Some may remember the controversy that swirled around San Francisco’s Father Joseph Illo, whose traditionalist ideas—male-only altar servers and ad orientem Mass, among others—provoked protests. Nonetheless: the parish where he serves, Star of the Sea, has since undergone an impressive revitalization. And Fr. Illo wrote about it recently on his blog:   Here are some of the simple changes we have made at my parish, Star of the Sea in San Francisco, that have made the parish more prayerful: a.  Confessions…. Read more

The New York Times’ Stephen Hiltner paid a visit to the venerable Trappist monastery in South Carolina and describes some of the challenges it is facing: Mepkin Abbey — part of a global network of Trappist monasteries that for nearly 1,000 years have provided their communities with reliable sources of prayer, learning and hospitality — is edging toward a potential crisis. In keeping with broader declines in the ranks of priests, nuns and brothers, Mepkin’s monastic community is dwindling. Only… Read more

From Vatican News:  The letter, which is written in Spanish, is essentially a thank you note for the greetings and prayers he received from the people of Argentina on the 5th anniversary of his election to the papacy. These expressions of goodwill came not only from the country’s authorities but, in Pope Francis’ own words, “from people of different religious, political and ideological backgrounds.” In the second paragraph of the letter, which was made public by the Argentine Bishops’ Conference at… Read more

Details:  Lack of sleep is one of the most critical health issues for the homeless. An average of 225 homeless people seek safety and rest on the pews in the sanctuary of St. Boniface church in San Francisco every day, thanks to The Gubbio Project. The Gubbio Project was co-founded in 2004 by community activists Shelly Roder and Father Louis Vitale as a non-denominational project of St. Boniface Neighborhood Center located in San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood in response to the… Read more

As most of you know, last week marked the one-month anniversary of the massacre at the high school in Parkland, Florida—and thousands of teenagers around the country staged a walkout to commemorate that tragedy and honor those who had been killed. Different schools marked the day in different ways. Some schools placed 17 empty desks outside, to honor the 17 killed. Others observed 17 minutes of silence. Several Catholic schools around the country offered prayers, Benediction or Mass. But one… Read more

This is going to be a great event—and a chance to take part in a significant piece of history. The congress is happening in July in New Orleans, and is expected to draw hundreds (if not thousands) of deacons (and their families) from around the United States. It celebrates the 50th anniversary of the restoration and renewal of the diaconate in this country—and I can’t think of a better event to celebrate. If you haven’t seen it yet, check out… Read more

This is our recessional this weekend—a fitting segue into next week and Palm Sunday, and an appropriate coda to the scripture readings this 5th Sunday of Lent. From Wikipedia:  George Kitchin wrote “Lift High the Cross” in 1887, while he was the Church of England Dean of Winchester, for the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel. It has been suggested that the hymn was inspired by the story of Constantine the Great’s conversion to Christianity after seeing a cross with “In hoc signo… Read more

A fascinating read for this day—with this intriguing bit of history:  A slightly ironic twist to the St. Patrick’s Day connection is that Guinness was not traditionally a Catholic company. St. Patrick was a Catholic and the patron saint of Ireland, and the colors of the day are drenched in the symbols of the Protestant-Catholic struggles of Ireland. Orange is traditionally recognized as the color of the Protestants, while Green is the color of the Catholics. You can still find… Read more

An analysis from The Washington Post: There are endless reasons a big-box toy store would collapse during a retail apocalypse — and Toys R Us acknowledged a number of them in its most recent annual filing: the teetering tower of debt incurred by its private-equity owners, competition from Amazon, Walmart and Target. They even wrung their hands about app stores, labor costs and potential tariffs raising the costs of the imported goods they sell. But one risk stood out. Toys… Read more

From The Columbus Dispatch: In Columbus and across the Midwest, Hispanics are changing and, some say, saving Roman Catholicism. Their population has been flowing into Midwestern and Northeastern Catholic churches since the turn of the century, said Hosffman Ospino, director of Hispanic ministries at Boston College, and Hispanics’ presence there is reshaping Catholicism and revitalizing churches with otherwise dwindling memberships. At St. Stephen the Martyr Catholic Church on Columbus’ West Side, membership was down to about 30 parishioners nearly two… Read more

Follow Us!

Browse Our Archives