Benedict Walks out on Sheikh

Pope Benedict XVI made a really wonderful speech to the "sons of Abraham."After a Palestinian cleric made an unscheduled denunciation of Jews and Israel in his presence, The last man of the 20th century did not stay to complete the diplomatic niceties.Some forums are complaining that the pope didn't leave in the middle of the speech. Some are complaining that he shook the sheikh's hand on the way out. I say give the Holy Father props for maintaining the absolute minimum diplomatic courtesy … [Read more...]

Saintly Relics, Babylon & Nimrod

As a Benedictine Oblate, it was with great joy that I read this article on the discovery of ancient relics, including one of our Holy Father, St. Benedict:The new medieval gallery at the British Museum is full of beautiful images of saints in ivory, stone, gold and wood - but invisible to visitors, it also holds the bones of 39 real saints, whose discovery came as a shock to their curator.The relics, packed in tiny bundles of cloth including one scrap of fabric over 1,000 years old, were … [Read more...]

Stuff you need to know today…

Getting some hate mail from my piece up at Pajamas Media. I'm being accused of wanting an "American theocracy". Not at all. I simply am pointing out that a determinedly secular mindset will not make much of a dent against an equally determined supernatural mindset, and so the West should not be so dismissive of the power and usefulness of the vocabulary of faith. And I can't be completely wrong since, as we see here at Hot Air, most Americans are open to that vocabulary.Today is the … [Read more...]

Obama: Yes to Iran, No to WFTV

A reader who asks for anonymity but refers to himself as "a product of Pittsburgh Steelworkers" writes about his discomfort over Obama:Dear Anchoress:An observation about Barack Obama that bothers me enough to write somebody an email.Barack Obama said during the first debate that he would sit down and talk to Iran, a state sponsor of terrorism, without preconditions because he did not believe in the notion that by not talking to people we are somehow punishing them.Then when a Florida TV … [Read more...]

Sometimes, the twains just gotta meet!

There is a a lovely post up over at the Inside Catholic blog, wherein Zoe Romanowsky links to Fr. Hugh Vincent Dyer, OP (is it me or is the Dominican Order absolutely all over the internet and using it very well, indeed?), and his encounter with a Muslim woman that might surprise you.One day last week I stood in front of St. Stephen Martyr Church in D.C. with a young religious sister and the pastor of the parish. The scene would have made for a typical beginning to a joke, “A priest, a nun, a … [Read more...]

Questions in the Blogosphere III

Q: Anchoress, if someone tells you that you cannot be credibly pro-life until you adopt a sick baby, and then you go out and adopt a sick baby (and then a second) and that person - who promised to become "pro-life" if you did it - never kept his end of the bargain, what does that mean?A: It means you can't form a conscience in fits and starts. You cannot become "pro-life" because of what someone else does, unless you are really willing to let their actions open up within you what you have … [Read more...]

Benedict: The Last 20th Century Man: UPDATED

:::SCROLL DOWN FOR UPDATE:::It seems almost silly to say I am bringing coverage of Benedict XVI's extraordinary sojourn in America to a close (actually, my final final thoughts are here) because the truth is I will likely be reading all of his addresses more closely and bringing them up in coming weeks, but the wall-to-wall writing will end here. I do want, though, to end with a thought that blipped through my head when Benedict was in DC, and again as he addressed the United … [Read more...]

Benedict's serious call for seriousness

In looking again at the text of Pope Benedict's White House address, I was struck by how serious were his remarks within the context of such a short speech given amid such pomp, particularly here:Historically, not only Catholics, but all believers have found [in America] the freedom to worship God in accordance with the dictates of their conscience, while at the same time being accepted as part of a commonwealth in which each individual and group can make its voice heard. As the nation faces … [Read more...]

The press and Benedict

My piece comparing and contrasting the press' dire predictions about Pope Benedict XVI with the reality of the man is up at Pajamas Media today.As if making my point for me, Newsweek has two pieces on Benedict, both falling rather heavily "pro" Benedict and "con" Benedict - I think perhaps the press is past understanding that balance means "a little bit of both." The first piece, by George Weigel, I recommend to you because although it glows for Benedict, it also gives you an excellent sense … [Read more...]

Noonan on Popes JPII & B16 – UPDATED

Deacon Greg, and Miss Kelly and Sissy Willis are all writing about Peggy Noonan's very good piece on the upcoming visit of Pope Benedict to the United States (and Sissy has a few words for those who don't appreciate the full genius of Papa Ratzinger, besides).Because so many are discussing Noonan's piece, I don't have to say much about it other than recommend you read it. I like how she notes that Benedict - unlike most "world leaders" - has no problem praising his predecessor and how she … [Read more...]