Church

Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago is all for clarity. It has been a consistent theme, as when in September of 2017 he issued a decree banning guns in all parishes, schools and other facilities across the archdiocese “so there would be absolute clarity on our position.” His official statement put “clarity” in italics. When he [...]

Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago is all for clarity. It has been a consistent theme, as when in September of 2017 he issued a decree banning guns in all parishes, schools and other facilities across the archdiocese “so there would be absolute clarity on our position.” His official statement put “clarity” in italics. When he [...]

On November 9, 2017, the Holy Synod of the Macedonian Orthodox Church—Ohrid Archbishopric sent a letter to the Bulgarian Orthodox Church with three requests: 1) recognition of the Macedonian Orthodox Church by other Eastern Orthodox Churches; 2) recognition of Macedonian Orthodox Church autocephalous status (canonical independence); and 3) readiness to recognize the Bulgarian Orthodox Church [...]

President Trump recently announced his intention to move the United States embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, thus reaffirming it as the capital of Israel. This raised the collective eyebrows of millions of dispensationalist Evangelical Protestants. Their eyes fixed, as they saw it, on the prophetic markers of scripture (a Jerusalem-centric book) as it has [...]

Germain Gabriel Grisez, 88, died February 1, 2018. Philosophy and Catholic theology in the United States lost a giant in his passing. After Karol Wojtyła, I probably owe my greatest intellectual debt to Germain Grisez and the late William May and their work in ethics/moral theology. Their work in defense of Catholic teaching on sexual [...]

Pope Francis' pre-Christmas call for a better translation of the Lord's Prayer was met by a number of defenses of the English translation which we all know by heart. Anthony Esolen, Lionel Yaceckzo  and Charlotte Allen, for example, have made it abundantly clear that, "and lead us not into temptation," is a correct English translation [...]

If you’ve seen the movie version of Porgy and Bess, you might recall Sammy Davis Jr.’s rendition of “It Ain’t Necessarily So.” At a church picnic, Sportin’ Life, a somewhat disreputable character, tries to convince the others that “the things that you’re liable to read in the Bible, It ain’t necessarily so.” He then proceeds [...]

The German bishops pushed hard for “accompaniment” of the divorced and “remarried” at the Synods of 2014-15. The new idea percolating in the German Bishops Conference is whether the Church should have a “blessing” for homosexuals who “marry” or have civil partnerships. Bishop Franz-Josef Bode of Osnabrück, the Conference’s Vice President and chair of its [...]

Over Christmas break, the family and I found ourselves with a detailed 3-D jigsaw puzzle of Paris’s famous Notre Dame. While it did not take as long to complete the puzzle as it took to build the medieval cathedral (182 years, according to Wikipedia), it did present challenges. Our son-in-law, now completing a doctorate in [...]

To have been the proverbial fly on the wall during a conversation, one good time would have been during dinner in the White House on September 2, 1943 when Franklin Roosevelt was hosting Winston and Clementine Churchill with their daughter Mary and the newly appointed ambassador to the Soviet Union, Averill Harriman. The other dinner [...]

In June 2016, the distinguished Austrian philosopher and friend of Pope John Paul II, Joseph Seifert, published a highly critical yet charitable essay on Amoris Laetitia (AL) that led to his dismissal from a teaching post at the seminary of the Archdiocese of Granada, Spain. In his essay, Seifert argued that the view of conscience expressed [...]

Continuing his commitment to a doctrinal vision that prioritizes the lived experiences and insights of ordinary Catholics over the authoritative teachings of the Church, Pope Francis recently affirmed the importance of what he called a “free and responsible” form of Catholic theology—a “creative fidelity”—in the life of the Church. Speaking before a Vatican gathering of 100 [...]

Pope Francis was right that the traditional English translation of the Lord’s Prayer is deficient, but his suggested change, and even his identification of which part needs to be changed, is simply wrong, and requires some comment, partly because it is a question so easily answered, partly because others have answered it easily. There is, [...]

Nietzsche portentously remarked in Beyond Good and Evil, “when you gaze into the abyss, the abyss gazes back.” The German nihilist fully appreciated where a world without God was gamboling. For him, no airbrushing the Brave New World. If only his scions were as brutally frank. Bereft of his Teutonic steel, they soak secularism in [...]

On November 8, 2017, St. Gregory’s University in Shawnee, Oklahoma, announced to student, staff, and the media that it would “suspend operations” indefinitely at the close of the fall semester. The announcement itself wasn’t particularly surprising, as the financial woes of the university were an open secret. University leadership, working with the Archdiocese of Oklahoma [...]

Beware the disguises of sin. Its guise of choice is the brash and loud ugliness, atrocity, wantonness and ruin that makes our skin crawl. While this serves as splashy spectacle, it captures few. Its most effective tactics are never so meretricious. Sin is normally a shy and bashful thing. It operates with consummate legerdemain, more [...]

In late June of this year, I had occasion to concelebrate a newly ordained priest’s First Mass. Following a well-established custom, this newly ordained priest had asked an older, more seasoned priest to preach the homily. Since we had already passed Pentecost, Most Holy Trinity and Corpus Christi—three consecutive Solemnities with rich and suggestive texts [...]

No, the bishops do not want us to subsidize porn usage on the Internet but that is the reality of a position agreed to by a committee of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops on something called “net neutrality.” Bishop Christopher Coyne of Burlington, Vermont (who is chairman of the Communications Committee of the USCCB) [...]

The Islamic world is waging—and winning—a war on Judeo-Christian civilization. With 1.3 billion Catholics worldwide, the Catholic Church is potentially one of the most powerful centers of resistance to Islam. It certainly has been in the past. Unfortunately, that’s not the case today. What are those 1.3 billion Catholics doing in regard to the struggle [...]

“The reality of the apostasy of faith in our time rightly and profoundly frightens us,” said Cardinal Burke in honor of Fatima’s centenary. In 1903, Pope St. Pius X declared himself “terrified” by humanity’s self-destructive apostasy from God: “For behold they that go far from Thee shall perish” (Ps. 72:27). How much more “daunting,” said [...]

A brave theology professor at my diocesan seminary, Rev. Gerald J. Bednar, has taken upon himself to defend the ambiguity that exists in Amoris Laetitia against the Dubia famously presented by “dissenters” (i.e. the four cardinals). He wrote an article that appeared in Emmanuel Magazine published by the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament. A shortened [...]

Bishop Robert Barron’s work is the gold standard for Catholic evangelization. I met him while he was the theologian-in-residence at the North American College in Rome during my deacon year (2006-2007). He gave some outstanding conferences during his stay. I have read many but not all of his books and have seen quite a few of his videos. His [...]

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