December 21, 2015

Patheos, I have loved you. When Elizabeth Scalia first invited me to sit in her chair, guest blogging for her while she enjoyed some much-needed down time, she described it as “giving me the keys to a Ferrari.” And I had to agree! “The Anchoress” was one of the blogs I read every day, without fail. Indeed, many of the writers over at the Catholic Portal at Patheos had their fingers on the virtual pulse of the Church–Patheos was my... Read more

December 20, 2015

First, I mean no disrespect—but if you are a theologian or a historian or a liturgist, please pop in here to explain something for me. I’ve been reading about the O ANTIPHONS, those profound anticipatory verses from Isaiah which, in the Catholic tradition, are read at Vespers from December 17 through December 23, leading up to the Christmas season.  Lovely prayers, most certainly!  But over and over in the literature, as an after-note, I read that the first letters of... Read more

December 19, 2015

What do readers want in a good Catholic blog? As the year draws to a close, I’ve taken a few minutes this week to look back at what on this blog, exactly, elicited the most interest from my readers. Can you equate pageviews with quality? I don’t think so. Is the most popular article also the most important? Not necessarily. But looking back at the top stories of the last year (or the last five years) can be a great... Read more

December 16, 2015

He’s coming!  And as the Church anticipates the coming of the Messiah at Christmas, we sing the joyful O Antiphons at Vespers during this last week of Advent. Each of the O Antiphons reminds us of a different title for Christ, highlighting one of his attributes; and each refers to Isaiah’s prophecy concerning the coming Messiah. *     *     *     *     * The O Antiphons are: December 17: O Sapientia (O Wisdom) December 18: O Adonai (O Lord) December 19: O... Read more

December 14, 2015

Serena Williams, named Sports Illustrated’s 2015 “Sportsperson of the Year,” dressed for her cover photo shoot like [choose one]: a tennis superstar a professional athlete a hooker The 34-year-old tennis legend, whose career made sports history and earned her more than $74 million in prize money, could have played the part of a winner:  She could have worn the uniform of a tennis great: a white tennis dress and a headband, or a tank top with a Nike hoodie…. The U.S. Women’s... Read more

December 14, 2015

For years now, Catholic schools have felt pressured to conform to the Common Core because of the perceived need to keep pace with changes to the SAT, to stay competitive in college admissions. But the Newman Society interviewed David Coleman—the president of The College Board which runs the SAT, and the chief architect of the Common Core.  They report two big takeaways: Despite fears to the contrary, Coleman told us that traditional and faithful Catholic schools have nothing to fear about Common Core-driven... Read more

December 13, 2015

How often a good idea finds expression in the rich liturgy and tradition of the Church! GAUDETE SUNDAY is a case in point.  The word gaudete (pronounced gow dĕ’ tā)—Latin for “rejoice”—is actually the first word of the Introit (Entrance antiphon) of the Mass for that day.  And rejoice, we do! But first, about ADVENT:  The word means “coming” or “arrival”; and during the four weeks of Advent, we prepare our hearts for the coming of the Christ Child at... Read more

December 12, 2015

Dr. Michael Roth, the Michigan abortionist who was busted by police last October with drugs and human tissue in his car trunk, is now the subject of a civil lawsuit. Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette filed a suit December 11, citing violations of Michigan’s health code. Roth stands to lose his medical license, and has thirty days to respond to these latest charges. I reported last October in the National Catholic Register about the auto accident which prompted the police... Read more

December 9, 2015

Robert L. Dear Jr., the shooter who burst into a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic and fired a semiautomatic rifle, shooting twelve people and killing three of them, now claims he “did it for the babies.” The impassioned and unshaven killer, cuffed at the arms and legs, appeared in court today for the first time since the November 27 shooting. “I’m guilty!” he admitted to Judge Gilbert A. Martinez. “There’s no trial. I’m a warrior for the babies!” So at... Read more

December 8, 2015

On December 8, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, many young Catholic women across America will be wearing a veil to Mass. I grew up in the pre-Vatican II days when chapel veils or mantillas were de rigueur. All women wore hats or veils to Mass as a sign of reverence. In grade school I wore a round white chapel veil, pinned to my pony tail with a hairpin. Later, Jackie Kennedy popularized the Spanish mantilla; and older girls favored the elegant lace... Read more

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