What is essential?

A number of years ago, my father-in-law gave me a copy of what he said had become one of his favorite books: “The Gift of Peace,” by Cardinal Joseph Bernadin. In it, the Cardinal Archbishop of Chicago, dying from rapidly advancing pancreatic cancer, writes with tender mercy about his approaching death.  He also writes about [Read More...]

One man's journey from the military to the Franciscans

Here’s a surprising, and surprisingly touching, video from the March for Life, about a vocation that grew from an unlikely place. Further proof: you never know how God will work. [Read more...]

A matter of degrees: the diminished value of faith

Speaking as someone who graduated — barely, and a semester late — from an unexceptional state university, I found this essay both welcome and consoling.  It’s hard to accept nowadays, but the fact remains: we are more than what it says on our diplomas.  Much more.  Have we lost the ability to see that? From [Read More...]

"Paul has shown us what man really is…"

“Paul, more than anyone else, has shown us what man really is, and in what our nobility consists, and of what virtue this particular animal is capable. Each day he aimed ever higher; each day he rose up with greater ardour and faced with new eagerness the dangers that threatened him. He summed up his [Read More...]

Amazing: woman speaks in her own voice after larynx transplant

Miraculous.  That’s the only word for this. She’s just the second person to have undergone this surgery.  And the result is dramatic — and surprisingly moving. Take a look, and give a listen. [Read more...]

What saved Gabrielle Giffords?

According to a new poll, an overwhelming majority of Americans attribute it to just one thing: prayer. Details: About 77 percent of American voters said they believed that prayer literally helped Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords survive the Tucson shooting, according to a Fox News poll released Thursday. Only 17 percent didn’t believed prayer played a [Read More...]

Life is a song — sing out!

Behold: another delightful “flash mob” from Philadelphia — a “Random Act of Culture” that unexpectedly brought opera to a busy marketplace.  (No Handel this time.) Enjoy! [Read more...]

Snow day for the sisters!

I think it was Leon Bloy who wrote that “joy is the most infallible sign of the presence of God.” Well, then, there’s a whole lot of God in the gals  below.  A merry h/t to Lizzie Scalia for sharing this.  I found it not only joy-filled, but unexpectedly moving. Ever wonder how nuns spend [Read More...]

This video gets to me every time

No matter how often I see it, it just knocks me into a puddle of tears.  Today seems a good day to give it another look: (soon-to-be-Blessed) Pope John Paul and Tony Melendez, in Los Angeles, in 1987. You can read more about Tony here. He also has a website. But watch the video.  It [Read More...]

What a blind monk sees

Words of wisdom — and words I needed, especially, today… “The closer one brings oneself to God, the happier one is. The faster one hurries to meet him. One should have no fear of death. On the contrary! For us, it is a great joy to find a Father once again. … The past, the [Read More...]