Synod Laity Suggest Families Need More Room to Love

On social media and in email, people are expressing concerns about some of what they are hearing (or not hearing), coming out of the still-young synod.I am, so far, much more alarmed by the expectational excesses that are being created in the secular press, and in a few Catholic media venues as well, by people who should know better, but can't resist an impulse to politicize and to pretend that by the end of this thing, the doctrines will have been turned on their heads and the church will … [Read more...]

Collegiality or Papal Unilateralism? Be Consistent Reformers!

From Crux, we learn that Reformers are telling Pope Francis not to wait for the bishops, but to just let 'er rip and "fix" the church, according to their notions, which they assume he shares: In the run-up to the Synod, the group is sending a letter to Pope Francis requesting a review of the arrangements for the summit.One recurrent theme in the meeting was a surprising note for many Catholic liberals, who over the years have called for tighter limits on papal authority. Now, however, they … [Read more...]

Churchill’s Words on Obama, Congress, World

His scorn was withering. . .He had described his foes in Parliament as "good, honest men who are ready to die for their opinions, if only they knew what their opinions are." Of Baldwin's government, he said: "So they go on in strange paradox, decided only to be undecided, resolved to be irresolute, adamant for drift...all powerful to be impotent." - Leo Rosten, on Winston Churchill**Well, I read that last night and thought, were Churchill around here, he might rerun those sentiments about … [Read more...]

The Burke and Kasper Videos: Epic Fail All Around – UPDATED

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

If you're not already fully repelled by everything in our world being politicized, this might do the trick.Seriously, when I watched these two CNS-produced videos -- which take a page from the political propaganda playbook -- my stomach turned. I actually had a visceral reaction to the overt manipulation at work, here. Propaganda videos, complete with dark music and heavy messaging on one side and fluffy light and goo on the other, are repellent enough in in the political arena. To see them … [Read more...]

Nun News: Autumn Vocation Roundup 2014 – UPDATED

Sr. Maria Teresa, OP receives ring signifying her solemn espousal to Christ

There has been "so much" Nun News this year that I have already posted not one, but two "mini-roundups" on the happenings concerning Catholic female religious.But on this Feastday of Saint Therese this is the big one -- I've been collecting information for months -- so settle in, and let's get to it. If you are unfamiliar with some terms, see this quick, helpful glossary. Go here for some perspective on habits and why some communities wear them while others do not.We must begin, as … [Read more...]

Why Dolan, and Francis, and Benedict are Right

Do you know why, as Pope Francis rightly noted, proselytizing doesn't work?Because it is not Incarnational. It has nothing in common with the example set by the Word when he condescended to join humanity and "set his tent among us". Not near humanity, but still apart; not above humanity, overseeing it, but among and with and in commonality with us.When Proposition 8 was roiling California in 2008, a group of Evangelical Christians decided to make a weekly trip into the Castro section of … [Read more...]

“The Faithful Traveler” Comes to Patheos!

faithful traveler

Back in February, EWTN showed a wonderful multi-part video tour of the Holy Land, hosted by a high-energy, vivacious and very faithful young woman named Diana von Glahn, who also produced the series, with her husband, David.You can watch that whole travelogue, and also visit some US Eastcoast shrines, here.As you will see, von Glahn has an eye for beauty, an openness to try new things and the kind of steady, centered faith that allows her to be both remarkably upbeat, and laid back. All … [Read more...]

Burke’s “Exile” to Malta**: What if Everyone is Wrong? UPDATED

The rumors appear to be true, and it looks like Pope Francis is "demoting" Cardinal Raymond Burke from being prefect of the supreme tribunal of the apostolic signatura to “cardinal patron” of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta.Burke is only 66 years old; the current "cardinal patron", Paolo Sardi, has just turned 80. That's kind of interesting.There's lots of analysis around, and some odd tweets. Everyone seems to be seeing this as a demotion -- some are using the word "exile", whi … [Read more...]

The Beautiful Doubled-Edged Sword of Hospice – UPDATED

Carl McColman has lost his beloved daughter, Rhiannon:Many well-meaning friends and loved ones say things like “At least she’s in a better place now” or “She’s no longer stuck in a wheelchair” or “Well, her suffering is over.” That’s all true and I believe it — thank heaven for my faith, or I think my sense of being plunged into an abyss would be far more engulfing than it is. And I don’t mean to criticize the genuine love and concern from the many people who care. But every time I hear a com … [Read more...]

The Great Unraveling: A Necessary Look at Reality

unravel shutterstock_6632740

This morning, the New York Times published an exquisitely-written dose of reality via Roger Cohen. If "only Nixon could go to China" then perhaps only a NYT columnist could spell this out and thus permit us to credibly acknowledge that things are as grim as we have all known, in our guts:It was the time of unraveling. Long afterward, in the ruins, people asked: How could it happen?It was a time of beheadings. With a left-handed sawing motion, against a desert backdrop, in bright … [Read more...]

Dolan is Charged to Model Christ, Not the Pharisees

When Jesus rescued the adulterous woman from an angry mob intent on stoning her to death, he was very quiet about it. He wrote something on the ground -- perhaps the sins of the men with the stones? Words in which they might recognize themselves and their own sins and offenses?"But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”Again he bent down and wrote on the ground. And in res … [Read more...]

Mother of Completeness: Nativity of Mary

"Your birth, O Virgin Mother of God, proclaims joy to the whole world, for from you arose the glorious Sun of Justice, Christ our God; he freed us from the age-old curse and filled us with holiness; he destroyed death and gave us eternal life." - Antiphon for the Canticle of Zechariah, Morning Prayer for Sept. 8I was struck this morning at mass by the Gospel reading, which was the genealogy and Annunciation from Matthew. The whole list of patriarchs and fathers, with the occasional mention … [Read more...]

Fulton Sheen Might Counsel Patience, Today

At the news, late yesterday, that the cause for sainthood for Venerable Bishop Fulton J. Sheen had been suspended, there was some understandable confusion and sadness. Some predictable high-drama and Catholic angst got flung around the web, too, as it seemed like -- given the available information -- Peoria's Bishop Daniel R. Jenky of Peoria ("actor" of the cause and President of the Sheen Foundation) and New York's Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan were having a tug of war with the corporeal remains … [Read more...]

BREAKING: NY Archdiocese responds on Sheen – UPDATED

Minutes ago, Joseph Zwilling, Director of Communications for the Archdiocese of New York, released the following statement today on behalf of the archdiocese, in an attempt to clarify certain questions concerning the cause of Venerable Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen.“The Archdiocese of New York joins Bishop Daniel Jenky of the Diocese of Peoria in his invitation to prayer that “God’s will be made manifest” concerning the cause for sainthood of Venerable Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen. People have a … [Read more...]


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