Is Doctrine Divisive?

From time to time one hears from the progressives that "doctrine is divisive". We're to have "a pastoral approach" and not speak about doctrine and discipline in the church.This is a lie, and not even a very smart one, and yet it is amazing how many people fall for it.Rather than doctrine and discipline being divisive they are actually unifying, and you can see how they are unifying with a simple analogy.What is doctrine and discipline anyway? Doctrine and discipline make … [Read More...]

St John Fisher: A Lone Voice

Why was St John Fisher--the holy Bishop of Rochester-- the only English bishop to stand up to Henry VIII?It is easy, with hindsight, to dismiss the other English bishops as cowards and compromisers. However it is not so easy. Consider the circumstances.First of all, they were in a completely new situation. Europe had been Catholic forever. The idea that a national monarch could and would break permanently with the Pope was simply unthinkable. The situation as it finally unfolded could … [Read More...]

On Doctrine, Diamonds and Fluffernutters

Doctrine seems to be the church's bad boy these days.We hear progressives play the victim and say, "But doctrine is so divisive! We need a pastoral approach! We need to reach out to the marginalized who have been alienated by strict doctrine and discipline!"To go off on a tangent for a … [Read More...]

Faith, Grace and Good Works

An email came in the other day which showed some confusion about the role of grace, faith and good works in our salvation.The Catholic was worried because a friend said salvation was by grace alone. I think he confused this with the Protestant heresy that salvation is by faith alone. Then the … [Read More...]

Some Straight Talk on Sex

A couple of new books have come out which are stirring up discussion about homosexuality. Fr James Martin S.J. hopes his little book promoting "respect, compassion and sensitivity" for members of the LGBT community will engender "further conversation."Meanwhile, Daniel Mattson's Why I Don't Call … [Read More...]

Growling the Gospel

Reading a biography of Flannery O'Connor--whose stories emphasize the grit and grotesque of life it reminds me that one of the most nauseating and exhausting things about religious life in America is the pressure by all the crybaby bullies for us to be sugar cookies all the time.We are expected … [Read More...]

On Priests, Cars and Cigars

My post about a priest and a sports car raised more comments over at Facebook than almost anything I have written in the past.The opinions were about 50-50. Many saying, "Go ahead Father. The people who care don't matter and the people who matter don't care." Others were more cautious, saying … [Read More...]

Challenging Faux Poverty

I got an interesting discussion going on Facebook through a picture of the new Fiat two seater sports car.The question is, "If this car costs less than the sedate sedan he already drives, would it be terribly wrong for a priest to drive this car rather than that one?"The comments were about … [Read More...]

Anglicans and Catholics Meet at Waffle House

The Catholic News Agency reports here that the ARCIC (Anglican Roman Catholic International Commission) met in Germany to discuss ecclesiology.This is code for "let's get together and talk about the dwindling number of things on which we agree."Once again our heroes have come up with an … [Read More...]

12 Things Kathy Griffin Might Have Considered Before Her Anti-Trump Stunt

Anybody who reads this blog knows I am not a fan of Donald Trump, but the "beheading" stunt of Kathy Griffin was not only outrageous and offensive, but it was simply overwhelmingly stupid and crass.Here are ten things Griffin might have considered before she took part in such an idiotic … [Read More...]

President Trump in Europe – A Shining Success?

Embed from Getty ImagesPeter Reith gives his uncompromising opinion here at Imaginative Conservative.He likes Trump and think the POTUS has put those snobbish, left wing Europeans in their place.Perhaps.I viewed the President's trip differently. For me his talks with NATO … [Read More...]

Birth Control and Catholic Priests

That little pill has changed everything.The effect of birth control and a contraceptive culture has altered our world in ways we could never have expected.Think for a moment about the effect contraception has had on the number of vocations to the priesthood and religious life.First of … [Read More...]

Why Is Everyone So Easily Offended?

Maybe I've spent too much time on Facebook, but why is everybody so darned offended all the time?Traditionalist Catholics are constantly getting on their high horse. Then its the feminist and homosexualists who are stomping off in high dudgeon. Next it is the Liberals or the Eastern Orthodox or … [Read More...]

TV? Turn it Off

One of the greatest blessings of my life is that my Mom had the guts to not have TV.Yep. I grew up in the 1960s and 70s with no TV.My folks were not especially strict or puritanical. They didn't tell us TV was wicked or "Hell's sewer straight into your home."They just simply and … [Read More...]

Why I Am Not Eastern Orthodox

From time to time I will get an email asking whether I considered Eastern  Orthodoxy when I left Anglicanism.The answer is that I did not.Here's why:I certainly learned a bit about Eastern Orthodoxy while I was at Oxford. Bishop Kallistos Ware lived around the corner in North Oxford. and … [Read More...]

On Presidents, Princes and Popes

One of the most curious things I've observed since moving back to my homeland after spending twenty five years of my life in the UK, is what I term America's emotional instability.Let's face it, we're the world's only superpower. Our military dwarfs every other nations, and even those who have a … [Read More...]