Detroit “Mass Mob” fills city’s largest church

Amazing:  For the third time in a row, the Detroit Mass Mob movement filled every seat and spilled out the doors today at another historic, architecturally awe-inspiring Catholic church in Detroit. An estimated 1,800 curious Catholics, many who attend suburban parishes, made for a standing room only crowd at Sweetest Heart of Mary Catholic Church [Read More...]

Boom: Catholic Church growing in Georgia

 Photo: by John Rawlston Details, from The Chattanooga Times Free Press:  Two separate car dealerships failed at a concrete-and-glass showroom built in 2001 in Chatsworth, Ga. Then Dalton’s St. Joseph’s Catholic Church bought the 22,000-square-foot building on U.S. Highway 76 in 2012 to establish a mission in Murray County, which had no Catholic church. “It [Read More...]

Boom: Spaniards returning to the faith

From First Things:  Like Quebec, Ireland, or Boston, Spain has epitomized the fading of Catholic faith. In the twentieth century, religious practice in Spain fell sharply, especially as the country transitioned to democracy and resentment of the Church’s support for Franco’s dictatorship surfaced. Recently, however, the downward trend has stopped and is recovering. According to [Read More...]

How to be a “Pentecost Church”

Some good advice here, from Rev. Emily Heath of the United Church of Christ: This Sunday is Pentecost Sunday in the church. It’s the Sunday when churches everywhere are filled with the color red, symbolizing the Holy Spirit, and we celebrate a story from the church’s earliest days. On Pentecost we remember how the Holy [Read More...]

Snapshot: Detroit Catholics weigh in on issues facing the church

From The Detroit Free Press:  Detroit-area Catholics rated a priest shortage as the biggest issue facing the Catholic Church, and nearly two-thirds of Catholics gave their parishes a “good” or “excellent” rating in promoting Catholic goals, according to results released Wednesday of an Archdiocese of Detroit survey of some 41,000 Catholics. Some eight out of [Read More...]

What we have come to: the drive-thru church

From The Philadelphia Inquirer:  Have it your way. No, not your fast-food burger. Your prayer. In an age when convenience is king and religion is often ridiculed, some churches looking to widen their outreach efforts are embracing what community banks and pharmacies have utilized for decades: the drive-through. The latest to offer a bit of [Read More...]

In the e-mail: “The Charlotte Observer is contributing to a campaign against the Bishop and conservatives”

A reader wrote me to take issue with the story posted the other day about a controversial capital campaign in the Diocese of Charlotte. The author is a member of the cathedral parish. Some excerpts from the email: St. Patrick doesn’t have eucharistic ministers except for one or two non-ordained men mainly because every priest [Read More...]

Controversy continues in Charlotte, as diocese embarks on capital campaign

From The Charlotte Observer:  The Catholic Diocese of Charlotte, whose flock is more than 10 times larger than when the diocese was created in 1972, has embarked on a $65 million fundraising campaign that organizers say would address an increased demand for services and sacred space that shows no signs of letting up as more [Read More...]

Here’s something you don’t see every day: a decree of excommunication

You can take a gander here.  The announcement from her bishop, Thomas Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois: Please be advised that Ms. Mary F. Keldermans of Springfield, Illinois, has attempted to be ordained a priest for “Roman Catholic Womenpriests, Inc.” in a ceremony at the Abraham Lincoln Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Springfield on May 5, 2014. [Read More...]

More on blessings from EMHCs—with a helpful solution from Archbishop Chaput

Various people have written in over the last 24 hours, suggesting that it’s just not practical or pastoral for an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion (EMHC) to turn away someone in the communion line who wants a blessing. Several years ago, Archbishop Charles Chaput offered a solution that I’ve blogged about in the past. I offer [Read More...]


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