A deacon writes about his LGBT son

I can’t recall reading anything by a member of Catholic clergy on this particular subject that is this personal. In the blog of New Ways Ministry, Deacon Ray Dever describes his son coming out, and what followed: Our journey has probably not been very different than the journey of any family with an LGBTQ child. [Read More...]

In Santa Fe, “native spirituality and Catholic faith walk hand in hand”

Details from CNS:  The Archdiocese of Santa Fe has placed new emphasis on reaching out to Pueblo communities, continuing evangelization efforts while upholding a traditional Indian way of life that is unique to New Mexico. “We are renewing our connection with the pueblos,” Archbishop Michael J. Sheehan told visitors with the Bureau of Catholic Indian [Read More...]

Let there be Christmas lights!

While visiting family in Maryland for the holidays, we decided to stop by a place that’s gotten a lot of attention in the local media: the Kentlands Christmas Lights in Gaithersburg. From Patch.com:  If you happen to be out for a drive in Gaithersburg, be sure to stop at this home where Mike Draghici has programmed [Read More...]

“They knew profound hope”: A homily on the Holy Family

Nativity scene at Our Lady Queen of Martyrs, Forest Hills, NY (photo: Deacon Greg Kandra) This family knew profound hope. They trusted completely in God. They call all of us to that kind of trust. And they are with us. In our own time, they stand beside all who worry, who struggle, who search, who [Read More...]

Life support ends for pregnant Irish woman declared clinically dead…

The case has polarized Ireland, where abortion is still illegal. Details, from the Associated Press:  A clinically dead pregnant Irishwoman was removed from life support Friday after a Dublin court ruled that her 18-week-old fetus also was doomed to die. The case highlighted fear and confusion among doctors over how to observe Ireland’s ban on [Read More...]

Pew: Pope Francis enjoys broad support, positive image across much of the world

Some highlights of a new survey:  Pope Francis, leader of the world’s nearly 1.1 billion Catholics, enjoys broad support across much of the world, according to a new survey report by the Pew Research Center. A median of 60% across 43 nations have a favorable view of the pontiff. Only 11% see the pope unfavorably, [Read More...]

Humanist group objects to public school children attending abstinence talk

Details:  A humanist group is objecting to a public school in southwestern Minnesota sending students this fall to hear an abstinence talk that it says had religious aspects. The American Humanist Association sent a letter Tuesday to Luverne Public Schools, saying students were sent during school hours on Sept. 30 to hear a presentation by [Read More...]

Diocese in U.K. issues directory on permanent deacons

And it makes for interesting reading. Among other things, across the pond they suggest “Rev. Deacon” as a form of address, and advocate wearing a cassock, cotta (a.k.a., surplice) and stole for baptisms and weddings. But that’s for starters. There’s much more about the faculties accorded the deacon, his formation, and the discernment of candidates (including [Read More...]

A timely reminder: torture is “intrinsically evil”

The details coming out of Washington this day are horrifying:  A CIA-led interrogation program kept suspects in cold cells, doused them with refrigerated water and force-fed some rectally, according to graphic details revealed today in a report by Senate Democrats. At least one detainee died in an unheated cell. Another tried to chew his arm and committed [Read More...]

World Meeting of Families debuts official hymn: “Sound the Bell of Holy Freedom”

Kathy Schiffer got the scoop: On Sunday, November 30,worshippers at a Mass at Philadelphia’s Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul heard for the first time the hymn that will be played at Pope Francis’ Mass during next year’s World Meeting of Families. “Sound the Bell of Holy Freedom” was co-written by Norbertine Father Andrew Ciferni and [Read More...]