Homily for August 15, 2012: Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

[Click here for readings] Last weekend, I was talking with someone in the sacristy and said that that, in my opinion, this is the best time of year to be in New York. The last two weeks of August may be hot, humid, mobbed with tourists. But: during rush hour, you can always get a [Read More...]

Dolan: Why I invited President Obama to the Al Smith Dinner

A keeper from the Cardinal, answering his critics: How can you justify inviting the President? Let me try to explain. For one, an invitation to the Al Smith Dinner is not an award, or the provision of a platform to expound views at odds with the Church. It is an occasion of conversation; it is personal, not partisan. [Read More...]

Paul Ryan surprises a Catholic parish by actually going to Mass—UPDATED

They had to make room for him and some Secret Service agents, too.  Details:  Greeting early morning worshippers at St. Gabriel’s Catholic Chuch in Charlotte on Sunday, Rev. Andre Mangango noticed the strangers with dark glasses and ear phones. Then he realized the reason they were there: A Secret Service contingent escorting Republican Rep. Paul [Read More...]

“Behold, the Mother of God has arrived!”

With tomorrow marking the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, one of the great feasts in the Christian calendar, a writer at L’Osservatore Romano looks at one depiction of this event in iconography: In the Byzantine tradition the first great celebration in the liturgical cycle is the Nativity of the Mother of [Read More...]

Study: younger Muslims less religiously committed

Sound familiar? Details:  Nearly all Muslims can agree on the basic beliefs of Islam: There is one God, Muhammad is God’s prophet, Muslims should fast during the holy month of Ramadan and give alms to the poor. Yet beyond these central pillars of the faith, Muslims worldwide vastly differ as religious convictions are shaped by [Read More...]

“You got Daddy Skills…!”

For all the dads out there: something sweetly infectious from a rapper you might call Snoop Daddy Dad (a.k.a Sam Dorman), who boasts on YouTube that he shot this entirely on his iPhone. Whatever he did, this is a new anthem for a generation of dads.  Enjoy. [Read more...]

Worth a thousand words

From South Korea:  Cheju diocese has demanded an official apology after about 20 riot police disrupted a Mass yesterday on Jeju island. The police were clearing a path for a cement truck to enter the construction site of a controversial new naval base. Father Bartholomew Mun Jung-hyun, who was presiding over the Mass at the gates of [Read More...]

St. Maximilian Kolbe: “It is obedience alone that shows us God’s will”

“I rejoice greatly, dear brother, at the outstanding zeal that drives you to promote the glory of God. It is sad to see how in our times the disease called “indifferentism” is spreading in all its forms, not just among those in the world but also among the members of religious orders. But indeed, since [Read More...]

Episcopal priest will convert, but without his wife

Details: A longtime North Shore clergyman is in line to become one of the first Episcopal priests in the country to be ordained as a Roman Catholic priest. The Rev. Jurgen Liias, who led Christ Church in Hamilton for 14 years before forming a breakaway Episcopal church in Danvers, has applied to the Vatican to [Read More...]

“Miracle”: one priest saves another from drowning

It happened last week in Florida.  Details:  The Rev. Krzysztof Bugno hovered over the lifeless body of his friend — also a priest — seconds after pulling the struggling man from the waves at Canvaeral National Seashore and prayed. A few harrowing moments later, Bugno got his miracle. “I didn’t know CPR, but I felt [Read More...]

“Marriage is a mess and homosexuals didn’t do it”

That’s the eye-catching headline of the latest blog post by one of Patheos’ newest writers, Rebecca Hamilton.  She’ll be hanging her hat over at a new blog called “Public Catholic,” devoting her time and attention to politics.  She knows whereof she speaks: Rebecca is in the Oklahoma House of Representatives and is (brace yourselves) a [Read More...]

Can Syria’s Christians survive?

It’s a question being examined in this morning’s Wall Street Journal: Near the Syrian city of Aleppo, the Church of St. Simeon the Stylite commemorates the 5th-century ascetic who became an ancient sensation by living atop a tall pedestal for decades to demonstrate his faith. Krak des Chevaliers, an awe-inspiring castle near Homs, was a [Read More...]

LA Times: Ryan’s budget a “quandary” for some Catholics

Barely 48 hours after Paul Ryan joined the ticket, the ideological debate is already heating up: A couple of things were different at 9:45 a.m. Mass at St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Janesville on Sunday. Rep.Paul D. Ryan, a fixture in the center pews when he’s not in Washington or on a national news [Read More...]

Amid concerns over religious freedom, Catholic vicariate leaves Kuwait

Details:  Bahrain will take over from Kuwait as the headquarters of the Vicariate of Northern Arabia for the Roman Catholic Church. Bishop Camillo Ballin will continue to lead the Vicariate, a statement said. “After thoughtful consideration and the completion of a new Roman Catholic Church in the Kingdom, Bahrain will host Vicariate as a testament [Read More...]

“Would you sing something different?”

The Johnny Cash biopic “Walk the Line” was on Ovation tonight, and the scene below just knocks it out of the park. Struggling songwriter and door-to-door salesman J.R. Cash (the incredibly good Joaquin Phoenix — why didn’t he get the Oscar for this?) gets a chance to audition for legendary record producer Sam Phillips, who [Read More...]

Tolerance in 2012 — UPDATED

This video is starting to make the rounds: Father Gerald O’Reilly prays outside of Chick-fil-A, (Watertower) in Chicago, Illinois on the 8th of August, 2012.  Watch what happens. UPDATE: Elizabeth Scalia has some thoughts on this video that may surprise you.   Read more.   [Read more...]

My day of rest

Periodically, people ask me what my Sundays are like.   I answered that question a few years ago when my blog was at Beliefnet.  I re-read the post recently.  To my surprise, not much has changed. A snip: SATURDAY 4:45 – Arrived for 5 pm vigil mass. Looked over the gospel and the Prayers of [Read More...]

The other Ryan: the candidate’s wife, Janna

An interesting glimpse at Paul Ryan’s wife, from the Washington Post:  Janna Ryan, wife of Republican vice presidential pick Rep. Paul Ryan, is the poster girl for Generation X women who wanted to have it all. Ryan, 43, like many of her 40-something peers, is a stay-at-home mother with an impressive resume. She prefers her husband’s [Read More...]


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