APTOPIX Ohio Slaying Witness Recants

Incredible: Man freed from death row after 39 years for wrongful conviction

This should give all of us pause.Details: Ricky Jackson walked out of jail in Cleveland, Ohio today after spending 39 years on death row, making him the longest-held prisoner to be exonerated in the United States.Ricky Jackson was just 18 years old when he and two others, Wiley and Ronnie Bridgeman, were convicted in the 1975 murder of Harold Franks after 12-year-old Eddie Vernon testified he saw the attack. All three men were sentenced to death. Mr. Jackson's death sentence was vacated … [Read More...]


Meet the nun who coaches college football

Really. This is pretty terrific.From The New York Times: The celebration after the College of St. Scholastica won its fourth consecutive conference football championship resembled an extended family gathering this month. Oblivious to the numbing cold, players, coaches, family members and students lingered on the field, exchanging hugs and posing with the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference championship banner.In the midst of it, Mike Lehmann, a beefy reserve offensive lineman, approached … [Read More...]

Homily for November 23, 2014: Solemnity of Christ the King

I’ve been reading some of the obits about the director Mike Nichols over the last few days, and one of the most remarkable stories of this truly remarkable life is about how he came to America.Mike Nichols was born in Germany. In 1939, when he was eight years old, his family managed to book p … [Read More...]

Miami church reports young Catholics seeking out Latin Mass

Details:  Roman Catholic Mass was at one time universally celebrated in Latin, the ancient Roman language.After the second Vatican Council in the 1960s, Mass was allowed to be celebrated in the language of the people, meaning Mass in Peru was celebrated in Spanish and Mass in the United States … [Read More...]

Pope: In the Christian community “no one is a stranger,” all are welcome

From CNS:  The Catholic Church "is a mother without limits and without borders," welcoming and assisting all of God's children, particularly those fleeing violence, oppression and poverty, Pope Francis said.Addressing the 300 participants in the Vatican-sponsored World Congress on the … [Read More...]

Winnie-the-Pooh, pervert

From The Independent: Winnie the Pooh has been banned from a Polish playground because of his “dubious sexuality” and “inappropriate” dress.The much-loved animated bear was suggested at a local council meeting to decide which famous character should become the face of the play area in the … [Read More...]

Bill Murray, liturgist: “I think we lost something by losing the Latin”

H/T to Rod Dreher, who posted this item:  His parents were Irish Catholics; one of his sisters is a nun. This conspicuous religion adds to his broad church appeal (there’s a citation from the Christian Science Monitor on his golfing memoirs). You don’t need to ask if his faith is important to him. H … [Read More...]

After 100 days, “dire situations” for Christians in Iraq

A new report from CNEWA's blog One-to-One: After 100 days away from their homes, churches, and lands, more than 20,000 Christian families find themselves in dire situations where they have to fight everyday to cover their basic needs. ...It is estimated that today more than 1.8 million people are … [Read More...]

Bishop stops speech, changes venue when reporter refuses to leave

Details:  Madison Catholic Bishop Robert Morlino halted a public speech Wednesday night at UW-Platteville and switched the venue to a Catholic student center after a reporter in the audience refused to leave.The bishop's action followed the appearance at the event of nine protesters opposed to … [Read More...]

The cardinal and the mayor: “A sort of municipal buddy movie”

While they haven't quite forged the friendship that defined Cardinal John O'Connor and Mayor Ed Koch, Cardinal Dolan and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio are finding their own way to a unique partnership.From The New York Times: Less than a year into Mr. de Blasio’s tenure, he and the cardinal, t … [Read More...]

Cardinal O’Malley writes about his “60 Minutes” interview

From The Boston Pilot's website:  Last Sunday evening I was privileged to be featured on the CBS television program "60 Minutes," which is actually three 20 minute segments. I was featured in segment two of the broadcast. The whole experience was fascinating. I was very impressed by the entire … [Read More...]

People, look east: Bishop announces celebration of Mass ad orientem during Advent

From Bishop James Conley in Lincoln, Nebraska: Since ancient times, Christians have faced the east during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass to remember to keep watch for Christ. Together, the priest and the people faced the east together, waiting and watching for Christ. Even in Churches that did … [Read More...]

Miracle? Fire destroys church, but crucifix is discovered intact

Photo: Gary Reyes / Bay Area News Group Details: The morning after the spectacular fire, the Rev. Firmo Mantovani and bleary-eyed members of his parish were stunned by the wondrous sight inside the burned out shell of Holy Cross Catholic Church."I can't believe what I'm seeing," said Sam … [Read More...]

Archbishop Cupich’s installation program, featuring music and the coat of arms

For those who missed it, you can download the full program right here. After all the debate that erupted online over the archbishop's selection of "All Are Welcome" at the vespers service, liturgists might want to note that the installation Mass itself included "How Lovely Are the Messengers" by … [Read More...]

VIDEO: “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” — but with a twist

In much of the country right now, it really is cold outside.So here's something to warm your heart: a new rendition of the winter classic by Michael Bublé and Idina Minzel (who last year was singing "The cold never bothered me anyway..." in "Frozen"). But this one has a charming twist. All the ro … [Read More...]

Caught on video: an exorcism in the Czech Republic

This happened last winter, but this week the priest involved finally confirmed it is authentic. Details: A chilling video of an exorcism taken at a Czech Republic Catholic church shows the chilling task of removing Satan. The ritual was captured on camera by a man who heard the shrieks of th … [Read More...]

“We are overjoyed”: reaction to pope lifting ban on ordaining married men as Eastern Catholic priests

This news got a lot of attention earlier in the week, and reaction has been overwhelmingly positive:The Vatican has lifted its ban on the ordination of married men to the priesthood in Eastern Catholic churches outside their traditional territories, including in the United States, Canada and … [Read More...]

Pope Francis: “All Christians are equal in dignity before God, united by vocation to holiness”

From his General Audience this morning:Dear brothers and sisters, good morning. A great gift of the Second Vatican Council was to have retrieved a vision of the Church founded on communion, and to have also embodied the principle of authority and hierarchy in this context. This has helped us to … [Read More...]