How Pope Francis has changed Vatican diplomacy

This week I was fascinated with the National Geographic look at the pontificate of Francis so far. They give a glimpse at how Francis is working within and without the traditional structures of the Vatican. It's worth a read. One thing I found fascinating was the summary of how Francis differs from Benedict in matter of diplomacy. It was offered by Federico Lombardi, the longtime Vatican communications official. Here's an excerpt from the article: After meeting with a world leader, the former po … [Read more...]

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Free Photo Fridays: Food and Life

This week I continue my Friday Photo Series: Free Photo Fridays I post a few of my pictures from the week so that you can use them. They are free to use or even edit. There is no need to attribute or link back. Take and use as you please. If you like what you see I have started posting some of my other pictures here.   This Week's Photos:   … [Read more...]

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Why The Sacraments Kept Me Christian

I will never forget the night my journey to understand the sacraments began. It was 1999 and I was meeting with a small with my Lutheran church. I had recently had a strong personal encounter with Jesus Christ and had begun going to meetings in the Church with a passion and fire to learn and share about Jesus.Then the leader, Byron, said something unexpected. He stated that we received the grace of God in the sacraments. This shocked and offended me. I was a good Lutheran and I knew that … [Read more...]

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Free Photo Fridays – Flowers, Statues, and Stained Glass

This week I continue my Friday Photo Series: Free Photo Fridays I post a few of my pictures from the week so that you can use them. They are free to use or even edit. There is no need to attribute or link back. Take and use as you please. If you like what you see I have started posting some of my other pictures here.   This Week's Photos:Free Photo Fridays by Billy Kangas is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. … [Read more...]

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Free Photo Fridays

For many of us who blog finding good pictures can be a challenge. You want to make sure the images you use are legal. You want to make sure that if photographers are being attributed or paid fir their work. Sometimes this is hard. I have decided to help. I have decided to start shooting pictures of things that fit into my own writing here on Patheos. I will be posting a few of them here each Friday as freebies. They are free to use or even edit. There is no need to attribute or link back. Take … [Read more...]

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Church of Antioch Breaks off Relations with Patriarchate of Jerusalem

As pravoslavie.ru reports: The reason of the break-off is the dispute on the canonical jurisdiction of Qatar territories, to which both Local Churches have claims This break has been on the horizon for a couple of years now, and it breaks my heart. Antioch and Jerusalem are among the very earliest Churches and most ancient patriarchates. Although neither of these Churches are in communion with Rome, it's still very sad to see something, which appears to me as a glorified pissing match, turn in … [Read more...]

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Why I take my children with me to Mass

One of my pet peeves is going to a church where people pressure you to take your kids to a nursery to to children's church. This was actually a big issue when I was a protestant. It is less of an issue in the Catholic Church. The reason I was bothered by it was because I feared that separating kids from worship would be detrimental to both the spiritual life of the children as well as to the broader life of the community. I have nothing against those who take special care to teach and care for … [Read more...]

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Summer Reading List

Recently Theologues asked me to contribute a few titles to their summer reading list. I thought I would include my selections here you you all. On top of these I have also been reading some Plato, Hume, and a few books by Michael Chabon (just finished this, and started this yesterday). There's also my comps list too.... which I won't put down in it's entirety here, but I'm sure you'll here about it soon. It's not really "summer reading" as much as it is a never ending sense of anxiety looming ov … [Read more...]

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10 quotes from LAUDATO SI’ rocking my world

I’ve now had time to sink into Pope Francis’ new encyclical on “Care for our Common Home.” I hope to unpack more of it soon but there have been a few quotes from it that have been coming back to me over and over.  These are probably not the 10 things everyone needs to take away from the letter, but I think they might be the things I need to take seriously in my own life. Hopefully in the weeks to come I will be able to take some time to unpack the whole thing, but for now here are the highlights … [Read more...]

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