What can you do about cruel comments online?

Some interesting insight into a subject we’ve all encountered at one time or another, via The New York Times:   Anyone who has ever been online has witnessed, or been virtually walloped by, a mean comment. “If you’re going to be a blogger, if you’re going to tweet stuff, you better develop a tough skin,” [Read More...]

Dear La Salle College High School: would you like to explain this, please?

Drop me a line, when you have a chance. I’d like to know what this is about: Various sources around the interwebs are saying this was a Mass celebrated on the Feast of the Assumption (August 15). The priest appears to be using a TV tray as an altar. Want to let us know what this [Read More...]

Memorial Mass held for James Foley

From The Wall Street Journal:  On Sunday, however, hundreds of people descended on Our Lady of the Holy Rosary parish with a new, painful focus: to remember James Foley, the U.S. journalist and New Hampshire native who was killed last week by extremists in the Middle East. More than 900 people packed the aisles and [Read More...]

Bigger wedding, happier marriage?

I wonder if this study was funded by a catering company. (And I wonder what the Kardashians would say…) Details:  A new report from the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia uses a longitudinal survey of recently married American couples to find correlations between spouses’ histories and the quality of their marriage. (“Marriage quality” is based on responses [Read More...]

Who killed James Foley? We may know soon.

Details:  British intelligence agents believe they have identified ‘jihadi John’ after employing sophisticated voice recognition technology, the British ambassador to the US has revealed. Officers from MI5 and MI6 have been working closely with specialists at the Government’s listening station at GCHQ and are now said to be “very close” to putting a name to [Read More...]

Watch: Bishop Zubik takes the ALS ice bucket challenge

Details: Hundreds of people gathered in Duquesne Saturday as Bishop David Zubik joined a Pittsburgh priest living with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, or ALS, in taking the Ice Bucket Challenge. Father Dennis Colamarino, pastor of Christ the Light of the World Parish and Saint Joseph Parish, was diagnosed with ALS, a disease that affects the nerves [Read More...]

Ordination update: 1 new deacon for Tyler

That would be the Diocese of Tyler, Texas, where today social media was tweeting and Facebook-ing about the ordination of Hal Williams to the diaconate. Details are scarce right now. But it took place at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Tyler. The ordaining bishop: Joseph E. Strickland. A few pictures from Facebook are [Read More...]

Now THIS is how to do the ALS ice bucket challenge

Thank you, Patrick Stewart. Cheers. [Read more...]

In Ferguson: prayer and the “ministry of presence” bring healing

The good folks at the St. Louis Review have been covering the events unfolding in nearby Ferguson, and the current issue of the newspaper offers a superb counterpoint to a lot of the bad press the neighborhood is receiving. If anyone wonders about the value of the Catholic press, take a look at the Review’s [Read More...]

Another Catholic newspaper to cease publication

The announcement, from the Diocese of Cleveland:  Bishop Richard Lennon, Bishop of Cleveland has announced that production of the print version of the Catholic Universe Bulletin, the official newspaper of the Diocese of Cleveland, will be coming to an end at a yet to be determined date in 2015. According to Bishop Lennon, “After serious [Read More...]

“To be a disciple of God, you have to serve each other”

Atlanta’s diocesan paper, The Georgia Bulletin, this week offers a rare glimpse at the ordination of  a deacon for the Melkite Catholic Church: On the day he was to become a deacon, Elie Hanna was led by two deacons to circle the altar three times as he kissed its corners as a sign “his life [Read More...]

WH offers compromise on birth control for religious employers

Somehow, this slipped under the radar today: The Obama administration outlined a new compromise Friday aimed at shielding religious business owners and Christian universities and charities from the health law’s contraception-coverage requirements, but a chilly initial response from Roman Catholic bishops suggested the move wouldn’t assuage their concerns. Federal officials laid out fresh rules to [Read More...]

Is James Foley a martyr?

  My blog neighbor Pia de Solenni takes up that question and offers some very compelling answers:  With the beheading of James Foley and the increasing reports of his Catholic faith, the word “martyr” is becoming more popular. Some would caution that we shouldn’t use the word too lightly. I agree. At the same time, [Read More...]

In a first, a bishop announces plans to take the ALS “ice bucket challenge”

Far as I know, this is the first time a member of the episcopacy is getting soaked for ALS research. But the money will go to a different charity, in line with Catholic teaching. Details:  Bishop David Zubik of the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh is taking the ice bucket challenge to help find a cure for [Read More...]

UPDATE: Pregnant teacher fired from Catholic school files lawsuit

Not surprising, really:  A former teacher fired for being pregnant filed a lawsuit in Butte federal court Thursday against Butte Central Catholic Schools. In the 12-page document, Shaela Evenson contends the district breached its contract with her and discriminated against her because she was pregnant and because she is female. The suit contends the district [Read More...]

On James Foley: “They made him stand against a wall and pose as if he’d been crucified…”

Someone who was held prisoner with the murdered journalist describes life with ISIS in The New York Daily News: James Foley — brave until the end — was subjected to beatings and psychological torture with mock executions before he was butchered by his Islamic State captors, it was revealed Thursday. “This group, which has a [Read More...]

Great moments in journalism: journalists as jackasses in Ferguson

Sadly, this doesn’t really surprise me.  Details:  I had been on the ground helping Al Jazeera America** cover the protests and unrest in Ferguson, Mo., since this all started last week. After what I saw last night, I will not be returning. The behavior and number of journalists there is so appalling, that I cannot in good [Read More...]

Pope Francis calls family of James Foley

Details:  The death of American journalist James Foley at the hands of the Islamic State has been mourned internationally since the tragic news broke. On Thursday, Pope Francis personally called Foley’s grieving family in Rochester, New Hampshire, to “console them for their loss and assure them of his prayers,”according to Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi. Foley’s relatives were “deeply [Read More...]