URGENT! Make a gift that will be doubled. We have $10,746 left to match by December 1st.
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Commentary Archive

All Catholic commentary from October 2009

time for personal renewal by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 1, 2009

Back in 2004, you may remember, the Springfield (MA) Diocese announced that Bishop Thomas Dupre, "citing health reasons," was opting for early retirement under the provisions of canon 401-dash-2. The word "health," it turned out, had a special ecclesiastical meaning. The...

Hollywood's moral compass by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 1, 2009

"Hollywood has the best moral compass, because it has compassion," Weinstein said.  That pearl dropped from the lips of Harvey Weinstein, the Hollywood impressario, speaking to the Los Angeles Times. Read it again. Let it sink in. The compassion to which Weinstein referred is...

The 'dash-2' deception by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 1, 2009

 With the revelation that Bishop Raymond Lahey faces prosecution on child-pornography charges, we have one more sad entry on the list of "dash-2 bishops"-- those prelates who have stepped down ahead of the usual retirement date, citing #401-2 of the Code of Canon Law, which allows...

AP puts words in the Pope's mouth by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 2, 2009

 The AP story, which will run in hundreds of American newspapers and on thousands of internet sites, carries this headline: Pope meets new US envoy, praises Obama Go ahead: Read the whole story. Do you see where the Pope praised Obama? Neither do I. Vatican Radio has provided the full text...

Family Size, Social Development, Selfishness and Love by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Oct 2, 2009

My wife teaches English to seniors at Seton School in Manassas, Virginia, and all the seniors are required to write regularly in a journal so that, by sheer frequency, they become more comfortable with writing. Recently, one budding literary talent wrote humorously of the reactions she gets...

So does the Baucus plan offer abortion coverage? by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 2, 2009

President Obama has said that an acceptable health-care reform proposal should not require taxpayers to subsidize abortion. Agreed. The key question now is whether or not the proposal under discussion on Capitol Hill-- the Baucus plan-- actually does provide abortion coverage. Pro-life activists...

Remind me again: how does celibacy contribute to scandals? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 2, 2009

 If only the Catholic Church allowed priests to marry, we wouldn't have so many clerics caught up in sexual scandals. Right? That's the party line, certainly. But it doesn't quite explain the problems facing a retired Anglican bishop who was arrested this week in a crackdown on prostitutes....

how this White House protects school children by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 2, 2009

 It was the spring of 1988. A 15-year-old boy came to a high-school teacher and hesitantly admitted that he was having a homosexual affair with an adult man.  Did the teacher alert police to this case of sexual abuse? No.  Did he tell the boy about the meaning of statutory rape,...

lahey the unmentionable by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 5, 2009

Canadian Bishop Raymond Lahey was arrested last week for possession of kiddie-porn, an event widely reported in the media. The public reaction was one of understandable disgust and exasperation. Halifax Archbishop Anthony Mancini has written an open letter to the Roman Catholic faithful of Nova...

an artist is a lovesome thing, god wot by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 5, 2009

The Polanski child-rape story provides a dislocating sense of déjà vu in the peculiarly haughty indignation with which the princes of the entertainment world have come to the defense of the perp. The dismissive reasons tendered for giving Polanski a pass will have a special...

From one blog, three by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 6, 2009

CatholicCulture.org has split "The Blog" into two different blogs. The first, "On the Culture" will be written primarily by Dr. Jeff Mirus. The second, "On the News" will be written primarily by Phil Lawler. We are also pleased to announce a new blog,...

Cardinal Turkson: one to watch by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 6, 2009

By appointing Cardinal Peter Turkson as relator general of the current African Synod, Pope Benedict guaranteed that the prelate from Ghana would command worldwide attention. Sure enough, Cardinal Turkson is making reporters in Rome take notice. And none more so than America's leading...

don't ask and especially don't tell by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 6, 2009

 At least one enterprising Canadian journalist has finally asked the obvious question: Why did airport security officials search a bishop's laptop computer? The answer is even more disconcerting than you might have anticipated: It was his travel history including visits to southeast Asian...

