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Resignation Aftermath: Pope as CEO? (3944)

After Pope Benedict XVI announced his resignation, the decision stirs confusion, concern and spin.

02/15/2013 Comments (4)
Franco Origlia/Getty Images

Pope Benedict XVI attends a meeting with parish priests of the Rome Diocese Feb. 14 at the Paul VI Hall.

– Franco Origlia/Getty Images

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — [Editor's note: This story was updated Feb. 17] Pope Benedict XVI’s decision to resign his office on Feb. 28 shocked Catholics who expected him to remain in office until his death.

While Church leaders have since described the move as an act of profound “humility,” some media commentators and longtime critics have presented the decision as a stark break with tradition, resonating far beyond the individual Pope.

“This decision has been the only great reform of Benedict, and, at the same time, it is a revolutionary step for the Catholic Church,” said Marco Politi, the author of a book on Pope Benedict, in a Feb. 11 interview with The New York Times.

Politi described...READ MORE

Filed under mainstream media, papacy, pope benedict

Archbishop Lori to Maryland General Assembly: End Death Penalty (2238)

Head of the Maryland Catholic Conference testified: 'The death penalty offers the tragic illusion that we can defend life by taking life.'

02/15/2013 Comments (3)

BALTIMORE — Speaking at a legislative hearing in Maryland, Archbishop William Lori of Baltimore supported efforts to end the death penalty in the state, calling for punishments that respect human life.

"While those who have done terrible harm to others deserve punishment," he acknowledged, "we urge a response that meets evil with a justice worthy of our best nature as human beings, enlightened by faith in the possibility of redemption and forgiveness."

Archbishop Lori testified in Annapolis, Md., on Feb. 14 before the state Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee and the House Judiciary Committee. The hearings marked the first time that the archbishop, who chairs the Maryland Catholic...READ MORE

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SDG Reviews ‘The Kid With a Bike’ (4910)

Register film critic's No. 1 film of 2012 debuts on home video this week.

02/15/2013 Comments (9)
via MovieWeb.com

– via MovieWeb.com

“Life as it is and life as it ought to be: Let us take that as the only true subject for a film and consider to what extent the cinema is fulfilling its proper function.” — Graham Greene

Has Greene’s maxim for what he called “poetic cinema” ever been realized more perfectly and consistently, or with greater grace and humanity, than by the Belgian brothers Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne?

“Life as it is and life as it ought to be,” expressed with a poetic power — “not the power melodiously to arrange words,” Greene wrote, “but the power to suggest human values” — this is what the Dardenne brothers have presented in one masterfully made film after another for the better part of two decades,...READ MORE

Filed under movies, sdg reviews

Deacon Bill Steltemeier, Faithful Servant (13005)

The late chairman of EWTN’s board of governors served as Mother Angelica’s right-hand man throughout the global Catholic network’s formative years.

02/15/2013 Comments (31)
EWTN photo

Deacon Bill Steltemeier (1929-2013)

– EWTN photo

IRONDALE, Ala. — Deacon R. William Steltemeier Jr. died on Feb. 15 at age 83 after an extended illness. Familiar to Eternal Word Television Network’s international family of viewers, for three decades, he had been a faithful servant for Mother Angelica and the mission of EWTN.

He is survived by Ramona, his wife of 59 years. He was preceded in death by his son, Rudy Steltemeier III, and daughter-in-law, Debra Steltemeier.

Funeral arrangements are planned for next week. Vespers and the Divine Mercy Chaplet will be prayed on Monday, Feb. 18, at 4:30pm Central time at the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Hanceville, Ala., followed by public visitation. A prayer vigil and Rosary...READ MORE

Filed under catholic faith, ewtn, mother angelica

Poll: New Yorkers Opposed to Abortion Law Expansion (2335)

A new survey finds overwhelming opposition to key elements of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s legislation to strengthen legal abortion.

02/15/2013 Comments (5)
Pat Arnow/Wikipedia

N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

– Pat Arnow/Wikipedia

NEW YORK — As New York debates Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposed bill to strengthen legal abortion, a new survey shows that 75% of locals oppose the bill's provision allowing non-doctors to perform abortions.

“Gov. Cuomo’s proposed changes in New York's abortion laws are clearly out of the political mainstream,” Greg Pfundstein, president of the New York City-based Chiaroscuro Foundation, said Feb. 13.

“While it is difficult to imagine having even less abortion regulation in New York, Gov. Cuomo's special-interest allies in the abortion lobby have come up with a few ideas, and they are all extremely unpopular.”

The Chiaroscuro Foundation commissioned the McLaughlin & Associates survey...READ MORE

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The First Misstep Among the Papabile, The Catholic Gentleman: Courtship and Much More! (4454)

The Best in Catholic Blogging

02/15/2013 Comment

The First Misstep Among the papabile. Follow the link by Phil Lawler of the Catholic Culture website to read more.

The First Misstep Among the papabile by Phil Lawler of the Catholic Culture website - Big Pulpit

The Catholic Gentleman: Courtship – Michael, Whiskey Catholic

You are Not Perishable, Live Accordingly – Julie Rodrigues, Catholic Stand

Lent: Official Catholic Rules for Fasting & Abstinence – Dr. Taylor Marshall, Canterbury Tales

Fasting with St. Thomas – Abram Muenzberg, Ignitum Today

Eating Alligator on Friday’s During Lent – Mike Scaperlanda, Mirror of Justice

Competing Religions – Donald R. McClarey, The American Catholic

Brick by Brick in Wisconsin and an Opportunity for You to Help – Fr. Z’s Blog

Portable Altar Cards for the Dominican Rite – Fr. Augustine Thompson OP,...READ MORE

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Pentagon Panned for Offering Same-Sex Couples Spousal Benefits (1682)

The new policies make ‘a mockery of the Defense of Marriage Act that is still the law of this nation,’ according to the head of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty.

02/14/2013 Comments (1)

The Pentagon.

– Wikipedia

WASHINGTON — The Department of Defense has drawn criticism over new policies providing same-sex partners some of the benefits normally reserved to military spouses.

The new policies make “a mockery of the Defense of Marriage Act that is still the law of this nation,” said Chaplain Ron Crews, a retired Army Reserve colonel and executive director of the Chaplain Alliance for Religious Liberty.

Speaking to Catholic News Agency on Feb. 13, Crews decried these new policies, saying that they essentially ignore the intent of federal law by treating same-sex couples as spouses.

Crews pointed to the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman for...READ MORE

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Pope: Media Spread Misinterpretations of Vatican II (3195)

These media misrepresentations ‘created many calamities, so many problems, so much misery,’ the Holy Father lamented in a Feb. 14 address.

02/14/2013 Comments (1)

Second Vatican Council Fathers.

– Wikipedia

VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI said that many of the misinterpretations of the Second Vatican Council were caused by the media promoting its own version.

“The world interpreted the Council through the eyes of the media, instead of seeing the true Council of the fathers and their key vision of faith,” said Pope Benedict at Paul VI Hall Feb. 14.

“Fifty years later, the strength of the real Council has been revealed, and it is our task for the Year of Faith to bring the real Second Vatican Council to life,” he told the priests gathered to meet him.

Pope Benedict spoke with the priests of the Diocese of Rome in an unscripted speech on the Second Vatican Council, which he first...READ MORE

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