Pope did NOT say animals are going to heaven

We linked to the story that the Pope, in comforting a child, said that his dog would go to Heaven.  But he never said that, there was no child, and the attribution was actually to a misunderstanding of something said by Pope Paul VI!  The story, put out by the New York Times, no less, was fake all the way through and a textbook case in incompetent journalism! [Read more...]

#9 most popular Cranach blog post of the year

Number 9 is from March 4, 2014, on the occasion of Ash Wednesday:

Fasting for 40 days before Easter

I think the meditation works that other Lent; namely, Advent. [Read more...]

Top 10 blog posts countdown

There are 10 blogging days until New Year’s, so as part of our year-end, look-back observances, we will count down the year’s most popular blog posts (by pageviews) here at Cranach.  The reason some posts get far more views than others is that they get picked up by Reddit or the equivalent, get linked to at numerous other blogs and websites, are topics lots of people search for, and I’m not sure why else.  (I suspect some teachers are assigning posts, giving me a captive audience.)  It’s interesting that large numbers of page views do not always translate into large numbers of comments.

#10 most popular Cranach post of the year

From September 3, 2014, the tenth most popular post on this blog for the year 2014:

How scholars proved that the “wife of Jesus” text is a forgery 

Read the post after the jump. [Read more...]

We’re recognizing Cuba

In another use of executive power to implement his legacy apart from Congress, President Obama has announced that he is going to extend diplomatic recognition to Cuba.  We will be re-opening our embassy in Havana, ease travel restrictions, and eliminate economic sanctions against the still-Communist regime.   Good idea?  Bad idea?  What does it mean? [Read more...]

North Korean hackers win

We blogged about  the hack of Sony pictures, apparently by North Koreans angry about “The Interview,” a comedy about an attempt to assassinate that country’s dear leader, Kim Jong-un.  The organization that broke into the company’s data released vast amounts of embarrassing information online, including racially charged remarks about President Obama from chief executives, insulting information about how the studio viewed certain stars, and financial details about who makes more than who.  Not to mention entire movies that can now be pirated before their release.

But then the hackers had this to say about the release of the movie on Christmas day:  “The world will be full of fear.  “Remember the 11th of September 2001. We recommend you to keep yourself distant from the places at that time. (If your house is nearby, you’d better leave.)”

With this dirrect threat,  many theater chains and distributors cancelled the showings.  Whereupon Sony has killed the movie completely. [Read more...]