Obama says Church Consciences will Be Respected? – UPDATE

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...]

Girls and Guillotines: Glorifying God

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If you're not subscribing to The Catholic Answer Magazine (which you should because it's a little six-times-a-year gem of Catholic information on scripture, doctrine and tradition, but I won't scold!) I hope you're at least liking the OSV Twitter account so you can click on to some of its goodness!The July/August edition is particularly rich, as it examines Eucharistic Adoration, Concupiscence, the Eastern Churches and the Carmelite Martyrs of Compiègne. Much of that is behind the paywall -- … [Read more...]

If Atheists want a creed, they ought to have one

In Florida, some atheists, peeved that a monument to the Ten Commandments could not be protested out of existence are planning to erect their own monument, celebrating their beliefs:A small city in heavily Christian northern Florida is about to become home to the first public monument in the United States dedicated to atheism.Florida members of American Atheists, a national advocacy group, plan to erect a 1,500-pound granite display in front of the Bradford County Courthouse in Starke, … [Read more...]

In other News, Fulton Sheen is “Venerable” UPDATED

While the SCOTUS ruling was breaking, this story came over the wires, too:Servant of God Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen is now “Venerable” after the Vatican announced today that Benedict XVI had signed a decree recognising that the archbishop heroically lived Christian virtues.The announcement of the decree marks a significant step in the canonization cause of Peoria, Ill.-born Archbishop Sheen (1895-1979), the Emmy award-winning televangelist whose program, "Life is Worth Living," was bro … [Read more...]

My Elder Son Reads Everything

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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...]

The Priest as Bridge and Balm – UPDATED

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Over on the Dedicated-Catholic page of Patheos' symposium on the Future of Seminary Education, two more entries, and I think they're both exceptional expositions of both the challenges facing our new generation of priests, and the profound gift of opportunity that lies within those very challenges.Read Deacon Greg Kandra's remarkable and moving story (it made me cry) of Father Martino BaThong Nguyen, who was born in great deprivation in Vietnam and now serves in the Diocese of Savannah in … [Read more...]

Quantum Levitation and Faith Levitation

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In our foyer is a small, beautiful icon of Our Lady of Good Counsel, and the icon has an interesting story behind it:Each year on April 25, the feast day of St. Mark Genazzano’s patron Saint, a fair took place near the church of the Mother of Good Counsel. On that day in 1467 towards the evening as the fair was beginning to end a white luminous cloud appeared over the village. The cloud descended on the church of the Mother of Good Counsel. The bells of the old tower began to ring by t … [Read more...]

Misunderstanding Dorothy Day Misunderstands Mercy

Kathryn Jean Lopez has written a thoughtful and terrific piece addressing Stephen Prothero's puzzling or deliberately provocative notion that Dorothy Day's abortion could interfere with her cause for sainthood.Prothero wrote: “Can Catholics abide a saint who had an abortion?"Possibly reconsidering the question as a bit aggressive, he rephrased it: "Can you be a saint if you have committed the original sin of contemporary Catholicism?"Lopez writes:It’s probably fair to say that D … [Read more...]

St. Benedict: Stability and Detachment

Today is the feastday of St. Benedict of Nurcia, who is regarded the Father of Western Monasticism. He is also one of the Patron Saints of Europe, and our dear Holy Father Benedict XVI, who made a retreat at the saints own Subiaco monastery just before his elevation to the Papacy. Although I am a very bad Benedictine, I do my poor Oblate best to honor our founder, today, whose Holy Rule has shaped and defined monasticism for both Benedictines and Trappists and has even been adopted by … [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 … [Read more...]


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