Big guns in the spiritual warfare by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 6, 2009

If you've ever spent autumn in New England, you know about the "leaf peepers"-- the tourists who flock to Vermont to enjoy the foliage in early October. But early October-- and specifically this day: October 6, the feast of St. Bruno-- bring different memories of Vermont for me. Back in...

CatholicCulture.org redesigned: Why? by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 6, 2009

Unless you’re getting this in an RSS feed, I suppose the redesign of CatholicCulture.org is obvious. But perhaps the reasons for it are not. Yet if the redesign is successful, the reasons should become obvious as you explore our new web site. As you look around, consider the...

take an axe to it by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 7, 2009

Controversy sells newspapers. When one prominent Catholic prelate criticizes another-- however politely he goes about it-- you've got yourself a controversy. That's especially true in Italy, where Vatican-watching is a popular pastime.  So when Archbishop Chaput took exception to the...

deja vu in the British press by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 7, 2009

Two different London newspapers carried stories this week about a Vatican official who was cruising slowly through Rome's red-light district, and when police tried to stop his car he set off on a high-speed chase, causing a crash that injured three police officers before he was finally...

know thyself (a painful process) by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 7, 2009

In order to engage your market, you must know yourself as your market knows you. In other words, you must see yourself through the eyes of your customer! This is the fundamental principle of marketing, but it is often ignored (or not fully executed) in marketing and business development...

The Gadgeteer by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 7, 2009

You’ve heard, I suspect, of a gazetteer, which is a geographical dictionary. And perhaps you’ve seen the Rocketeer, the high-flying 1991 Disney film hero based on a character created for Pacific Comics in the 1980’s. If you read Scripture, you also know about Pharoah's chariots...

I don't got rhythm by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 8, 2009

Warning: For immature audiences only You probably should not watch this video if you have a sensitive stomach. Send the children away; they might get nightmares. But if you're brave enough to watch, you'll notice something immediately about the priests shown making a spectacle of...

getting the outsider's perspective by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 8, 2009

Many small business owners, or organizational leaders working on a tight budget, wonder how they can economically get the "outsider's viewpoint" of their company without spending any money. Simply having the input of one intelligent outsider can make a big difference to maintaining...

people as assets by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 8, 2009

Both in this blog and on my corporate website, I have written and will continue to write a good deal about leveraging business assets to accomplish goals (both general and specific). In common "business speak" we talk about people as assets all the time. "The company's most...

OneCause and universal promotions: A problem? by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 8, 2009

A supporter of CatholicCulture.org sent a message today indicating he had received an email from OneCause promoting Dell’s offer to donate $5.00 to the Susan G. Komen Foundation for each pink laptop it sells. This was obviously designed as a non-controversial incentive for...

don't ask and especially don't tell, cont. by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 8, 2009

Fact: Bishop Raymond Lahey, who was hit last week with child-porn charges, had traveled-- a number of times, apparently-- to southeast Asia. Fact: Tourist sites in southeast Asia have a seamy reputation. They have become international centers for the sexual exploitation of...

Do I make myself perfectly obscure? by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 8, 2009

Ordinarily, when you want to "clarify" a statement, you add an explanatory note. But earlier this week, when 5 prominent American prelates released a "clarification" of an earlier statement on relations between Catholics and Jews, they made the change by removing two sentences...

Lahey the indomitable by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 9, 2009

When Bishop Raymond Lahey was arrested for possession of kiddie-porn after attracting the suspicion of Canadian Border Patrol agents, Terry Mattingly asked the apposite question, What was the trigger that led to the secondary search of the laptop hard drive of a Catholic bishop? Well, now we...

