May 8, 2019

Details from Springfield, Pennsylvania: Students at Sabold Elementary School will no longer proclaim “God bless America” every morning — and the change is drawing some national attention. Each morning Principal Peter Brigg used the public address system to lead the children in the Pledge of Allegiance, which conforms to state law. He followed that by saying “God bless America,” which has become a Sabold custom for several years. As students recited the pledge, they were inclined, but not compelled, to… Read more

May 7, 2019

From his flight home today:  The commission Pope Francis appointed to study the history and identity of women deacons did not reach a unanimous conclusion about whether deaconesses in the early church were “ordained” or formally “blessed,” the pope said. “What is fundamental is that there was no certainty that there was an ordination with the same form and same aim as the ordination of men,” the pope told reporters flying with him from North Macedonia to Rome May 7…. Read more

May 7, 2019

A great light has dimmed. A man some hailed as a living saint has gone to his reward:  Jean Vanier, the founder of L’Arche, has died in Paris, aged 90. In a statement on L’Arche’s website announcing Vanier’s death, its leaders said: “Jean passed away peacefully today . . . In recent days, while remaining very present, he had declined quickly. “We all know Jean’s place in the history of L’Arche and Faith and Light and in the personal stories of many… Read more

May 6, 2019

The very deacon-friendly Bishop Shawn McKnight just ordained a new batch of deacons for Jeff City — his first, I believe. The picture is above. The press release:   Bishop Shawn McKnight, bishop of the Diocese of Jefferson City, will ordain 13 men to the order of deacons during a Mass on Saturday, May 4, at 10 a.m. at the Cathedral of St. Joseph, 2305 W. Main, Jefferson City. The men, all of whom are married, join 70 other permanent deacons… Read more

May 5, 2019

If you want a glimpse at what pro-life activists can face today, click on the video in the tweet below. It includes video shot outside a Planned Parenthood clinic last week, where a lone woman was performing the dangerous and clearly threatening act of silently praying the rosary. WATCH: Pennsylvania State Representative @BrianSimsPA harasses an elderly woman who is peacefully advocating for the lives of preborn human beings and women who are considering abortion. This is shameful. https://t.co/Xb9pkFZSXC — Live… Read more

May 5, 2019

From the Rev. Joshua Whitfield in The Dallas Morning News, wrestling with questions for which there are no easy answers: My uncle took my father’s place when my parents divorced. I was nine when my mom’s younger brother filled the paternal gap. In those poor, stressful, single-parent years, he was our strength. He was a young man, bright and full of life, a gay man and HIV-positive. I loved him deeply because he was there when I needed him. That is,… Read more

May 4, 2019

Several years ago, my wife and I made a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. One of the young women on the trip was a new Catholic; she had just joined the Church at the Easter Vigil. I was curious and at one point asked her: “What was it that made you want to be Catholic?” What she said surprised me. “It was my boss,” she said. “I saw how he treated his family, his friends, those of us who worked… Read more

May 4, 2019

You can catch the ordination video at the diocese’s diaconate Facebook page.  I’m waiting for someone to move pictures of the new deacons — anyone have one? — but here’s the press release:  Bishop Nelson Perez will ordain four men as permanent deacons during a Mass at 10 a.m. May 4 in the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist in downtown Cleveland. The four men who will be ordained are Christopher DePenti, husband of Anne Marie, and a parishioner at… Read more

May 3, 2019

Behold, a depressing message of misery from Burger King. Oh: and it’s timed for Mental Health Month. Does this make you want to buy a Whopper? Details: One of the only truly astonishing spectacles left to witness in this world is just how desperate brands are willing to get in order to capture your attention. And it’s really annoying when it works. This week, Burger King announced—to much brouhaha—that it will begin rolling out “Real Meals” in big U.S. cities as… Read more

May 3, 2019

Here’s a fascinating and inspiring glimpse into some of those who entered the Church at Easter — from a secular source, with its nose pressed against the window with wonder and curiosity. From The New York Times:  Why convert, and why now? It is not a capricious choice. Converting required months of preparation, diving into the abundance of rituals and traditions of Catholicism and the theology that underpins it all. For each catechumen, there was a different path. Many of… Read more

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