RIP, Hal David

I was surprised this weekend to hear of the death of lyricist Hal David, who penned some of the most enduring pop tunes of the ’60s.  I didn’t realize just how prolific he had been until I read his obit in the Times and saw his output: “Raindrops Keep Fallin’ On My Head,” “I Say [Read More...]

“This does not seem right to me”: when a priest uses someone else’s homily

I received the following e-mail this morning: Dear Deacon Greg: Today during Mass our pastor read your homily for the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, with hardly a word changed and without acknowledging that someone else had written it. This is at least the third time this has happened, and it appears to me that [Read More...]

A first: anchorwoman appears on Egyptian TV wearing head veil

Details, from the Associated Press: A female Egyptian news presenter appeared on state television wearing a veil for the first time on Sunday after the Islamist-dominated government lifted an effective ban that had been in place for decades under secular-leaning regimes of the past. The ban on female news readers wearing the Islamic veil had [Read More...]

Another threat facing Catholic schools

It’s the charter school system, according to this analysis from Education Week: The nation’s Roman Catholic schools have labored for decades under increasingly adverse economic and demographic conditions, which have undermined their finances and sapped their enrollment. Today, researchers and supporters say those schools face one of their most complex challenges yet: the continued growth [Read More...]

One deacon’s story: “Really, what I do is listen…”

Writer Tom Loewy from the Galesburg Register-Mail in Illinois spent some time recently chatting with a deacon, and shared part of the conversation: If you can take the time to listen, you learn something knew every day. And you are fortunate to be given the opportunity to hear. That fact was hammered home as I [Read More...]

Cardinal Dolan: “Just because we pray with someone or we eat with someone doesn’t mean we agree with them”

Kathryn Jean Lopez had a chance to chat with Cardinal Dolan in Tampa, and he shared his thoughts about the conventions and the Al Smith Dinner: “I am just hoping that a more conciliatory posture might especially be a light to the world and salt to the earth in a time when divisiveness and almost [Read More...]

Martini: Church is “200 years out of date”

Details of the late Cardinal’s final interview are emerging, and they have a few surprises: The former archbishop of Milan and papal candidate Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini said the Catholic Church was “200 years out of date” in his final interview before his death, published on Saturday. Martini, once favored by Vatican progressives to succeed [Read More...]

“We sin when we put priests on pedestals and idolize them…”

From the great Joanne McPortland: The thing is, we sin when we put priests on pedestals and idolize them. I think that’s what Jesus cautioned against when he told us to call no man father. Yes, priests are due the respect of their office—as is every person made in God’s image. But holiness is not [Read More...]

Archbishop rebukes priest who took part in same sex wedding

A Catholic blogger in Brooklyn has a followup to this story from a couple weekends ago: Statement from the Archdiocese of Hartford regarding Fr. Michael DeVito August 24, 2012: Archbishop Henry J. Mansell has met with Father Michael DeVito regarding the priest’s participation in a same-sex marriage ceremony involving a cousin in New York City [Read More...]

Secret Service investigating “Pray for Obama” sign

It’s not the sign that’s causing trouble, but the Bible verse accompanying it. Details: The Secret Service is looking into a sign posted in Victoria, Texas. The sign says “Pray for Obama”, but it’s the scripture quoted below those words that is raising eyebrows: Psalms 109:8. Psalms 109:8 reads, “Let his days be few, and let [Read More...]

Homily for September 2, 2012: 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

[Click here for readings] “From within people, from their hearts, come evil thoughts…” In the gospel we just heard, Jesus speaks of the roots of sin – and even goes on to list some examples.  He accuses the Pharisees of hypocrisy for worrying more about how they cleanse their hands, but not how they cleanse [Read More...]

The Ryans attend Mass in Florida

Details: The day after delivering his first major address to the nation, Paul Ryan attended daily mass at Our Lady of Grace parish in St. Petersburg. The church, built in 1929, is a beautiful structure that is “Byzantine in style with Romanesque features.” A sign in front of the church read: “ALL ARE WELCOME.” The [Read More...]

On priests and political activism

As we enjoy some relative quiet between the two conventions (and a long holiday weekend!) now might be a good time to reacquaint ourselves with the Church’s teaching on clergy and their involvement in politics. First, there are these remarks from Blessed John Paul II, titled “Priests Do Not Have a Political Mission”: The Church [Read More...]

Meet the “new men”: the priests of tomorrow

From Catholic News Service comes this excellent video, featuring brief profiles of five of the men who have just arrived at the North American College in Rome to begin studies for the priesthood. Take a look. [Read more...]

RIP, Cardinal Martini

One-time papal contender Cardinal Martini has died: Italian Cardinal Carlo Maria Martini, a renowned biblical scholar and former archbishop of Milan, died Aug. 31 at the age of 85 after a long battle with Parkinson’s disease. Pope Benedict XVI met privately with the cardinal during a visit to Milan in June, and was informed of [Read More...]

Cardinal Dolan’s closing prayer at the GOP convention

From his blog: With firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, let us pray: Almighty God, father of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Jesus, we beg your continued blessings on this sanctuary of freedom, and on all of those who proudly call America home.  We ask your benediction upon those yet to be born, and [Read More...]

“Please let Fr. Groeschel know we love him very much…”

This e-mail arrived today, from a nurse, regarding the Fr. Benedict Groeschel story: I have been thinking of him alot lately– I say the rosary at 9 pm when he leads it on the radio. He reminds me of the sweet religious that I was privileged to take care of at a Dominican nursing facility. [Read More...]

Madonna, still gunning for the church

New Jersey Star Ledger writer Tris McCall describes what happens in the star’s latest concert: The lights went down, and we were in Troyes Cathedral, or perhaps Fordham University. A gigantic glowing crucifix, several stories high, hung over the stage. It was the centerpiece of a handsome Old World church built of light and shadow [Read More...]


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