Obama says Church Consciences will Be Respected? – UPDATE

Thomas More

That would be surprising! Refreshing, too!Says Obama, today:On an issue as sensitive as [gay marriagte], knowing that Americans hold a wide range of views based on deeply held beliefs, maintaining our nation’s commitment to religious freedom is also vital. How religious institutions define and consecrate marriage has always been up to those institutions. Nothing about this decision – which applies only to civil marriages – changes that.This from the man who said, during his Comme … [Read more...]

Part II The Chanting Coffin-Maker: Mother Dolores & Agape

beret

In Part I of my interview with Mother Dolores Hart, she shared an insight that struck me as being profoundly important to our understanding of the vagaries of love: "all love relationships don’t end at the altar".What is love but a means to an end, the end being to become for each other a model of God? Not an idol, nor an icon/image but a model that helps us to know more fully the depths the Creator's love for each of us.Ponder it: here were Dolores Hart, beautiful young actress and Don … [Read more...]

“All love relationships don’t end at the altar!” – Part I

MotherDolores2

As a rule, when it comes to interviewing celebrities, Tony Rossi is our go-to guy, around here. Last week, though, he could not work into his schedule an opportunity to talk to Mother Dolores Hart, the actress-turned-Benedictine-nun who was the subject of last year's documentary, "God is the Bigger Elvis", and this year's best-seller, The Ear of the Heart. Mother Dolores is currently missing her cloister while she makes a major promotional tour in support of the book, and I had the opportunity … [Read more...]

The Mystery of God’s Own Timing

Pope-Idols

Yesterday morning my email and twitter feeds were busy with people laughing and saying "he did it again! It's downright spooky!" while sending me this link to Pope Francis' homily, which contained many important themes but was particular heavy on the subject of idolatry:‘The Lord is the only God, there is no other’, but then live as if He was not the only God and have other deities at our disposal...There is a danger of ‘ idolatry: idolatry, which is brought to us through the spirit of the w … [Read more...]

Charles Ramsey: Class Act

ramsey

A terrible story yields a diamond:On Tuesday, CNN host Anderson Cooper asked Ramsey what it felt like to find out that he had been living next to kidnapping victims.“See, that’s why now I’m having trouble sleeping,” he explained. “See, up until yesterday, the only thing that kept me from losing sleep was the lack of money. See what I’m saying? So now that that’s going on, and I could have done this last year, not this hero stuff, just do the right thing.”“Because there’s a lot of peop … [Read more...]

Echo Chambers Leave Us too Weak to Fight Idols and Bullies

shutterstock_79547737_man in bubble

Since they seem to be recurring themes in my life and my writing, last week I had occasion to again contemplate idols and idolatry and also the way bullies operate. Both idols and bullies play with our psyche, of course, and can do great damage. They are like germs and bacteria that bring disease and make us exceedingly ill, but only if they can first penetrate the immune system.In the case of bullies and idols, this involves a piercing of the spiritual and psychological immune systems. We … [Read more...]

“The Church challenges all its members, in different ways over different issues.” Just like Life Itself

Two great reads for you as I head out to Adoration:1) Sister Mary Ann Walsh hits a homerun as she observes the media going batshit crazy over basic Church teaching as though it's all brand-new:It amazes me when basic church teaching is received as if it were somethig brand new. This morning's New York Times brought the latest example with the headline: "Dolan Says the Catholic Church Should Be More Welcoming to Gay People." A glance at other media outlets finds similar news accounts. … [Read more...]

All In: the Deep Evangelization of Pope Francis -UPDATED

Sadly, my phone is not letting me have the picture I took today, for this piece, but honestly, I didn't get any really good shots, anyway. I am a bad photographer, and too short to get much more than pictures of taller people getting better shots. Such is life. This pic above is from 2011.So, my recovery continues apace, and this morning I was able to be part of Pope Francis' audience with the press. Unfortunately, his Italian was too much for mine, so I had to wait for the translated … [Read more...]

The Big Book of Lent and Easter – UPDATED

Ash Wednesday OOR

Every Ash Wednesday I put away Book III of the Liturgy of the Hours, and pull out Book II for the Lenten and Easter Season.Book III is pretty big, but Book II is "the big book." It's a book that carries a little bit of penance for me, on days when the arthritis in my hands is acting up, because just holding it in prayer sometimes makes me aware of pain. The book gets heavy, but Lent is a heavy time; as my prayer is distracted, I simply offer it up -- I look at the crucifix on my oratory and … [Read more...]

Failing…in love again

shutterstock_99170681 (1) walled in

"There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment, and so one who fears is not yet perfect in love." - First reading at Mass, from 1 John 4:17-18(Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com)As Popeye would say, "well, blow me down."I fail at love all the time -- grievously -- and when I consider how often that failure is connected to fear, I have to say, this is pretty spot-on.There is a great deal I do not fear; usually for me fear is … [Read more...]


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