U.S. Catholic Population Rises

06/05/2009 Comments (1)

The 2009 Official Catholic Kenedy Directory is out, and it contains some hopeful news. Among its statistics is the fact that there are 68.1 million Catholics in the U.S. That’s an increase of about 1 million from the previous year, making Catholics 22% of the U.S. population.

In 2008 there were 887,145 infant baptisms, 42,629 adult baptisms, and 81,775 baptized Christians who entered full communion with the Church.

Among the directory’s other findings, there are 41,489 diocesan and religious order priests, 60,715 religious sisters, 4,905 religious brothers and 16,935 permanent deacons.  The Kenedy Directory lists 18,674 parishes, including 91 new parishes, and 189 seminaries with 4,973...READ MORE

Filed under catholic identity

Media Calls Killer 'Pro-Life'

06/03/2009 Comment
40 Days for Life

Prayerful protesters at 40 Days for Life campaign in Little Rock, Ark.

– 40 Days for Life

I have found half a dozen headlines about the murder of abortionist George Tiller that use the word “pro-life” to describe his suspected murderer or his associations.

“In regular news stories, they always use the term ‘anti-abortion,” said Brian Gibson, “Now they start calling the person who did this ‘pro-life,’ when he’s not. They’re rubbing our noses in the term.”

Gibson is director of the St. Paul, Minn.-based Pro-Life Action Ministries.

The Associated Press Stylebook is quite clear on how they want news organizations to report on abortion. The stylebook says, “Use anti-abortion instead of pro-life and abortion rights instead of pro-abortion or pro-choice.”


Filed under abortion, media, media bias, pro-life

Bible in a Flash

05/29/2009 Comment

Call Catholic inventor Mark Mastroianni a modern monk. Just as the monks of old hand-transcribed and illustrated the word of God, giving us the printed Bible as we know it, Mastroianni is bringing the word of God into the digital age.

With everything going digital, it was just a matter of time before the word of God received a high-tech makeover. Mastroianni came up with the idea for “God on the Go,” a USB flash drive that contains the entire New Revised Standard Bible.

“Why not combine the Bible with commonly used and readily accessible technological platforms?” he told Catholic News Service.

The $39.95 USB flash drive offers a number of advantages over a printed Bible, Mastroianni...READ MORE

Filed under bible

500,000 Hits and Counting

05/28/2009 Comment

Four days ago, during Pope Benedict XVI’s message for World Communications Day, he encouraged young people to utilize the Internet to spread the Gospel message. In addition, the Vatican unveiled its Pope2You webpage, along with its iPhone and Facebook applications.

“When we find ourselves drawn towards other people, when we want to know more about them and make ourselves known to them, we are responding to God’s call — a call that is imprinted in our nature as beings created in the image and likeness of God, the God of communication and communion,” said the Pope in his message. “It falls, in particular, to young people, who have an almost spontaneous affinity for the new means of...READ MORE

Filed under facebook, internet, iphone, pope benedict xvi, youtube

A Womb With a View

05/08/2009 Comments (1)
Michael Clancy

Photo first appeared in USA Today Sept. 7, 1999.

– Michael Clancy

Nine-year-old Samuel Armas’ first baby photo isn’t like most infants’ first photo. Taken while he was still in utero, it’s the famous photograph that appeared in USA Today on Sept. 7, 1999, showing a 21-week-old Samuel grasping a doctor’s finger during surgery to correct his spina bifida. Four months later, Samuel was born.

Now living with his family in Villa Rica, Ga., Samuel said he’s proud of the photo because it’s given others the opportunity to live.

“It’s very important to me,” Samuel said. “A lot of babies would’ve lost their lives if that didn’t happen.”

The photograph not only has had an impact on parents-to-be, but also on the photographer who took the...READ MORE

Filed under abortion, pro-life

That Old Rugged Cross

04/22/2009 Comment

World Youth Day Cross at the Great Barrier Reef, Australia.

During Pope Benedict XVI’s general audience today, he recalled the 25th anniversary of the consignment of the World Youth Day cross by Pope John Paul II to the young people of the world.

It was during the Holy Year of Redemption (1983-1984) that Pope John Paul II ordered a simple wooden cross to be erected near the altar in St. Peter’s Basilica. At the close of the Holy Year, he consigned that same cross to the youth of the world, saying: “Take this into the world as a sign of the Lord Jesus’ love for humankind, and tell everyone that only through Christ, who died and rose again, comes salvation and redemption.”

The young people of the San Lorenzo International Youth Centre took that...READ MORE

Filed under australia, pope benedict xvi, world youth day

The Female Schindler

04/17/2009 Comment

On Sunday, CBS is airing Hallmark Hall of Fame’s The Courageous Heart of Irena Sendler. While not a household name, she should be as well known as Schindler. Sendler was a Polish Catholic credited with saving the lives of 2,500 Jewish children during World War II.

Using a network of largely female social workers and others, she smuggled children out of Warsaw’s Jewish Ghetto to safety. Academy Award-winning actress Anna Paquin portrays Sendler in the made-for-TV movie. You can read an interview with her at Catholic Digest.

Her story was largely unknown until the fall of 1999. For it was then that a rural Kansas teacher showed four high school students a short clip from a March 1994...READ MORE

Filed under holocaust

ND: 33 Bishops and Counting

04/15/2009 Comment

The Notre Dame scandal shows no signs of stopping.

Two more bishops — Bishop Richard Stika of Knoxville, Tenn., and Bishop Gerald Barbarito of Palm Beach, Fla., — came out with statements opposing the University of Notre Dame’s invitation to President Barack Obama to speak at the school’s May 17 commencement exercises and receive an honorary degree of law. That brings the total number of cardinals and bishops who’ve issued statements or letters to 33.

“As a Catholic, I am embarrassed by this gesture of the University of Notre Dame,” wrote Bishop Stika in a column in last week’s East Tennessee Catholic. “The president’s approach to abortion rights, embryonic stem-cell research, and...READ MORE

Filed under bishops, cardinal george, notre dame, obama

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About Tim Drake

Tim Drake
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Tim Drake is an award-winning writer and former journalist and radio host with the National Catholic Register/EWTN. He currently serves as New Evangelization Coordinator for the Holdingford Area Catholic Community in the Diocese of St. Cloud, Minnesota. He resides with his wife and five children in St. Joseph, Minn.