Just in time for Easter, James Frey's new book about an alcoholic Messiah — UPDATED

He strikes again, with a book being released on Good Friday that seems designed to provoke and enrage: Controversial author James Frey is set to ignite another firestorm with his new book, “The Final Testament of the Holy Bible,” in which the second coming of Christ takes place in The Bronx projects — but the [Read More...]

The largest Stations of the Cross in the world

These are really something:  the Stations of the Cross, in Rome.  Below, a shot of their installation, from Catholic News Service. Details, and the story behind them, from Zenit: This week, the grand avenue of the Vatican is taking on another guise, the Via Crucis. Fourteen life-size stations line the wide sidewalk of the Via [Read More...]

Ministering "on the fly": meet the airport chaplains

Yesterday was one of the busiest days of the year for priests everywhere — including at America’s airports. From the Wall Street Journal: For the Rev. Michael Zaniolo, Ash Wednesday is the busiest day of the year. He’s the head chaplain at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, which had three Masses and 14 different ash ceremonies. [Read More...]

World's biggest human cross?

Behold, what transpired yesterday in Manila: Details, from Reuters: Thousands of Filipinos lined up across a football field in Manila to mark the start of Lent by forming a human cross they hoped would go down as the world’s biggest. Officials at the University of Santo Tomas, a Catholic university that at 400 years old [Read More...]

Is this the best he could do? Really?

Can I ask for a do-over? [Read more...]

What everyone wants to know today

Anyone who has ever worked in a rectory on Ash Wednesday knows the drill. Ready?  Here goes. “8:00, 12:05, 4:00 and 7:30.” [Read more...]


Now here’s a picture that’s really worth a thousand words … or more. Caption: Charles B. Tripp the armless man and Eli Bowen the legless man. Both men traveled with the Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey circuses in the 1890′s. Source H/T Deacon Eric [Read more...]

"To love another person is to see the face of God…"

That’s my nominee for Best Song Lyric Ever, from the final moments of “Les Miserables.” For those who missed it: below is the thrilling finale to the 25th anniversary concert, which aired Sunday night on PBS. In a word: wow. [Read more...]

"Before I die, I want to…"

…what?  How would you finish that sentence? An artist in New Orleans has created a special installation around an abandoned building, and asked people to fill in the blanks: Check out the rest of the installation.  Clearly, this is something designed to provoke comment, and thought, and more than a little introspection. [Read more...]

Attention, carnivores: one last Friday splurge

I had a hamburger for lunch.  Next Friday: Catholics are getting ready for Lent — and so are purveyors of fish: Aw Shucks & Big Shucks restaurants, for example, will serve grilled tilapia with rice and veggies for $8.95 on Fridays during Lent. That’s two $2 off the regular price, which, ahem, would fit nicely [Read More...]