Clap happy at mass

“Hello — if this is “ministry” then it is not about the musicians and their “performance,” and it should not be applauded as though they’d provided entertainment breaks. Should we applaud the ushers? Should we applaud the priest and deacon? I keep waiting for one “music minister” — just one — to announce before mass, “we [Read More...]

Why did the Episcopal Church knowingly ordain a man accused of sex abuse?

That’s a question a lot of people are asking. But the Episcopal Church is now defending the bishop at the center of this storm. Details: The Episcopal Church is rejecting charges that its top leader, Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori, mishandled the ordination of a former priest who is now accused of sexual abuse. Jefferts [Read More...]

"These are the most important words in history…"

That’s the beautiful sentiment of the novice pictured below, describing to the New York Times some of what she was thinking at the moment the photograph was taken. The Times magazine this weekend looks at the popular — and growing — Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist in Michigan.  (Mary Ann Marks — [Read More...]

Lift high the cross: crucifix from 1963 Detroit fire to be restored

It’s taken nearly 50 years, but it’s finally going to happen. Details: The image is seared in the memory of many in Detroit’s Belgian community: firefighters carrying a 13-foot crucifix out of the devastated and fire-ravaged Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church on the city’s east side. The date was April 10, 1963. Shortly after 8 a.m., [Read More...]

California passes bill requiring schools to teach gay history

It happened late Tuesday: A bill to require California public schools to teach the historical accomplishments of gay men and lesbians passed the state Legislature on Tuesday in what supporters call a first for the nation. Governor Jerry Brown, a Democrat, has not said publicly whether he supports the bill, which he has 12 days [Read More...]

A Catholic Crystal Cathedral?

Maybe.  Is someone up for “flipping” a cathedral? The Diocese of Orange, California is looking to build a new cathedral — but there may already be one that’s been built and is ready to go…or at least, ready to become the American church’s biggest and most expensive convert: The Roman Catholic Diocese is exploring the [Read More...]

Banned in Brooklyn: parish returns check from pol who backs gay marriage

From the In My Backyard Desk … Following Brooklyn Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio’s hard line on politicians who voted for gay marriage, there’s now word that some parishes are not accepting cash gifts from those same politicians: DiMarzio … demanded “all pastors and principals to not invite any state legislator to speak or be present at [Read More...]

Quote of the day

“The spiritual life must be tended with great dedication. At first the effort is burdensome because it demands the renunciation of caprices of the pleasures of the flesh and of other such things. But if she lets herself be enthralled by holiness, a holy soul will find even contempt for the world sweet and lovable. [Read More...]

"I want you to live in this circle…"

Below, a gorgeously produced video celebrating one of my favorite places, the Monastery of the Holy Spirit in Conyers, Georgia. This holy corner of the world played a significant role in my own vocation journey, and I have many warm memories of prayers chanted, friendships forged and silences embraced in the walls of that sacred [Read More...]

Worth a thousand words

Discovered this morning on a friend’s Facebook page …click to enlarge. [Read more...]

Wisconsin Marian shrine: "Turnout has been incredible"

Thousands have flocked to the Shrine of Our Lady of Good Help since it became the first and only shrine in the United States to be officially recognized for an apparition of the Blessed Mother.  And it will get even more attention next week, when it will be featured in a report by ABC News [Read More...]

Corapi reaction — UPDATED

For those seeking more… Bishop Gracida has posted what he says his his final comment on the case. Phil Lawler dissects the case and asks “Why were the warning signs ignored?” Deacon Scott Dodge says people may want to prepare for perhaps more revelations, and pray for holiness in our present day. “God may not [Read More...]

Adorable x 2

Because you can never have too much of laughing babies on YouTube.  And I think we could use this about now, don’t you? Here, then, are twin babies.   Laughing.  In sync. [Read more...]

"Where shall we find a holy person?"

Fr. Dwight Longenecker  offers some timeless — and timely — advice: Where shall we find a holy person? Where shall we find a saint? It is difficult because the real saint is hidden and humble and holy. Instead of looking for the hidden holy ones we fall for the  celebrity ‘saint’. We want the big [Read More...]

IT'S OFFICIAL: SOLT announcement on Fr. John Corapi

From their website: From: Rev. Gerard Sheehan, SOLT Regional Priest Servant Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity Robstown, Texas Fr. John A. Corapi submitted his resignation from the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (“SOLT”) early in June. SOLT is a Society of Apostolic Life of Diocesan Right with [Read More...]

Tangled: how sperm donors and surrogates are changing the family tree

And the branches are harder to discern. Below, cousins who are also, biologically, half-siblings. The New York Times looks at some strange and disturbing trends: Laura Ashmore and Jennifer Williams are sisters. After that, their relationship becomes more complex. When Ms. Ashmore and her husband, Lee, learned a few years ago that they could not [Read More...]

A prayer for summer

From the poetic pen of Fr. Austin Fleming… If I don’t believe in summer, Lord, how will I believe in you or in heaven where summer’s joy surely never ends, where summer’s timeless stillness calms with peace all other seasons’ grief? I offer you these months, my heart’s July and August days: come summer with [Read More...]

iPhone, circa 1950

Looking for a swanky dock for your smartphone?  Look no further. The LA Times spotlighted retro iPhone holders recently.  There’s a whole line of these docks designed by Scott Freeland, for sale at this link. And that’ s just for starters. Check out this unusual gallery. [Read more...]