5 Ways to Avoid Unhelpful Pope Francis “Mind Reading”

04/23/2016 Comments (19)

It has been interesting to see the varied reactions to Amoris Laetitia, or The Joy of Love, the new document by Pope Francis on the family. I have learned a lot from the positive, the negative, and the mixed reviews. But I also think that some of the responses to the document, positive and negative, have been a disservice to the Church. After digging around online just a day after the document was released I had to stop because I was feeling depressed and full of despair, not because of the document itself but because of the negativity of some writers, the effusive praise of others (who see only their own agenda in anything the pope says or does), the lies in many of the headlines, and the...READ MORE

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Vatican Details Humanitarian Crisis in Ukraine Ahead of Sunday Collection

04/22/2016 Comments (1)

A collection will be held in all European Catholic churches this coming Sunday to support the people of Ukraine. The initiative comes after Pope Francis called on European Catholics during the Regina Caeli on April 3 to perform a gesture of charity to alleviate the material suffering of Ukrainians.

On the eve of the collection, the Vatican shared today some of the extreme hardships and suffering taking place in a country that continues to be stricken by a conflict that many people think has ended.

The conflict began in the spring of 2014 when Russia made several incursions into Ukrainian territory, beginning with Crimea. After demonstrations by pro-Russian groups in the Donbass area of...READ MORE

Filed under bishp borys gudziak, collection, congregation for the oriental churches, humanitarian aid, pope francis, ukraine

Political Correctness is a Totalitarian Ideology

04/22/2016 Comments (16)

Three Red Guards from the Chinese Cultural Revolution from a 1971 textbook (via Wikimedia Commons)

Thus, a good man, though a slave, is free; but a wicked man, though a king, is a slave. For he serves, not one man alone, but, what is worse, as many masters as he has vices. — St. Augustine of Hippo, City of God

As if we don't have enough things to worry about in our spiritual lives, along comes a Catholic writer that just tries to add to our misery by stirring the pot.

The study of sin is called hamartiology. (Technically, hamartiology is the study of evil in general but I'm limited to the amount I can write in a single article so I'll just stick with sin for now.)

Reflecting our Jewish theological heritage, for something to be a sin, you have to have done it consciously understanding...READ MORE

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Why We Should All Prayerfully Read ‘Amoris Laetitia’

04/22/2016 Comments (9)

Press conference on Pope Francis' post-synodal apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia” at the Holy See Press Office in Vatican City on April 8, 2016. (Photo Credit: Daniel Ibanez/CNA)

My husband and I spent our free time the weekend after the release of Amoris Laetitia reading the document, and we would both say that it was really good for our marriage. We liked what we read in the document about marriage and family life as it was full of theological truths and many times practical ways to live out marriage. We have also had many conversations with friends about the document, read many commentaries of it, discussed what really is going on with Chapter 8 (which I am not going to add to the buzz there). One of the concerns a friend had (besides all the issues surrounding Chapter 8) was that the pope really did not state anything new about marriage. What was the whole point...READ MORE

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One Mistake We Make When We Want to Make a Difference as Catholics

04/22/2016 Comments (4)

Fans greet the arrival of the Beatles at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol on June 5, 1964. (Photo Credit: By Nationaal Archief, Den Haag, Rijksfotoarchief: Fotocollectie Algemeen Nederlands Fotopersbureau (ANEFO), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Do you have Catholic heroes?

When I converted to the Catholic faith I was on fire to make a mark. Having been into blogging before I converted, my conversion gave me a deep zeal and the new information I had learned was quickly converted into content. But it ran out quickly. The more I wanted to be like my heroes, the more impossible that became, and the more frustrated I ended up.

Perhaps you didn’t notice, but there are many Catholics who are just crazy about Catholics. I mean it. I mean it like I mean I absolutely love thick cut, applewood smoked, crisp and greasy bacon. There’s a serious error many commit and I’m guilty of it, too. And I’m not talking about the bacon.

It all began...READ MORE

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A Unique Way to Honor the Veterans of World War II

04/22/2016 Comments (1)

Flight of Honor participants are greeted at the Raleigh, North Carolina airport. (Image Credit: “Rtphokie”, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

Bagpipes played “Amazing Grace” in the airport concourse.

At first, I thought it was some kind of performance arranged by the airport administration as a publicity stunt. Or, perhaps it was a local high school band performing as a public service.

Then I saw the flags, and I knew it was a color guard making its way down the aisle. But, what for?

Then the announcement over the loud speaker. An Honor Flight was preparing to take off, and would everyone in the concourse please give a round of applause to honor these veterans who had so bravely served their country?

Honor Flight is a non-profit organization that transports veterans free of charge to Washington DC to visit the War Memorial.

...READ MORE

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Even a Stopped Clock is Right Twice a Day

04/22/2016 Comments (6)

Episcopal Bishop John Shelby Spong (Image Credit: Scott Griessel, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

You may want to sit down for this, but once upon a time flamboyantly apostate Episcopal bishop John Shelby Spong actually thrilled me with a prescient bit of insight into Scripture! How is this possible?

Well, there is a basic principle at work in the universe called the Gomer Pyle Axiom of High and Low Expectations. It works this way: when you expect great things from somebody, then merely above average performances are often denounced as disappointing failures. So, when Pixar, whose worst movies still tower over the junk Hollywood emits, makes Cars, people groan at what a weak effort it is, even though Cars still dwarfs 99% of all other movies and 99.9% of all other animated films.

But...READ MORE

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Planned Parenthood Prez Lauded at Georgetown for Defending Abortion

04/21/2016 Comments (11)

The rooftops of Georgetown University and Rosslyn and Washington, DC beyond it. Taken from the roof of the Reiss Building. (Image Credit: “Patrickneil”, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons)

[Editor: This post was updated at 8:30 p.m. Pacific time, to include coverage of Cardinal Wuerl's homily at a "Mass for Life" for university students at a parish church in Georgetown.]

Georgetown University had defended Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards' April 20 speech on campus as evidence of the Catholic institution's commitment to the "free exchange of ideas."

But take a look at Richards' speech here, and it is clear that election year politics brought her to Georgetown. She gave a plug for Hillary Clinton, attacked congressional efforts to defund Planned Parenthood, and targeted recent legislation in Texas designed to raise standards at abortion clinics.

The Cardinal...READ MORE

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