Church

Blessed be the Lord, my rock who trains my arms for battle, who prepares my hands for war (Psalm 144). During the 1970s, the United States Army descended into chaos. Discipline, tradition, morale—all were lost during, after, or because of the Vietnam War. I do not mean to argue here for or against the justice [...]

Blessed be the Lord, my rock who trains my arms for battle, who prepares my hands for war (Psalm 144). During the 1970s, the United States Army descended into chaos. Discipline, tradition, morale—all were lost during, after, or because of the Vietnam War. I do not mean to argue here for or against the justice [...]

This past spring, a marvelous new cathedral was dedicated in Knoxville, Tennessee. The dedication of Sacred Heart Cathedral is certainly a sign of the return of traditional architecture in sacred buildings. The cruciform cathedral was designed in a classical style, featuring arches and Corinthian pilasters in the nave. With a traditional long nave and cruciform [...]

After Moses had been up on Mount Sinai for forty days and forty nights, the children of Israel grew impatient and asked Aaron to make them a god to lead them on their journey through the wilderness (Ex. 32). Aaron complied by taking all the earrings from the wives and daughters and fashioning a golden [...]

Shortly after the youth synod began, Edward Pentin—the authoritative chronicler of the family synod’s rigging—reported that an Italian cardinal close to Pope Francis had prophesied a great “surprise,” convinced that the pope would “for sure invent something.” Pentin said some sources had indicated that the final document’s main substance was in fact already written—hence the [...]

In a letter dated October 7th, Cardinal Marc Ouellet penned an open reply to Archbishop Viganò’s most recent appeal to Ouellet to “bear witness to the truth” concerning the alleged sanctions placed on Cardinal McCarrick by Benedict XVI and subsequently lifted by Pope Francis. Viganò claimed that, as Prefect for the Congregation of Bishops, Cardinal [...]

It took a while, but writers Melinda Selmys and Damon Linker have finally owned up to the thing gnawing at their consciences for years; they no longer believe the claims of the Catholic Church and have left. Selmys is a blogger at Patheos who calls herself “queer.” Linker is a columnist at The Week noted [...]

And he said, “Sit down here while I go over there to pray.” And he took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee with him. He began to feel sorrow and grief and fear and weariness. Then he said to them, “My soul is sad unto death. Stay here and keep watch with me” (Matt. [...]

Recently, the Church has suffered blow after blow as a result of scandals involving clergy sex abuse and the abuse of power exercised by certain bishops and cardinals who sought to cover up that abuse so as to protect the abusers. Some accusations have been raised about Pope Francis stemming all the way back to [...]

Reading through the Instrumentum Laboris (IL)—the working document for the Youth Synod—one gets the impression that the biggest challenge young people face in life is discovering their sexuality. Fortunately, the Synod Fathers stand ready to “accompany” youth on their journey of self-discovery wherever it may lead. The bishops have particular solicitude for LGBT youth who [...]

My wife grew up in a small town, and as Chesterton said, small-town people are the real cosmopolitans. They can’t insulate themselves in a comfy circle of the like-minded; they must deal with everybody. There were good people in her town, but the nasty ones were always walking down her street. Cosmopolitan in a fallen [...]

There has been much commentary about Pope Francis’s self-imposed “silence” regarding Archbishop Carlo Viganò’s allegation that Francis had lifted Pope Benedict’s sanctions against sexual predator Theodore McCarrick, and then made the ex-cardinal a trusted—and very influential—advisor. It might be, however, that Francis did, in fact, give a resounding—and contemptuous—reply to the allegation, just three days [...]

On September 21, the well-known German magazine, Der Spiegel, featured a long article on the whole career of Pope Francis under the title “The Greatest Crisis in the History of the Church.” The immediate issues brought up concerned the pope’s handling of abuse issues while he was still in Argentina. Most people are by now [...]

The Sin of Silence

In the Inferno, Dante Alighieri, a critic in his day of Church leadership, famously put the souls of at least three popes in hell, as well as countless other clerics who go nameless, their faces blackened beyond recognition. However, one cleric he does meet along the way is Ruggieri degli Ubaldini (d. 1295), the archbishop [...]

"[W]hat the Church holds to be true about human sexuality is not a stumbling block. It is the only real path to joy and wholeness. There is no such thing as an 'LGBTQ Catholic' or a 'transgender Catholic' or a 'heterosexual Catholic,' as if our sexual appetites defined who we are; as if these designations [...]

My first visit to the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Chartres was in 1968. I was 15-years-old and knew little about what I was looking at—though in truth, I could hardly see anything. The magnificent stained glass windows were visible, but at that time were still wearing centuries of grime. Looking up at them was like [...]

Pope Francis famously downplays law and doctrinal formulations, which he often associates with Pharisaism, in favor of “discernment,” which seems to involve the direct application of ultimate considerations to particular situations. As he put the matter in his address at the conclusion of the Synod on the Family, “The true defenders of doctrine are not [...]

Your Excellency: As a young Catholic I write to share my grave concerns about the looming youth synod. I am grateful for your repeated efforts to promote orthodoxy at this event and your attempt to ask Pope Francis to presently cancel it in light of the sexual abuse crisis. “Right now, the bishops would have [...]

A priest of the Chicago archdiocese, Fr. Paul Kalchick, has been disciplined by his bishop for burning a Nazi flag that had been lying in a closet somewhere. It was left over from many years before, when German Catholics wanted very much to believe, along with plenty of temporizers, trimmers, and German bishops, that National [...]

We’re all troubled by the moral confusion and heterodox beliefs of self-identified American Catholics that have been chronicled in many polls: 65 percent believe that employers who have a religious objection to the use of birth control should be required to provide it in health insurance plans for employees; 32 percent disagree. 54 percent believe [...]

Anyone who wonders why the Catholic Church is in its present crisis need only read Dr. Scott Bruce’s “Do We Still Need to Believe in Hell?” The Wall Street Journal article (9/15-16/2018) recently appeared in its popular weekend review section. It was a rather typical yet brutal appraisal of the notion of Hell. The author [...]

That every five hundred years the Church passes through a crisis is not a novel insight. It may be something of a contrived schematic, since there have been other crises as well, but each of those periods of crisis has influenced the Church to an extraordinary and radical degree: The Fall of the Roman Empire, [...]

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