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Commentary Archive

All Catholic commentary from June 2009

Lighthouse CD of the Month by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 2, 2009

Recently I received a note from Lighthouse Catholic Media asking if we would like to carry their ads on a percentage of sale basis. Lighthouse distributes audio CDs containing talks on various aspects of faith and spirituality. We checked them out and found that their selection of speakers reads...

Obama, the 1st Catholic president by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 2, 2009

 "We have a Vatican II president," John O'Malley informs us in a revealing America magazine article.  It seems that just as Bill Clinton was a "black president," even though he was white, so too Barack Obama is a "Catholic president" even though he is...

George Tiller, RIP by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 2, 2009

George Tiller was one of the few doctors in the United States who was willing to perform late-term abortions. He was murdered on Sunday morning, as he entered a church in Wichita, Kansas, by one Scott Roeder, who is apparently unconnected with any pro-life group. The motive is not yet...

Can Disobedience Be a Sign of Respect? by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Jun 2, 2009

 Krakow's Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz, the longtime secretary to the Pope John Paul II, has offered an explanation for his refusal to burn the personal papers of the late Pontiff. If the reports are accurate, the cardinal wants us to keep in mind that in a previous case, a Pope's aide was...

Tiller and Vigilante Justice by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Jun 2, 2009

 Every death is a tragedy. A violent death compounds tragedy with brutal injustice. And a bloody killing inside a church is an abomination. Sane Christians reacted to the murder of Dr. George Tiller with horror. We deplore the killing; we condemn it; we recoil from it. We pray for God's...

A Note on Terrorism and the Pro-Life Movement by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 3, 2009

How quick people are to redefine words to suit their own purposes! In both public statements and private correspondence, radical anti-lifers and squeamish pro-lifers alike have fallen into the habit of calling acts of violence against abortionists “terrorism” and defining those who...

On the Misappropriation of Words by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Jun 4, 2009

When a statue of Ronald Reagan was unveiled on Capitol Hill yesterday, Nancy Pelosi gave a speech at which she could not resist praising Nancy Reagan’s support of embryonic stem cell research: “Your support for stem-cell research has made a significant difference in the lives of many American...

Hmmmm.. by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - Jun 8, 2009

 In February, Bishop William Morris of Toowomba, in Australia, announced that he had no intention of backing off his contention that the Catholic Church should re-open discussion about the possibility of ordaining women as priests. He would "continue to fight for what I believe is the...

How the New Missal is Being Translated, and Why by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 10, 2009

Bishop Arthur Serratelli of Paterson (New Jersey) is the chairman of the US Bishops’ Committee on Divine Worship. Last October he addressed the Federation of Diocesan Liturgical Commissions on the significance and goals of the revision of the Roman Missal, currently in progress. The revision...

Why Be Catholic? 6: Divine Intimacy by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 10, 2009

Among all the concepts of God the world has known, only one draws the believer into the most profound intimacy of love. This intimacy is completely dependent upon the unique way in which the Christian God interacts in its three persons, and in which the Catholic God interacts with men. I refer, of...

Is it Just Me? (Rant No. 947) by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Jun 12, 2009

Long-time readers of this column know that I try, at least in anemic fits and starts, to keep up with what the larger culture is doing and thinking. God forbid that I should one day know so little of the world around me that I can’t make a few intelligent comments in the course of a week! So among...

Stupid by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 15, 2009

 Father Tom Reese is not happy. The American bishops have not been listening to him.  At their June meeting the US bishops will vote on a new set of liturgical translations, which have been prepared by linguists operating on the novel theory that a translation should reflect what the...

the efficiency experts by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 16, 2009

 You won't find Vatican employees updating their "friends" lists during office hours anymore. The Facebook web site has been blocked from the Vatican computer network. It's a question of efficiency, Msgr. Paul Tighe told the Catholic News Service. Keep the workers at work, you...

thin skin by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 16, 2009

He doesn't reach the same fever pitch of sputtering petulance that Father Tom Reese managed in the Washington Post, but David Gibson, writing for Beliefnet, lets us know that he, too, is sorely disappointed in the American bishops. Moreover, he cites editorials in America and Commonweal to...

