Worth a thousand words: cowboy confession

The picture above was taken in 1966. Forty-six years later, the picture below depicts a brother, a priest and a bishop on a cattle drive in the same corner of the country. Read the story behind all this here, in a terrific post by Wyoming’s blogging bishop, Paul Etienne. [Read more...]

How to plot like Pixar: “Brave” animator tweets secrets of storytelling

If you have a hankering to make a blockbuster classic animated film, one of the people behind the new Disney/Pixar hit “Brave” has been tweeting what he learned at the drawing board.  From the Wall Street Journal: For the past five years, Pixar has served as my film school. As a storyboard artist, working mainly [Read More...]

Homily for July 8, 2012: 14th Sunday in Ordinary Time — UPDATED WITH AUDIO

For audio of this homily, click the green arrow below. [Click here for readings] Last week, you’ll remember, the gospel told us what faith could achieve – miracles that could even restore health and give life. But this week, we’re reminded of what happens when we lack faith. What happens is…nothing.   When Jesus returned to [Read More...]

Cardinal Burke: five years on, work remains to make Latin Mass accessible

Five years ago today, 7 July 2007, the pope issued an apostolic letter expanding the use of the Tridentine Mass.  Now a leading advocate for that Extraordinary Form of the Mass is sizing up the success of that effort so far. Details: Five years after Pope Benedict XVI lifted most restrictions on celebration of the [Read More...]

Political discourse in 2012: #!*&%$!

The soaring rhetoric of ages past has crashed to earth. From the AP: What the $?&(! is going on with our politicians? The mayors of New York and Philadelphia and the governor of New Jersey let loose with a few choice vulgarities over the past two weeks in otherwise G-rated public settings, including a town-hall [Read More...]

From helmets to hardhats: the war veterans who are building the new World Trade Center in New York

This is inspiring, moving and just great. [Read more...]

“It’s like planning a wedding in six weeks with 2,000 guests”

That’s how one person involved described the process of putting together the installation of the new archbishop of Denver. Details: Among the summer’s most pressing questions: how long does it take to move a processional of 400 priests and deacons, up to 50 bishops and as many as four cardinals the length of two city [Read More...]

Melinda Gates on her Catholicism, and contraception

She speaks to CNN’s Sanjay Gupta below: Details from CNN: Responding to simmering controversy among Catholic bloggers about her new birth control program, Melinda Gates — a practicing Catholic — said she will not shrink from her role as an advocate for poor women. “Part of what I do with the (Gates) Foundation comes form [Read More...]

Cardinal Schonborn on Medjugorje

Cardinal Christoph Schonborn gave a wide-ranging interview recently to Our Sunday Visitor. A snip: OSV: Your decision to accompany pilgrims to Medjugorje has surprised some people, especially given the statements coming out of the local diocese and Rome that have questioned the authenticity of the apparitions. Could you give us some insight into how you [Read More...]

Atheist sues restaurant, charges discrimination over discount for diners who bring in church bulletin ad

Seriously? Yeah: A Manheim Township man [near Lancaster, PA] has filed a discrimination complaint against a Columbia restaurant that offers a 10 percent discount for diners who present a church bulletin on Sundays. John Wolff, who is an atheist, filed the complaint with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission against Prudhomme’s Lost Cajun Kitchen in Columbia. [Read More...]

Benny takes a break

So the pope is on vacation for a few weeks.  Looking over pictures of some of his recent vacations… …I can’t help but think he would just love to put on some flip flops and a bathing suit and cut loose. The gentleman above, btw: 93-year-old barefoot water skier George Alfred Blair. Enjoy the break, [Read More...]

“You can find love just about anywhere!”

This shot was taken by my goddaughter in Arizona, during her morning walk: I have a 3 mile route each morning here on the high desert. Mostly lots of rabbits and an occasional snake along the way. I thought this proves that you can find love just about anywhere! Someone made quite an effort on [Read More...]

Chaplains adjust to repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

Details: Col. Timothy Wagoner [shown above] has been an Air Force chaplain for 20 years, serving a denomination — the Southern Baptists — that rejects same-sex relationships. Yet here he was at the chapel he oversees, watching supportively as an airman and his male partner celebrated a civil union ceremony. “I wouldn’t miss it,” Wagoner [Read More...]

Mother of the Year nominee: cancer survivor who refused abortion while pregnant

Wal Mart in Canada is running a Mother of the Year contest — and this nominee, submitted by one of her children, deserves a little closer attention, I think: At 8 years old, my mom was diagnosed with a stage 4 Wilm’s tumor. She had surgery, 15 months of chemo, 6 weeks of radiation and [Read More...]

“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...]


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