Pray for Nancy Pelosi

Just pray for her.Pelosi’s office did not respond to CNSNews.com’s follow-up questions regarding the speaker’s statement that she seeks to make policy in conformance with the values of the Word made flesh.It takes a special kind of cognitive dissonance to speak fervently of the Word Made Flesh, and to understand that by his Incarnation God has ennobled all mortal flesh with a sanctity and a holiness relative to his own, and yet to consistently vote--as Nancy Pelosi did in 2003--against legi … [Read more...]

June 1st Resolution; ora AT labora – UPDATED

The motto of the Benedictines is ora et labora; pray and work.In his Holy Rule, our Father Benedict writes that prayer should preface all activity throughout the day, so that a meeting should not take place, a meal should not be eaten, a guest should not be greeted or a specific labor should not be performed, until one has taken a moment to place oneself in the presence of God, and ask his blessing, and for the strength to do his will.A monk may spend several hours in prayer, in choir, then … [Read more...]

St. Philip Neri

From the Breviary: Saint Philip Neri was born at Florence in 1515. He went to Rome and began to work with young men among whom he fostered Christian life and formed an association for the poor and the sick. Ordained to the priesthood in 1551, he founded the Oratory where spiritual reading, singing, and works of charity were practiced. He excelled in his love of neighbor and in evangelical simplicity along with a joyous service to God. Saint Philip died in 1595.My Patron for 2010 has quietly … [Read more...]

A Most small-c Catholic Drama

Over at Pajamas Media, I have a piece that you might call an addendum to my weekend article at First Things.In 2009 an Arizona woman, pregnant with her fifth child and suffering from pulmonary hypertension (an often, but not always fatal complication), consulted with her doctor and the ethics committee member on call — a Catholic Sister of Mercy — and obtained an abortion at the St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center.As the story has gone public, the reactions have been predictable across r … [Read more...]

Hilarion: "No longer a competitor but an ally…"

Pope Benedict XVI & Archbishop Hilarion I mean all due reverence when I say that I have been a fan of Metropolitan Hilarion Alfeyev (his site has been in my blogroll for as long as Archbishop Dolan's, at least) for some little while.As a musician/composer/scholar/monk he rings my maternal bell by reminding me of my own sons. Like Pope Benedict XVI, he is a brilliantly gifted man and prolific writer, who is nevertheless an accessible joy to read.The lack of taste for solitude and silence … [Read more...]

Snapshot of America, May 2010 – UPDATED

Strange days, my friendsEarlier this month, a voting-rights attorney from the Department of Justice resigned because, well, because the Justice Department refused to prosecute a clear case of voter intimidation.Intimidation, it seems, is currently in vogue, in the Obama government.Making Politics Personal/Photo Nina EastonJust about a year after President Obama told bankers I am the only things standing between you and pitchforks, union thugs supported by Obama's pals (and perhaps by … [Read more...]

"Martyrs Made Our Faith"

Martrydom of St. Cecilia, Stefano MadernoWhile in Portugal this past week Pope Benedict XVI talked about Christian witness, and faithfulness, within a secularist world: “Seek dialogue, but be ready for martyrdom.”The pontiff's remarks on the need for Christians to be ready for “the radical choice of martyrdom” were a tidy lead-in to today's New Testament reading:They threw him out of the city, and began to stone him. The witnesses laid down their cloaks at the feet of a young man named Sa … [Read more...]

Life of Faith, Power of Prayer

The life of faith, in truth, is -like Jumpin’ Jack Flash, a g-g-gas; it is a mind-blower. We humans tend to try to put everything, including God, and love and life, into manageable compartments, and we hide in them. We hide inside our frameworks, our structures, our plans, our narratives, our willful and our unintentional bigotries.But God -who created a world of order- points cannons at those tidy compartments and goes ba-boom! And when we ask, repeatedly, “why did you do that, when I had it a … [Read more...]

"What does the heart long for?"

These Benedictine Nuns of the Abbaye Notre-Dame de l'Annonciation in Barroux, are so lovely to look at and listen to that I had to share the video with you.The community of Benedictine nuns of Our Lady of the Annunciation is born 1979. Four young girls were gathered around Mother Elizabeth and, following Dom Gérard, wanted to also "experience the Churches tradition." After moving to different locations, they can turn to find common ground near the town of Le Barroux in 1983. Today, the … [Read more...]

"I forgive the man who raped me…"

Recently, writing about the terrible scandals of the church and the need for the hierarchy (and others) to do penance, I added:The fullness of healing, of course, can only come when the victims finally feel capable of saying “I forgive you…” That moment -which cannot be compelled and does not mean forgetting- is the moment when a victim takes his life back. When a victim says, “I forgive you,” she confers her own power over the entire situation, and controls it. It is transformative; it brings … [Read more...]


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