Catholic Living

Fairfield Carmel

A New Carmel

“Praised be Jesus Christ and the Virgin Mary, His most holy Mother! Come to prayer, Sisters, come to praise the Lord!” It is 4:00 a.m. and fifteen Carmelite sisters arise to this call, dating back to the days of their foundress, Saint Terese of Avila. They make their way to the stone chapel, where they [...]

A New Carmel

“Praised be Jesus Christ and the Virgin Mary, His most holy Mother! Come to prayer, Sisters, come to praise the Lord!” It is 4:00 a.m. and fifteen Carmelite sisters arise to this call, dating back to the days of their foundress, Saint Terese of Avila. They make their way to the stone chapel, where they [...]

Many may remember the strange and shocking video “This Is America” by rapper Donald Glover, which gained much attention two years ago and is now making a comeback. The images of an America descending into hatred, madness, violence, chaos, and fear were both astute and apocalyptic. Glover was primarily making a statement about racism, but [...]

Faithful Catholics in America have long lamented the dreadful Mass attendance numbers of the past half century. In 1970, 55% of American Catholics attended Mass; by 2019, that number had dropped to little over 20%. It’s clear that most self-identifying Catholics don’t think it’s obligatory, or even beneficial, to participate in the “source and summit” [...]

Like many of her fellow lefties, Nancy Pelosi is a troll. I’m not talking about her looks; I’m talking about her clever use of deliberately inflammatory behavior that serves only one purpose: to keep the enemy (that’s us) riled up about a problem that doesn’t exist. Case in point: the January 2 House of Representatives’ [...]

Grace builds upon nature, and perfects it. But what if the foundation of nature is missing? I look out of the window to the broad stretch of open yard behind our house. It is covered with the snow we got last week. If you stand in it, and look at it in the light of [...]

I was in Boston on the weekend the Associated Press, and other esteemed arbiters of American democracy (Fox News, CNN, et cetera, et cetera,) preemptively declared Joseph R. Biden, Jr.—nominal son of Scranton, Pennsylvania, and of the Roman Catholic Church—the forty-sixth President of the United States. You’d think the Patriots had just won the Super [...]

The Violence of Christmas

The Christmas decorations came out early this year. Immediately after Halloween, they began popping up in neighborhoods and strip malls. The justification was 2020—in a year of manifold chaos and distemper defined by the Coronavirus, racial strife, and contentious elections, putting up the decorations early was a cathartic way to bring out those good “Christmas [...]

The lesson from Isaiah at Midnight Mass on Christmas reads, “Thou has increased their joy and given them great gladness.” I am often struck by the fact that in Christianity joy and gladness are not so much a product of our own activities but something much more, something that happens when all that the Greeks [...]

For many of us, 2020 has been a difficult year. (Yes, I am aware of the understatement!) Covid-19, along with its ensuing restrictions and economic and personal upheaval, the rioting, election madness, and all the rest of the public horror has for many of us been combined with personal losses, especially the deaths of family [...]

Without presuming to speak for the human race, but claiming what authority membership bestows, let it be said that there is no time when people are more susceptible to otherworldly interactions than at Christmas time. Marking the greatest spiritual Advent in history, the aura and traditions of Christmas have been alive with spirits ever since [...]

Stand thou for ever among human Houses, House of the Resurrection, House of Birth; House of the rooted hearts and long carouses, Stand, and be famous over all the Earth. — Hilaire Belloc One of the few joys of this year, a year that has proved particularly joyless, happened back at the end of January [...]

A Very Modern Mystic

When Saint Lawrence was thirty-three and a deacon in Rome, the prefect of the city’s secular government demanded the treasure of the Church be handed over; the saint brought forth the city’s poor. The prefect didn’t like that much, and ordered Lawrence burned on a gridiron. After he had been held over the fire for [...]

Santa Is Not a Leper

Will Santa Claus be the next culprit in a mass spreading of Covid-19? Is it really safe for him to be going house to house, possibly collecting germs from countless families, and infesting the masses with the pandemic? CNN recently published a video starring Dr. Fauci, who assures children (who were clearly coached to ask [...]

At the beginning of the 2005 conclave, Pope Benedict XVI preached a now-famous homily condemning what he called the “dictatorship of relativism.” The newly-elected pontiff warned: “We are building a dictatorship of relativism that does not recognize anything as definitive and whose ultimate goal consists solely of one's own ego and desires.” Benedict’s words elicited [...]

On the moral illicitness of the use of vaccines made from cells derived from aborted human fetuses In recent weeks, news agencies and various information sources have reported that, in response to the Covid-19 emergency, some countries have produced vaccines using cell lines from aborted human fetuses. In other countries, such vaccines are being planned. [...]

Charity or Death

Aristotle said that the ideal polis has no more than ten thousand citizens. Well, Dixville Notch has twelve. That little hamlet in New Hampshire, nestled up there by the Canadian border, has exactly one dozen citizens—five of whom voted in the 2020 election; all five went for Mr. Biden. If there had been fraud committed [...]

In our post-democratic era, there are all sorts of questions of identity being bandied around the post-Christian West, not least in our own United States. The dominant view for over two centuries saw this nation as primarily an instrument of freedom, firstly for itself, and then for all the world. For those of a conservative [...]

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has declared that “there will be no Christmas this year.” When I read that, my thoughts immediately turned to a popular song containing the charmingly inverted opening lyrics, “There’ll always be a Christmas; a Christmas there’ll always be.” Sometimes there is more truth in popular songs than in political pronouncements. [...]

In the film Full Metal Jacket, which is set during the Vietnam War, there is a scene where a platoon of American soldiers is pinned down by a sniper. Two soldiers have already been hit. They writhe in pain, and perhaps death throes, out in the open. The newly christened platoon leader, “Cowboy,” tells his [...]

Suppose an anthropologist were asked, apart from the sound and fury of current politics, what were the signs of a dying culture, or a culture committing suicide? What might he respond, as following from human nature and from the terms of the question itself? What might he notice in our own? Such a culture would [...]

It’s Sunday morning. As you get out of your car to walk into the church, you look down at your watch. You’re running late, and if you don’t hurry, you won’t get a seat inside. You look to your left and see a family of five walking besides you. You look to your left and [...]