Study: church attendance among women plunges

This is something to make you put down your morning coffee and say “Huh?” Details, from the Religion News Service and Huffington Post: Women, long considered the dominant pew dwellers in the nation’s churches, have shown a dramatic drop in attendance in the last two decades, a new survey shows. Since 1991, the percentage of [Read More...]

New York Times spotlights Call to Action

The peg, ostensibly, is the rich Catholic history of America’s Second City.  But, of course, this being the Times, there’s more to it than that. Snip: It’s a long way from the Vatican to Roscoe Village, but a group based in that North Side neighborhood is leading a high-profile protest among American priests that challenges [Read More...]

RIP John Chervokas, "squeezable" Catholic

The man who came up with the idea to tell the world “Please don’t squeeze the Charmin” has died. Obituaries note that in addition to coining one of the most enduring advertising slogans ever, ad executive John Chervokas also wrote books on spirituality and prayer that included “Patient Prayers” and “Pinstripe Prayers, or How to [Read More...]

What's the secret of a successful parish?

New York’s Archbishop Timothy Dolan has the answer. From his blog: “What makes this place tick?”  I quizzed the exuberant pastor as he showed me around the parish, renowned for its high rate of Sunday Mass attendance; first-rate school; excellent religious education for kids, teenagers, young adults, and adults; remarkably effective stewardship; and successful initiatives [Read More...]

An offer they couldn't refuse

From Las Vegas comes this surprising story of a rare autographed movie script that found its way to a Catholic Charities thrift store. Details: This is how Diane Hutton, who runs one of the largest thrift store operations in town, ended up on the hit cable TV show “Pawn Stars” on Monday night. A while [Read More...]

Report: fewer priests, fewer parishes, more masses

Does this sound familiar? Details: More U.S. Catholics are attending Masses at fewer parishes staffed by a rapidly declining corps of priests, according to a new report on “The Changing Face of U.S. Catholic Parishes.” Produced by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate for the Emerging Models of Pastoral Leadership project of five [Read More...]

"When I go to confession, I sometimes mention that I'm gay…"

Here’s something altogether different and surprising: a blog post by a faithful Catholic who also happens to be gay.  Don’t think such creatures exist?  Think again. H/T New Advent. A snip: I have heard a lot about how mean the Church is, and how bigoted, because she opposes gay marriage. How badly she misunderstands gay [Read More...]

"A Catholic by any other name…"

Sr. Mary Ann Walsh over at the USCCB blog takes a good long look at Bill Keller’s remarks about Catholicism last week. Her stirring conclusion: The Catholic Church doesn’t totally give up anyone. Even if you’re excommunicated, it expects you to attend Mass each week, though not to participate in the sacraments. James Joyce in [Read More...]

Playing for Bob Dylan, Christina Aguilera, and God

You might think you’d never meet a serious Catholic in a popular rock band.  Think again.  And meet Ray Hermann. Details: Ray Herrmann is currently on tour, entertaining thousands of fans across Europe as the lead saxophonist and flautist for Chicago, one of the world’s longest running rock bands. A highly gifted Grammy award-winning musician [Read More...]

"A number of people…have expressed concerns about my leadership…"

“While I am confident that I am faithfully handling the responsibilities entrusted to me, I personally made this request earlier this year because a number of persons have written to Rome expressing their concerns about my leadership of the Diocese. This visit will be an opportunity to gather extensive information on all aspects of the [Read More...]


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