Iraq’s Sister Diana: “We need to gain back our humanity”

I got to meet the now-legendary Sister Diana Momeka this morning and wrote about it over at CNEWA’s blog:   The first thing that struck me about the veiled woman in white standing in our reception area was: “She’s so little.” The petite Dominican sister with the piercing eyes and dark hair didn’t look like someone [Read More...]

Visiting the Little Sisters in Queens

Wednesday evening, I was invited out to Queens Village to lead a Holy Hour and Benediction for the Little Sisters of the Poor.  I took the opportunity afterward to stroll the grounds, which have some unusual areas for prayer and contemplation, even at night. This statue of the Holy Family struck me for a couple of [Read More...]

Another giant falls: University of Maryland daily newspaper goes weekly

Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, almost 40 years ago, The Diamondback was one of the best student newspapers in America: a daily paper with a circulation of about 40,000 that consistently turned out award-winning journalism from some of the best and brightest young writers around. To write for The Diamondback (or DBK, as we [Read More...]

I’d like to thank the Academy…

Or, at least, Matthew Coffin. Got a nice email from him today, with this piece of news: I am pleased to announce the 1st annual New Evangelization Award for excellence in Catholic blogging. The Catholic blogosphere hosts thousands of sites. Choosing among them blogs of distinction is a daunting task. I had originally intended to [Read More...]

Celebrating diakonia in Queens

Saturday night, I attended the party celebrating the ordination of Deacon Dean Dobbins, from the next parish over, Our Lady of Mercy in Forest Hills. Sunday, I was privileged to vest and take part in Dean’s Mass of Thanksgiving. It was a great opportunity to celebrate the ministry and the dedicated men who give their lives to [Read More...]

“Pentecost is at work”: a great day in Brooklyn, as 19 new deacons are ordained

It was a glorious Spring day—and a moment of renewal for the Diocese of Brooklyn. On the day before Pentecost, 19 men were ordained deacons by Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio at the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph. The church was packed with family, friends, religious, priests and deacons. As the bishop reminded us in his homily: “Pentecost [Read More...]

This news made my week: Denise is here at Patheos!

That would be Denise Johnson-Bossert, who makes any selfie look better: That was the two of us at JFK Airport, picking up our baggage after the 10-day religious blogger trip to Jordan  last month. (Moments after I snapped that picture, security came by and barked, “No pictures!” If Denise had not been so sweet and obliging, we’d [Read More...]

The time Mike Wallace sat on my couch and didn’t laugh—and other favorite memories of Letterman

I was working at CBS when the president of the network, Howard Stringer, did something utterly audacious: he bought a legendary New York theater and gave it to David Letterman as his own personal playpen. That was what happened when CBS invested in what was christened The Ed Sullivan Theater—now a veritable landmark and tourist magnet—on an [Read More...]

Brooklyn gets two new auxiliary bishops—including one who regularly celebrates Mass in the Extraordinary Form

From the In My Backyard Desk, the following press release arrived in my mailbox this morning. One detail of note (which is unmentioned here): one of the new bishops, Fr. James Massa, often celebrates Mass in the Extraordinary Form. In fact, a few years ago, Bishop DiMarzio appointed him to coordinate the celebration of the liturgy in [Read More...]

Putting out into the deep: May 19, 2007

About the stole It is a custom in this diocese for each deacon class to design its own distinctive stole to wear on the day of ordination. Taking as our inspiration Bishop DiMarzio’s motto “put out into the deep” (Luke 5:4), we’ve designed a stole that shows a vessel sailing into the water. It resembles a [Read More...]