Catholicism, Apps and New Media

Not to sound like an old lady, but I am quite taken with young Brandon Vogt, whose book, The Church and New Media: Blogging Converts, Online Activists, and Bishops Who Tweet will be released toward the end of summer. Brandon blogs at The Thin Veil, but he's also a crackerjack reporter who quickly filed some excellent-- really comprehensive -- pieces for OSV during the Vatican/Blogger meet-up last month, so it's not surprising that his book is a comprehensive and up-to-the-minute look at the … [Read more...]

Feast of Dear St. Philip Neri

Today is the memorial of my dear patron, teacher and friend, St. Philip Neri, whose chapel in Santa Maria in Vallicella (also called Chiesa Nuova) in Rome feels like a very natural and welcoming second home, for me -- where I was able to participate, daily, in the mass on my last visit.In her column, "A Word in Season" Pat Gohn takes a really wonderful look at this very great saint, whose "mission" was to the people of Rome; the churches and hospitals he built are still serving. The Oratory he … [Read more...]

A Theology of Expansive Love

After being rather quiet for the past two weeks, it feels good to write again, and funnily enough my column today at First Things came about precisely because illness made me submissive to silence, where I re-acquainted myself with a "quaint" act that I do not practice enough -- "offering it up" -- and rediscovered the powerful theological punch contained therein:Pondering the crucifix, and the immensity of what Christ endured, we wonder what could possibly be ‘lacking’ in his afflictions. But … [Read more...]

Roma 6AM Beatification Prep!

I'm out until later in the afternoon. This is from the loggia in St. Peter's Basilica, as the sun is rising -- just so beautiful!Through the columns!I wrote about some of this here.More later... … [Read more...]

Vatican-Blogger Round-Up – UPDATES!

Bless Max Lindenman, who is still steering the ship while I'm kind of below decks throwing up. Hope to be back on my feet soon, as I must tape a couple of In the Arena's tomorrow, and then, finally, come up from the poop deck on Friday!I have so much to write about, but am not competent to the task, just yet, but I wanted to do a quick recon of the internet and find stuff for you about the Blogger Meet Up (and unload my camera, if I can find it). Here is a video from Rome Reports -- … [Read more...]

Remarks Delivered at VBM11

All packed to come home and once again too excited to sleep! The Vatican/Blogger Meet-up was exceedingly well put-together, both panels were interesting-- the second gave great information on i-developments coming out of the Vatican, and I believe most bloggers in attendance came away with a strong conviction that Rome is very serious about building a cohesive, co-operative relationship with the purveyors of Catholic social media.It was a real treat to meet so many bloggers and writers whose … [Read more...]

Live-blogging Beatification John Paul II

(Photo SourceHe is a Beato! Loved singing the Gloria, in Latin, with my fellow Catholics. Bells ringing all over Rome!8:33 AM After doing more grousing than a mature woman and a Christian should, I stood up, watched the chopper overhead, the stunning vista, the crowds, the placement, the choir...and I was just overwhelmed. I found myself doing the hand-to-chest thing: holy moley, look where I am! This is unbelievable; it is breathtaking, heart-aching, staggering, and I want to share it with … [Read more...]

People Piling in to Rome

I was very glad to be able to do all of my pilgrimage stuff yesterday, when the weather was beautiful and the city still felt like it was "mine, all mine." This morning I made my way to 9am mass as the little chapel of St. Philip Neri, which is becoming my morning habit while here, and afterwards I walked over to St. Andrea Apostole, which has been rather brilliantly freshened up in time for it's feature as part of the vigil leading up to the beatification. Last September it was under … [Read more...]

May I take your intentions with me to Rome? – UPDATED

(My photo of ancient side altar at the Basilica of Santa Sabina)While I am busy getting my column written for tomorrow and attending to other duties and devotions (Easter Monday Adoration! Yay!) I thought I'd invite you to leave your prayer requests and intentions in the comments thread. I will print them out and take them with me to Rome, and ask St. Catherine of Siena, St. Philip Neri and others for their prayerful support on your behalves, and then take the whole list with me -- in my hands … [Read more...]

Rome-bound, against all odds…

Lots of excited talk this weekend about the Blogger-meetup scheduled in Rome scheduled for May 2 -- the day after the beatification of Pope John Paul II -- and instigated by the Pontifical Council for Social Communications. We might call this gathering of international bloggers a "baby step" toward helping disparate voices to get to know each other less as "contingents" and more as hale-fellows-well-met. It will also, hopefully, help to coalesce blogdom's diverse, multi-focused alternative … [Read more...]