What about Bad Music? by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Oct 9, 2009

It is a feature of human nature that all normal persons respond emotionally to music. For this reason, music is often described in emotional or quasi-emotional terms. It may be languorous or bombastic, martial or lyrical, peaceful or agitated, soothing or exciting, and so on. But in addition to...

nothing to see here, folks by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 9, 2009

 Archbishop Edwin O'Brien knows a thing or two about apostolic visitations. He led the apostolic visitation of American seminaries that was ordered up by the Vatican at the height of the sex-abuse scandal. That investigation, you'll recall, concluded with an assurance that the seminaries were...

Bishops note 'deficiencies,' but CHA still pushes health-care reform by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 9, 2009

On September 30, the Senate finance committee voted down amendments that would have eliminated abortion subsidies from the health-care reform plan. The very next day, the Catholic Health Association (CHA) issued two statements. "Thank you, Mr. President," was the headline on the...

A Short Course in Music and Morals by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 13, 2009

Readers who liked my analysis What about Bad Music?, or even those who disagreed with it, owe it to themselves to read the book Music & Morals by Basil Cole, OP. Fr. Cole was a jazz musician before becoming a Dominican priest, and he did an extensive study of the relationship between music and...

Mailbag: Are Labor Unions Encouraged by the Catholic Church? by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 13, 2009

"How does a Catholic in business reconcile Caritas in Veritate (and earlier encyclicals) with widely accepted business theory and practices regarding labor. 'Union Free' environments are preached in business schools. As a member of SHRM [Society for Human Resource Management] I have many...

kidnapped! by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 13, 2009

Thank goodness, justice has triumphed again. Msgr. Cesare Burgazzi will not be serving a prison sentence. Msgr. Burgazzi, in case you've forgotten, is the Vatican official-- make that former Vatican official-- who was stopped by police as he cruised through a red-light district in Rome....

When junk mail isn’t junk: The Life Issues Institute by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 14, 2009

Recently I took note of some unsolicited mail, a copy of the October issue of Life Issues Connector from the Life Issues Institute in Cincinnati. The President and Publisher is the well-known pro-life physician, John Willke, so I decided to resist my first impulse and read the newsletter. Among...

suitable to the occasion by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 14, 2009

The U.S. Bureau of Prisons applies the following restrictions to persons visiting inmates incarcerated in federal detention facilities: Inappropriate/unauthorized attire is considered to be: transparent clothing; strapless garments; any garment which exposes the stomach or any intimate area of...

soft options by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 14, 2009

Chris Johnson brings our attention to some eco-gushing at the Anglican Communion web site: Our faith and our ancestors have always taught us that the earth is our mother and deserves respect; we know that this respect has not been given. We know that like a mother the earth will continue to give...

Catholics United for Partisan Politics by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 14, 2009

A group that calls itself Catholics United for the Common Good is heaping fulsome praise on Maine's Senator Olympia Snowe for her "courageous" finance-committee vote to approve the health-care reform bill. Let's assume, for the sake of the argument, that this legislation is desirable....

no other public institution by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 14, 2009

In conversation with John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter, Archbishop Wilton Gregory looks back on those halcyon days when he was president of the US bishops' conference, and that weighty body was coping so successfully with the sex-abuse scandal:  I think that the bishops of the...

The habit of responsibility by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 15, 2009

It's easy to shirk responsibility. It can be habit-forming. More often than not there's a convenient excuse. Maybe someone else can do the job. Maybe nobody will notice if the job goes undone. Maybe things will turn out all right even if you do nothing. Shouldering the responsibility, on the...

feel the love by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 15, 2009

Do conservatives have a monopoly on hate? Progressivist Catholics often write as if we did. In part, the accusation of hatred is a labor-saving device (impugning your opponent's motives at the outset saves you the trouble of analyzing and answering his arguments). In part, the accusation of...

