Is student debt contributing to the vocation crisis? — UPDATED

A recent study from CARA says, “Yes”: With accumulated educational debt increasing by five percent yearly in the United States, the research was designed with two main goals: 1) to learn more about the impact of student loans on the men and women who are coming to religious life today. 2) to learn about the policy [Read More...]

“Loose canon”: Vatican may tighten rules on annulments

From John Allen: A Rome conference in late April hinted that the Vatican may be moving towards a more restrictive posture on annulments, the procedure in church law for declaring a marriage null and void, which some critics refer to as “Catholic divorce.” If so, the fallout could have special significance for the United States, [Read More...]

From the in-my-backyard desk: two new auxiliary bishops for Brooklyn

And one of them, Bishop-elect Paul Sanchez, is not only the territorial vicar for my parish; he’s also the son of a deacon. The press release: Pope Benedict XVI has appointed two priests of the Diocese of Brooklyn – Msgr. Raymond Chappetto, 66, and Msgr. Paul Sanchez, 65 – as auxiliary bishops of Brooklyn. Archbishop [Read More...]

Life is short. Be fearless. Like this 104-year-old paraglider.

God bless you, Peggy McAlpine. Read her story here.  And watch her break a world record below. [Read more...]

Make a joyful noise!

I got an email the other day alerting me to a music institute happening on Long Island next month and, while I’m not in the habit of plugging this sort of thing here, this time I’ll make an exception because I know it’s just got to be good. Because: one of the teachers is the [Read More...]

For all you college students out there…

Good luck.  You’re in my prayers. [Read more...]

“A gay man I consider a saint…” — UPDATED

This morning Mark Shea tackled a tough subject with a kind of grace and compassion that couldn’t help but leave me impressed.  There’s a benevolent wisdom here, and mercy, too: One of the people I admire most in the world, who I regard as an inspiration and, very likely, as a saint was a gay [Read More...]

Best. Wedding toast. Ever.

Congratulations from Kenny and Selma. – Watch More Funny Videos [Read more...]

Shepherd of note: the musical stylings of Bishop Paprocki

Springfield’s Bishop Thomas Paprocki is getting a lot of attention these days as one of the bishops reviewing the LCWR. He also likes to sing.  A lot.  In homilies.  The clip below is from his installation as bishop two years ago. [Read more...]

Making God a hit on Broadway

It’s an unusual trend in the theater right now, and the New York Times looks at one effort to get people who go to church to also to the theater: Jesus is cracking jokes, sharing parables and dying for our sins in three Broadway musicals this spring, while another six shows feature religious themes that [Read More...]


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