Awesome video: see a church transformed from Good Friday to Easter Sunday in 30 seconds

Check out how they did it at St. John Cantius Church in Chicago. Doesn’t every parish wish it were this easy and fast? Photo from St. John Cantius website [Read more...]

Do this in remembrance of me: Homily for Holy Thursday

When I was growing up, like a lot of families, mine had one of those small, cheap Kodak Instamatic cameras. You used those flash bulbs that looked like ice cubes…and got these little square pictures back from the drug store when you had them developed. My dad must have taken hundreds, if not thousands of [Read More...]

Coming attraction: Hugh Jackman as St. Paul?

The buzz from Hollywood:  A new faith-based project with A-list stars involved is coming now from Warner Bros. The project, Apostle Paul, is being developed at the studio for Hugh Jackman to star in the role as the Jewish man of God (also known as Saul of Tarsus) who crossed over to speak to the Romans and preach the [Read More...]

The most surprising thing I’ve read in The New York Times recently

“I must say that a disproportionate share of the aid workers I’ve met in the wildest places over the years, long after anyone sensible had evacuated, have been evangelicals, nuns or priests. Likewise, religious Americans donate more of their incomes to charity, and volunteer more hours, than the nonreligious, according to polls. In the United States and abroad, the [Read More...]

Is this the next Sister Christina? Redemptorist priest is a hit on “The Voice”

Details:  The 28-year-old Redemptorist priest Damian Maria Montes has surprised thousands of viewers of Spanish television when he passed the blind audition of La Voz (The Voice),  a reality talent show in Spain. One of the important premises of the show is the quality of the singing talent. Four coaches, themselves popular performing artists, train [Read More...]

Pittsburgh eliminates fees for marriage annulments

Welcome news. Let’s hope this is the beginning of a trend. Details:   The Diocese of Pittsburgh has eliminated fees for annulments in keeping with comments by Pope Francis that the church should make it easier for some divorced Roman Catholics to remarry and receive other sacraments. “My staff and I have long dreamed of [Read More...]

Before Holy Thursday, there is Spy Wednesday

The day before Holy Thursday is traditionally known as “Spy Wednesday” — when Judas “spied” for an opportunity to betray Jesus. (The 13th century fresco above shows him being paid his 30 pieces of silver.) This day comes complete with its own traditions and customs: Wednesday is known as Spy Wednesday because on this day Judas [Read More...]

Reconciliation, from the priest’s point of view

Yesterday, I posted about my visit to a church in midtown Manhattan to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Today, my blog neighbor Fr. Michael Duffy tells the story from the other side of the screen:  I walked into the church at ten to three and already fifty people were waiting.  I went into the priest’s sacristy, [Read More...]

Spa-like abortion clinic to open outside Washington

Making murder more comfortable:  With its natural wood floors and plush upholstery, Carafem aims to feel more like a spa than a medical clinic. But the slick ads set to go up in Metro stations across the Washington region leave nothing to doubt: “Abortion. Yeah, we do that.” The Maryland clinic, opening this week in Montgomery [Read More...]

Vatican defends Barros appointment in Chile

From Reuters:   The Vatican on Tuesday strongly defended its appointment of a bishop in Chile despite protests by critics who have accused him of covering up sexual abuse. Juan Barros was installed on March 21 as new bishop of Osorno as supporters holding white balloons and opponents carrying black ones shouted at each other during [Read More...]

Just published: the pope’s daily homilies

A perfect Easter gift: Each morning when Pope Francis celebrates Mass he offers a short homily for fellow residents and guests in the chapel of St. Martha’s Guesthouse, where he has chosen to live. Now, Morning Homilies makes it possible for everyone to experience his lively interpretations of Scripture and his uncanny capacity to engage [Read More...]

Meet the Muslim building a chair for Francis in Bosnia

From AP:  Salem Hajdarovac says he didn’t sleep for a week when he heard his workshop had been granted the honor of carving a special chair that Pope Francis will sit on during his visit to Bosnia. Hajdarovac, 61, and his 33-year-old son Edin, both devout Muslims, started working on the chair on Monday in [Read More...]

Illinois street renamed for miraculous icon

From our Orthodox siblings:  Orthodox Church officials joined Archpriest Nicholas Dahdal and officials from the Town of Cicero in commemorating the miracle of the Tearing Icon known as “The Miraculous Lady of Cicero, Illinois.” The Town of Cicero placed an Honorary Street Marker that reads “Our Lady of Cicero Court” on the corner of 60th Court and [Read More...]

An iPad from the pope to be auctioned for charity

Get in your bid:  A Montevideo auction house hopes to get at least $40,000 for an iPad used by Pope Francis, with the proceeds to be donated to a Catholic high school in the northwestern Uruguayan city of Paysandu. “There is interest not only in our country,” auctioneer Juan Castells told Efe. “Recently, we received [Read More...]

Renegade bishops plan consecrations for “The Resistance”

Grim news for Holy Week:  Two renegade Catholic bishops plan to consecrate a new generation of bishops to spread their ultra-traditionalist movement called “The Resistance” in defiance of the Vatican, one of them said at a remote monastery in Brazil. French Bishop Jean-Michel Faure, himself consecrated only two weeks ago by the Holocaust-denying British Bishop Richard [Read More...]

Reconciliation Monday at St. Francis of Assisi

I dropped by one of my favorite churches in Manhattan, St. Francis of Assisi, for confession today, “Reconciliation Monday.”  The church is open for confessions every day, at all hours, but there was a line today anyway—about 20 people when I arrived at 5 p.m.  Four confessionals were open, so things moved quickly. I was [Read More...]

Want to prove you’re a good Catholic? Get your papers in order!

An excellent nudge, from Commonweal:  Want to prove you’re a good Catholic? I’m afraid you’ll have to do more than feed the hungry and teach your children the Lord’s Prayer in at least four modern languages and one or two dead ones. The absolute steel test for proving you’re a good Catholic has little to [Read More...]

EWTN workers build Pope Francis Habitat for Humanity house

Details:  EWTN employees more accustomed to running cameras, editing video and overseeing a worldwide religious TV network got their hands dirty on Friday. An anonymous donor contributed $60,000 to Greater Birmingham Habitat for Humanity in honor of Pope Francis and his commitment to “work confers dignity.” That money has been used toward construction of a [Read More...]


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