Belmont Abbey College: Preparing to Fight by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 15, 2009

Belmont Abbey College in North Carolina has been striving for the past few years to become a more thoroughly Catholic institution of higher education. The College has a long tradition which extends back to its founding in 1876 as St. Mary’s College by the Benedictine monks of Belmont Abbey....

free ride by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 15, 2009

Notre Dame's student newspaper The Observer reports that the university helped some students travel to Washington to demonstrate in favor of gay rights. A surprise move from the Student Activities Office allowed five students to attend a national gay rights demonstration in Washington D.C....

a word from our betters by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 15, 2009

James Taranto cites a 2007 address made in Berkeley by Clinton's Secretary of Labor Robert Reich. Reich gave the speech which he believed a Democratic presidential candidate should make, were he free to speak his mind on the matter of health care: "Thank you so much for coming this...

widen that chasm for you? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 15, 2009

Chicago's ABC News affiliate ran a story on last Saturday's makeover of a local woman into a Catholic "priest." The reporters don't quite get the facts right, but they do convey the idea that the Vatican -- i.e., Catholic officialdom in some sense -- does not regard the ceremony as a...

quis custodiet, etc. by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 15, 2009

 There's a dreary familiarity about the facts of the case, as reported in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. A priest was accused of molesting boys. A chancery bureaucrat investigated, uncovered evidence, but did not make that evidence public nor warn potential victims. Eventually there were...

As Africa goes . . . by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Oct 16, 2009

Quite a bit has been written in the last few years about the rising importance of religion in the world, especially in the “global south”, and particularly in Africa. Those who are paying attention to world affairs with at least some attempt at objectivity recognize, for example, that the...

Personality Types and the "God Experience" by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 16, 2009

I am a big proponent of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), and recently provided a lecture to our junior staff on the history of the MBTI (including how it relates to the classic temperaments) and the merits of determining your personality type by this system. The MBTI results (and resulting...

author! author! by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 16, 2009

When you see a sentence like this, drawn from the Pope's message for World Food Day.... Guaranteeing individuals and peoples the chance to defeat the scourge of hunger means ensuring they have real access to adequate and healthy nourishment. ... you get the sense, right away, that the statement...

sweet home chicago by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 16, 2009

Today's Chicago Sun-Times features an investigative exposé detailing the contents of a digital "hiring database" belonging to former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich, currently under federal indictment for racketeering, extortion, and fraud. "The Blagojevich hiring...

CWN correspondent publishes book on India's 21st-century martyrs by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 16, 2009

Longtime CWN correspondent Anto Akkara has released a new book on the valiant loyalty of Christians under persecution in India's Kandhamal region. His work, Shining Faith in Kandhamal, was introduced to the press in Mumbai on October 15, at a news conference chaired by Cardinal Varkey Vithayathil,...

full compliance by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 16, 2009

The Diocese of Rockville Center, New York, proudly announces that it is fully in compliance with the guidelines of the Dallas Charter. Newsday explains this achievement: Last year an audit found that, while the diocese passed virtually every aspect of the 13-article audit, it failed in one part...

the smartest guys in the class by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 17, 2009

Times are tough for all of us. But your Uncle Di didn't lose $500 million gambling on interest-rates last year. Did you? No? Guess we're not smart...

Make the Most Out of Your Weakness by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 17, 2009

Corporate introspection is a good thing. The acknowledgement that we all have weaknesses is a good thing. Using the "we all have weaknesses" card to excuse poor behavior/performance is a bad thing both in our personal lives, our businesses, and our society.  It is admirable to...

This one is for the sufferers by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 19, 2009

In my experience in both the non-profit and for-profit sectors, I have encountered people in all types of businesses and in all levels of authority that suffer for various reasons. Perhaps that suffering comes from a bad economy, an unreasonable boss, difficult coworker(s), lack of commitment in...

antigonish agonistes by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 19, 2009

Canadian bishop Raymond Lahey is currently awaiting trial, charged with possessing and importing child pornography. The disgrace of Lahey's misdeeds has been amplified by the embarrassingly infantile moral cowardice he has displayed at every stage of the business: he even lies...

can you spare a paradigm? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 19, 2009

Indian Theologian Calls for New Women Religious Paradigm! squealed the NCR headline. We're all thrilled beyond measure by original paradigms, it goes without saying, and impatient Uncle Di almost crippled his left mouse button clicking on the link. Here's the lede: Samphran, Thailand. Speaking...

