From home plate to lunch plate: meet the Baltimore umpire who serves the hungry

From CNS and Baltimore’s Catholic Review: When Major League Baseball umpire Mark Wegner, a Catholic, is in Baltimore to work at an Orioles game, one way he likes to spend his spare time is by helping people in need. “I have free time, and I try to use it productively, but nothing is more productive [Read More...]

Freed Iranian pastor writes letter of thanks to those who prayed for him

The Christian Post has details: Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani, who was released Sept. 8 after three years imprisonment, issued a letter shortly after his new-found freedom, thanking his supporters and God for helping him through his difficult journey. Nadarkhani begins his Sept. 8 “thank you” letter, made available by persecution watchdog Present Truth Ministries, by [Read More...]

A doctor’s witness: “I get to see the likeness of God every day”

From the New York Times, a profile of hope steeped in faith: Forty years ago, long before the recent afternoon when Dr. Joseph Dutkowsky knelt at the warped feet of his 4-year-old patient, he was a small-town teenager approaching his Catholic confirmation and needing to select a patron saint. He made an unlikely choice, a [Read More...]

“Ecclesiastical authority regards female ordination, even to the diaconate, with grave reservations…”

Canon lawyer Ed Peters has some thoughts on Bishop Wcela’s essay advocating for women deacons. From his blog: The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s 2008 visitation of a latae sententiae excommunication on those attempting to ordain women to the diaconate represents, I suggest, something more than a temporary disciplinary measure against prematurely implementing [Read More...]

Bloody Sunday: suicide bomber attacks Catholic church in Nigeria

From the Associated Press: A suicide car bomber attacked a Catholic church conducting Mass in northern Nigeria on Sunday, killing two people and wounding another 45 in a region under assault by a radical Islamist sect, officials said. An Associated Press journalist heard the explosion after 9 a.m. Sunday in the city of Bauchi, which [Read More...]

California Catholic church becomes a mosque

From the Orange County Register: An Islamic mosque with plans to expand is now operating in a small former church that was previously occupied by a Maronite Catholic church. The sale prompted questions – even from church parishioners – about the future of the site. The Jafaria Islamic Society purchased the building at 1546 E. [Read More...]

How come two of the “Top Catholic” high schools aren’t even Catholic?

After a reader checked out this post from earlier in the week, the following e-mail landed arrived this morning: Wanted to point out that two of the schools on this list are not even Catholic - that is, recognized as such by their local ordinaries. Having lived in the Dallas-Fort Worth area and having never heard of these institutions [Read More...]

Random act of kindness: bus driver gives shoes to homeless man

It happened in Winnipeg, Canada, but the story is quickly spreading around the globe. A Canadian TV report below tells what happened: [Read more...]

Life is good

They’re back: And not only that, there’s this: It’s like having pumpkin pie for breakfast. I love autumn. [Read more...]

Homily for September 23, 2012: 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

[Click here for readings] Long before he became the cardinal archbishop of New York, Timothy Dolan was the rector of the North American College in Rome. He used to give regular talks to the seminarians, which were collected in a very good book called “Priests for the Third Millennium.” In one of the talks, Cardinal [Read More...]

German bishops will refuse sacraments to those who don’t pay “church tax”

At a time when more Germans are leaving the Church and fewer are being baptized, the bishops have embarked on a bold crackdown. Details, from Huffington Post and Reuters: Germany’s Roman Catholic bishops have decreed that people who opt out of a “church tax” should not be given sacraments and religious burials, getting tougher on [Read More...]

Hanging out with the patriarch

His Beatitude,  Archbishop Foaud Twal, Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem, stopped by CNEWA today and sat down for a brief interview.  Here he is with Your Humble Blogger and Michael LaCivita, CNEWA’s vice president for communications. I actually had the good fortune of meeting the patriarch last spring (great snapshot here, showing my best side.) You can read [Read More...]

A bishop makes the case for women deacons

From the next issue of AMERICA, retired auxiliary bishop Emil Wcela of Rockville Centre weighs in: Women already minister extensively in the church. Consecrated religious serve in various fields. Thousands of other women serve in diocesan offices; in parishes as administrators, pastoral associates, directors of religious education, in the whole spectrum of parish life; in [Read More...]

Whatever happened to Latin?

That’s a question a lot of Catholics have asked and, while it’s making a comeback, the ancient language of the Church can still be hard to find in some places. Catholic News Service (whose excellent videos are becoming the standard by which all others are measured) offers this very good overview of Latin’s role in [Read More...]

Ordination preview: new deacons for Boston

From the Boston Pilot:  Cardinal Seán O’Malley will celebrate the Rite of Ordination to the Order of Deacon for 10 candidates at the Cathedral of the Holy Cross Sept. 22. Louis J. Piazza, a deacon candidate of the class of 2012, explained the significance of the rite and gave a bit of insight into the [Read More...]

Fort Worth’s Bishop Vann tapped for Diocese of Orange

And besides taking over a diocese, he will be taking over a high-profile project: transforming the Crystal Cathedral into the Christ Cathedral. Details over at Whispers in the Loggia.  You can also find a brief write-up at the AP.   [Read more...]

“Top 50 Catholic High Schools” includes one from Queens — UPDATED

In fact, this building is where I studied for the diaconate —for five years, it was my home away from home. Congratulations, to Cathedral Preparatory Seminary in Elmhurst, Queens. (Not insignificantly, it also is the last prep seminary of its kind in America.) From the Cardinal Newman Society:  Today, September 20, 2012, the winners of [Read More...]

“Les Miz”: an extended first look

Those who have been waiting for more glimpses of this epic musical — following the sensational trailer released this summer—your wait is over. The producers have just released a mini-documentary/promotional video that focuses on the groundbreaking technique they used for recording the music: actually performing the songs live, with piano accompaniment, rather than lip-syncing. Prepare [Read More...]


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