What's wrong with The Principle?

11/13/2014 Comments (95)

What's wrong with the arguments used in the geocentrism-promoting documentary The Principle?

The Principle is a documentary promoting geocentrism, or the idea that the earth is at the center of the universe.

In a previous post, I looked at how well it worked as a film. (I gave it * * 1/2 stars out of 5.)

What about the content of the film? How well does that stand up?

It depends on the level you are talking about.

At the highest level, the film contains a message that science and faith are not enemies and should not be pitted against each other.


But that doesn’t mean that the earth is at the center of the universe, which is what the film wants to suggest.

The summaries that The Principle provides about the history of astronomy also are generally accurate, though I was...READ MORE

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The Splat Life

11/13/2014 Comments (27)

Who remembers that wonderful scene from The Wrong Trousers, where poor Gromit finds himself chasing an evil penguin atop a runaway model train? The train is whizzing out of control, and he can't get off, slow down, or change course. In desperation, Gromit snatches a box of spare tracks and frantically lays them on the floor ahead, just split seconds before the train he's on thunders over them. (If you can't see the video, click here.)

This is more or less what it's like to raise a child. Yes, you have to work frantically to stay ahead of that train; but no, you're not exactly in control.

It's terrifying, and distressing, and agonizing -- and also somewhat liberating, if liberation is...READ MORE

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Cardinal Burke's Homily on Feast of St. Charles Borromeo

11/13/2014 Comment

Here below is an English translation of a homily given last week in German by Cardinal Raymond Burke. The Mass in the Extraordinary Form was celebrated on Nov. 4, the feast of St. Charles Borromeo, in Vienna's Karlskirche, an 18th century church dedicated to St. Charles. The homily was well received by those present and is republished here, with Cardinal Burke's kind permission.






Eph 3, 8-12 , Mt 25, 14-23



Praised be Jesus Christ!

It is a source of particular joy to offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on the feastday of Saint Charles Borromeo in this magnificent church dedicated to the...READ MORE

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Everyday Heroes and More in Randy Hain’s “Joyful Witness”

11/12/2014 Comment

I am 99% sure I’ve read all of Randy Hain’s books. And I’ve enjoyed them all.

But his latest, Joyful Witness: How to Be an Extraordinary Catholic (Servant Books, 2014), is something different than the rest, and I can’t help but call it his best writing. Though it’s unmistakably Hain’s voice, it’s also something more, like he let go and just poured himself into it all the way.

In the introduction, Hain shares his goals for the book:

These men and women are some of the extraordinary Catholics who in many ways are quite ordinary. This should give us hope that we will also discern how to grow in our faith and do more than the minimum required of us as Catholics. It would be easy to assume...READ MORE

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The Principle: A Movie Review

11/12/2014 Comments (58)

How well does "The Principle" work as a movie?

Recently the Register asked me to review The Principle—a documentary that promotes geocentrism, or the idea that the earth is at the center of the universe.

This film is much smaller than most of those the Register reviews. Indeed, at the time of this writing it has only reported $16,826 at the box office—half of which was made in a single theater on its opening weekend.

But the film is being disproportionately discussed in conservative Catholic circles, so I agreed.

Like any documentary, this one can be looked at more than one way. One perspective concerns the production values and how well it is executed. Another concerns the content of the film and how successfully it argues its case....READ MORE

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Have You Heard the Latest About Cardinal Burke?

11/11/2014 Comments (323)

I haven't. I also haven't heard the next-to-latest, or the thing before that, or the rumors that were circulating about the possible repercussions of what might happen if the rumors that had been previously circulating turned out to be true-ish.

I don't know, and I don't care.

And it's been a deliberate decision not to care, and a deliberate decision not to know what's going on. I've seen the headlines saying that this is proof that Francis the Freethinker is finally cracking down on the moldy old trads eagerly fomenting schism. I've also seen the headlines saying that this is proof that Francis the Slaughterer is squelching the one true voice that still dares to sing out its hymn...READ MORE

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Jesuit Astronomer Wins Carl Sagan Award, Shocks NPR

11/11/2014 Comments (12)

Jesuit Brother Guy Consolmagno

– Wikipedia

Jesuit Brother Guy Consolmagno, a U.S.-born astronomer, has won the Carl Sagan Award, a prestigious prize “for outstanding communication by an active planetary scientist to the general public.” 

The news led National Public Radio to bring its persistent questions about the so-called conflict between the Catholic Church and science to the Jesuit brother. His adept and pithy responses can be found here.  

Is it possible that Brother Guy will  effectively quash outrage over the Vatican's persecution of the astronomer Galileo Galilei back in the 1600s? Don't bet on it.

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Philly Readies for Likely Papal Visit, World Meeting of Families' Registration Opens

11/11/2014 Comments (4)

The Pope’s presence is still in limbo for the World Meeting of Families (WMOF) in Philadelphia next September, but the Philly Archdiocese is geared up to welcome 8,000 to 12,000 people from around the world for the weeklong event and more than a million for the likely papal visit over the weekend.

“We are not likely to get an announcement of the Holy Father’s visit until after the turn of the year, but we’ve received many hopeful signs that he does intend to come,” Archbishop Charles Chaput told the U.S. bishops gathered in Baltimore Nov. 10-11 for their annual fall meeting.

The World Meeting of Families will be held in Philadelphia Sept. 22-27. Keynote and breakout sessions will touch on...READ MORE

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