What hath God wrought? The talking rosary

A Florida newspaper has details, and a video: The so-called Freedom Rosary, developed by a Vero Beach couple, talks a devotee through the prayers with a tiny speaker in its cross. Like the Confession app, the device is meant to aid Catholic tradition rather than replace it. “People are confused about how to say [the [Read More...]


This, of course, is the Feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.   And it is also a day when history was made in Egypt. Above: “The Virgin Mary Tree” in Egypt. An ancient tradition holds that it protected the Holy Family. The Anchoress points out that Hosni Mubarak resigned on a Marian feast — and that [Read More...]

How tall is Mary?

A new book claims to have that answer, and some other details, about the apparition in Medjugorje. Details: The Virgin Mary is a blue eyed teenage girl that appears taller than she is because she stands on a cloud. That is according to a new book that has carried out exclusive interviews with the the [Read More...]

Business is booming at Wisconsin apparition site

Perhaps unsurprisingly, America’s first approved Marian apparition shrine is generating a lot of interest — and seeing a lot more visitors these days. From the Green Bay Press-Gazette: People came in unprecedented numbers this week to Our Lady of Good Help in Champion, the first approved Marian apparition site in the United States. Since the [Read More...]

Homily for January 1, 2011: Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God

This is traditionally the day when we make resolutions and size up the year to come. This is when we decide… To quit smoking…again. To lose weight…again. To stop drinking…again. To spend less money…again. I typically spend this day going through all the junk piled up on my desk and sorting through old papers in [Read More...]

Another Annunciation…

Earlier, I posted an item about one artist’s unique take on Mary’s visit from Gabriel. Below is another interpretation, from the same artist, John Collier, commissioned for a church (now co-cathedral) in West Virginia. As the artist describes it: “In my Annunciation the angel Gabriel stands on a rotting stump which has a living branch [Read More...]

"I have traveled many moonless nights…"

Another favorite song of the season: Amy Grant’s haunting Marian hymn, “Breath of Heaven.” [Read more...]

"Hail, full of grace…"

Is this what the Annunciation would look like if it happened today? The above picture is John Collier’s provocative, decidedly modern take on the singular event which we heard recounted in today’s gospel.   Collier has done some captivating work around religious themes, including the Catholic memorial at Ground Zero. Check out this website for more. [Read More...]

A Presbyterian sings the praises of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Is she the new Santa Claus? Check this out, from Presbyterian minister Ben Daniel in Huffington Post: The feast of Guadalupe is a distinctly Mexican holiday, and it may be worth asking why my family celebrates the holiday when none of us were born in Mexico or have Mexican ancestors. The answer is this: we [Read More...]

Stocking stuffer: the latest in Catholic kitsch …

…just might be this curious rendition of the rosary. Details: An Italian company is offering an electronic rosary with the voice of Pope John Paul II leading the prayers. The Prex Co., based in Loreto, Italy, said in a press release that the device, complete with headphones, “was conceived to promote greater use of prayers [Read More...]