December 1, 2019

Details:  The bishop of the Roman Catholic Church’s diocese in Duluth for the past 10 years died Sunday morning. Paul Sirba, 59, suffered cardiac arrest at St. Rose Church in Proctor and was taken to Essentia Health St. Mary’s Medical Center in Duluth, where lifesaving measures were tried in vain, read a statement from the Rev. James Bissonette, Sirba’s vicar general. News of Sirba’s death about 9 a.m. was disclosed to diocese staff and announced during mass at parishes around… Read more

December 1, 2019

From the translation, via Zenit:  1. With this Letter, I wish to encourage the beautiful family tradition of preparing the nativity scene in the days before Christmas, but also the custom of setting it up in the workplace, in schools, hospitals, prisons and town squares. Great imagination and creativity is always shown in employing the most diverse materials to create small masterpieces of beauty. As children, we learn from our parents and grandparents to carry on this joyful tradition, which… Read more

December 1, 2019

“The Germans brought on the Reformation 500 years ago and divided the Catholic Church, and now the Germans are again up to no good trying to change the church.” From The New York Times:  The Roman Catholic Church in Germany has a split identity. At home, attendance is falling and many Germans say they regard the church’s teaching on social issues as hopelessly out of touch. But globally, the German church is one of the most powerful — and liberal — regions… Read more

December 1, 2019

This is worth your time: an interview with Father Scott Nolan, the priest who told a judge in a same-sex marriage that she could not receive communion. This comes from WOOD-TV in Grand Rapids. And check out the analysis that follows the video, too If you haven’t read it yet, here’s an excellent take from my blog neighbor Msgr. Eric Barr: [Father Nolan] showed eminent pastoral care (mercy) in trying to deal with the problem in a private phone call… Read more

November 29, 2019

Big news, via CNS: Deacon Drake McCalister, a former Pentecostal minister, has been given approval by the Vatican to be ordained to the priesthood for the Diocese of Steubenville. Steubenville Bishop Jeffrey M. Monforton received the letter of approval Nov. 6 and will ordain McCalister Dec. 19 at Holy Family Church in Steubenville. “Thanks be to God! And a strong sense, a sobering sense of the increased responsibility and accountability that comes with ordination to the priesthood,” said McCalister when… Read more

November 28, 2019

This popped up (in a shorter version) during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, and you could hear gasps around the world. Henry Thomas, the little boy from “E.T.,” reconnects with an old friend. Excuse me, there’s something in my eye. Watch and see if it hits you the same way. Happy Thanksgiving. Read more

November 27, 2019

The video below from WOOD-TV in Grand Rapids tells the story:  Details: Judge Sara Smolenski, chief judge of the Kent County District Court, has been denied Communion at the church where she has been a parishioner for more than six decades because she is married to a woman. It is a move that for many was the final straw in a pattern of behavior that has them calling for the removal of a priest — a priest who came… Read more

November 27, 2019

If you don’t know his name, you do know his work. Deacon Sullivan designed the coat of arms for numerous bishops around the United States — a legacy that will live on. His obit:  Deacon Paul Joseph Sullivan, 72, passed away peacefully Sunday, November 24, 2019, at home. Born in Providence, RI, to the late Isabel and Allyn Sullivan, Paul was the devoted husband of Kathleen M. Sullivan and adored father of Ryan M. Sullivan. In everything he did, Paul… Read more

November 26, 2019

“We regard the former bishop’s acceptance of this plan of amends as an act of restorative justice. It is also for his own spiritual good.” From The Washington Post:  West Virginia’s new bishop Tuesday called for his predecessor, Michael Bransfield, to pay $792,000, apologize to victims and to the diocese, and lose his place in the diocese’s cemetery as part of a restitution package for alleged financial and sexual misconduct that some church experts say is a first for a… Read more

November 26, 2019

1 in 3 Catholic Church employees says sex abuse/misconduct is “still a major problem.” Details: A vast survey of the Roman Catholic Church workforce in America shows the people who know best how the church is run – the employees themselves – are deeply split on key issues facing parishes across nation. The survey reveals diocesan priests are far more likely to view clergy abuse as a problem of the past, while nuns and other religious employees often consider sex abuse… Read more


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