Martyrs read tweets by Joel Osteen

This is inspired, from our Lutheran siblings. (H/T Deacon Sean Keller). Yes, evidently he really did tweet these things.  (His Twitter feed is here.) [Read more...]

What else did CNN get wrong?

From Baltimore’s Catholic Review, here’s an important addendum to CNN’s piece on archbishops and where they live: Archbishop William Lori is mentioned because his residence is valued at $1.24 million. In this case, [author Daniel] Burke fails to make some important distinctions. The archbishop’s house was not purchased by Archbishop Lori; it first served as the [Read More...]

In Iraq, creating camps for Christian refugees

From CNEWA:  This morning, I spoke with a member of the San Egidio Community in the Iraqi Kurdish city of Erbil, who has been very active in responding to the needs of displaced Christian families. He informed me that most of the 80,000 Christians displaced from the towns of Qaraqosh, Bartella and Qaramlesh spent the [Read More...]

Pope appoints personal envoy to Iraq, as US launches first air strikes

From Catholic News Agency:  In light of the increasingly dramatic situation of Christians in Iraq following the expansion of ISIS forces to the plain of Nineveh, Pope Francis has appointed Cardinal Fernando Filoni as his personal envoy.“In light of the grave situation in Iraq, the Holy Father has nominated Cardinal Fernando Filoni, Prefect of the [Read More...]

Thousands call for halt to Wisconsin parish’s annual pig wrestling event

Details: Tens of thousands of people nationwide, including Garbage singer Shirley Manson, are calling on an Outagamie County church to cancel a pig wrestling event planned for Sunday. As of late Thursday, an online petition at had more than 31,000 signatures calling for the cancellation of the Pig Rassle in Stephensville, an unincorporated community [Read More...]

“We live out our awareness that we are called to be the Body of Christ”

A friend sent this my way, from an Anglo-Catholic parish, St. Paul’s, in the Episcopal Diocese of Washington, DC. They’re looking for a new rector, and have published a Rector Qualification Sheet, which describes the parish, its mission, and what it seeks for the new boss. I like how the parish describes itself: In our [Read More...]

Diner drops prayer discount after atheists threaten to sue

You probably remember this story from several days back. Well, here’s an update:  Mary’s Gourmet Diner has announced it will no longer offer occasional discounts to people who pray before eating, citing the threat of legal action. The restaurant’s prayer discount had gone viral in recent days, making national news shows and sparking heated arguments [Read More...]

US bishops ask parishes to pray for Iraq on August 17

This release just arrived in my in box:  The chairman of the Committee of International Justice and Peace of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) asked the U.S. bishops to invite the people of their dioceses to pray for peace in Iraq on Sunday, August 17. Bishop Richard E. Pates of Des Moines, Iowa, [Read More...]

Denver Christians, Jews, Muslims to pray for peace, “coming together as a people who believe in God”

Details:  Demonstrating his deep concern for growing violence against innocent people in the Middle East, Archbishop Samuel Aquila invites people of all faith backgrounds to an evening of interreligious prayer at 7 p.m. Aug. 11 at the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Denver. “We must pray and fast for our enemies,” Archbishop [Read More...]

Iraq’s Way of the Cross: “We appeal with sadness and pain to save these innocent persons from death”

The situation grows worse with every passing day. From our regional director at CNEWA:  Early this morning, we learned that the fighters of ISIS (the Islamic State) have conquered all the Christian villages around Mosul in the Nineveh Plain — namely Qaraqosh, Talkeif, Tel Eskof, Qaramlesh, Bartella and Al Qosh. I talked to Archbishop Yohanna [Read More...]

Deacon’s wife makes history: Loretta Rush named first woman to head Indiana Supreme Court

Details: History was made Wednesday in Indiana when the first woman was named to head the state Supreme Court. Loretta Rush, 56, the newest and only female member of the state Supreme Court, will replace Brent Dickson, a 28-year court veteran who has served as chief justice since 2012. A transition date has not been [Read More...]

Report from Iraq: families throwing children from a mountain to keep them from terrorists

The nightmare that is Iraq gets worse. This was just posted at the CNEWA blog:   This report was sent to us by Ms. Christina Patto, VP Assyrian Aid Society of Iraq. Here what she wrote: Here is our report and some of our testimony concerning the events happening now in North of Iraq. It is [Read More...]

Spain hopes to bring home priest who has Ebola, making him first patient treated in Europe

From NBC News:  Spain is arranging to retrieve a Catholic priest who has tested positive for Ebola in West Africa, which would make him the first patient in the outbreak to be treated in Europe, health officials said Wednesday. Liberia closed the hospital in its capital city, Monrovia, where the priest and seven hospital staff [Read More...]

Francis remembers Paul

From the CNS blog this morning: Holding his weekly general audience today in the Vatican’s air-conditioned Paul VI audience hall, Pope Francis reminded people that today is the 36th anniversary of the death of the pope who commissioned the hall. Pope Paul VI died Aug. 6, 1978, at the papal summer villa in Castel Gandolfo. [Read More...]

Oklahoma City archbishop on Black Mass: “This Satanic ritual is deadly serious”

Details:  Archbishop Paul Coakley is calling for a Catholic campaign of prayer to oppose a satanist’s plans for a “Black Mass” at Civic Center Music Hall. In an open letter released Tuesday, Coakley said there had been no indication Oklahoma City officials would block the event “in spite of repeated requests.” The archbishop wrote that [Read More...]

When a parish refuses to do a funeral

The following email arrived yesterday afternoon: I just had a disturbing conversation with a co-worker whose sister passed away a few days ago, and when the family tried to arrange her funeral, they were refused by a local parish because the sister wasn’t registered there. The sister had been sick with cancer for several years and [Read More...]

“The Latin Mass appears to be alive and well”

That’s the assessment from The St. Louis Post-Dispatch:  When Pope Francis was first elected, he appeared to the crowd in St. Peter’s Square without the short, red velvet cape known as a mozzetta. Some Roman Catholics immediately cried foul, worried that the pope’s decision to forgo the more formal wear signaled a threat to traditional [Read More...]

Must-see video: “How to Dad,” a great new ad from Cheerios

Smart, funny and utterly winning. One blogger writes:  It is well shot and the guy playing the dad is fantastic. Also, it is funny without being condescending, and that is hard. So often, humor in commercials is at the expense of someone. These diapers are so simple even these stumbling dads can handle them! Dad can’t [Read More...]