Lord, Make Me an Amateur Catholic

"Really?"¬† That's my grandson's new response to any parental pronouncement. It's time for your bath. Let's put away your toys. We're out of tortillas. That ink doesn't wash off. "Really?"Many of the big names in Catholic media---including my blogparents, The Anchoress and Deacon Greg Kandra---are gathering in Colorado this week to confer, converse, and otherwise hobnob with their fellow wizards at the Catholic Media Association gathering. … [Read more...]

Praying for St Lucy’s . . . and Mr B

What does it mean to provide a Catholic education? What are the challenges that commitment poses when Catholic teaching runs counter to societal norms and civil laws? Some young women in Glendora, CA, are getting a lesson in those challenges this month. And they're not alone.I'm closely following the local news story about a Catholic school's firing of a long-time, very popular teacher following the publicity surrounding his recent marriage to his same-sex partner. Media coverage is, … [Read more...]

Francis and Francis and Dr Kueng and All: Friday Bits

A big week in the Church and the world: too big to get my blog around, somehow. Here are some Friday bits to think about through the weekend.Francis Goes Home to AssisiToday, the Feast of St Francis of Assisi, was the day Pope Francis made a pilgrimage to venerate the holy places associated with his namesake. This most Franciscan of Jesuits (or most Jesuitical of Franciscans?---it's a tossup) got to spend the day in one of the holiest places on earth. I wasn't able to watch more than a … [Read more...]

Dearest Pope Francis . . . Snap Out of It!

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?”

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

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

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

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...]