Stephen’s Service: The Apostles of Acts

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Stephen blazes across Acts like a comet, his brief ministry beginning in two chapters that interrupt the story of Peter and form a bridge to the conversion of Paul. Before he falls under the stones of the mob, he leaves a vivid impression as one of the only people other than Peter or Paul given [Read More...]

The Congressional Stenographer and the Holy Spirit UPDATED

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When I first heard that a congressional stenographer had grabbed a microphone and started ranting about Masonic conspiracies on the floor of the House, I assumed she’d had some sort of mental break. That’s always a safe guess when people deviate from the script in public, and it wasn’t helped by the lack of clear [Read More...]

Stunning Jeweled Saints

Saint Deodatus in Rheinau, Switzerland, by Paul Koudounaris (Thames and Hudson)

Smithsonian has a long, heavily-illustrated piece on photographer Paul Koudounaris and his amazing work cataloging the heavily bejeweled skeletons and corpses of saints. He’s gathered them in a book called Heavenly Bodies: Cult Treasures and Spectacular Saints from the Catacombs (Thames and Hudson), and they are simply astonishing. Here’s a taste: You should read the entire [Read More...]

“We did not make ourselves”

Benozzo Gozzoli: Death of St. Monica

Yesterday we celebrated the feast of St. Augustine. The day before that was the feast of his mother, St. Monnica, who emerges from his writing as a forceful and brilliant example of early Christian piety. Chapter IX of The Confessions ends with a long description of the death of Monnica, reaching an ecstatic vision that [Read More...]

Restless Heart: The Confessions of St. Augustine (Trailer)

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Bulgarian Relics of John the Baptist are Probably Authentic

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First it’s vampire graves, and now the relics of John the Baptist: Bulgaria is just totally cornering cool archaeological news for the month of June. Go Bulgaria! It almost makes us want to forgive you for trying to kill Bl. John Paul the Great. Almost. Two years ago, in an altar in the ruins of [Read More...]

Dali and St. John of the Cross

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In honor of Salvador Dali’s birthday today: Christ of St. John of the Cross. Dali’s painting was inspired by a sketch done by St. John while he was chaplain of the monastery of the Incarnation in Avila. One day, while praying in a loft overlooking the sanctuary, he was struck by a vision, and hastily [Read More...]

St. Hildegard of Bingen Named a Saint … Again

In some quarters, there’s this idea that Hildegard of Bingen is not really a saint, and that this is somehow PROOF! of the horrible awful sexism of the Church. Except that Hildegard IS a saint, and even has a feast day (September 17). The problem is that her cause was one of the earlier ones [Read More...]


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