ONE FINAL VICTIM OF THE RAPE OF NANKING?: From the Times of London...Were it not for the crinkled maps of China, the pictures of mass graves and the two desperately overstuffed Rolodexes on her desk, Chang might have been just another former high school homecoming queen from the aptly named Sunnyvale. But she had become one of the foremost young historians of her generation after publishing, seven years ago, a bestselling account of the Rape of Nanking, one of the worst episodes of human cruelty … [Read more...]

DAPPLED THINGS' EASTER SERMON: "...Christianity, and particularly Catholicism as the perfect manifestation of what Christianity is, is fundamentally a joyful, an optimistic religion. Twelve unkempt fisherman are made the pillars of a Church that encompasses the world. A meek and humble Virgin from Nazareth becomes Queen of Angels. Bread and wine become God's Body and Blood. A murdered Rabbi rises from the dead and promises us the forgiveness of our sins. If the Christian God can do all of that, … [Read more...]

MESSAGE OF REDEMPTION FOR INMATES ON HOLY THURSDAY: From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.The overcrowded chapel was sweltering, but Catholic Bishop Donald Wuerl had an utterly attentive audience as he prepared to wash the feet of inmates at the Allegheny County Jail.He told them that Jesus had offered his life as ransom."Imagine if someone said, 'I'll serve your sentence,'" he told 100 male inmates in red prison uniforms."That is what Jesus did in his death for anything that any one of us would ever … [Read more...]

Brothers and sisters: Are you unaware that we who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were indeed buried with him through baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might live in newness of life. For if we have grown in union with him through a death like his, we shall also be united with him in the resurrection. We know that our old self was crucified with him, so that our sinful body might be done away … [Read more...]

IN THE TEST OF DEATH: Amy Welborn has written a must-read post on Terri Schiavo's life and our own lives here. "It's deepened my interest in preparing myself and my family for the day that will come for me and for them, as well -- not in terms of legal documents, but in terms of our spiritual stance." (much more)Also, the Old Oligarch notes that BlogsForTerri needs money to pay its server fees. … [Read more...]

BY THE WAY: The fine people who bring you the National Catholic Register (for which I occasionally write) also have a guide to the rosary and a companion guide to the movie "The Passion of the Christ." … [Read more...]

TO THINE OWN SELF BE TRUE: Fascinating collection of quotations typically taken out of context--or, one might say, more honored in the breach than in the observance! … [Read more...]