St Joseph School Chapel

When I arrived at St Joseph’s last year school Mass was being celebrated under pretty makeshift conditions. Vestments and linens were old and second or third hand. The altar was a folding table on risers and the other furniture bits of whatever could be gathered together. The school is new, and people had done the [Read More...]

Tony Blair soon to Convert

The Daily Telegraph reports that former UK Prime Minister is soon to convert to the Catholic faith. Telegraph religion blogger Damian Thompson comments, and his combox is full of interesting chatter. Now I wonder whether I may have had any hand in this…In 1995, while living in England, my first book was published. It was [Read More...]


If you expect the wrong thing you’ll be disappointed with reality. I think one of the main problems in Christianity today is that we expect the wrong thing and are ultimately disappointed with what we’ve got. Here’s a list of things we expect from religion, which religion might give us up to a point, but [Read More...]

For What It’s Worth…

…Preaching at school Mass at St Joseph’s Catholic School [Read more...]

Asceticism in America

A friend of mine has been reading about the Cure d’Ars and commented that he didn’t think the Cure’s asceticism would be understood in our society. Strange isn’t it, that people in or society are willing to work, sweat, fast and put themselves through considerable pain and embarrassment– (you think the clothes people wear to [Read More...]

Abortion Survivors

Britain’s Daily Mail reports this story of a little boy who survived an attempted abortion. H/T to the Blue Boar [Read more...]

The Curmudgeon is Back

I was greeted first thing this morning at school by a reader of the blog who said, “The curmudgeon is back!” He was referring to a few of my recent posts which assumed a tone which was (ahem) shall we say, somewhat more opinionated than my usual meek and mild, sweetness and light attitude. My [Read More...]

Know Popery

The town of Lewes in Sussex, England, still has a traditional bonfire where they burn an effigy of the Pope. This custom used to be commonplace across England on 5 November –Guy Fawkes Night. Lots of towns still have bonfires and fireworks, but Lewes is one of the few towns that keeps the full fire [Read More...]

Al Bore

The Daily Telegraph has this brilliantly common sense article on global warming. If you have any doubts about the stupidity of Al Gore’s latest apocalyptic warnings this should put them to rest. What tickles me about the whole global warming because of CO2 nonsense is the way secular activists have bought the whole conspiracy, apocalyptic [Read More...]

Anglican Agony

The Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh is planning to withdraw from the Episcopal Church. The Bishop, Bob Duncan, has received a this letter of stern warning from presiding bishop Katherine Jefferts Schori. Bishop Duncan has given this pugnacious reply. Anglicans the world over are facing the divide within their church which is now clearly evident. It [Read More...]

The Golden Compass

If you want the low down on British atheist Philip Pullman and his anti-Narnia, anti-Catholic children’s trilogy His Dark Materials which comes out in film version called The Golden Compass check out Carl Olson over at Ignatius Insight.As usual, Olson gathers the information, offers a brilliant critique and points out exactly what’s wrong and right [Read More...]

Prayers for the Dead

We had a beautiful All Souls Day Mass at St Joseph’s Catholic School today. The students, faculty and staff recorded the names of their loved ones and each one was named as Mass was said. Most non-Catholic Christians don’t have any truck with the Catholic custom of praying for the dead. Their theology forbids it. [Read More...]

Fontevraud Abbey

h/t the Roving Medievalist [Read more...]

And Another Thing…

…has anyone noticed the red herring within church music and liturgy circles that informal Masses and ‘praise and worship’ music are provided for the young people because they ‘like that sort of thing’? This is ridiculous. All you have to do is look around church one Sunday at the faces of the people. It is [Read More...]

What’s a Hymn For?

I’m having some problems with music in Catholic America. Part of it is my problem. I spent fifteen years in the Anglican Church with the New English Hymnal–which is probably the finest hymnbook ever published in the English language. Musically and liturgically it was the best that traditional Anglicanism had to offer. Catholic music in [Read More...]

The Page

Going through some old sermons from Anglican days I came across this poem I wrote in 1984, and had forgotten about. What do you think? The Page I saw a king presiding on his throne; his robes were fine, his features kind, but stern. He saw envoys, ambassadors and men with urgent messages who rushed [Read More...]

Of Dandelions and Diamonds

A phrase from the Divine Office stuck in my head yesterday. Something to the effect of, ‘All the great men are as a breath of wind.’ It brought back a verse from the psalms about our life being like that of the grass of the field. It is here today and tomorrow the wind comes [Read More...]

All Hallows Even

Jay has re-posted some excellent information about the history of Halloween. Check it out. The celebration of Halloween is not a celebration of evil, devilry and witchcraft. It is properly a party on the Eve of All Saints Day, on which the victory over evil begins to be celebrated. The jack o lantern, and the [Read More...]

Are Witches Real?

I knew some witches in England. They belonged to a coven which was in my parish. I blogged about them last year this time. Believe, me. They’re real. They’re out there, and they’re not nice. One Saturday morning a fifteen year old girl knocked on my door. She was dressed all in black, with plenty [Read More...]

New Book

If you’re in England, make sure you pick up Protestantism by Cyprian Blamires. It is one of CTS’s new ‘Explanations’ series. The book is the best little explanation of what makes Protestants tick. It is clear, objective and sympathetic to Protestants without granting them much ground. The contrasts with Catholicism are pointed out in simple [Read More...]

Bishop’s Move

The Daily Telegraph reports that the Church of England is going to allow foreign bishops to oversee dissenting parishes in the UK. This really is a completely new idea of what a bishop is. From the beginning a bishop was the chief elder of a particular city or geographical area. What seems to be emerging [Read More...]


My friend Carl Olson over at Ignatius Insight has written on the Dumbledore homosexual thing. Like him, I haven’t read one sentence of the Harry Potter books, and dozed off in the only one of the movies I was dragged off to see. What I’ve seen and heard of them makes me think they’re derivative [Read More...]