NYC Church With Major Artwork Merges

11/06/2014 Comments (1)
Joseph Pronechen

The Crucifixion scene by Brumidi fills the apse in St. Stephen/Our Lady of the Scapular Church in Manhattan

– Joseph Pronechen

The Church of St. Stephen/Our Lady of the Scapular is one of the nine Manhattan parishes that the Archdiocese of New York announced on Nov. 2 are among those to merge with other parishes and then, by Aug. 1, 2015, be used only for special occasions.

The decision is quite understandable yet sad, because this church is adorned with very significant artwork by painter Constantino Brumidi.

In fact, it has the largest number of Brumidi religious paintings done in a single church in the United States — 45 in all.

The major mural is the Crucifixion scene. It’s one of two he painted in Manhattan churches. Both Crucifixion scenes are more than 20 feet wide and 44 feet tall and among the biggest...READ MORE

Filed under archdiocese of new york, religious art

Is Christine Mayr-Lumetzberger Worthy of the Priesthood?

11/06/2014 Comments (47)

A few years ago, I had a freelance job editing the biographies of seminarians. It was especially difficult work, because the stories were so varied and so poignant, but my editor's pen had to be ruthless. Fifty words each, and that's all the room we had.

Even whittled down to the bare bones, story after story had one thing in common: they were all about Jesus. Jesus called me. Jesus put a billboard in my path. Jesus sent me a dream. Jesus wouldn't leave me alone until I talked to my pastor. Jesus wouldn't let me sleep until I went back to confession. Or sometimes: Mary kept sending me to Jesus. 

Contrast this focus on Christ with the words of Christine Mayr-Lumetzberger, the ex-nun...READ MORE

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Kiev: Where the Godly and Wicked Face Off

11/06/2014 Comments (7)

Cardinal Husar and Victor Gaetan

Cardinal Lubomyr Husar, age 81, is a beloved figure in Ukraine.

Born in Ukraine, his family fled turmoil during the Second World War and he grew up in the United States. He became a Ukrainian Greek Catholic priest in 1958, eventually moving back to his homeland to help guide its course after independence from the Soviet Union.

Cardinal Husar even renounced U.S. citizenship in order to fully participate in Ukrainian life — especially, to be able to vote.

Although the cardinal strongly supports Ukraine’s Western orientation in terms of rule of law, greater transparency, and independence from Russia — and he participated in Kiev’s Maidan protests last winter — he is wary of swallowing...READ MORE

Filed under archbishop sviatoslav shevchuk, cardinal lubomyr husar, catholic faith, christianity, communism, corruption, hivaids, human trafficking, kiev, maidan square

Did Pope Francis Endorse Pro-Abortion Democrat?

11/04/2014 Comments (64)

It might have seemed that way to folks in Rhode Island. A pro-abortion rights Democrat ran a last minute ad prominently featuring Pope Francis. It read "Gina Raimondo. She is Church." I don't even know what that means but it seems to have been effective.

~~The pro-Raimondo flyer touts that she is a graduate of a Catholic school, she baptized her children, she's female and Catholic, and "believes in Catholic values."

But here's the thing. Raimondo isn't endorsed by the Church, of course, but she is endorsed by Planned Parenthood. On abortion she reportedly distanced herself from the Church by saying, "You know the Catholic Church has a clear position, and I have a clear position. And I am...READ MORE

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The Accidental Marriage: Unexpected, Delightful and Important

11/04/2014 Comments (2)

Marriage is a hot topic right now, as well it should be. And I have a book that’s just what this whole conversation needs.

The Accidental Marriage: A Novel (Ignatius Press), by Roger Thomas, is a take on the issue of love that not only got my attention, but that also kept me smiling.

Here’s the set-up: Scott and Megan are friends, each in separate same-sex relationships. Megan and her lover decide to have a baby, and it’s natural to Megan that Scott be the donor. As it happens, Megan gets pregnant and her lover abandons her after some abusive acts. Scott, ever the problem-solver, comes up with a plan that involves Megan moving in and being his housekeeper.

Their friendship grows, but...READ MORE

Filed under book review, fiction, ignatius press, marriage, novels, roger thomas

There Is No Real Choice In My State

11/04/2014 Comments (152)

Catholic voters, do you live in one of those states where the candidates are only weakly pro-life? Perhaps they say they want to protect the unborn, but they can't be trusted to actually vote that way? Or maybe they are strongly pro-life, but are utter nincompoops in every other way? Do you approach the polls with a weight on your heart and a clothespin on your nose, because you know you have a duty to vote for the single most important issue in the world -- but there just isn't anyone you're happy to vote for?

Oh, how I envy you.

At least you have a lesser of two evils to choose. Here, there is no choice. Here's what our ballot looks like in New Hampshire:

For Senate, it's incumbent...READ MORE

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Don't Just Sing Louder

11/04/2014 Comments (2)

Though the Holocaust killed 11 million people, according to the a survey by the Anti-Defamation League, only 54% of the world’s population has heard of the Holocaust. Of those, a third believe that it’s been accurately described by history.

Abortion, on the other hand, has killed 53 million babies legally from 1973 through 2011.

It’s hard to wrap our minds around that number. The Holocaust, in some ways, is more tangible, easier to understand.

Do the two have anything in common, some way of helping us relate one to the other?

The producers of the new movie Sing Louder think so. That’s the basis of their 10-minute film, which is inspired by and based on the true story of an elderly man....READ MORE

Filed under abortion, holocaust, jewish people, movies, pro-llife, sing louder movie

Welcome to Corkscrew's Religion Chat Room!

11/03/2014 Comments (9)

My Dear Slimemold:

I am gratified at your latest report concerning the spectacle of fratricidal malice among the patients who participate in the Christian email list we are monitoring.

I see that Pusfang has got one of the hairless bipeds into that delightful state where it can set out to attack a fellow human's faith in the Eucharist with bad satirical poetry (coated in a veneer of greasy humour) and then take offense when the attack is seen for what it is and objected to! Excellent! I must remind Pusfang in my next communiqué to be sure to play on the creature's thwarted will to bully and abuse by teaching it to say that it has a "sense of humour" whereas all around it are simply...READ MORE

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