“Fake it until you make it”: a great lesson in optimism

If anybody needs a primer in the power of positive thinking, look no further than Jane Brody’s recent column in the New York Times, which told the story of a World War II vet named William Richmond: My recent column on optimism drew hundreds of comments from readers who testified to the value of living [Read More...]

Chinese priest reported missing ahead of illicit ordination

Details: Father Giuseppe Zhao Hongchun, apostolic administrator of Harbin, has been “missing” since the afternoon of July 4, where he went to attend an appointment arranged by religious affairs officials. Local sources told AsiaNews that they believed he has been under house arrest, but his whereabouts is not known to them. This event is related [Read More...]

“The only deacon referred to by name in the New Testament is Phoebe…”

Since the news of a new head of the CDF has prompted renewed discussion about women deacons, Deacon Bill Ditewig takes a closer look at some of the latest scholarship on the subject: The new Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF), now-Archbishop (soon-to-be Cardinal) Gerhard Ludwig Mueller has written on [Read More...]

Muslims vow to protect Christian churches in Kenya

Details: Muslim leaders in Kenya have agreed to form self-defence groups to protect churches following a deadly attack on Sunday. Fifteen people were killed in the raids on churches in Garissa, a town near the border with Somalia. Kenya’s border region has been tense since it sent troops into Somalia to pursue al-Shabab Islamist militants. [Read More...]

Quote of the day

“We live in a time that calls for sentinels and public witness. Every Christian in every era faces the same task. But you and I are responsible for this moment. Today. Now. We need to “speak out,” not only for religious liberty and the ideals of the nation we love, but for the sacredness of life [Read More...]

My favorite rendition of the “Star Spangled Banner”

From 2007.  Place: Fenway Park, Boston.  Singer: Peter Rometti.  He has autism and was selected to sing the national anthem as part of Disability Awareness Night.  The crowd was clearly rooting for him as much as it was the Red Sox.  Watch.  Is this a great country, or what? [Read more...]

In tribute to that great Jewish novelty tune, “God Bless America”

Who knew? At least one critic has noted that parts of the song are lifted from a Jewish vaudeville song written over 100 years ago. (If you’re curious, give a listen to a sampling, and you can indeed hear the title strains of “God Bless America” very clearly.) Below, Kate Smith’s iconic rendition from “This [Read More...]

What a friend we have in cheeses: meet the cheese-making nuns of Virginia

All Gouda gifts around us are sent from heaven above! Details, from the Washington Post: It is 10:05 a.m., and Sister Barbara Smickel is shoulder-deep in curds and whey. She is in the cheese barn at Our Lady of the Angels Monastery in Crozet, Va., located about 14 miles west of Charlottesville and down a [Read More...]

Will Romney pick a Catholic?

Washington’s favorite guessing game — who will be Mitt Romney’s running mate? — is heating up along with the weather outside. The Washington Post notes one religion in particular keeps coming to the forefront: There has been a lot of talk this year concerning the role of evangelical Christians and Mormons on the Republican side, [Read More...]

Bill Geist reveals he has Parkinson’s

I missed this news this past weekend — I’m usually doing something else on Sunday mornings — but the announcement by the best-selling writer and longtime CBS News correspondent is worth noting.  Bill Geist is a national treasure, and an all-around good guy.  (On top of that — if memory serves — I believe his [Read More...]

RIP, Andy Griffith

Word that the television icon, best known as the sheriff of Mayberry  and father of Opie, has died at the age of 86. People tend to forget what a spellbinding actor he could be. His standout performance in Elia Kazan’s “A Face in the Crowd” is still a stunner — and the story itself, recounting [Read More...]

“My last night as an associate pastor…”

A priest in Indianapolis reflects on how his life is about to change as, for the first time, he becomes a pastor: For the rest of my life until retirement, barring getting sent away for further schooling or something like that, I’ll be a pastor of a parish.  It is kind of intimidating sitting here [Read More...]

India’s miracles: “Many cases of healing we cannot ignore”

On the day we remember the saint who doubted, a story from the Vatican notes that many in the mission country he visited are reportedly experiencing miraculous cures that are helping lead them to faith: Strange things are going on in the Indian diocese ofItangar and Mgr. John Kattrukudiyl spoke about them during a visit to Germany for [Read More...]

Just desserts: Biden visits nuns in Iowa

And ice cream was involved: Political campaigns are all about generating publicity and public support, but Vice-President Biden seems to have upended conventional wisdom — not a first for him, of course — by making an under-the-radar visit to the motherhouse of the Sisters of St. Francis in Dubuque during a two-day campaign trip to [Read More...]

“St. Thomas definitely landed on this very spot…”

Today the Latin church marks the feast of the celebrated “Doubting Thomas,” the skeptic who became a saint. Tradition holds that after the resurrection, St. Thomas the Apostle traveled to India.   But what happened after that? Here’s a glimpse at the region he visited, from two years ago in the pages of ONE: “St. [Read More...]

Just in time for vacation season: hotel swaps the Bible for Kindle

Ladies and gentlemen, the future is here (or, at least, in Britain): From today, all 148 rooms at the Hotel Indigo will contain a Kindle e-reader pre-loaded with a copy of the Bible. The hotel is claiming to be the first in Britain to offer such a service. Guests are also permitted to download a [Read More...]

Absolution at Gettysburg: the story of Fr. William Corby

A fascinating and timely piece by the good doctor, Pat McNamara: On the hot afternoon of July 2, 1863, the Union Army’s Irish Brigade, a unit composed predominantly of Catholic immigrants, waited for the order to go into action. It was the second day of the Battle of Gettysburg, a three-day conflagration that saw over [Read More...]

On Alec Baldwin’s wedding and his daughter’s “illegitimate” status

Last week, a New York tabloid noted that celebrated hothead Alec Baldwin was having a big Catholic wedding (his first in the church) at the city’s storied basilica, Old St. Patrick’s (shown above).  It also reported that in the eyes of the church his daughter from his marriage to Kim Basinger is considered illegitimate.  One [Read More...]


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