I also note that not every author on LifeSite deserves the same evaluation. Some indeed, produce very faithful articles, well other authors seem to only publish highly questionable ones. Other new reports/reporters fall in between.