a different approach to fundraising? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 17, 2009

A New Jersey pastor has been placed on administrative leave.  Monsignor Patrick Brown, pastor of St. Vincent de Paul Church since 1992, began the leave June 4, a day after two FBI agents visited the diocesan headquarters in Clifton and told top officials Brown was under investigation, said...

double reverse by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 18, 2009

Nouwen Catholics-Kenya, which describes itself as "a group of LGBTI (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans gender and Intersex) Catholics," is unhappy with Archbishop Karl Raymond Rodix. So, you might ask, what else is new? Gay activists are constantly at odds with archbishops, insofar as...

for better or for worse by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 18, 2009

 So the aptly named Alberto Cutie-- don't you agree that the name looks better without the accent?-- is now married. Well, best wishes to the happy couple, and all that. But tell me: What are the long-term prospects for Mrs. Cutie? This romance blossomed after Father Cutié, the...

diagnostic error by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 19, 2009

Folks have been reacting to the Christopher West imbroglio partly because of the ludicrous identification of the early thought of Karol Wojtyla and Hugh Hefner--a comparison that West regrets. But leaving aside any comparison of the...

Miller's analogy by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 19, 2009

Boys and girls, it's that time of year again to practice for those pesky analogy problems on college entrance exams. Here's problem #1. Listen carefully. Disgraced former archbishop of Milwaukee, Rembert Weakland, lobbying for the Church to "endorse the 'physical, genital expression'”...

A Significant USCCB Self-Correction by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 23, 2009

Last Thursday’s publication of “A Note on Ambiguities Contained in Reflections on Covenant and Mission” marks a very significant step in the renewal of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The “Note” clarified the doctrinal ambiguities in an ecumenical...

Christians and Jews in Dialogue by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 24, 2009

Now that the USCCB has shored up the deficiencies in Reflections on Covenant and Mission (see A Significant USCCB Self-Correction), the Director of the Jewish Anti-Defamation League, Abraham Foxman, has expressed concern: This document, if taken at face value, reintroduces the notion that...

Wards of the State: The Danger of Church Involvement in Government Programs by Phil Lawler in "In Depth Analysis" - Jun 25, 2009

If you're drowning, and someone throws you a rope, you're not likely to spend much time worrying about where the rope was manufactured. You grab the rope, and cling to it gratefully. Someone in desperate need is not in a position to question a benefactor. But when the need is no longer so...

The One and Only Theological Impasse by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Jun 26, 2009

In his presidential address to the annual meeting of the Catholic Theological Society of America on June 7th, Terrence Tilley discussed “Three Impasses in Christology”. Tilley is Chair of the Theology Department at Jesuit-run Fordham University in New York. For Tilley, a theological...

The Richness Offered by our Users by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 26, 2009

I mentioned in my Insights message today that the noted Dominican scholar Benedict Ashley apparently keeps up with CatholicCulture.org and kindly sent us some information about the poetry of the Sacred Heart written by Mechtilde of Magdeburg in the thirteenth century. You can find information...

sorry for the distraction by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 27, 2009

 So it appears that Caritas Christi, the health-care agency of the Boston archdiocese, won't be involved in the abortion business after all. Thank God for that. The announcement was obviously timed (after business hours on a...

How Culture is Done by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jun 29, 2009

One of the most important questions with which CatholicCulture.org is supposed to grapple is the question of how to form a Catholic culture. If the answer involves setting forth a specific program, a sure-fire series of steps that will take our current overall culture and make it Catholic, then...

call a grownup by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jun 30, 2009

 We shouldn't realize expect European commentators to understand the American political scene. So the rosy portrait of Barack Obama painted on the pages of L'Osservatore Romano, while annoying, are not necessarily cause for panic about the Vatican paper's editorial slant. The tributes to the...

Dead or Alive: 'Brain Death,' the Vulnerable, and the Slippery Slope by Phil Lawler in "In Depth Analysis" - Jun 30, 2009

Nathaniel Turner had a short, painful life. His parents are divorced, and while they both live in Massachusetts, Nathaniel spent most of his young life with a grandmother in Alabama. But he was staying with his father-- a man with a record of criminal violence-- when he was brought to the...

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