Dear St. Aloysius

I love St. Aloysius and while in Rome was privileged to be able to pray at his tomb for my sons.A nice piece on him, in AmericaIn his single-minded pursuit of God, and especially his willingness to give up literal riches, Aloysius perfectly emblemizes a key meditation of the Spiritual Exercises called the “Two Standards.” In that meditation, St. Ignatius asks the retreatant to imagine being asked to serve under the banner, or “standard,” of one of two leaders—Christ the King or Satan. If on … [Read more...]

Gay Marriage, Sentimentalism and Being – UPDATE

Over at First Things, I felt compelled to continue unpacking my thoughts from last week, about homosexuality, nature/nurture, "necessary otherness" and what it all might mean.Larry Kramer called the gay community “exceptional,” and in doing so he opens the door to question what that means, whether it implies a giftedness that is planned, and meant for all of us. If that is so, our homosexual brothers and sisters deserve a full participation in our human adventure, right down to the “plans of fu … [Read more...]

The Corapi Investigation: What it is… (UPDATES)

Deacon Bill Ditewig, who has serious experience in the matter of priestly investigations has a very helpful post up on his site. First and foremost, he admits the system is flawed, but maintains it also has its strengths, and that the issue pertaining to John Corapi and his resignation -- or whatever it is -- from the priesthood has nothing to do with the so-called Dallas Charter:It has never been my intention to comment much on l'affaire Corapi. We simply don't know enough the facts … [Read more...]

CUA re-embracing single-sex dormitories

I had the pleasure of meeting CUA's new president, John Garvey a couple of months ago, and came away impressed with his energy and his obvious interest in his students. That sincere interest is on display in his very "counter-culteral" move to re-establish same-sex dormitories at Catholic University:"Virtue," Aristotle concludes, "makes us aim at the right mark, and practical wisdom makes us take the right means." If he is right, then colleges and universities should concern themselves with … [Read more...]

The Parent-Child Thing

It doesn't always flow so easily, or so naturally, especially when the family has been shattered and new people are coming in and out of the framework.When I was 14, two things happened. First, he met a woman, moved in with her, and got engaged. Second, I entered high school. The future he and I had talked about so hopefully became foreshortened; like Tony Manero's, my future was tonight.With startling speed, my father changed from a wise and patient counselor into, well, a crabby and … [Read more...]

The Deep Waters and Gay Marriage

I rarely recommend subscribing to RSS feeds, because I know what it's like to get enough email, but I am going to urge you to subscribe to Theologian (and Patheos columnist) Tim Muldoon -- at least over the summer -- as he continues to plumb the theological depths in consideration of gay marriage.He started out wondering if Christianity was having a Gamaliel moment on the matter.This week, he thinks about what does true violence to the spirit, and whether "facsimiles of love" play into … [Read more...]

Nun Soaps: New Face and Gift Soaps!

It has been a while since we've taken a look at what our nun pals are up to -- and they've been very busy; Dominicans traveling and partying; Passionists partying and building.Who knew the cloisters were so busy? Or so much fun?So, over in Summit, where the Dominican Nuns have perfected the art of soap and hand creme and lip balm making, they've come out with two new soap products:Our Cleansing Facial Soap has been in "test mode" for several months by our sisters! This soap is made with … [Read more...]

Bishop Finn: Epic Fail and Fallout

By all accounts, Bishop Robert Finn is a very good man, but it seems he is a very good man who made a very big -- huge; astounding -- mistake:Creepy is one thing. The question remained: was [Father Shawn] Ratigan's behavior criminal? Based on the evidence available at the time, nobody could have said in good conscience that it was. [. . .] Julie Hess, St. Patrick's principal, was able to fuse a mosaic of apparent non-events into a coherent picture of pathology. In May of 2010, she reproduced … [Read more...]

Accept Almighty Father – FOUND!

A couple days ago I awoke with my memory ringing back a hymn from my childhood that I had not heard in likely 42 years, and which I could not find on google.Happily, a twitter-follower, HeyJulieo found the hymn, with the melody I remember, in the 1966 Parish Mass Book - St. Joseph Edition.Can we please have this wonderful, singable, instructive and reverent hymn back? Please? … [Read more...]

A Catholic Hymn I'd like Back, Please

I awoke this morning with this in my head, and it's been an earworm all day:Accept, Almighty Father This gift of bread and wine Which now your priest does offer To You O GOD benign.In humble reparation for sins and failings dread To win life everlasting for living and for dead.Actually, what I awoke with was the next part:Oh, God, by this commingling of water and of wine may He who took our nature Give us His life divineThere is more, after that, but I can't remember it, and it … [Read more...]