U.S. Catholics Critique 2014 Synod in Recent Survey

06/10/2015 Comments (41)

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops began its 2015 General Assembly in St. Louis today.

Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville, Kentucky presented 12 general findings from the family surveys that each diocese circulated to local Catholics. The results are revealing, and, in some cases, echo broader concerns regarding the substance of the Synod relatio. Some of the key points:

1. The Catholic faithful are eager to assist their bishops. The framing of the survey questions left something to be desired, respondents said.

2. The survey was incomplete. The question was raised: "What was missing from relatio?" The answer: "The absence of marriage as a vocation." Also, a significant number...READ MORE

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Vatican Statement on Pope Francis' Meeting With President Putin

06/10/2015 Comments (14)

The conflict in Ukraine and the situation in the Middle East were central to the discussions between Pope Francis and Russian President Vladimir Putin during their meeting at the Vatican this evening.

In a statement, the Vatican said the Pope called for a "sincere and great effort to achieve peace" in Ukraine.

The statement went on to say that the two leaders spoke of the "urgency to pursue peace" in the Middle East, ensuring "necessary living conditions" for religious minorities, particularly Christians, in the region.

The Russian President arrived at the Vatican soon after 6pm and left at 7.30pm. As in 2013, he arrived late, this time by about an hour, but the meeting with the Holy...READ MORE

Filed under diplomacy, holy see, middle east, persecution, pope francis, ukraine, vatican, vladimir putin

Sister Carol Keehan: 'It Has Been My Privilege to Work With the President'

06/09/2015 Comments (36)

Catholic Health Association president Sister Carol Keehan welcomes President Barack Obama June 9 at the CHA’s annual conference in Washington, D.C.

– whitehouse.gov

In an appearance that boldly signaled the enduring intertwined interests of a political leader and an industry lobbyist, President Barack Obama was invited to give the keynote address today at the Catholic Health Association's annual conference in Washington, D.C. 

"It has been my privilege to work with the president and his team over the past seven years," said Sister of Charity Carol Keehan, who leads the Catholic Health Association, a lobby that represents Church-affiliated health care institutions, as she introduced Obama to conference attendees.

"With CHA’s deep gratitude for his leadership and concern for the well-being of all Americans, it is my honor and pleasure now to introduce...READ MORE

Filed under affordable care act, catholic health association, hhs mandate, obamacare, president barack obama, sister carol keehan

Does It Matter If Medjugorje Is Real or Not?

06/09/2015 Comment

What do I think about Medjugorje? I'm so glad you asked. I think it's the scam to end all scams. Either it was a hoax from the beginning, and nothing ever happened there; or it was originally a true apparition and has since become a hoax, or possibly even a spiritual manifestation that is not from God. Whichever it is, it's bad, bad news.

But there are plenty of people who remain devoted to Medjugorje, pointing to the "good fruits" as thousands of people return to the sacraments and the rosary.

We can talk all day about how the local bishop, Pavao Zanic, has condemned the apparitions as false and has deplored the disobedience encouraged by the seers and their adherents:

 [T]he Ordinary...READ MORE

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Prayer that Pleases God: Advice from Teresa of Avila

06/09/2015 Comments (1)

The purpose of the newest book in the Navigating the Interior Life book series, 30 Days with Teresa of Avila, is to reveal the unique personality, wisdom, and insight that often emerges out of the letters of the saints. These letters are a window into Saint Teresa’s genuine humanity, witness, and pragmatic advice for pursuing an intimate friendship with God.

I’ll be sharing some of the letters here, in the hope that you’ll be inspired to spend time prayerfully reflecting on them. This is from Day 21.

Toledo, October 1576
To Father Gracian, Seville
Father Gracian and the Calced friars.
Paul and Joseph. Counsels on prayer.
May the grace of the Holy Ghost be with your Paternity,...READ MORE

Filed under navigating the interior life, prayer, saint teresa of avila, st. teresa of avila, teresa of avila

In Which I Nag You To Buy Life Insurance

06/08/2015 Comments (6)

What keeps you up at night? What kind of dark horses go galloping around your brain at 3:30 a.m.?  Lately, my horses are: what if someone asks the kids to prove the existence of God, and they can't, because we gave up on Aquinas? I haven't printed out photos in six years! I'm not sure I ever taught them about sonata form, and now some of them think Cake is actually a good band! I never thanked Nora's mom for making us food when the baby was born, and I'm still not sure which Nora's mom it was! We'll have to change schools. And so on.

Happily, I no longer wake up wondering how our kids will pay for funeral expenses if we die. Yep, the Fishers have life insurance.

For a long time, we just...READ MORE

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Our Tools for Evangelization Have Never Been Greater, Why Do We Stink At It?

06/08/2015 Comments (60)

Our Tools for Evangelization Have Never Been Greater, Why Do We Stink At It?

So there are twelve guys in Israel with nothing but the sandals on their feet. They dispersed and did nothing short of change the world.

How did they do it? Evangelistic zeal. These guys really believed what they were selling.

St. Ignatius of Loyola was injured in the army and read a book about the saints and went out and changed the world. How? Evangelistic zeal.

So today, we have the internet, IPhones, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and various other apps, devices, and instruments to help us spread the Word throughout the world. One might have expected that such a technological revolution in the Western...READ MORE

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Cardinal Müller Warns Against Adapting the Church to Today's Often Pagan Lifestyles

06/08/2015 Comments (69)

Cardinal Gerhard Müller

– EP

Cardinal Gerhard Müller has spoken out firmly against trying to adapt the Church’s teaching to today’s often pagan lifestyles, saying such an approach introduces subjectivism and arbitrariness.

In an interview with the Catholic newspaper Die Tagespost on June 6th, the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith warned that placing “any so-called lived realities” on the same level as scripture and tradition is “nothing more than the introduction of subjectivism and arbitrariness, wrapped up in sentimental and smug religious terminology.” 

The cardinal’s comments have been widely seen as a criticism of a recent “shadow council” when bishops and experts from Germany, France and...READ MORE

Filed under cardinal muller, divorce reamrriage, germany, homosexuality, paganism, synod on the family

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