Is this a thing now? Churches being transformed into bookstores?

Someone sent me this blog post from a few years ago, showing the startling transformation of a Dominican church in Holland that was converted to a bookstore—complete with a coffee bar where the altar once stood: Details: We’ve seen some breathtaking libraries in the past and this bookstore is no exception when it comes to [Read More…]

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“Unsportsmanlike conduct”: football player penalized for thanking God after touchdown

From Syracuse.com:  Late in the first half of Mexico Central Academy’s regular-season football finale atVernon-Verona-Sherrill on Saturday, Tigers’ quarterback Dante Turo took a snap from center and bolted 73 yards for a touchdown. As he crossed the goal line well ahead of any V-V-S defenders, Turo, a devout Christian, raised his right arm and pointed skyward. He also held the [Read More…]

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Mmm, mmm good? Campbell’s unveils a gay dads soup commercial

Seems like everybody is hopping on the gay ad bandwagon.  Take a look at the latest. [Read more…]

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Trump: I’d close down some mosques, “I think that’s great”

This is what we have come to. From The Washington Post:  Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said on Wednesday he would be willing to close some mosques within the United States in order to fight the Islamic State. In an interview on Fox Business, Stuart Varney asked Trump whether, if elected president, would take similar action as [Read More…]

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What defrock?!

This happens with some frequency, so it might be a good idea to look at a term that has become fairly common in the media: “Defrock.” Lately, a few places have used that word, or a variation of it, to describe what was done to that Polish monsignor who announced that he was gay and had [Read More…]

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Who was behind those stories about the pope’s brain tumor?

The Italian media are wondering:  Conspiracy theories worthy of a Dan Brown novel sprouted in the Italian media on Thursday, with accusations that Pope Francis’s enemies were looking to undermine him after a newspaper reported he had a brain tumor.  The Vatican angrily denied Wednesday’s story, calling it irresponsible and inexcusable, but rather than fading out [Read More…]

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From John Paul, a message for our time—and all times

The great pontiff’s feast day is today, and you’ll find this inspiring (and timely) gift in the Office of Readings, from his first homily as pope: The new Successor of Peter in the See of Rome today makes a fervent, humble and trusting prayer: Christ, make me become and remain the servant of your unique [Read More…]

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A Muslim mother offers blessing to her son, a newly ordained priest

Here’s something you don’t see every day: Details: A Muslim mother gave her blessing and support to her son who recently became one of the 11 newly ordained priests from the Societas Verbi Divini (SVD) order in the presence of Archbishop Vincensius Sensi Potokota. Robertus Belarminus Asiyanto, 31, was ordained last Oct. 10 at the [Read More…]

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Synod documents show insufficient support for changes in Communion

View image | gettyimages.com Details from The Wall Street Journal:   Newly released documents show Catholic bishops are unlikely to back Pope Francis’ drive to let church members who have divorced and remarried receive Communion, threatening to set back one of the pope’s signature initiatives. Position papers prepared during a high-profile meeting on family issues indicate conservative [Read More…]

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He’s out: Bishop suspends Polish gay priest

View image | gettyimages.com Not surprising:  A Polish priest who lost his job at the Vatican earlier this monthafter revealing that he is gay and has a boyfriend was indefinitely suspended Wednesday by the church in Poland from performing the functions of a priest. Rev. Krzysztof Charamsa, 43, came out as gay and criticized the Vatican [Read More…]

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Saluting “Back to the Future”—and Biff Tannen, Catholic!

Who knew?  Well, anyone who hasn’t been living in a cave knows that today is a big deal for “Back to the Future” fans. What you may not know is that the iconic villain of the trilogy, Biff Tannen, was played by a devout Catholic, Thomas F. Wilson. He now has his own website, promoting [Read More…]

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Church sign of the month

From some clever Catholics in southern Maryland: [Read more…]

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Meet the Imam who sat next to the pope

Last night, I attended the bi-annual joint Clergy Convocation for the Diocese of Brooklyn— bringing together priests, bishops and deacons for Evening Prayer, fellowship and (of course) a great meal. This year’s after-dinner talk included a panel discussion on the 50th anniversary of Nostra Aetate. One of the presenters was a young Imam, Khalid Latif, [Read More…]

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Vatican denies report Pope Francis has brain tumor

From Reuters:  The Vatican denied on Wednesday an Italian media report that Pope Francis has a benign brain tumor. “The circulation of entirely unfounded news regarding the health of the Holy Father by an Italian newspaper is gravely irresponsible and unworthy of attention,” chief Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said in a statement. “Furthermore, as [Read More…]

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Cutting a rug: thousands receive souvenir carpet squares used at pope’s Mass in Philadelphia

Now for something completely different:  Nearly one month after Pope Francis’ 2015 visit to Philadelphia, more than 5,000 of the 6-inch by 6-inch squares of white, gold and gray carpet used during the papal Mass on Benjamin Franklin Parkway have been given out as souvenirs. Crews from Hunterdon County’s Flemington Department Store were onsite at the Philadelphia Museum of [Read More…]

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Pope’s favorability numbers rise after visit to U.S.

From CNS:  A Marist Poll survey commissioned by the Knights of Columbus found Pope Francis’ favorability made significant gains among Catholics and among Americans overall in the wake of his Sept. 22-27 visit to the United States. Among practicing Catholics, 90 percent now say they view Pope Francis favorably, up from 83 percent in August, [Read More…]

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From the Synod: Cardinal Napier optimistic about Synod’s outcome

From NCR:  One of the 13 cardinals said to have signed a letter to Pope Francis sharply criticizing the ongoing Synod of Bishops has said he no longer has concerns about the gathering and is even optimistic about its outcome. South African Cardinal Wilfrid Napier told reporters at a briefing Tuesday that Francis’ response to [Read More…]

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10 Things You Should Never Say to a Nun…

From a nun, of course, Sister Theresa Aletheia Noble:  To preface this list, I have to say that most people I meet are very kind and excited to speak to a religious sister. Atheists. Muslims. Bikers. Former Catholics. Punks. People from all kinds of backgrounds and views love nuns. It makes sense. Kids know that [Read More…]

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