So You Want to Bring Your Kids Back to the Catholic Church?

I spent this weekend with as fine a portion of the Knights of Columbus and the Columbiettes as you could hope to meet.  Super group, truly a privilege to be among them. Thank you, prayer team, for your support in making this weekend work, you made all the difference.My hosts told me I could use the lunch hour to talk about anything I wanted, so (surprise!) I talked about evangelization.And thus a follow-up, which I've cross-posted over at my personal blog:If you'd like to continue t … [Read more...]

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3 Tips for Keeping Your Dominicans from Looking Like Klansmen

Here in South Carolina we have both Dominicans and Klansmen, but so far there haven't been any social media panics.  I did have a rural Russian Orthodox deacon tell me once that the people at the IGA think he's with the Klan.But we Catholics know these problems are preventable. Here are our top three tips for how to keep anyone from thinking your Dominicans are really KKK:1. Have Them Found an African-American Parish.  Try to do it during the height of Jim Crow if you can.  Nothin' says " … [Read more...]

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Whom Does Modesty Serve?

I've got sex on the brain, and before I start into that conversation, I want to lay out a few comments about the limits of modesty.Here's a quick working definition: With respect to chastity, modesty is the collection of actions we take in order to safeguard our purity.  Modesty includes not only the way we dress, but the way we interact with others.There are of course other areas where modesty applies -- with respect to our wealth, our accomplishments, and so forth.  For your homework, y … [Read more...]

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Favorite Catholic Insults, Divine Mercy Edition

As learned this weekend: "Don't make me have to say a Chaplet of Divine Mercy for you."Learn more about Divine Mercy Sunday here. Artwork:  The English dance of death, from the designs of Thomas Rowlandson, (1903), from the Internet Archive Book Images [No restrictions], via Wikimedia Commons. … [Read more...]

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The God Who Does Not Meddle

This Lent I've been reading from On the Passion of Christ According to the Four Evangelists by Thomas à Kempis. I keep losing the book, so my progress is slow, and hence this thought for Good Friday from relatively early in the Passion: The populace cried out: We have a law, and according to that law he must die because he has made himself Son of God. Upon hearing this, the governor became frightened and asked: Who are you? The fear of God is one of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and Pilate is s … [Read more...]

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Suspected Abuse? Call the Police. You and Your Bishop Both.

There are a couple stories circulating to the effect that new Catholic bishops are being told they don't necessarily need to contact the authorities when they are presented with evidence of child abuse.  The Guardian reports it here, and John Allen from Crux discusses it here.  Reporting on religion is notoriously unreliable, and I'm in no position to confirm or clarify these reports.  But whenever such nonsense gets promulgated, I'm here to remind you: Tell the police.It is not your job to b … [Read more...]

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What Place for Bare Minimum Catholicism?

What is it a Catholic really must do?You don't have to go to Mass on Ash Wednesday or Good Friday.  You do have to fast, unless for some reason you don't.  You don't have to go to confession for your venial sins, though you ought to, but you do need to confess your mortal sins.  You need to go to Mass on Sundays, unless for some serious reason you can't.  You need to generally rest on Sundays, and allow other people to rest, but exactly how much restaurants and house chores are implicated in … [Read more...]

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