August 17, 2019

From CatholicPhilly.com:  Forty Catholics in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia have been honored by Pope Francis for their dedication and exceptional service to the church, the archdiocese announced Aug. 16. The honors will be conferred by Archbishop Charles Chaput during a ceremony with Evening Prayer Sept. 5 at the Cathedral Basilica of SS. Peter and Paul, Philadelphia. The awardees, who include lay individuals, couples, a religious sister and a permanent deacon, will receive their honors among five award categories. Among the… Read more

August 17, 2019

Over the last several months, many deacons have wondered: “What role can we play?” in helping to heal a broken and bruised Church. Robert Klesko, a man in formation to become a Byzantine deacon, offers some ideas in the National Catholic Register:  For Ignatius, the deacon is not a social worker. He is essential to the life of the local Church, for he represents an essential revelation, “a commandment” of Jesus Christ. The contribution of the diaconate to the building… Read more

August 17, 2019

My heart broke when I heard this news today: Father James Stephen Behrens, OCSO, a monk at the Monastery of Our Lady of the Holy Spirit died on Thursday, August 15th at the hospital as a result of complications from a lung biopsy procedure. A monk of 25 years and a priest of 45 years, he served as a priest of the Archdiocese of Newark for over twenty years before entering the monastery in 1994. Father James was 71 years old when… Read more

August 16, 2019

Things in Buffalo just keep getting worse:  In the wake of more than 100 child sex abuse lawsuits filed under the Child Victims Act, a sudden departure is now blindsiding a Diocese already in crisis. Stephen Parisi, a seminarian, is announcing his “immediate withdrawal” over what he calls, “alarming and problematic governance” of the Buffalo Diocese and Christ the King Seminary. Parisi served as Dean of Seminarians at Christ the King Seminary, a leadership role among the young men pursuing… Read more

August 16, 2019

More houses of worship are encouraging pastors to train church personnel how to deal with an active shooter. This report tells of one effort in Pittsburgh:  Recent events have only made the need more urgent. From the AP: The shootings this month killed more than 30 people at an El Paso Walmart and Dayton, Ohio entertainment district. But gunmen have also targeted houses of worships in recent years, includinga church in rural Sutherland Springs, Texas, where more than two… Read more

August 15, 2019

An excellent piece of journalism in The Washington Post looks at how the changing demographics of America — more older people, far fewer younger — is beginning to have an impact in one state, Maine: Janet Flaherty got an alarming call last October from the agency tasked with coordinating in-home care for her 82-year-old mother. It could no longer send her mom’s home caretaker. It knew of no other aides who could care for her mother, either. Flaherty’s mother, Caroline,… Read more

August 15, 2019

From CNA: The Diocese of Scranton has begun an investigation into allegations of misconduct on the part of the rector of the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, D.C. “Bishop Joseph Bambera, Bishop of the Diocese of Scranton, has commenced the process of launching a full forensic investigation into the concerns that have been raised,” about Msgr. Walter Rossi, the diocese told CNA Aug. 14. “Approximately one year ago, concerns were raised in the public sector… Read more

August 15, 2019

Imagine for a moment the map of Italy. On the back of “the boot,” along the Adriatic Sea, you will find one of the more unusual shrines in all of Europe. It is in the town of Loreto. At the heart of the town, here’s a huge basilica. Inside of it is a humble stone house. The house is now a chapel. A number of years ago, before I was ordained, I had the privilege of serving Mass there. But… Read more

August 14, 2019

From the Facebook page of the Archdiocese of Denver: Yesterday, deacons from across the Archdiocese of Denver gathered for a special Mass with Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila and were honored for their service to the Church. Check out many more pictures in the album at the link.    Read more

August 14, 2019

  A sign of the times:  A Pennsylvania parish has cancelled a scheduled festival in response to a security threat received by the Diocese of Pittsburgh. In an Aug. 13 statement, the diocese said that in late July it received a “disturbing,” handwritten letter that said “Cancel August 14-17 Festival Security Problem is Huge.” Our Lady of Grace Parish in Scott Township, a Pittsburgh suburb, was the only diocesan parish scheduled to hold a festival Aug. 14-17. “Although there was… Read more

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