“Clericalism is bad for priests and laity”

Vatican Insider spoke recently with the Prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, Beniamino Stella, who will receive the red hat of Cardinal later this month.   He had some choice words about the vocation of the priesthood—which could also apply, I think, to deacons: There has often been talk of an identity crisis among [Read More...]

Deacon psychologist launches study of deacons’ lives, spirituality

From National Catholic Reporter:  Hoping to fill a gap in scholarly research about permanent deacons, Joseph Ferrari, a permanent deacon in the Joliet, Ill., diocese and a professor of psychology at DePaul University in Chicago, has designed a survey to collect data that when complete will provide a better understanding of the personal and spiritual [Read More...]

Pope Francis to religious: “Wake up the world!”

The Italian Jesuit journal La Civilta’ Cattolica offers an account of Pope Francis’s recent meeting with 120 superiors general of men’s religious orders in late November. CNS has highlights:  While you can access the full 17-page article in English, Spanish or Italian at the journal’s website, here is a sampling of some of our favorite excerpts (CNS translations of [Read More...]

“Never too old to dream a new dream”: Oldest seminarian in Little Rock ordained a deacon

Photo: Karen Schwarz/Arkansas Catholic Wow, from Arknasas Catholic:  When Jack Sidler Sr. was discerning his call to the priesthood, he ran across a plaque inscribed with a quote from C.S. Lewis: “You are never too old to set another goal or dream a new dream.” On Dec. 14, three years after entering Sacred Heart School [Read More...]

What happens when deacons stand on a street with a sign offering “Free Blessings”?

Seminarian Connor Danstrom, from Mundelein Seminary, did that in downtown Chicago a few days ago and wrote about it over at Word on Fire: “Without cost you have received, without cost you are to give.” My phone told me it was three degrees when I woke up at 7 A.M. This was the gospel reading [Read More...]

Archdiocese for the Military Services ordains married former Anglican

Father Jerry Sherbourne ordained a Catholic priest by Archbishop Timothy Broglio at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. This e-mail from the Archdiocese for Military Services gives the details: Father Jerry Sherbourne, an active-duty U.S. Army Chaplain, and former Anglican priest, was ordained a Catholic priest Sunday at the Basilica [Read More...]

A woman priest on the walls of the catacombs?

Photo: AP Seems a stretch to me.  But make of it what you will. From the Associated Press: The Vatican on Tuesday unveiled newly restored frescoes in the Catacombs of Priscilla, known for housing the earliest known image of the Madonna with Child — and frescoes said by some to show women priests in the [Read More...]

“Journeys to Priesthood”: Must-see video on vocations from Los Angeles

It’s described in the current issue of The Tidings:  Men preparing for priesthood has increased in both numbers and diversity during the past five years, a trend captured in a video released last week by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles’ Office for Vocations. The video, “Follow Me: Journeys to Priesthood,” features interviews with seminarians and [Read More...]

Vatican says more than 2,600 religious leave their orders every year

Details:  According to figures compiled by the Vatican, more than 2,600 priests and consecrated female religious leave their orders every year – and the office that oversees religious life has cited lack of fidelity to the Church’s sexual teachings and disagreement over the reservation of priestly ordination to men as a leading reason. In all, [Read More...]

Ordination update: 2 new deacons for Portland

Details from the Catholic Sentinel:  Archbishop Alexander Sample ordained two men to the permanent diaconate at St. Mary Cathedral, reminding them that their call to the diaconate is not about achieving a special status, but to serve the people of God. “You are ordained here today for the community of the church,” said Archbishop Sample [Read More...]