Book Review: Joseph Ratzinger, “Milestones”

When people talk about Joseph Ratzinger, the theologian, what most often goes mentioned is his erudition and his orthodoxy. What always strikes me most about Ratzinger's writing is his humility, his meekness, his gentleness. There is a softness in the writing style which is incredibly endearing and inviting. Every word is carefully chosen to say just what is meant and not more. Errors are only ever gently rebuked, and not without humor. (There's a fun passage in Introduction to Ch … [Read more...]

Reminder: The Red Army Choir Does Christmas Music Now

I listen to Christmas music basically non-stop during Advent (shut up Advent police) and Christmas. One of the types of music I really like to listen to is the Christmas music of the Red Army Choir. Not just because I like the style of music. But also because the fact that the Red Army Choir now has to make Christmas music to earn lunch money is the delicious honey of sweet, sweet victory. "The righteous will rejoice when he sees the vengeance; he will bathe his feet in the blood of the wicked," … [Read more...]

A Good Example Of Being On The Offense

"My center is giving way, my right is retreating, situation excellent, I am attacking." - Ferdinand Foch One point I often make is that Christians cannot think of themselves as on the defensive, or losing any kind of "culture" wars, since the Church, as an Army, is assured of the help of the Holy Spirit and of final victory. We need to think of ourselves as conquerors, just as Christ conquered sin and death.Whenever I use the word "feminism" I often get a barrage of comments … [Read more...]

“Solidarity” vs “Charity” in the Social Doctrine of the Church

Van Gogh, The Good Samaritan (After Delacroix)

A long time ago, I bought, and read (or "read") the document known as the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church, which is pretty much what it says on the tin.One quick-and-dirty thing I did at the time was to go to the book's index and compare the mentions of the word "solidarity" versus the word "charity." If memory serves, the ratio is something like 3-to-1 in favor of "solidarity."My first reaction was to think that this is a big mistake."Solidarity" is fine, but it's n … [Read more...]

More On Santa (I Will Murder The Fat Bastard With My Bare Hands)

Imagine trying to strike up a conversation with someone at a social function and saying some platitude like, "Nice weather we're having," and then having the person angrily jab their finger in your chest and exclaim "GEORGE WASHINGTON WAS THE FIRST PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!!!" and walk off in a huff.That would be bizarre, wouldn't it? The reason would not be because the person said anything incorrect, it would be because it is totally unrelated to the matter at hand.Similarly my d … [Read more...]