"Down in adoration falling…"

So begins the English translation of one of the most beloved and popular Catholic hymns, “Tantum Ergo,” the great song of praise sung at Eucharistic Adoration. We have Exposition and Adoration at my parish every Thursday — concluding with Benediction (sometimes celebrated by the deacon) at 7:30.  We also offer Benediction at the conclusion of [Read More...]

The reluctant penitent: my journey back to confession

Been to confession lately?  Lent is a good time to do that — and I talk about my own experience as a reluctant penitent in this week’s column, “All Things New”: “Bless me, Father, for I have sinned.” I spoke the words clearly, firmly, just as I had been taught by Sister St. Margaret. This [Read More...]

The Fukushima 50

While the world watches the misery continue to unfold in Japan, I can’t help but be moved by the actions of a brave band of workers, all anonymous, struggling to keep one corner of Asia and the Pacific from nuclear disaster — and doing so at enormous personal cost. From the New York Times: A [Read More...]

The buzz on the new "Exultet": here come the bees!

With Easter rapidly approaching, deacons everywhere will be clearing their throats and getting ready to give voice to the great hymn of the Paschal Proclamation — also known as “The Exultet,” a seven-minute a capaella chant that fittingly, as the lyric proclaims, “humbles earthly pride.”    It is the Mother of All Chants, an epic [Read More...]

Mom blows nose! Baby freaks out!

Another adorable baby video, for your Tuesday consumption … H/T New Advent [Read more...]

When a nun dies

Over at NCR, Sister Rose Pacatte has a beautiful reflection on what happens when a sister dies — and shares the life and legacy of one nun in particular, Sr. Cecilia Livingston, who recently passed away: My hunch is that only a few of you knew Sr. Cecilia, but I would like you to. She [Read More...]

Life is a song — everybody join in!

This just cracked me up.  I’m still grinning.  Enjoy this great Beatles tune, in what has to be one of the longest hallways anywhere. Happy Ides of March! [Read more...]

Just in time for Easter, James Frey's new book about an alcoholic Messiah — UPDATED

He strikes again, with a book being released on Good Friday that seems designed to provoke and enrage: Controversial author James Frey is set to ignite another firestorm with his new book, “The Final Testament of the Holy Bible,” in which the second coming of Christ takes place in The Bronx projects — but the [Read More...]

"I wanted to start feeding my soul instead of my wallet…"

From Canada, comes this great story about a deacon who gave up a high-paying executive position to work with the homeless as the chaplain of the Ottawa Mission. Details: We come upon the official chaplain, Tom Donohue, a Catholic deacon since 2003. He has an office right by the front door on Waller Street, where [Read More...]

"He can help us from heaven": Quebec missionary priest killed in quake

Here is just one story, out of thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, that are emerging from the devastated rubble of Japan. From CTV in Canada: A Catholic priest from Quebec has been found among the dead in Japan after an earthquake and tsunami rocked the country. Father Andre Lachapelle, a 76-year-old missionary from Saint-Jacques-de-Montcalm, near [Read More...]

In search of "the lost sacrament"

That would be confession, or the Sacrament of Reconciliation.  With Lent now upon us, many places are offering it more frequently, with some dioceses even publicizing it.  But are people buying what the Church is selling? The Catholic Anchor in Alaska takes a look: Like lancing a boil or going to the dentist, the thought [Read More...]

A song for the desert: "My Lord Did Trouble Me"

I first posted this a few months back, but it’s worth a second hearing.  Here’s a rich performance of a great song by Tom Jones — and the video below includes the arid landscape of the desert, as well as a clutch of rosary beads. It’s a perfect anthem for Lent. [Read more...]

Catholics and communion, Jesus and Judas

While people continue to debate the Cuomo Communion Controversy, Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles weighed in on the issue earlier this week: While some of Mahony’s brother bishops appear as if they won’t be happy until they get the chance to deny Communion to elected officials who deviate from church teachings, Mahony has resisted [Read More...]

Pray. Hope. Give.

A prayer for the quake victims, from the Catholic Medical Mission Board: God our Father, In faith we acknowledge your care over us, your sons, daughters and children. In hope we trust in your divine providence of giving us wisdom and courage as we face challenges in life. We invoke your help and guidance during [Read More...]

Homily for March 13, 2011: 1st Sunday of Lent

Friday morning, when I clicked on my computer at home, I was stunned, like a lot of people, to see the images and video from Japan. Within hours after it happened, almost instantaneously, hundreds if not thousands of pictures and videos had been loaded onto the Internet, many from cell phone cameras, capturing this disaster [Read More...]

Sarah Palin on Lent: "Catholic baptism and catechism classes have stuck with me"

“I do observe Lent, and my family and I have traditionally sacrificed something during these weeks leading up to Easter Sunday. When I was growing up, my Irish Catholic grandfather would remind me that sacrifices offered up during Lent are to be like tithing — if you advertise your ’sacrifice’ and tithe then you negate any spiritual gains. [Read More...]

Worth a thousand words: the tsunami strikes

From Japan this morning: Our Lady of Akita, pray for us. [Read more...]

The largest Stations of the Cross in the world

These are really something:  the Stations of the Cross, in Rome.  Below, a shot of their installation, from Catholic News Service. Details, and the story behind them, from Zenit: This week, the grand avenue of the Vatican is taking on another guise, the Via Crucis. Fourteen life-size stations line the wide sidewalk of the Via [Read More...]


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