Police apologize for arresting deacon by mistake

Details (and thanks to the great deacon’s wifve, Kathy Schiffer!) from the Des Moines Register: As the Des Moines police officer handcuffed him Monday night, Quan Tong was so nervous that he forgot his adopted language. The officer told him he was being arrested for a revoked license. “Revoked?” Tong recalls saying. “What does ‘revoked’ [Read More...]

A basilica grows in Brooklyn

More on a news item I posted last week, on Brooklyn’s third basilica, with reaction from the pastor and parish: Parishioners in Brooklyn are anticipating the elevation of their Regina Pacis Church as a basilica, with the dedication set to take place on the feast of the Immaculate Conception. “They’ve been admiring the beauty of [Read More...]

Organ donors needed: why many Catholic churches don’t have organists

Is organ music in church doomed to disappear?  Details, from Catholic News Service: If music conservatories are producing a bumper crop of organ performance graduates, why can’t the parish down the street get a substitute organist for the 10 a.m. Mass? There’s no single answer, but liturgical musicians who spoke with Catholic News Service attribute [Read More...]

Yes, somebody actually said that

“It is unthinkable that any sexual act with an animal is punished without proof that the animal has come to any harm.  We see animals as partners and not as a means of gratification. We don’t force them to do anything. Animals are much easier to understand than women.” – Michael Kiok, expressing opposition to [Read More...]

What’s the only vocation that grew in the United States last year?

Three guesses. From Catholic World News:  The number of religious sisters in the United States fell from 57,113 to 55,045 in a one-year period, according to data in the 2011 and 2012 editions of The Official Catholic Directory. During the same period:  the number of priests fell slightly from 40,271 to 40,203 the number of seminarians [Read More...]

“The Holy Father has no power to change the nature of the ordained priesthood”

A commentary from Francis Phillips in the Catholic Herald:  Friendly commentators on the question of women’s role in the Church but who are not members of the Catholic Church sometimes pity us because (as they see it) we are subject to authoritarian edicts from Rome, devised by elderly celibate men who are determined to suppress [Read More...]

Amazing: Japanese firm offers parents 3D model of fetus

Details: Expectant parents in Japan who can’t wait to show the world what their baby will look like can now buy a three-dimensional model of the foetus to pass around their friends. The nine-centimetre resin model of the white foetus, encased in a transparent block in the shape of the mother’s body, is fashioned by [Read More...]

Canadian Catholic schools approve HPV vaccinations

The bishops are opposed, and the move has not been without controversy. From the Calgary Herald:  Trustees with the city’s Catholic school board have overturned a four-year-old ban on offering the HPV vaccine in its schools, a move greeted by doctors and victims of the disease who have fought the prohibition. The decision was made [Read More...]

This will save you a TON

Or close to it. Behold, what is reputedly the heaviest item that Amazon will ship for free (or, at least, with a $79 membership in Amazon Prime). Details: “It’s really an amazing deal,” says Amazon spokeswoman Pia Arthur, even if the heaviest items sometimes have to be handled by “specialty shippers” instead of UPS or [Read More...]

10 reasons why men shouldn’t be ordained

I have to admit: this made me laugh.  It comes from Bosco Peters, an Anglican priest and blogger (and Friend of the Bench) in New Zealand.  He says he doesn’t know where the list originated.  (My favorite is #7.) Enjoy. 10. A man’s place is in the army. 9. The pastoral duties of men who [Read More...]


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