Saving Souls on a Nazi Death Train

A Catholic veteran dedicates his final years to Holocaust education

07/22/2016 Comments (3)

After their liberation, dozens of train passengers succumbed to disease and were buried in unmarked graves in the displaced persons camp in Hillersleben, Germany. Frank Towers (right) and Christian Wolpers (Bergen-Belsen museum curator) are pictured in the cemetery on August 3, 2011. (Photo by Katja Seybold, Memorial Museum, Bergen-Belsen)

As an officer in the U.S. Army’s 30th Infantry Division, Frank Towers heard rumors about Nazi persecution of the Jews. He dismissed them as propaganda.

“They couldn’t be doing this to the Jews,” Towers said he thought at that time. “That’s just not possible,” he thought — “until I saw it, like Thomas in the Bible.”

On April 14, 1945, the Catholic lieutenant encountered the Holocaust.  

Six days earlier, the Nazis had crammed a 50-car train with 2,500 Jewish prisoners of Bergen-Belsen concentration camp and attempted to transfer them to Czechoslovakia. Advancing from opposite directions, Soviet and American forces unknowingly trapped the train between them. Most of the guards fled before...READ MORE

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Pope Francis Issues New Apostolic Constitution on Women's Contemplative Life

07/22/2016 Comments (13)
Daniel Ibanez/CNA

Pope Francis with women religious at the Jubilee Audience in St. Peter's Square on June 30, 2016.

– Daniel Ibanez/CNA

The Vatican today published Pope Francis’ new apostolic constitution on women’s contemplative life, Vultum Dei quaerere (Seeking the Face of God).

The document, signed on the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul on June 29 and released on the new liturgical feast of St. Mary Magdalene, eloquently praises the contemplative vocation and begins by explaining its essential nature, one which offers the world a prophetic sign and is devoted to “exclusively seeking” the face of God.

The apostolic constitution has a chapter devoted to esteem, praise and thanksgiving for contemplative life, and says that women contemplatives in particular have produced “a rich harvest of grace and mercy.”

But the Pope...READ MORE

Filed under contemplative life, monasticism, nuns, pope francis, religious, vultum dei quaerere

RNC Day 4: Donald Trump Accepts His Nomination

07/22/2016 Comments (23)

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump delivers a speech during the evening session on the fourth day of the Republican National Convention on July 21, 2016 at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The Republican National Convention drew to a close on Thursday with the much-anticipated acceptance speech by the party’s newly minted nominee, Donald Trump. Introduced by his daughter Ivanka, Trump took the next step in his unexpected climb to the pinnacle of American political life with a speech that highlighted dramatically his unconventional political style.

In his 76-minute-long speech, Trump was absolutely faithful to his personal brand of populism, unabashed self-assurance and personal pledge to be a fighter in restoring America to its greatness. His language was deliberately crafted to appeal to the same constituencies that had proven so crucial to the success of his primary...READ MORE

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The Data on Children in Same-Sex Households Get More Depressing, Men and the Holy Rosary, and More!

The Best in Catholic Blogging

07/22/2016 Comment

Click on The Data on Children in Same-Sex Households Get More Depressing by Mark Regnerus of Public Discourse link to read more.

The Data on Children in Same-Sex Households Get More Depressing – Mark Regnerus, Public Discourse

On the Relationship Between Catholicism and Science – Brian Jones, Crisis Magazine

Saving Marriages by Healing Old Wounds and Selfishness – Richard Fitzgibbons, Mercatornet

Icons of Mercy: Paying the Ultimate Price for Mercy St. Maximilian Kolbe – David Werning, OSV Newsweekly

I Agree with Pope Francis that Most Marriages are Null - Ben, Two Catholic Men and a Blog

Catholics Should Not Be Ashamed of the Index of Prohibited Books – David Mills, Aleteia

Catholic Men and the Holy Rosary – Dom Cingoranelli, Catholic Stand

Why Did This 70-Year-Old Couple Sell Their Home to Come to Rome? –...READ MORE

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Love Meeting Love: Ecumenism For Us Ordinary People

07/22/2016 Comments (5)

St. Paul is staying in the house of Aquila and his wife Priscilla, the family are making tents and St. Paul is writing. (Engraving by J. Sadeler after Jodocus Winghe/CC BY 4.0/Wikimedia Commons)

I run into lots of Catholics who feel bad about the divided state of Christendom yet also feel powerless to do anything about it. "After all, this is the 20th Century. Don't most Protestants know what we believe already?" they say. "So why should I talk about my faith with them? Besides, I'm a layperson. All that ecumenism stuff is for theologians, not laypeople."

Well, let me tell you, when I was an Evangelical, I lived for years in the most media-packed, multicultural society on earth. Yet my knowledge of Catholics was just road-kill on the information superhighway. I didn't know diddly. That was because I thought I knew all that was worth knowing about them already. Catholics, you see,...READ MORE

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It's Time to Tell Our Representatives to Pursue the Common Good

07/21/2016 Comments (3)

I’ve been a bit hesitant to write about this, mainly because it sounds as if I’m blowing my own horn. But I’ve known since this tragedy of police violence and community reaction began that the fault lay primarily in the hands of do-nothing elected officials, and I’m beginning to feel as if I’m remiss in my responsibilities by not talking about my hard-earned inside understanding.

A situation as bad as the one we are now facing always has a number of causes. I think that the so-called press and its constant flogging of the American people has contributed greatly to the level of violence and disconnect we are seeing. They have engaged in hyperbole, lies and constant manipulation for far too...READ MORE

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Cardinal Sarah: St. Mary Magdalene Helps Us Recover Primacy of God

07/21/2016 Comments (1)

In an article in L’Osservatore Romano to coincide with the new liturgical feast of St. Mary Magdalene on Friday, Cardinal Robert Sarah has said the great woman saint reminds us of the need to “recover the primacy of God and the primacy of adoration in the life of the Church and in liturgical celebration.”

The prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments recalls in a reflection on the preface of the new liturgical feast that Mary Magdalene “was the first to adore” the newly risen Lord, and that He “honored her with the task of being Apostle to the Apostles, so that the good news of new life might reach the ends of the earth.”

For this reason, he...READ MORE

Filed under cardinal robert sarah, liturgy, st. mary magdalene

Why Gender Ideology Is Demonic, 5 Polish Saints Who Changed the World, and Many More Great Links!

The Best in Catholic Blogging

07/21/2016 Comment

Click on Why Gender Ideology Is Demonic by Fr. Paul Scalia of The Catholic Thing link to read more.

Why Gender Ideology Is Demonic – Fr. Paul Scalia, The Catholic Thing

Five Polish Saints Who Changed the World – Philip Kosloski, Aleteia

An Open Letter to Our Bishops – Luciano Corbo, New Evangelizers

The Jim Gaffigan Show brings Catholicism to the Masses - Matthew Becklo, Aleteia

What Christian Education Is Not – Kenneth Crowther, Crisis Magazine

The Basics on Indulgences – Ray Sullivan, Catholic Stand

Yoga Not Worth The Risk – Steven R. McEvoy, Maccabee Society

Come Over for Sex Devoid of Commitment – Kelly Thomas, Regina Magazine

Why Medievalists Should Stop Talking about Game of Thrones – Philippa Byrne, Mercatornet

The Spiritual Life by Analogy – Ray Sullivan, Catholic Stand


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