Homeless man finds $40,000, turns it over to cops

And now he’s being hailed as a hero. Attention: preachers. Looking for a great story for next Sunday’s homily? Check out the readings and then try this on for size. Details:  A homeless Boston man who found $40,000 in a backpack has been hailed a hero — after he turned it all over to police. [Read More…]

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Canon law experts discuss Church teaching on divorce, remarriage and communion

From Catholic News Service:    Recent remarks by Pope Francis about the need for a stronger pastoral approach to marriage and divorced couples, do not signal the church is overturning its laws or practice of denying communion to Catholics who divorce and remarry, said two canon law experts. When Pope Francis made parenthetical reference to [Read More…]

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“Don’t curse the dark”

“The more you get involved in the groups that are doing wonderful work in the church the more you will be filled with joy in being a Catholic. The corruption, scandal and heresy will fade away like shadows. You will see clearly what you should be doing and it will be positive, life filled and [Read More…]

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This looks thrilling: a glimpse at the new IMAX movie “Jerusalem”

See the Holy Land as never before, thanks to the wizards at National Geographic. From HuffPo:  Jerusalem is one of the world’s most important cities, held sacred by three religious traditions, and it’s now possible to virtually visit its holy places in an unprecedented way thanks to the vision and daring of the team behind [Read More…]

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Vatican publishes e-book of Benedict’s World Communications Day messages

Something new and nifty, from the Pontifical Council for Social Communications:  The Pontifical Council for Social Communication has published an eBook entitled,“Benedict XVI: World Communications Day Messages“. The eBook, which is free, contains the eight messages released during Pope Benedict XVI’s pontificate. The digital publication is a first for the Council and intended as a [Read More…]

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“With fraternal good wishes, Francis”

That’s how the Holy Father has signed the now-famous letter to an atheist.  In an unusual move, the Vatican has published the entire text of the letter, in English, on its website. Check it out.   [Read more…]

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Forbes calls pope a “social media phenomenon”

From columnist Tom Watson:  Pope Francis – or @pontifex to his Twitter followers – has quickly become a social media phenomenon, adding five million followers since his installation six months ago. He is gaining more than 4,000 followers a day and knocking at the door of three million followers for his English language feed alone. He’s got more [Read More…]

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Report: Francis urges priests to “welcome” couples living together—UPDATED

That’s just one part of a two-hour discussion he had with the priests of Rome Monday. Details:  “Sanctity is greater than scandal”. This was the message Pope Francis extended to Rome’s parish priests at a meeting in St. John the Lateran this morning, the Diocese of Rome’s weekly newspaper RomaSette reports. The Pope asked for this meeting [Read More…]

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Bishop Caggiano: “Witness is the most powerful method of conversion. Not confrontation. Witness.”

A great interview with a great priest: from the National Catholic Register, a chat with Bridgeport’s new bishop, Brooklyn’s own Frank Caggiano: Please tell us little about growing up and discovering your vocation. I had a wonderful experience of what I call old-style neighborhoods, where I had perhaps 12 or 14 friends who lived on [Read More…]

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Ordination update: 15 new deacons for Youngstown

A newly ordained deacon writes: The Diocese of Youngstown has 15 new Permanent Deacons. Ordination 9-14-2013. If was a joy-filled day. The sacrament that is ‘mostly’ for others. I am looking forward to a fulfilling ministry. Congratulations, brothers, and welcome!  Ad multos annos!  [Read more…]

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Roma Downey producing mini series of “The Dovekeepers,” the story of Masada

From the press release: Roma Downey, executive producer and star of the Emmy® nominated, THE BIBLE series and her production company LightWorkers Media, announced today that it has acquired all rights to Alice Hoffman’s thrilling saga, and New York Times bestselling novel The Dovekeepers. The mesmerizing story, set in ancient Israel in the year 70 [Read More…]

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Best pope ever?

MSNBC’s Chris Hayes goes ga-ga over Papa (reminding me of another MSNBC anchor, Chris Matthews, who once expressed similar enthusiasm, and a tingling leg, for Barack Obama.) Snip:  You know who I freakin’ love? This new pope. Pope Francis. You know who I’m talking about, right? The pope. Are you watching this guy? Because you should [Read More…]

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A Brooklyn bishop sings the praises of deacons

It’s Auxiliary Bishop Octavio Cisneros, offering his endorsement of the diaconate in this new promotional video from the USCCB. Check it out and pass it on. [Read more…]

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“Why celibacy is right for me”

A prominent Jesuit writes in the Washington Post:  There has been much talk recently about priestly celibacy. Italian Archbishop Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s new Secretary of State, gave an interview to the Venezuelan newspaper El Universal, in which he discussed continuity and change in the Catholic Church. The interviewer raised the question of celibacy, and the archbishop [Read More…]

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Grandmother boasts: “I’m Long Island’s first female priest”—UPDATED

  Photo: by John Roca Um, no you’re not. Newsday has the scoop:  Eda Lorello, a longtime church worker, said she was ordained during a service in Wellesley, Mass., on Aug. 10 organized by Roman Catholic Womenpriests, an advocacy group that says it has ordained 120 women to what it calls the priesthood in the [Read More…]

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Try this at work and let me know what happens

It’s the Ostrich Pillow.  And no, once again, THIS IS NOT FROM THE ONION. Details:  Sometimes all you need is a power nap — after a stressful day; to counter jet lag; or for a chance to relax. The Ostrich Pillow is a dream come true. Burrow your head and arms into its cozy “cocoon” [Read More…]

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Report suggests holy water may be hazardous to your health

Details:  When getting blessed, you might also be getting sick. Researchers say holy water could actually be harmful to your health, as some of it contains fecal matter. “Austrian scientists tested water from more than three dozen holy springs and church fonts and found that none, not one of them were safe to drink.” (Via WPVI) Researchers [Read More…]

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“What is a parish?”: a homily for September 15, 2013

Today, traditionally the feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, is also my parish’s feast day. Late yesterday, the parish administrator said, “You wanna throw together a few words for the 11:30 Mass?”  Okay, I said.  Here they are.  Yesterday, as I do every month, I met with families to schedule baptisms. And I’m always surprised [Read More…]

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