To Atlanta’s new deacons: “Care for the Church with the same intense love you provide to those you love at home”

The Georgia Bulletin has details behind the picture I posted yesterday: Ten new permanent deacons were ordained for service to the Archdiocese of Atlanta on Saturday, Feb. 11, at the Cathedral of Christ the King. Among family, friends, priests and brother deacons, the class of 2012 was all smiles as they reached the culmination of [Read More...]

Introducing “Conciliaria”

This is truly something remarkable — and well worth a visit. My brother deacon Eric Stoltz from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles has created and designed a beautifully executed new website devoted entirely to marking the 50th anniversary of the Second Vatican Council.  Titled “Conciliaria,” the new site is a treasure trove of history, theology, journalism [Read More...]

Mother Dolores Hart heads back to Hollywood

The celebrated former movie star and cloistered nun will be returning to the Oscars later this month — and walking the red carpet in her habit. Details, from USA TODAY: If you spot a nun roaming the red carpet during the Oscar telecast Feb. 26, don’t adjust your set. Mother Dolores is not flying or singing, but [Read More...]

Poll: Catholic voters tilting toward Romney

But will that hold?  Details: Despite a battle over birth-control policy between the White House and Roman Catholic leaders, Catholics’ political views differ little from those of non-Catholic voters, according to Reuters/Ipsos poll results released on Monday. About four in 10, or 37 percent, of Catholic voters approve of Democratic President Barack Obama’s performance, and [Read More...]

Sebelius defends HHS contraception mandate

Details: In her first appearance before lawmakers since her department inflamed the Catholic Church with a new rule mandating the provision of female contraception, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius defended the rule as legally sound.  “We certainly had our legal department look at a whole host of legal issues,” Sebelius testified before the [Read More...]

“Cooperation with evil” and the contraceptive debate

David Gibson of the Religion News Service has an interesting analysis of the contraception c ontroversy, from a moral theology perspective that most people have, as yet, failed to consider: When President Obama last week bowed to political reality and changed the rules on mandated contraception coverage, the White House was trying to find an [Read More...]

Rift: How Obama’s “accommodation” has split Catholics

A wide array of voices, from this morning’s New York Times: The near-unified front led by the nation’s Roman Catholic bishops to oppose a mandate for employers to cover birth control has now crumbled amid the compromise plan that the Obama administration offered last week to accommodate religious institutions. The leaders of several large Catholic [Read More...]

Ordination update: 10 new deacons in Atlanta

Below, the first picture of the new group, ordained last Saturday.  Deacon Steve Swope writes:  “This group brings us to 244 deacons in the Archdiocese.  We still have 53 in formation too!”  I’ll try to post names and more information as I get them.  Congratulations, brothers!  Ad multos annos! Photo: by Thomas Spink/Georgia Bulletin/Archdiocese of Atlanta. [Read more...]

Quote of the day

“I confess I no longer understand Obama. He did not go to the mat to end the Bush tax cuts for the super-rich. He did not go to the mat for comprehensive immigration reform. He did not go to the mat to close Guantanamo Bay. He did not go to the mat for Card Check. [Read More...]

For Valentine’s Day: one guy really takes the plunge

Olympic swimmer Matt Grevers proposes to his girlfriend Annie Chandler after winning the Missouri Grand Prix. [Read more...]

Have 98% of Catholic women really used contraceptives?

Um, no.  Surprised? The WaPo explains:  Lydia McGrew questions whether 98 percent of Catholic women have actually used contraceptives, a figure that became ubiquitous in last week’s birth control debate. She parses the research behind the stat, which comes from a 2011 Guttmacher Institute study: The survey was limited to women between 15-44. Ah, well, [Read More...]

Silence 101: College course teaches how to live like a monk

You have to go to school now to learn?? Details: Looking for a wild-and-crazy time at college? Don’t sign up for Justin McDaniel’s religious studies class. The associate professor’s course on monastic life and asceticism gives students at the University of Pennsylvania a firsthand experience of what it’s like to be a monk. At various [Read More...]

Meet Michael Voris

The Detroit Free Press has a lengthy profile of the controversial televangelist: As a Catholic TV station based in Ferndale becomes increasingly popular around the world, church officials are trying to tell the public that the media outlet does not represent Catholicism. In two public statements, the Archdiocese of Detroit has taken the unusual step [Read More...]

From Mark, on Greta

The following comment was posted on an earlier thread, from Mark: You might have noticed I have had a number of posts in the last hour or so. I lost my partner this afternoon, the love of my life, my Greta. I am mad as hell about losing her and remember the many battles she [Read More...]

Greetings from sunny Florida

…where, this morning,it was 35 degrees. The Deacon’s Wife and I are taking a winter break in a warmer climate — or trying to — and blogging will be light for the next few days. I’ll try to post periodically and moderate comments when necessary.  Please behave yourselves. Since I’m away, I don’t have a [Read More...]

“We were getting killed”: the inside story of Obama’s “accommodation”

From the New York Times: For the White House, the decision announced Friday to soften a rule requiring religious-affiliated organizations to pay for insurance plans that offer free birth control was never really driven by a desire to mollify Roman Catholic bishops, who were strongly opposed to the plan. Rather, the fight was for Sister [Read More...]

Report: NY Catholic institutions have been offering contraception coverage for years

From the New York Times: Although Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan of New York has been leading the national fight against requiring Roman Catholic hospitals, universities and charities to cover birth control in their health insurance plans for employees and students, some Catholic institutions in his own diocese and others throughout New York State have for [Read More...]

USCCB statement: “A first step in the right direction” — UPDATED

This just in: The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) sees initial opportunities in preserving the principle of religious freedom after President Obama’s announcement today. But the Conference continues to express concerns. “While there may be an openness to respond to some of our concerns, we reserve judgment on the details until we have [Read More...]


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