Now it can be told: how they created those realistic raptors in “Jurassic Park”

From Stan Winston comes this fascinating glimpse at how they made those dinosaurs so realistic. It’s not as technically sophisticated as you might think: ultimately, it was mostly a guy in a rubber suit. Check it out, though. It’s surprising, and fascinating. [Read more...]

I saw “Lincoln” last night: here are five takeaways…

I took in an advance screening of Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” last night.  Five quick points, in no particular order:  Forget the trailer. What you’re seeing to promote the movie is more histrionics than history, and what actually unspools on the screen is sharper, smarter, headier and often much more reflective and tender than what you [Read More...]

Vatican ambassador attends first Mass held at Iraqi monastery in 1,500 years

Amazing.  Read on: The Vatican’s ambassador to Iraq and a number of monks held the first mass in 1,500 years in one of the oldest monasteries in the Iraqi city of al-Hira (south of Najaf), and met with the top Iraqi Shiite cleric, Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani. Hira had been a spiritual capital for Christians, and [Read More...]

Poland to start funding IVF treatments

And the secularization of Europe continues.  Details: Poland’s Prime Minster Donald Tusk announced plans on Monday to finance in-vitro fertilization treatment for couples, setting himself on a collision course with conservatives who say the procedure violates Catholic doctrine. A growing number of increasingly secular Poles back IVF, which has been performed in Poland for 25 [Read More...]

What was the pope wearing yesterday??

It’s called a fanon.  Huh?? Details, thanks to the Catholic Encyclopedia and New Liturgical Movement:  A shoulder-cape worn by the pope alone, consisting of two pieces of white silk ornamented with narrow woven stripes of red and gold; the pieces are nearly circular in shape but somewhat unequal in size and the smaller is laid [Read More...]

Planning to be on Long Island this weekend? Stop by and say hello to some Patheosians!

The Society of Catholic Social Scientists is holding its 20th annual conference on Long Island Friday and Saturday, and some familiar names will be there, including Your Humble Blogger. Friday morning, I’ll be moderating a panel  — “And God Said ‘Tweet’: New Media and the New Evangelization” — that will include our own Marc Barnes and [Read More...]

The future of the New Evangelization? Look East

That, in effect, is the message of John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter, writing from Ukraine: Back in 1974, music writer John Landau achieved immortality after attending a set in the Harvard Square Theatre by a then-obscure act out of New Jersey, and declaring: “I have seen the future of rock and roll, and [Read More...]

“He was a typical village priest…”

Last year on this day, my parish celebrated a special Mass to mark the first feast day of Blessed John Paul II.  Below is part of my homily for that occasion. It remains a personal favorite of mine. Blessed John Paul, pray for us!  — DGK He was a typical village priest.  He said mass, [Read More...]

New survey shows gap between “social justice” and “right to life” Catholics

Details: A new national survey of likely voters shows a sharp contrast among Catholics, the nation’s largest religious group and one with significant membership in swing states such as Florida and Ohio, when it comes to choosing between President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney. The American Values Survey, released Monday by the [Read More...]

Holy water: video of California’s “Blessing of the Waves”

I posted on this a few days back, now there’s video! Check out this report on the Blessing of the Waves, complete with every religion imaginable — and Dean of Jan & Dean, to boot! [Read more...]

St. Kateri at my church

As I mentioned in my homily this morning, St. Kateri is featured in my parish’s reredos.  Here are a couple pictures I took today to illustrate.  The sacristan is lighting the candles by the image of St. Boniface. Kateri is located in the upper right corner of the Boniface image. [Read more...]

Video: Pope names seven new saints

From Rome Reports comes this concise video, which gives some of the color and flavor of today’s canonizations. [Read more...]

Pope’s homily at today’s canonizations: “These seven generous disciples of Christ…”

Complete text, via Vatican News: The Son of Man came to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many (cf. Mk 10:45) Dear Brother Bishops,Dear brothers and sisters! Today the Church listens again to these words of Jesus, spoken by the Lord during his journey to Jerusalem, where he was to accomplish [Read More...]

Ireland opens first abortion clinic

Details: The first abortion clinic on the island of Ireland opened Thursday in downtown Belfast, unleashing angry protests on the street and uniting Catholic and Protestant politicians in calls to investigate the new facility. The clinic, run by the British family planning charity Marie Stopes, will be permitted to provide abortions only in exceptional circumstances [Read More...]

UPDATE: Last Catholic hospital in Phoenix NOT stripped of its status

 Earlier reports were incorrect. UPDATE: The diocese today released a statement: Contrary to reports in the media, Mercy Gilbert Medical Center has not been stripped of its Catholic status. The hospital is in the process of renewing its status and ensuring its compliance with the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services. This [Read More...]

Owed to joy: check out this thrilling symphony flash mob

Just when you thought this contrivance had been done to death, somebody finds a new and delightful way to bring a little joy into everyday life. This first popped up on YouTube last summer, but since we have a while into the Hallelujah! flash mobs start up again, let’s indulge ourselves, shall we? This comes [Read More...]

What does “Catholic” really mean?

This piece by Franciscan friar and blogger Daniel Horan, OFM (“Dating God”) offers some answers that may surprise people: In 1990 the now-late Jesuit scholar of English literature and philosophy, Walter Ong, S.J., wrote an essay for America magazine that responded to the perennial question for educators in Catholic institutions of higher education: How does [Read More...]

Homily for October 21, 2012: 29th Sunday in Ordinary Time

As most of you know, today the Holy Father formally declared a number of new saints, including two from New York, Mother Marianne Cope and Kateri Tekakwitha. I think it is a special and unexpected grace that Kateri was declared a saint during our parish centennial.  She is literally a part of this church. If [Read More...]


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