“No one hates men! But…damn these men!” – UPDATED

On Facebook, Diane of Te-Deum blog embedded this interview between Christiane Amanpour and Sister Joan Chittister, OSB, whom Amanpour calls "a practicing nun."Because she's a class-A journalist, is the haughty Christiane. She's like the Anna Wintour of elite broadcasters, but even less interesting.Full disclosure: as a Benedictine Oblate, I've read and gleaned much wisdom from Sister Joan's books on Monasticism; she has a lot of good and instructive things to say about the psalms and … [Read more...]

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Pope Benedict: Faith and the Future

faith future

In 2009 Ignatius press released this prophetic little volume, written by our pope over 1969-1970 -- while the world was in the first throes of the social revolution. I thought I'd share a few of Joseph Ratzinger's prescient thoughts. They seem timely:"The church will become small and will have to start afresh more or less from the beginning. She will no longer be able to inhabit many of the edifices she built in prosperity. As the number of her adherents diminishes . . . she will lose many … [Read more...]

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My Elder Son Reads Everything

geddeswannabepic

My elder son, the dreamy quiet planet, has the most curious mind I've ever encountered.He never rejects an idea outright--first he acquaints himself with who and what is behind the idea and then finds out who influenced their thinking and he checks them out too. He will swim in the seas of an idea for a while before deciding whether he accepts or rejects it, and then washes up on the next shore, then the next. His library is formidable, and he is never intimidated (as I sometimes am) by a … [Read more...]

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Those Year-End Book Lists!

augustine

First I get an email from Julie Davis wondering if I am going to rise to her reading challenge.I wanted to say "no" because I found her list daunting.But then I thought, "hey, wait, I shouldn't be intimidated! I actually just re-read The Brothers Karamazov, last year, in this terrific translation!And I'm actually, slowly, reading Saint Francis de Sales' Introduction to the Devout Life, this year.And last week I began this marvelous, beautifully wrought translation (Maria … [Read more...]

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Dominicans, Lepanto and More

Arches at Santa Sabina, Rome/Elizabeth Scalia

Kathryn Jean Lopez and I recently commiserated with each other about how life as a writer/editor seems to translate into: "if you are awake, you're working". One need only look around the internet, or check the speaker's schedule around the DC area and in New York to see how busy Lopez is, and yet she's taken the time to contribute a piece to Patheos' Book Club: One of the saddest of sights, to me, is a locked door on a Catholic Church. Mercifully, I find them infrequently. And, all over the … [Read more...]

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Barron’s “Catholicism” Book is A Course in Revolution

Recently I posted the first of what are bound to be many, many posts raving about Catholicism; A Journey to the Heart of the Faith and urging you to purchase the book, read it and -- you won't be able to resist -- give it to everyone you know.My husband and I are giving it to our priests and the parish DRE, and we're not waiting for Christmas!And I haven't actually even written my rave review, yet. But while I figure out how to do that, George Weigel has written a rave of his own, this … [Read more...]

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Pratchett, Chesterton, Granny & the Grubby White

Over at First Things, I'm writing about Terry Pratchett, Sin, Chesterton and Assisted Suicide and referencing one of Julie Davis' favorite exchanges his great book, Carpe JugulumHaving announced several years ago that he is dealing with early-onset dementia, Terry Pratchett, the celebrated author of scores of fantasy titles, most notably the marvelously wise and entertaining Disc World series, has—despite rumors to the contrary—staunchly maintained his atheist’s stance. Last year he decl … [Read more...]

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Late Summer Bookchat

It is unbelievable to me that we're into August, already. Before you know it, the kids go back to college (buy them this and this!) or high school (buy this for sure!) the leaves go crisp and crimson-gold and then we're into the work of Thanksgiving and ta-da! It's Advent again!And Advent, of course, is when we'll begin using the new missal translation of the mass. In her weekly column, Pat Gohn (aka "the sanest woman on the internet") is going to do a special four-week series on those new … [Read more...]

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"Of Gods and Men" and John Corapi

The remarkable film Of Gods and Men is out on Netflix, and if you haven't seen it yet, I urge you to put it on your queue and move it to the top. It is one of the best films I seen in years -- gripping, moving, enlightening and insightful. I can't think of a film in recent memory that so truly and respectfully portrays the life of faith, the religious life, and most especially the value, use and meaning of liturgical prayer and the sacramental, Holy Mass -- how these enhance the life of faith, … [Read more...]

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Making Love in the Light

My column at First Things for the upcoming Feast of the Ascension:It is this onenes Father Barron describes when he writes of the “interacting and interpenetrating fields of force” that are heaven and earth, constantly commingling, and within the church embodying a true encounter between bridegroom and bride. That is considered archaic language, I know — Flannery O’ Connor called it “a metaphor that can be dispensed with” — but the brilliant Ms. O’ Connor was uncharacteristically off the mark … [Read more...]

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