Obama backlash: Rubio introduces “Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 2012″

Someone whose name, and profile, have both become more prominent this election year is now staking out his turf in the looming battle over the recent HHS ruling on contraception. From National Catholic Register: Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., introduced the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 2012 today, marking the GOP’s first legislative response to the [Read More...]

“The Amish Project”: life without a cell phone, computer, social media

What happens when a college student walks away from modern life for 90 days?  Jake Reilly did that.  And what he found was a revelation: In the end, having finished this whole thing, is your life different now or did you fall right back into old habits? Reilly: It’s definitely different, but I catch myself doing [Read More...]

Does your life sound like this?

Mine does. Oscar Hammerstein once wrote, “All the sounds of the earth are like music.”  Here’s the 21st century version of that idea, cleverly conceived and executed. [Read more...]

Great moments in the Commonwealth of Virginia

This would be funny, if it were’t true. Virginia is about to pass a bill that would require pregnant women to undergo an ultrasound before having an abortion. Details: It’s one of several anti-abortion bills now moving through the General Assembly. Others would give legal rights to unborn children, prohibit abortions after 20 weeks unless [Read More...]

“Now is the time for all good Catholics to come to the aid of providers…”

“Now is the time for all good Catholics to come to the aid of providers—the schools, hospitals, charities, and soup kitchens who serve communities in need without asking affiliations. And, in coming together, perhaps now is the time to ponder their long-held presumptions, each about the other, and broaden our own outreach as well. If [Read More...]

Worth a thousand words

Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan prays the rosary on steps of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. He’s on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land this week. Read more. Photo by Bob Mullen/The Catholic Photographer/NY Daily News [Read more...]

“Catholic” Social Services to become “Christian” in Illinois

And another Catholic institution gives up its affiliation with the Church.  Details: As of Feb. 1, 2012, Catholic Social Services of Southern Illinois will become Christian Social Services of Illinois (CSS). CSS has chosen to become independent of the Catholic Diocese of Belleville in order to adhere to the new State of Illinois Religious Freedom [Read More...]

Worth a thousand words

I can relate: [Read more...]

The witness of Rick Santorum

The New York Times (!) has a sympathetic and moving look at his daughter Bella’s illness, and how it has shaped Santorum’s life and affected his campaign: Isabella Santorum, the fragile 3-year-old daughter of Rick Santorum, has pulled through again. She came down with pneumonia over the weekend, a frightening turn of events given that [Read More...]

Matthew Broderick’s Day Off

For those of us who still have warm, fuzzy feelings for Bueller, try this: a new Honda ad, set to debut during the Super Bowl, but getting an early push on the interwebs. To Honda and Broderick all I can say is: “Danke shoen.” [Read more...]

Shock: employee accused of stealing more than $1 million from Archdiocese of New York

Details: The Manhattan district attorney’s office on Monday arrested a Bronx woman who is accused of stealing more than $1 million from the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York when she worked in the archdiocese’s finance office, law enforcement officials and church leaders said. The woman, Anita Collins, 67, had been previously convicted of grand [Read More...]

“Pray, prepare, practice…”

Several months ago, the folks at Deacon Digest asked me if I might have anything interesting to contribute to a special issue devoted to preaching. Well, I didn’t. But they printed it anyway. Now you can find that essay — “Pray, Prepare, Practice: How I Put Together My Homilies” — here at Patheos.  A snip: [Read More...]

News from the boiler room

Think it’s easy shoveling out all this blog stuff every day?  Ha! My Boss, Elizabeth Scalia (or the Artist Otherwise Known As The Anchoress) is taking a well-deserved blogging break this week.   She’s stepped away from the boiler, and put aside her shovel, and enlisted some able-bodied replacements to continue keeping the engine humming. [Read More...]

From the Department of Excessive Excess

For the really really rich executive who has everything:  a smart phone that’s so smart, it costs $2,400. A review: Let’s begin digging into what will interest the business elite — the phone’s design and hardware. First off, we’ll need to answer the first burning question: does the P’9981′s cost have anything to do with [Read More...]

Catholic colleges and the HHS contraception ruling

Another angle of this story, from the New York Times: Bridgette Dunlap, a Fordham University law student, knew that the school’s health plan had to pay for birth control pills, in keeping with New York state law. What she did not find out until she was in an examining room, “in the paper dress,” was [Read More...]

Praying for Greta: “My wife continues to decline…”

Many commenters know Greta and her husband Mark.  The Anchoress last night posted this comment from Mark: My wife continues to decline. She was not supposed to go to the march for life but insisted and anyone who has seen her post knows that stopping her on anything to fight for life has a hard [Read More...]

My Catholic school: at the center of it all was Jesus

My parish is celebrating its centenary this year.  As part of the festivities, this weekend we had a special Mass at 1 p.m. honoring the school and its alumni.  Two of those alumni, Msgr. John McGuirl and Msgr. Ned Ryan, concelebrated.  Below is the homily I delivered for that event.  It’s a little rough; I [Read More...]

Teachers and preachers: innovative program aims to help immigrant priests with English

It’s happening in Los Angeles, but I can think of a lot of other corners of the country (including my own) where something like this could reap dividends. From The Tidings: The group of nuns and priests sitting around the conference table had been invited to a historic event: an orientation meeting for the “Teachers [Read More...]


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