The bishops and their(?) lobbyists by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 19, 2009

 Writing in Time magazine, Amy Sullivan asks: "Will the Church Try to Block Health Reform?" The question is ironic, in light of the energy spent by Catholic officials-- especially at the US Conference for Catholic Bishops-- to promote the health-care reform package. Now it seems...

Earning your trust by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 19, 2009

All it took was a front-page article in the New York Times, and the Diocese of Superior, Wisconsin, took action, suspending a priest who fathered a son during one of an indeterminate number...

making people squirm by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 19, 2009

Saturday's announcement that the Pope has appointed two new members to the Congregation for Bishops is worth unpacking. The two new members are Cardinal Antonio Canizares Llovera, the Spanish prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship; and Archbishop Raymond Burke, the American head of the...

Putting the Liturgy in Perspective by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 19, 2009

Reading a fine article by Msgr. George P. Graham in the October issue of Homiletic & Pastoral Review put me in mind once again of the key to understanding the Mass and how the Liturgy should be absorbed and evaluated. The Liturgy is the public worship not primarily of a...

big news coming tomorrow?? by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 19, 2009

This could be big news. Or else it could be very very big news. Father Z rightly calls attention to a short notice in the Bolletino, alerting journalists to a press briefing that will take place on Tuesday, October 20, at 11. The participants will be Cardinal William Levada, the prefect of the...

Applauding a failed priest by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 20, 2009

I’m here to interpret the not-so-strange case of Fr. Henry Willenborg of the Diocese of Superior, Wisconsin, whose parishioners applauded him when he explained his suspension from the priesthood resulting from various affairs he had had with women, in one of which he fathered a...

anglicans incoming! by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 20, 2009

The Holy See took the ecumenical imperative out of the hands of ecumenists, with the result that the reunion of Christians -- at least in one limited area of schism -- ensued. From the Vatican website: With the preparation of an Apostolic Constitution, the Catholic Church is responding to the...

The Pope's bold invitation to Anglicans by Phil Lawler in "In Depth Analysis" - Oct 20, 2009

With a single, bold stroke that caught nearly everyone by surprise, Pope Benedict XVI has eased the way for tradition-minded Anglicans who wish to enter the Catholic Church. [See the CWN headline story.] The apostolic constitution that was announced at the Vatican today will create a...

the money trail by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 20, 2009

If a judge gave me a choice between paying $432,000 and going to jail, he really wouldn't be giving me any choice at all. I don't have $432,000; I'd go to jail.  Now I know what you're thinking. You're thinking: "If you'd just been charged with stealing $432,000, and you offered a...

these troublesome (Anglican) priests by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 20, 2009

 With furrowed brow, Jeff Israely of Time magazine ponders the implications of the latest Vatican move: For Anglican leaders, the Vatican announcement is the latest minefield to manage in their ongoing effort to avoid a full-fledged schism within their 80-million-strong church, which...

a clash of cult and culture in Northern Ireland by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 20, 2009

 In Northern Ireland, a Protestant cabinet minister has made some waves with his announcement that his conscience will not allow him to attend ceremonies in a Catholic church. His stand was assailed by Sinn Fein, the political party identified with Catholics (and in the past, with supporters...

Church on the Prowl: The Lion Tamer’s Lament by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 21, 2009

I’m telling you, things are getting a little wild. First the Vatican observer at the UN offices in Geneva answered criticisms on the sex abuse scandal by telling everyone that the real abuse behind the scandal is homosexuality, and by telling other organizations to do as much to get their...

