How Lincoln gave thanks: his proclamation

With the 16th president cleaning up at the box office these days, here’s another reminder of why he was, and is, a blockbuster. Here’s the text of Abraham Lincoln’s Thanksgiving Proclamation, from 1863: The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these [Read More...]

When in Rome: priests, bishops should wear cassocks

It’s back to the future.  Again. Details: Bishops, priests and religious should wear the formal long robes of a cassock during most occasions when visiting Rome, a high-ranking Vatican official has said. Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Vatican’s Secretariat of State, made the request for the formal dress in a letter released during last month’s Synod [Read More...]

“Time, like an ever rolling stream, soon bears us all away…”

What you see here is the view from the sanctuary in my parish this afternoon, moments before we began the procession for the Mass marking our 100th anniversary. To put it simply: I’ve never experienced a liturgy quite like this. It was, in every sense, grand: from the entrance procession that included members of various [Read More...]

Woman dies in Ireland after being denied an abortion—UPDATED

Details: The debate over legalizing abortion in Ireland flared Wednesday after the government confirmed a miscarrying woman suffering from blood poisoning was refused a quick termination of her pregnancy and died in an Irish hospital. Prime Minister Enda Kenny said he was awaiting findings from three investigations into the death of Savita Halappanavar, an Indian [Read More...]

The religious vote

Here’s how it went, according to CNN’s exit polls:   [Read more...]

Hollywood developing movie about Catholic Church sex abuse scandal

Details:  Variety reports that Win Win director Tom McCarthy is directing an untitled drama about the reporters at the Boston Globe who uncovered the original conspiracy to keep these deeds quiet. Not exactly lighthearted material to help close out the week, but since it’s the “story behind the story” that’s being put in the spotlight here, it should be more [Read More...]

“The homilist should strive to live a life of holiness…

A topic of which there is no shortage of opinions — preaching — will be getting more attention next month at the bishops’ meeting in Baltimore. From the USCCB:  The U.S. bishops will vote on a formal document on preaching at their annual fall meeting, November 12-15, in Baltimore. The document, “Preaching the Mystery of [Read More...]

Scientists win Nobel Prize for adult stem cell research

This is a pretty big deal—and a shot in the arm for the pro-life cause: John B. Gurdon of the U.K. and Shinya Yamanaka of Japan shared this year’s Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for their work in so-called cellular reprogramming, which has unleashed a wave of advances in everything from cloning to the [Read More...]

What does the Catholic Church teach about end of life care?

New York Times columnist Bill Keller might want to take a refresher course. In today’s paper, he describes the recent death of his father-in-law from cancer at the age of 80: When they told my father-in-law the hospital had done all it could, that was not, in the strictest sense, true. There was nothing the [Read More...]

NJ lawmaker introduces “Death With Dignity Act,” allowing patients to kill themselves

Hot on the heels of this news from the Netherlands comes another item from much closer to home. From the Newark Star-Ledger: A state lawmaker says it’s time for New Jersey to openly discuss the most difficult of topics: whether terminally ill patients should be allowed to decide how and when they die. Assemblyman John [Read More...]


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