Jewish and liberal paeans to a blessed pope

Here are two especially moving tributes to John Paul II, whose beatification ceremony Elizabeth is now winging her way to attend. The first comes from Dr. Michael Berenbaum of A Jewish Journal:Enter Pope John Paul II who as a young man in Poland witnessed the Shoah. Three million Jews of Poland were killed in the Holocaust. After the war, Polish cities, which were once the home of large and thriving Jewish communities, were bereft of Jews and the Pope’s hometown was the site of a large g … [Read more...]

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Remembering Schiavo and John Paul II

Leticia Velasquez has written a beautiful witness to life and love on the main page:It was the first day of spring in 2005. I was at the florist in the seaside village where I grew up, assembling a basket of flowering spring plants for my sister, who had just given birth.Immersing my hands in budding greenery, inhaling the earthy scents—it helped to chase away, for a few moments, the looming death which occupied my mind. Later that evening, watching my sister's pink newborn suck on his tiny f … [Read more...]

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Lenten Reading: Jesus and Jewish Roots of the Eucharist

It's that time of the year again. As Ash Wednesday approaches (it's later than usual this year, and am I the only one who feels likes she's missing it and needs it to begin?) I'll be suggesting books that may enhance the Lenten journey.Foremost in my recommendations will be this book, Jesus and the Jewish Roots of the Eucharist. It is foremost because the Holy Eucharist is the source and summit of our faith, and it is so poorly understood by so many -- even among Catholics -- that I can … [Read more...]

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Pater Noster

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You Have Video Recommendations?

Over at Patheos, I am still getting my feet wet and doing what little I can to contribute to next week's focus on Catholicism, as The Future of Religion Series Continues.If you haven't yet checked out the series, do so; you'll find it fascinating. This week, the site is focusing on Judaism, and you might enjoy availing yourself of some interesting writing and opining on the subject (I am looking at you, especially, Hantchu!); you may enjoy spending some time with the people John Paul II … [Read more...]

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Fundamental Error of Socialism – UPDATED

“The fundamental error of socialism is anthropological in nature. Socialism considers the individual person simply as an element, a molecule within the social organism, so that the good of the individual is completely subordinated to the functioning of the socio-economic mechanism. Socialism likewise maintains that the good of the individual can be realized without reference to his free choice, to the unique and exclusive responsibility which he exercises in the face of good or evil. Man is r … [Read more...]

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Defending Benedict Against Theatricals

There is a plot afoot to arrest the Pope when he goes to England in September. As it seems Her Majesty, the Queen had apparently expressed an interest in putting Benedict up at Buckingham Palace, I am intrigued to imagine the Defender of the Faith and the head of the Church of England, giving sanctuary and protection to the Bishop of Rome.But then Christ in the fullness of time will restore all things to himself!The basis for the plot is a single document being lauded as a smoking gun … [Read more...]

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Douthat, JPII and B-16 -UPDATED

Over the past week, in correspondences with friends, I've wondered how Pope John Paul II -whom I revere for a holy man- was such a poor judge of character? He named so many weak bishops, and seemed to believe people he should not have. When this story broke about Fr. Maciel, I had to wonder again: was JPII a deplorable judge of character?After reading that, I wrote to someone, "It seems like JPII was the charismatic hero, leading the parade, and Cardinal Ratzinger was the homely little guy … [Read more...]

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Dominican Sisters on Oprah

Novices in chapel, observed by Oprah's crewThe Dominican Sisters of Mary will be featured on Oprah Winfrey's show tomorrow, and the gals were kind enough to send along an exclusive picture from the crew's visit to their Ann Arbor Motherhouse. They have more pictures here.A peek at her teaser for the Tuesday show (H/T the Deac) indicates that the Sisters will share the hour with a look at the "the word's only Western Geisha." One serves God and thereby all of humanity, one serves a single … [Read more...]

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A Study in Contrasts

Two Polish men.Both artists.Both "brilliant."Both persecuted by Nazis, in their native land. One was a prisoner, one was a slave. When the Nazis left, the Communists came.One, Roman Polanski, becomes a filmmaker. He encounters a 13 year old girl.One, Karol Wojtyla, becomes a priest. He too, encounters a 13 year old girl.After his encounter, the filmmaker -still a youngish man- runs away, out into the world, saying "everyone wants to do what I did." He lives what is for the most … [Read more...]

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