Realistic expectations about Anglicans by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 21, 2009

There's a natural, healthy excitement in Church this week, caused by the Pope's bold move to welcome Anglicans into the Catholic fold. But after that first flush of excitement, let's step back just a bit and assess the likely outcome.  Will there be millions of Anglicans battering down the...

hate speech, Rush, and the USCCB by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 21, 2009

Liberal activists in the US loathe conservative talk-radio shows. OK, you already knew that. Liberals would like to use the power of the Federal Communications Commission to tighten down the lid on conservative talk-show hosts. OK, you already knew that. Liberal religious groups have asked the...

Business with a handshake by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 21, 2009

I once had a prospective client in which I had invested some time, and for which my company was assembling the scope for a project.  Near the end of the scope discussions with the prospect, I said, "Great! We'll put together a Statement of Work for you. If you like what you see, just...

down syndrome children, and us by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 22, 2009

Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput has written an essay on children with Down syndrome -- and on our responsibilities towards them -- with some real wallop. An excerpt (from the First Things site): Every child with Down syndrome, every adult with special needs -- in fact, every unwanted unborn...

the Anglicans and the Eastern churches by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 22, 2009

Secular journalists, hearing the news about the Pope's dramatic invitation to Anglicans, immediately fastened on the question of celibacy. If married Anglican priests can be admitted to the Catholic priesthood, will the issue of priestly celibacy in the Roman Church be re-opened for...

I shall send you the Paraclete, who will lead you into constructive disagreements by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 22, 2009

In gauging the reactions to the Holy See's announcement of a Personal Ordinariate for Anglican converts, it's clear that, as is almost invariable in contemporary controversies, the rift in opinion reflects not church affiliation but one's alignment in the culture wars. The response of U.S....

Bankers on the Move by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 22, 2009

A group of London bankers has been caught studying Benedict’s social encyclical Caritas in Veritate. I know this because Zenit has dutifully reported the Pope’s pleasure and the message of encouragement sent by the Pope’s Secretary of State Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone. The study...

gone fishin' by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 22, 2009

The BBC explains why so many people were caught off guard by this week's news from Rome: Only last week the Vatican's senior spokesman on relations with other churches, Cardinal Walter Kasper, said "full visible unity" with Anglicans was Rome's long-term goal. "We are not fishing...

[T]radition and [t]radition by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 23, 2009

Yes, I know you’re tired of hearing about it, but one of our most faithful supporters, and a man whose opinion I deeply respect, has posted two highly critical comments in Sound Off in response to my In Depth Analysis from September 23rd, On Waffling, Tradition, and the Magisterium. Both...

The Jewel of Celibacy by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Oct 23, 2009

Phil Lawler is undoubtedly correct that the rule of celibacy will not be relaxed for Catholics of the Roman Rite when married Anglican priests begin to appear under a new Catholic ordinariate. He may also be correct that Eastern Rite churches will gradually permit more of their married clergy to...

ecumenism lives on by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 23, 2009

Don't listen to those people who say that by spreading the welcome mat for Anglicans, the Vatican has ended an era in ecumenism: an era marked by pleasant conversations which produce agreements on dates for future pleasant conversations, with an eye to continuing pleasant conversations unto...

Editorial misfire by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 23, 2009

An editorial in the Philadelphia Inquirer complains that by filing for bankruptcy, the Diocese of Wilmington, Delaware has stalled the progress of sex-abuse lawsuits against the Church. The paper argues that the diocese should have allowed the suits to continue, thereby bringing out all the...

death wish by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 24, 2009

LifeSite News reports that Dominican Sister Donna Quinn serves as a Chicago-area abortion clinic "escort," that is, she guides women seeking abortions into the clinic doors while providing a bit of reassurance to silence any last-minute hesitations induced by pro-life activists in the...

