Now for sale on eBay: a gold ring from Vatican II — UPDATED

Current bid: $1,440. It’s unclear just where this comes from, or who wore it  — but the description on eBay indicates it belonged to someone who took part in the Second Vatican Council: + This is a near impossible find these days + + A solid gold Vatican II “Miter ring” inside the old red [Read More…]

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Married couple will write about family for this year’s Way of the Cross in Rome

The Vatican announced yesterday that Pope Benedict had selected, for the first time, a married couple to write the reflections for the Good Friday Way of the Cross — and Vatican Radio has a brief interview with the couple: Pope Benedict XVI’s choice of theme for the Way of the Cross this Good Friday – [Read More…]

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Archbishop of Canterbury to step down

Details: Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, the head of the 85 million-strong worldwide Anglican Communion, announced Friday he will step down from his post at the end of the year. Williams has been Archbishop of Canterbury, the top role in the Church of England, for 10 years. He has accepted the position of master of [Read More…]

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Sign of the times: fish markets report lower sales during Lent

The story from New Jersey: Leigh Finley was acting like a kid in a candy store, or a traditional Catholic at a fish market during Lent. Scallops, monkfish, shrimp, salmon and other seafood items piled up on the counter here at the Lobster House Fish Market. Finley drove here from Cumberland County on Tuesday just [Read More…]

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On Fr. Marcel Guarnizo’s statement: “I believe that he, and those inclined to support him, need correction”

From Dr. Ed Peters: Fr. Marcel Guarnizo’s statement evidences misunderstandings of several aspects of Catholic law on the administration of holy Communion and confirms my sense that Guarnizo erred in withholding holy Communion in this case. Regarding those errors, I believe that he, and those inclined to support or even imitate him, need correction. I [Read More…]

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Odor of sanctity: celebrity perfume-maker designs fragrance for Pope Benedict

Details: Italian celebrity perfume-maker Silvana Casoli, has created her most heavenly scent yet for a very special client, Pope Benedict XVI. Known for creating a number of perfumes that can be used by both men and women with names like Chocolat Bambola (Chocolate doll) and Vanilla Bourbon, Casoli has designed unique fragrances for famous personalities [Read More…]

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From Darth Vader: “Why I am leaving the Empire”

Goldman Sach’s Greg Smith caused a sensation with this Op-Ed piece in yesterday’s New York Times. Now, Darth Vader has been moved to follow suit: After almost 12 years, first as a summer intern, then in the Death Star and now in London, I believe I have worked here long enough to understand the trajectory [Read More…]

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Diocese in India to get its first permanent deacon

This is exciting news — though I’m less excited about the way this article misrepresents the diaconate and seems to confuse deacons with lay people. Details: The Poona diocese will soon have a married deacon to conduct baptisms, marriages, funerals and even give sermons. Roy D’ Monte, 54 — an administrator at Loyola High School [Read More…]

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On this date in 44 B.C.

Soothsayer Caesar! CAESAR Ha! who calls? CASCA Bid every noise be still: peace yet again! CAESAR Who is it in the press that calls on me? I hear a tongue, shriller than all the music, Cry ‘Caesar!’ Speak; Caesar is turn’d to hear. Soothsayer Beware the ides of March. CAESAR What man is that? BRUTUS [Read More…]

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What’s in your wallet? How about a Catholic ID card?

Catholics in England and Wales could soon have the credit-card sized document above in their wallets. Details: A card communicating that its carrier is a baptised Catholic will be distributed nationally on behalf of the bishops of England and Wales. The Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales is distributing one million cards to 24 dioceses [Read More…]

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Did you know Rick Santorum is Catholic?

Well, a new poll says, incredibly, that most GOP voters don’t: A new poll by the Pew Research Center asked voters what they knew of a candidate’s religion. Only about a third of Republican and Republican-leaning respondents correctly identified Santorum as Catholic. Republican white, evangelical Christians were as likely to identify Santorum as one of [Read More…]

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Fr. Marcel’s statement: “I did the only thing a faithful Catholic priest could do” — UPDATED

From Catholic News Agency: Here are the facts: On Saturday, February 25th I showed up to officiate at a funeral Mass for Mrs. Loetta Johnson. The arrangements for the Mass were also not my own. I wish to clarify that Ms. Barbara Johnson (the woman who has since complained to the press), has never been [Read More…]

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Boom: the astonishing growth of the Catholic Church in Texas

Who else but Rocco could put it all together? Take a look: Catholics — their presence increased nearly 60 percent since 1990 — have eclipsed Evangelicals to become the state’s largest religious group. In a matter of years, three of its dioceses have erupted to comprise more than a million members, each reflecting five-or-sixfold expansions [Read More…]

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Fr. Marcel Guarnizo’s pastor: “Let me repeat…”

Worth noting: At Sunday Masses over the weekend, [Father] LaHood read a letter from Bishop Barry C. Knestout, Washington archdiocesan vicar general, announcing Guarnizo had been removed from the parish and barred from priestly ministry in the archdiocese until issues surrounding his behavior are resolved. It said his removal followed “credible allegations” that the priest [Read More…]

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Are blog comments a “joke”?

A good question: In the early days of the Internet, there was hope that the unprecedented tool for global communication would lead to thoughtful sharing and discussion on its most popular sites. A decade and a half later, the very idea is laughable, says Gawker Media founder Nick Denton. “It didn’t happen,” said Denton, whose [Read More…]

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Bishops hope to restart talks with White House over contraception mandate

Details: The Catholic bishop leading the push against the White House’s contraception mandate says the bishops hope to restart contentious talks with the Obama administration, but cautioned that church leaders “have gotten mixed signals from the administration” and the situation “is very fluid.” Bishop William E. Lori of Bridgeport, Conn., who chairs the religious liberty [Read More…]

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Closing the book: Encyclopedia Britannica goes out of print

Wow.  It really is an end of an era: After 244 years, the Encyclopaedia Britannica is going out of print. Those coolly authoritative, gold-lettered sets of reference books that were once sold door to door by a fleet of traveling salesmen and displayed as proud fixtures in American homes will be discontinued, the company is [Read More…]

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Barbara Johnson talks about her “Buddhist Catholicism”

And the Washington Post looks at her “blending of faiths”: Barbara describes a deep if sometimes conflicted relationship with Catholicism, which she calls a basic, unchangeable part of her identity. In her 20s, Johnson remembers her growing doubt about Catholic institutions as she wrestled with accepting her sexuality, and later as she watched the clergy [Read More…]

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