No Good Guys, No Bad Guys: Fr Greg Boyle on the Policing We Need

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I don't know anybody who's said this better. Whoever you are, whatever your politics or race or social status or experience with the competing forces of order and disorder in this broken world, please read Fr Greg Boyle SJ's op-ed in yesterday's LA Times. If we think crime is the vocabulary of the bad guy, then we deploy special troops to round up a bunch of them. Our default assessment of Freddie Gray's death in Baltimore, or the shooting of Walter Scott in South Carolina, is racism. But the … [Read more...]

5 Reasons Why Catholics (of All People!) Should Make Earth Day Holy

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Today, Earth Day, should be a holy day of obligation for Catholics. That's not exactly a majority opinion, I know.To look around the blogosphere this week, you'd get the notion that many Catholics consider Earth Day---and anything even vaguely approaching concern for non-human creation---to be a communist Hollywood pagan plot, a form of idolatry perpetrated by no less an antichrist than That Guy in the Vatican (cf. Maureen Mullarkey's, um, malarkey at First Things). At the very least, it's … [Read more...]

What’s Really Wrong with Catholic Religious Education? Everything. UPDATED

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 [UPDATE: A year later, on the way to LA RE/Congress 2015, I'm still asking these questions. You don't need to comment with last year's arguments, many of which were convincing, once y'all realized I wasn't serious about wiping children's catechesis off the map. But I will be in Anaheim this year looking for signs that lifelong catechesis of adults is A Thing deserving of even half the energy we put into supplying training, resources, and networking support for making kids Catholic. … [Read more...]

Dearest Pope Francis . . . Snap Out of It!

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I love you dearly, Holy Father. But there's no denying you're overdue for an earful---a come-to-Nonna meeting, with all due respect---from some ladies of a certain age and station, for whom I dare to speak.Don't get me wrong. My beef is not with your theology. You probably don't get to read the Sunday Los Angeles Times, so you may have missed an op-ed piece calling you on the carpet for being a traitor to feminist hopes. One of the co-authors is a kind of TV theologian called Candida Moss … [Read more...]

Pope and African Bishops to Cardinal Kasper: “Can you hear us now?”

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Presented for your consideration: Pope Francis has named Cardinal Robert Sarah of Guinea (which, for the Eurocentric, is an African country) as Prefect for the Congregation of Divine Worship. Listen up.Deacon Greg Kandra has the story at The Deacon's Bench, via The Vatican Insider:The Vatican has an African cardinal leading a Vatican Congregation once again. Nigerian cardinal Francis Arrinze was Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments from 2002 … [Read more...]

Brittany and Lauren: A Diptych for the Dying

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Over this weekend of saints and souls, Brittany Maynard, diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer, took her own life. Lauren Hill, diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer, took her first and last layups as a college basketball player.Both young women's stories played out in the public arena. Both challenge, poignantly, Americans' beliefs about death---that very uncomfortable reality we would rather die than face.I am not the only one seeing Brittany and Lauren as contrasting icons, two … [Read more...]

A Musical Birthday Card to (and from) St Teresa: No Worries

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I am disturbed. I am affrighted. And I suspect I'm not alone. In the world, the apocalyptic horsemen ride hard. In the Church, folks are either toppling statues (and statutes) or busy sending out Save the Schism Date postcards, at least as far as anyone can tell from the garbled barque-to-shore transmissions and the excited utterances they provoke. Here in my house (in your house, too, maybe) the everyday demons of worry and sorrow are never far away.So here, without further comment, is the … [Read more...]

Thanks, Catholic News Service, But No Thanks

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As Deacon Greg Kandra reports at The Deacon's Bench, Catholic News Service (CNS) today released matching videos purporting to summarize two sides of a hot-button debate on the eve of the Extraordinary Synod on the Family. While only one thread in a tangled rope of issues facing families, Catholic or not, in the world today, the discussion of whether Catholics who marry after a civil divorce (but whose first marriage was validly sacramental and has not been declared null) might be admitted to … [Read more...]


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