"friending" your way to the top by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 24, 2009

One of the best ways to advance your sphere of influence in the business world is to invest in relationships. Word of mouth drives a significant portion of growth for many companies in many industries. A popular vehicle for doing this, particularly for the small business crowd, is BNI -- the...

wet hankies in tomorrowland by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 25, 2009

The Pope's Apostolic Constitution erecting the Personal Ordinariate for Anglican converts has not been released, yet there's no question but that it's got the right people pouting. Across the board, among Catholics, Anglicans, and neutral spectators, hostility varies inversely with...

African Catholicism comes of age: the Synod message by Phil Lawler in "In Depth Analysis" - Oct 26, 2009

That Africa is a deeply troubled continent, few would deny; the evidence of poverty, disease, bloodshed, and repression is all too evident in all too many places. Rather than simply lamenting the suffering of Africa’s peoples, the Synod of Bishops for Africa-- which concluded its discussions this...

the remedial education of Congressman Kennedy by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 26, 2009

Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence, Rhode Island-- who shows a rare gift for plain

the enemy of my enemy is my friend by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 26, 2009

Go Phillies! . ....

Now just a damn Yankee minute . . . by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 26, 2009

No doubt you’ve noticed Phil Lawler’s absurd On the News entry, consisting of a cheer for the Philadelphia Phillies. This has nothing to do with his name. Phil lives in Red Sox land. I had a pastor once who introduced himself at his first Mass in our parish as being “from Boston,...

Pope picking up steam? by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 26, 2009

In April 2005, when Pope Benedict was elected to the Chair of Peter, many of his friends hoped (and his enemies feared) that he would use his new power, quickly and dramatically, to set a new course in Vatican affairs. They were wrong. Although he was known as a man with strong opinions and a...

music for working, part 2 by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 27, 2009

In my last music for working post, I featured three albums of the liturgical/classical genre. This time, I'm going to write a little bit about jazz and feature three very different albums. I have listened a good deal to all three of them while working through the years. Like old friends, they...

what's the matter with kids today? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 27, 2009

While you slept, your children consumed enough oxygen to fuel three dozen gerbils for six weeks at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Aren't you ashamed? What follows from the U.K. Guardian is not, regrettably, a parody: The worst thing that you or I can do for the planet is to have...

Why Be Catholic? 7: Tradition by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 27, 2009

This is not primarily an essay about Sacred Tradition, which is certainly another worthy apologetical topic. Instead, I have in mind here the Catholic Church’s unique vision of human nature, a vision so profound that one particular dimension of it is just now beginning to be grasped in the...

hate speech, Rush, and the USCCB: clarification by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 27, 2009

So it turns out that the US bishops' conference is not, after all, a part of the coalition that sent a petition to the FCC urging an investigation of "hate speech" by conservative radio talk-show hosts.  Or to be more accurate, the USCCB is part of the So We Might See coalition,...

unproclaimable by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 27, 2009

Leading the charge against approval of the latest English-language liturgical texts, Bishop Donald Trautman of Erie, Pennsylvania, worries that "ordinary Catholics" will be unable to understand words like "incarnate" and "precursor" and "inviolate" and...

the USCCB on health reform: 'mixed results' by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 27, 2009

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops has announced that it saw "mixed results" in a series of Senate finance committee votes on health-care reform. The votes everyone was watching involved funding for abortion. On that issue, the pro-life amendments were defeated. Richard Doerflinger,...

dawkins showing the strain by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 28, 2009

Professional atheist Richard Dawkins is told about the Personal Ordinariate for Anglican converts and blows a gasket: What major institution most deserves the title of greatest force for evil in the world? In a field of stiff competition, the Roman Catholic Church is surely up there among the...

let's (not) shake on it by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 28, 2009

Diocese altering rituals in swine flu precaution That's the top headline in today's Boston Globe. So it must be a big story. The lede certainly confirms that impression: The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston, reacting to the...

too good to be true? by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 28, 2009

After the Pope, the Secretary of State, and the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, the most influential man at the Vatican-- #4 on the overall list-- is the prefect of the Congregation for Bishops. That congregation supervises the selection of bishops for dioceses all...

another episcopal fumble on health care reform by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 28, 2009

If you read the statement carefully, you'll see that the Louisiana bishops called for a health-care reform package that respects the right to life. But most people don't read statements from the bishops carefully. Most people read about the statements, in newspaper stories with headlines like this...

