Echoes, Ghettos & the Chasm of Unknowing

Start here with Robert Royal's piece on the "anti-Catholic moment" Are we living in one?Maybe. But I'll get back to that, later.The hatemail and disgusting threats being made against Stacy Trasancos are reprehensible and cannot be justified.They can't. Don't try. Don't say "well, she..." and then prattle on that her expressed frustration and the hurt feelings of others justifies wishing that her children be "kidnapped, raped and murdered."Don't say, "but..." because there is no but. … [Read more...]

Debuting at The Catholic Answer – UPDATED

Look at that cover; Pope Benedict XVI and Jordan's Prince Ghazi Muhammad bin Talal, taken during Benedict's visit to the Holy Land in 2009. Given the headlines coming our way every day from an evolving Middle East, and what these changes mean for governments and churches, could it-- or the cover story featuring an interview with Jesuit Father Samir Kahalil Samir -- be more timely?Like its editor Dr. Matthew Bunson, The Catholic Answer has a gift for timeliness; it's previous issue anticipated … [Read more...]

More on Voris and RCTV

Lots of very ungenerous comments yesterday -- detailing how Mark Shea is a heterodox-Michael-Voris hater -- by people who were busily emoting, and ignoring the fact that yesterday morning, before most were even aware of the story, Shea was already defending Voris, and promising a beefed-up defense today.And today, he keeps his word, coming to the defense not only of Voris, but of Simon Rafe, too:". . . I expect some in the blogosphere who aren’t especially keen on stuff like “The Vortex” wil … [Read more...]

An Elegant Argument for Catholic Education

PhotosourceFirst things first. The goal of a Christian is to come to know and believe in Jesus Christ and to live with God forever. Catholic education remains vital because it anchors itself in that foundational truth. [. . .] Catholic schools are also indispensable because they help students understand the transcendent purpose of their thousands of hours of cramming and test-taking. As one of my colleagues put it, Catholic education responds to the question, "What now?" "Now that we know … [Read more...]

Moments "After America"

On Sunday I'd mentioned that I was reading Mark Steyn's After America.Finding the book less "LOL funny" than Steyn's previous book, America Alone, I was nevertheless unable to put After America down, and I write more about it in my column at First Things:I thought of Chesterton a great deal while reading After America. Steyn quotes de Tocqueville liberally throughout the book and makes great, relevant references to H. G. Wells’ Eloi and Morlock populations, but in reading about the sort of … [Read more...]

Betraying Charity or Truth?

Every once in a while, I find myself saying "yes" to too many people asking me to look at their books, and I amass a rather slap-dash pile of books I feel like I will never plow through. Occasionally I miss a review "due" date, and I am never happy when that happens.I am especially not happy to be late on The Betrayal of Charity; the Sins that Sabotage Divine Love, which the Patheos Book Club has been talking about and excerpting for over a week, and which I have almost missed, to my overbusy … [Read more...]

Three More Little Words UPDATED

In the post below, we look at Three Little Words -- "Don't be afraid" -- that we should perhaps use to begin more of our sentences.Here are three other words, that perhaps should end more of those sentences: "Pay it forward.""Don't be afraid; pay it forward." It's almost the perfect one-sentence summary of the Gospel.And here are a few more words, from both my mom and Saint Bernadette Soubirous, the visionary of Lourdes:"God is never outdone in generosity."This is true. I know this … [Read more...]

When Young Faith is Tested

In his column today, Matt Emerson, who teaches at a Jesuit prep school, expresses concern over the effectiveness of our current religious education programs. Addressing the aftermath of the Gabrielle Giffords shooting, he writes of working through Psalm 46:Those classes, and that day, were sacred moments. There had been an uncovering. In the darkened room, in the mild glow of a projector screen bearing ancient words, I had been given an x-ray of my students' spiritual life. The images were … [Read more...]

Peace of Mind, Distractions, Forgiveness?

Matt Emerson writes today of Peace of Mind. Why don't we have it? Do we really need it? What brings it?Of late, however, I've been unsettled less by the headlines and more by the trepidation of friends and family. I've sensed a growing unease and a strident wish to know when and by what means the economy gets fixed.At root, I sense a desire for peace of mind.But the cure we seek may never come. Gas prices may continue to rise, housing prices may continue to drop, and a second recession … [Read more...]

Holy Women & Everyday Hero Priests -UPDATE

"The Church gives thanks for all the manifestations of the feminine genius which have appeared in the course of history, in the midst of all peoples and nations; she gives thanks for all the charisms that the Holy Spirit distributes to women in the history of the People of God, for all the victories which she owes to their faith, hope, and charity: she gives thanks for all the fruits of feminine holiness (n. 31)."--- Blessed Pope John Paul II in his Apostolic Letter Mulieris DignitatemExciting … [Read more...]