Weekly TV Picks

DEC. 4 & 7

Pope John Paul II


Airing in two-hour installments Sunday at 9 p.m. and Wednesday at 8 p.m., this premiere miniseries bio of the late Vicar of Christ was blessed by Pope Benedict XVI after he saw a partial version of it in mid-November. In the first part, Cary Elwes plays the young Karol Wojtyla in his Polish years and in the second, Catholic actor Jon Voight plays him as Pope John Paul II, fighting Communism and the culture of death.


Design on a Dime

Home & Garden TV, 3 p.m., 11 p.m.

In this episode, “Mexican-Inspired Christmas,” the design team helps Rudy and Maria Jimenez turn a plain room into a place of celebration, and Maria and her mom take part in the Christmas tradition of making tamales for all their relatives and friends.

DEC. 6 & 9

‘Peanuts’ Christmas Specials


On Tuesday at 8 p.m., the 40th-anniversary showing of A Charlie Brown Christmas adds on short 'toons that each feature a “Peanuts” character. On Saturday at 8 p.m., I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown! spotlights toddler ReRun Van Pelt.


Remembering Pearl Harbor

History Channel

Starting at 8 a.m., four specials, all re-airs, tell the story of the infamous Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. The same slate of shows starts again at 2 p.m.


Meditations on the Immaculate Conception

EWTN, 6:30 a.m., 5 p.m.

“O Mary conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to thee!” Franciscan Friar of the Renewal Father Benedict Groeschel speaks in praise of the Blessed Virgin Mary.


Christmas Animals

Animal Planet, 8 p.m.

We learn about lots of animals that are associated with Christmas — including, nowadays, reindeer and, tangentially, to say the least, even chipmunks.


Black Pharaohs, Golden War

History Channel, 6 p.m.

An inscription in the tomb of an ancient governor in El Kab, Egypt, says an invasion by Kushites “covered the landscape of Egypt.” Archaeologists cite this and other indications that the Kingdom of Kush fought the pharaohs and even ruled Egypt for a century.


Rick Steves’

European Christmas

PBS, 8 p.m.

Choirs, chapels, cathedrals and families abound in veteran travel host Rick Steves’ 90-minute special on Christmas customs, concerts and celebrations in Bath, Burgundy, Nuremberg, Oslo, Paris, Salzburg and Tuscany.

Dan Engler writes from Santa Barbara, California.

‘One of our Eucharistic ministers was running out of Hosts and, suddenly, there were more Hosts in the ciborium. God just duplicated himself in the ciborium,” an emotional Father Joseph Crowley told the faithful.

Priest Reports Possible Eucharistic Miracle at Connecticut Church

A local television station is reporting that the Archdiocese of Hartford is investigating a possible Eucharistic miracle that may have taken place during the celebration of Mass at St. Thomas Catholic Church in Thomaston, where Blessed Father Michael McGivney once served as pastor.