God’s Partner: Obama and our prevailing prejudices by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 28, 2009

First Things editor Joseph Bottum has offered a telling critique of President Obama’s effort to enlist the aid of religious leaders for his health care reform. In the October 2009 issue (“The Day for the Religious”), Bottum describes Obama’s conference call with 1,000...

are you scared? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 29, 2009

Hans Küng has criticized Pope Benedict.   In other news, the sun rose in the east this morning. Writing in the Italian daily La Repubblica, Küng said that the Pope's invitation to Anglicans was tantamount to "unecumenical piracy of priests," and worried that Pope...

prayer, yes; faith, no by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 29, 2009

Rejecting protests, the city council of Darwin, Australia has decided to continue the practice of reciting the Lord's Prayer at meetings. Showing the wisdom of Solomon, the council members reason that non-Christians should not object to the prayer, since its inclusion at the meetings is a matter...

Anglicans and celibacy: the sticking point by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 29, 2009

To the surprise of no one, priestly celibacy is emerging as the most contentious issue to resolve in connection with the Pope's invitation to Anglicans. Italian journalists report that it was questions about celibacy that delayed the release of the Pope's apostolic exhortation.  The question...

if you don't read this, humanity could become extinct by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 29, 2009

Pope Benedict's willingness to welcome Anglicans into the Catholic Church is "a rejection of contemporary human experience." That is the magisterial judgment of James Carroll, the former Paulist priest who, having abandoned the order of Melchizedek, has taken up the Great Commission of...

Statistics and Value Propositions for the Catholic in Business by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 29, 2009

As a Catholic In Business (CIB), you have to look at statistics very carefully to make sure that you don't create lies or spread "third-party manufactured lies" to others. In marketing, statistics are sliced, diced, julienned, cooked, garnished and served to present appealing-looking...

Recruit for the Right Stuff by Peter Mirus in "The City Gates" - Oct 30, 2009

I have spent the last five years trying to convince some clients, in ways both direct and indirect, that they are going about staff recruitment backwards. Companies should never hire people who do not possess qualities that the company does not plan on teaching to them. If a company...

Good Questions, Great Answers by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Oct 30, 2009

Suppose you were to make a list of the most important questions which haunt the intersection between the Catholic Faith and modern culture. What would your list include? Where would you look for answers? No, this time I am not talking about CatholicCulture.org. But I do think this is a worthwhile...

the party of healing by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Oct 30, 2009

Amherst Professor of Jurisprudence Hadley Arkes remarks on the unexpected stubbornness of that almost-extinct species, the pro-life Democratic congressman, and the unexpected consequence that "health care" may find itself directed at health: What the media have not understood is that...

Ratzinger's Faith by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Oct 30, 2009

I've just finished reading Tracey Rowland's Ratzinger's Faith: The Theology of Pope Benedict XVI. Rowland is Dean and Associate Professor of Political Philosophy and Continental Theology at the John Paul II Institute in Melbourne, Australia. She is also on the editorial board of Communio, the...

a new campaign to reform the CCHD by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Oct 30, 2009

A coalition of Catholic and pro-life groups-- including Human Life International, the American Life League, and the new Bellarmine Veritas Ministry-- has joined in a call for the American bishops to reform the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD). The Bellarmine Veritas Ministry burst...

Fall 2014 Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Art and theology, beauty and truth, work together in the New Evangelization 5 hours ago
Anatomy of Conversion 6 hours ago
Anatomy of Conversion 10 hours ago
It is a failure of mercy to deny sin November 20
Yesterday's news, tomorrow November 20

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days