“Why I wear a biretta”

An explanation from an Episcopal priest:  I saw somewhere on Facebook where a priest asked the following: “What exactly is the point of a biretta.”  At last count there were 41 responses, ranging from indignation to clergy humor.  I actually liked the question – what is the point of a biretta. From a practical standpoint, [Read More...]

UPDATE: Massachusetts bishop pleads not guilty to DUI

Details:  The leader of a Roman Catholic diocese in Massachusetts charged with driving drunk in Rhode Island has been released on $1,000 bail.  Worcester Bishop Robert McManus pleaded not guilty Tuesday to charges of driving under the influence and leaving the scene of an accident. The 61-year-old McManus was represented by former Rhode Island House [Read More...]

Priest collapses, dies while celebrating Mass

From New Zealand:  Hundreds of parishioners watched in shock as a Catholic priest died at the altar during mass, moments after baptising a baby. Napier’s longest-serving priest, Monsignor Timothy Francis Hannigan, 81, collapsed at the altar during communion at St Patrick’s Catholic Church on Sunday. A doctor and nurses in the packed church rushed to [Read More...]

Chicago priest’s confession: he crossed the border illegally

His story, and why he did it, from the Chicago Tribune:  Just days after crossing the U.S.-Mexico border by climbing a wall, a Chicago priest said Sunday that what he did was wrong and urged parishioners in his Southwest Side church to apologize if they had done the same. “And by recognizing you did something [Read More...]

Reading the tea leaves: married priests and women deacons?? —UPDATED

Fr. Michael P. Orsi—a research fellow and scholar at Ave Maria University in Florida— makes some observations about what Francis can change, and what he can’t:  Church discipline is the rules the church enforces for the good of her members.  These often have a long history and must not be tampered with lightly.  However, they can [Read More...]

Pope Francis at priestly ordinations: “You are pastors, not functionaries”

To mark the 50th World Day of Prayer for Vocations —which falls every year on Good Shepherd Sunday—Pope Francis ordained 10 men to the priesthood at St. Peter’s Basilica today.   Below, his homily, from Vatican Radio. +++ Beloved brothers and sisters: because these our sons, who are your relatives and friends, are now to [Read More...]

Priest’s accused killer blames it on “bad homilies”

Yikes: An unemployed man, who said he was only trying to teach his elderly priest a lesson, was charged Wednesday with murdering him. Antonio Incandela, 33, said he had had it with the homilies delivered by Michele Di Stefano, the priest in the small rural town of Ummari on the west coast of Sicily. Di [Read More...]

Brit boom: ordinations to priesthood higher than in the 1950′s

Some surprising and encouraging news out of England and Wales: New figures for 2012 show numbers of men and women entering religious orders have risen for the third year running, while ordinations to the priesthood have reached a ten-year high. There were 29 people entering religious life in 2010, rising to 36 in 2011 and 53 [Read More...]

A priest writes: “This is why I wear a collar…”

A couple years ago, when he was a mere seminarian, my blog neighbor Fr. Michael Duffy wrote passionately about how the collar is “yoke and witness” to his life and his vocation. Now another priest,  Father Chris Pietraszko, has sounded a similar chord, and I think it’s something people need to be reminded of: This is [Read More...]

The movie producer in a collar

Who knew? Details:  No sooner had Eric Andrews arrived on the set of “The Lost Valentine,” a 2011 Hallmark Channel movie starring Jennifer Love Hewitt and Betty White, when his neckwear attracted attention. “People are looking at me, and trying to figure out who I was,” he said. “One of the actors came up and [Read More...]


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