A Nameless Dignity

Am I the only one feeling uneasy about the coverage of Pope Francis and the man with neurofibromatosis? It’s not that I mind seeing the man, whose neck and head are covered with benign tumors resembling boils or giant scales. But I do wish I knew more about him — his name, his nationality, his [Read More...]

Purgatory-Schmurgatory, As Long As You’re Hopeful

By the Council’s 25th session, when the Trent Fathers finally got around to the subject of Purgatory, they must have feeling tired and grouchy. After affirming that such a state exists, and that “the suffrages of the faithful” and “the acceptable sacrifice of the altar” work to detainees’ benefit, they drew a veil. “The more [Read More...]

The Ugliest Piece of Religious Art Ever

Here’s a sampling of Facebook comments on Pope Francis’ new ferula: “Okay, I think I know what it looks like: Remember those old magnetic things where there were contained iron shavings, and there was a picture of a guy’s face and you used a magnet pen to move the shavings onto the guy’s face to [Read More...]


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