The Roches – We Three Kings

Public Domain

Happy Feast of the Epiphany (Traditional)For my money, this is the best version of We Three Kings, ever. It's just right.Enjoy! … [Read more...]

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What Would Pope Benedict or the Psalmist Say About THIS Music?

Ansel Adams/Public Domain

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your truth in the watches of the night, on the ten-stringed lyre and the lute, with the murmuring sound of the harp. (Psalm 92:2-4)And, apparently, with the music of birds on wires, as well, at least in the eyes, and to the ears, of one clever musician in Brazil!While reading a newspaper one day, a musician named Jarbas Agnelli saw a photo of birds sitting on an … [Read more...]

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“I Hate Youse All!” Uncle Charlie, Christmas & That Generation

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Christmas day never comes without my remembrance of "Uncle Charlie", a family friend who once appeared on our doorstep, decked out in all of Santa's raiment and tripping in his boots only slightly. He had apparently been Santa for a party at the local soup kitchen (or the local bar; this was never clear to me) and -- just a trifle in his cups -- had decided during his walk home that he would stop at the houses of his friends and give all the kids "a treat." And if the friends wanted to toast the … [Read more...]

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Kyrie Eleison: The “Year of Mercy” Can’t Come Too Soon…

G. Rosa--Grosasm via Creative Commons

“The mercy of God is not an abstract idea but a concrete reality,” writes Pope Francis.Well thanks be to God for this emphatic good news, and for the nearly here Jubilee of Mercy. That it begins one week into Advent — the sweet and lonely season of anticipation for the coming of the All Merciful — seems especially appropriate and hopeful, given our times, for at the Incarnation Mercy was delivered, in fragile and human form, to a brutal world of tribalism and inequality, where life was held c … [Read more...]

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Pope Francis Has Set a Confrontation in Place; Not the One We Think

St. Catherine of Siena, Doctor of the Church, Santa Sabina Basilica, Rome/Elizabeth Scalia

So, New York Times columnist Ross Douthat published a piece on October 17, where referred to Pope Francis as the "chief plotter" in an effort to change Catholic doctrine, and thus the Church, itself.The response to Douthat's column played out in various articles and twitter-fights, during which Douthat flung the words "Own your heresy" toward theologian Massimo Faggioli (albeit, in Twittersubtext, meaning without a direct hashtag). That brought about what might be called (IMHO) an … [Read more...]

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Child Breaks Host in Half to Share With Divorced/Remarried Father

Photo: Elizabeth Scalia

The headlines, and the stories could not be more different.From Italy, (via Google Translate): A Child Moves the Synod; divides the Host with this divorced father. We read that Pope Francis and 270 Synod Fathers listened with emotion today in the Synod Hall to the story of a bishop who witnessed — while celebrating a parish First Communion Mass — the scene of a child who came to the altar to receive the consecrated host in his hand, on his own initiative took steps to break it in two, givi … [Read more...]

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What Pope Benedict Wrote about the Shroud of Turin

vatican proph

An excerpt from John Thavis' new book, The Vatican Prophesies: Investigating Supernatural Signs, Apparitions, and Miracles in the Modern Age":As one might expect, Pope Benedict, who was often called "the pope of reason," was much more circumspect on the [Shroud, than Pope John Paul II.] He, too, was interested in the Shroud and had stood before it as a cardinal. As pope he ordered the extraordinary exhibition of the Shroud in 2010. Benedict himself flew to Turin to venerate the cloth and … [Read more...]

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A Simple Question for Nancy Pelosi

Public Domain

I barely get to read news, anymore, but I stumbled across this interesting exchange between Nancy Pelosi and a reporter:The reporter sparked the exchange by asking: “Is an unborn baby with a human heart and human liver a human being?”“Why don’t you take your ideological questions…I don’t know who you are, and you’re welcome to be here and freedom of this press,” Pelosi said. “I am a devout, practicing Catholic. A mother of five children. When my baby was born, my firth child, my oldest ch … [Read more...]

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The Thrill of the Chaste, and the Mystery of Agape Love

thrill of the chaste

In this new Catholic edition of The Thrill of the Chaste, [Dawn] Eden is still living as a sign of contradiction — the world, after all, still misunderstands chastity as being little more than a dreary and joyless island of “no” — but she also has become a rather paradoxical witness to the world of “yes,” and how the power of that word, directed first to God, before any human, creates a chaste place for the Holy Spirit, and providence, to work in our lives.“If you take the longing you feel in … [Read more...]

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Are the 21 Coptic Martyrs of February Creating Converts?

Image via Pixabay

The news moves so quickly and we gorge ourselves on it so mindlessly, that I sometimes wonder if anyone really remembers the 21 Coptic martyrs created just last February, and whose deaths moved us as much and as deeply, back then as the deaths of Aylan and Galip Kurdi are moving us now.Have we forgotten the 21 men, all Christian save for one whom, is was reported, watched the Christians die proclaiming Jesus and declared that he was taking their savior as his own.Tertullian said "the … [Read more...]

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No, the Rosary is not “vain repetition”; here’s why

Image via Pixabay

From my "Ora Pro Nobis" column at The Catholic AnswerHow often do we think of Christmas in April? In praying a daily Rosary, one will ponder the Nativity of the Lord, and the whole great mystery of His incarnation, twice a week, throughout the year. The entirety of the Gospel is therefore alive for us at all times, and the insights and consolations that arise from our contemplation, or the intentions of those whose names enter into our awareness, render the prayer continually changed, bead … [Read more...]

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Aylan, Gassed Refugees: A Pivotal Moment for Civilization

teargas

The crisis of Syrian refugees is coming to a head. We've all seen the awful pictures and even drawings and artwork covering little Aylan Kurdi's tragic death.On August 26, there were reports of a tear-gassing of refugees, in Hungary. It is dramatic and hard to watch.These are human beings, and how Europe deals with such a humanitarian crisis is going to matter a great deal; it is going to tell us where the future of Western civilization -- a civilization built on Christian principles - … [Read more...]

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Scalia Resigns Patheos to Take Helm at Aleteia-US

“If you're not having fun, you're doing something wrong.” ― Groucho Marx/ WikimediaCommons, Public Domain

I said earlier that I had an announcement to make, and now I have the chance to do it. So, here goes:Effective the close of business yesterday, I have resigned my position as Managing Editor of the Catholic Channel.I have loved working with all of Catholic channel writers, who have become real friends and partners-in-prayer, and this gig has been inspiring and instructive to me, a gift and privilege; I've had the opportunity to indulge my passion for finding really great writers and then … [Read more...]

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What to Expect When You’re Expecting Pope Francis

great reformer

At a moment when "change from below" is already stirring in America, Pope Francis' upcoming visit may impact the nation for generations.by Sean ConnollyPope Francis is not coming to the U.S. to damn Americans for our wealth or our love of SUVs. He will arrive not as a critic but as a missionary, one who will affirm what is best in the US before he challenges our choices. And he is likely to disarm and even charm those of us who, believing the pundits, are braced for harsh words from the … [Read more...]

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