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Hurricanes, Climate Change, Pope Francis, and the Poor

Never letting a serious crisis go to waste, climate change advocates seized upon hurricanes Harvey and Irma as evidence that climate change is real and happening, its effects devastating, and without drastic remedial measures global cataclysm is inevitable. Joining in was Pope Francis. While Irma was hammering the Florida coast, El Papa warned against inaction, [...]

Can a Pope Be a Heretic?

Recently, Cardinal Burke stated that, if Pope Francis were to endorse a position on marriage and sexuality that were contrary to the tradition of the Church, that he would be obliged to “resist” the pontiff. Although the cardinal clarified that he was speaking of a purely hypothetical situation, he hit upon a nerve that gets struck [...]

Should Christian Leaders Defend Islam?

Is there such a thing as bad religion? Or is religion by its very nature a good thing? Throughout most of history, most people wouldn’t have hesitated to label some religions as bad. The Romans condemned the child-sacrificing religion of the Carthaginians, Christians condemned the Aztec religion for its human sacrifice, and Catholics condemned Arians [...]

“Glory of the Preachers”: St. Peter of Verona

At the heart of every religion worth its salt lies the problem of evil. The intractable issue of pain, disorder, suffering, and moral turpitude manifests itself infallibly in every genuine human spiritual longing. This problem is compounded in the monotheistic religions of Judaism, Islam, and Christianity. How can an omnipotent and omniscient God—creator of both [...]

Pope Francis Quotes Chesterton! But … What Was the Quotation?

An Italian paper reported last December 5 that on that day Pope Francis said Mass at the Church of St. Martha in Rome, and in his homily, he quoted G.K. Chesterton. Yes, I know. There was great rejoicing. According to a translation of the report (provided by my Italian wife, Laura), this is what the [...]

Hey, Maureen It’s None of Your Business

To hear the mainstream media tell it, the Vatican has viciously attacked poor, unsuspecting old nuns. Carol Marin’s piece in the Chicago Sun-Times was headlined: “Vatican waging a war on nuns”. Maureen Dowd, in her Sunday column in the New York Times asked, rhetorically, “Who thinks it’s cool to bully nuns?” We Catholics might reasonably [...]

The Truth about the Spanish Inquisition

Because it was both professional and efficient, the Spanish Inquisition kept very good records. These documents are a goldmine for modern historians who have plunged greedily into them. Thus far, the fruits of that research have made one thing abundantly clear -- the myth of the Spanish Inquisition has nothing at all to do with [...]

A Time to Gloat

Last week, I declined to chime in on the pope's new book -- though I should probably hurry up, since I still haven't gotten a copy, which means that my perspective on it is still fresh and unspoiled, marked by the disinterested objectivity that comes with utter ignorance. Instead I tried to use the cacophony [...]

You’re Invited to InsideCatholic’s 15th Annual Partnership Dinner and Dance!

  You are cordially invited to join the board, staff, writers and friends of InsideCatholic in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, September 16, for our 15th Annual Partnership Dinner & Dance. This year, we'll be honoring Bishop Robert F. Vasa, D.D., of the Diocese of Baker, Oregon. In an era of lukewarm, go-along-to-get-along prelates, Bishop Vasa [...]

Creator Red in Tooth and Claw?

  Whenever the moral confusions facing our Church begin to trouble me, to give me the slightest sense that the gates of Hell really might be prevailing, I know what to do: Stop reading that document from the USCC -- just put it down, kick it across the room -- and pick up something more [...]

Let’s Pretend We’re Jesuits in China

Drawing crackpot connections between seemingly unrelated things is a key skill for a writer. Whatever is actually happening in the world, he can use it to prove a point about whatever he was thinking about already. Metaphysical poet John Donne took a flea that he squished with a fingernail and stretched it out as a [...]

The Inescapability of the Gospel

  Here's a piece by a Lefty named Annalee Newitz about the insufficiently Lefty liberal power fantasy that energizes stories like Avatar:   These are movies about white guilt. Our main white characters realize that they are complicit in a system which is destroying aliens, AKA people of color -- their cultures, their habitats, and [...]

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