Saints and Seminarians: Detroit Archdiocese Launches Vocations Video With a Lively Beat


A YouTube video just released by the Office of Priestly Vocations in the Archdiocese of Detroit serves up a dose of inspiration with a lively beat.Intended for students, for those contemplating a vocation to the priesthood, and for anyone who wants to be holy, the video is the brainchild of Father Tim Birney, director of priestly vocations for the Archdiocese of Detroit.  Brian Meldrum, seminarian and transitional deacon, produced the film."I try to be creative," said Father Tim in a p … [Read more...]

ISIS Imagines Their Flag Atop the Obelisk in St. Peter’s Square


 Dabiq, the online propaganda magazine published by the Islamic State, is named after the town of Dabiq in northern Syria.  The town is mentioned in a hadith (a prophetic saying by the prophet Mohammed) about Armageddon, the great final battle at the end of time.  According to Islamic tradition, Dabiq is the place where the Muslim and Christian armies will eventually face each other. The magazine has just released their new edition, the fourth issue--and there, on the front c … [Read more...]

So That All May Believe: The “Miracle of the Sun”

Fatima - crowd in the rain

It was raining at the Cova da Iria on October 13, 1917--raining so much, in fact, that the crowds gathered there, their clothing drenched and dripping, slipped in the puddles and along the trails of mud.   Those who had umbrellas opened them against the downpour, but they were still splashed and sodden.  All waited, their eyes on three peasant children who had promised a miracle. And then, at high noon, something remarkable happened:  The clouds broke, and the sun appeared in the sky.  Unlike any … [Read more...]

“Bucket List” Baby’s Short Life Was Full of Love

Baby Shane

"Today at 6:15AM, after meeting his entire family and being baptized into the Catholic faith, baby Shane died peacefully in his Mother's arms." *     *     *     *     * On October 9, more than 910,000 followers of the "Prayers for Shane" Facebook page received the sad news that Shane Michael Haley, an anencephalic infant, had died just four hours after birth."We are so grateful for the time that we were blessed to hold and hug our son," wrote his parents Jenna Gassew and Dan Haley.  "The s … [Read more...]

Sauter de Joie! Young Parisian Religious in Notre Dame Flash Mob

Brothers and Sisters at Notre Dame

Oh happy day!Toe-tapping fun:  On January 19, 2012, six hundred young religious brothers and sisters dance before Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, in an extraordinary flash mob.I know that in 2012, the famed Cathedral was celebrating its 850th anniversary.  I'm not sure, though, just why these happy men and women were gathered on that particular cold afternoon.  Obviously, though, they're having a good time! … [Read more...]

Diocese of St. Augustine Honors the Virgin Mary, Breastfeeding Mother

Our Lady of La Leche

On Saturday, October 11, the Diocese of St. Augustine will honor Mary in her role as a new mother nursing her infant.Bishop Felipe J. Estévez, head of the northeastern Florida diocese which is the oldest diocese in the United States, has declared the Feast of Our Lady of La Leche to be celebrated throughout the diocese.He also instituted a Jubilee Year in commemoration of the Blessed Mother, celebrating the 450th anniversary of the founding of America's oldest city at the site of the cu … [Read more...]

Flannery O’Connor Has Become So Collectible!

Flannery O'Connor

A great announcement this week out of Emory University in Atlanta:  The Mary Flannery O’Connor Charitable Trust, the literary estate of influential Catholic writer Flannery O'Connor, has donated a collection of her works and personal items to Emory University.  Emory plans to make the long-hidden literary drafts, journals, letters and personal effects available to the public soon.Flannery O'Connor described herself as a  "pigeon-toed child with a receding chin and a you-leav … [Read more...]

The Snowshoe Priest and Other Great Stories

Statue commemorating Bishop Baraga at L'Anse, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula

In the long, harsh winter of 1835, Father Frederic Baraga trudged through the snow, carrying the gospel to the Ojibway tribe in northern Wisconsin and Michigan.In the region south of Lake Superior, the average snowfall is 300 inches.  Undaunted, the native Slovenian priest traveled thousands of miles on snowshoes, ministering to the region's Native American population.It was the Ojibway (Chippewa) tribe that gave Father Baraga his nickname, "the Snowshoe Priest."  But the young priest's m … [Read more...]

What’s a “Synod”? The Holy See Press Office Explains the Basics

Pope Francis at the Synod

As the 2014 Synod on the Family gets underway, the Holy See Press Office continues to keep us informed.In this brief video, they try to explain the process and structure:  What's a Synod?  Who attends?  What are the objectives?Whether you're experienced with "All Things Vatican" or you're watching for the first time as the wheels of the Church slowly turn, you'll appreciate this clever lesson in ecclesiology. … [Read more...]

Pope Francis’ Homily at the Opening Liturgy of the Synod on the Family

Mass opening the Synod

This morning in St. Peter's Basilica, the Synod Fathers gathered for the Opening Liturgy, before beginning their conversations regarding issues important to the family.The Holy See Press Office has been doing a good job of reporting from the scene.  You can also keep up to date by following #Synod14 on Twitter.Here, the full text of the Holy Father's homily at this morning's mass.Today the prophet Isaiah and the Gospel employ the image of the Lord’s vineyard. The Lord’s vineyard is hi … [Read more...]