Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Commentary Archive

All Catholic commentary from July 2006

pro-choice, prayerfully by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 1, 2006

Spiritual Youth for Reproductive Freedom maintains, desultorily, a blog called Prayerfully Pro-Choice. The prayer-dimension, it must be said, is not much in evidence. Political jargon is. I was amazed to find out that members of the United Methodist Church helped begin the [Religious...

what price communion? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 2, 2006

Getting a taste of the medicine they've been spoon-feeding others for four decades, liberal Episcopalians spit it out: "I used to be Communion über alles," said Judy Holding, a student at Yale Divinity School and a chaplain at Greenwich Hospital, "but now I'm asking, at what price...

resting on her roars by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 2, 2006

Australian Helen Reddy is one of those 1970s figures who, like Andy Warhol, left a lasting mark on their generation, not by their talent, but by the faultlessly timed banality of their imagination. Every high school English class has its Reddy-in-waiting, viz., the scowling poetess with a...

a good witch, or a bad witch? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 2, 2006

Eye of newt, and toe of frog, Wool of bat, and tongue of dog, Adder's fork, and blind-worm's sting, Lizard's leg, and howlet's wing From a sponsored link noticed on the UK Telegraph site: Witchcraft Supplies for the Metaphysical Pagan: Wicca store and Witchcraft supplies for the...

code blue by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 2, 2006

The Anglican bishops of Nigeria have elected a priest from Fairfax, Virginia, to become the Missionary Bishop of the Convocation for Anglicans in North America. Gay-positive Anglicans in England, meanwhile, have proposed "the radical possibility of an American bishop 'overseeing' a liberal...

no self-respecting assassin ... by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 3, 2006

... would be caught dead: When law enforcement agents entered a halfway house on the South Side last year, a man wearing a bathrobe stood up and began screaming, "I'm a murderer! I'm a murderer!"This strange boast was prompted by his unwillingness to be mistaken for the convicted sex...

Of War and Red Flags by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jul 3, 2006

The reaction to my recent column on the moral ambiguity of war has been mixed but interesting. Although many thought the column worthwhile, others were convinced it was just one more proof of my conservative, pro-Republican pseudo-Catholicism. Those who edit large amounts of expository material...

fashioned to our liking by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 3, 2006

Today's refuse found buried in the dumpsters of yesteryear. Nice work by Gerald Augustinus, who rummaged around in Time magazine archives to discover the Bright Young Catholics of 2006 -- Hans Küng, Charles Curran, and Andrew Greeley -- congratulating themselves as the Bright Young Catholics of...

Pontiff gives World Cup a miss by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 4, 2006

From a wire service story earlier today. VAL D'AOSTA, 4 July 2006 [RNN] "I have no time for such foolishness," Pope Benedict XVI responded curtly, when asked by journalists whether he would support the team of his native Germany or that of his adopted Italy in today's World Cup soccer match....

Catholics vs. Provos by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 5, 2006

Some days ago Amy Welborn made reference to a Touchstone article wherein Austin Ruse gives an appreciative account of the development of the National Catholic Reporter's Vatican correspondent John Allen: Allen has achieved something remarkable [Ruse says] and that is genuine dialogue among...

the shape of schism yet to come? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 5, 2006

Back in 1994, professor James Hitchcock wrote an article in the Homiletic and Pastoral Review called "How Schism May Come" -- an elaborately articulated scenario of soft schism based on the all-too-real proliferation of Priestless Eucharistic Services in certain dioceses. Most of the elements of...

in case of emergency, follow liturgical directives by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 6, 2006

Just in case a bird-flu epidemic hits New Zealand, priests are receiving instructions on how to protect the faithful from contagion. Practices effective immediately include priests using only chalices and bowls made of precious metals for the distribution of holy communion. "Research has...

ever vigilant by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 6, 2006

The USCCB uses a six-element classification of film ratings, ranging from A-1 (general patronage) at one end of the spectrum, to O (morally offensive) at the other. The rating L is explained as "limited adult audience, films whose problematic content many adults would find troubling." Troubling...

too warlike by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 6, 2006

Crusader tops dragon, only to find himself snarled in the tentacles of political correctness. From the Daily Mail: The Church of England is considering rejecting England's patron saint St George on the grounds that his image is too warlike and may offend Muslims.Clergy have started a campaign...

not the #1 fan by Phil Lawler in "Off the Record" - Jul 6, 2006

Italy's ANSA news service has the answer to the question everyone has been asking this past week. Pope Benedict went to bed before the end of the Italy-Germany soccer match on Tuesday. Or at least that's what ANSA reports, based on an information received from the Pope's secretary, Msgr....

Tending One's Own Garden on Independence Day by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Jul 6, 2006

On July 4th, my oldest son and I shoveled a dump-truck load of mulch into our garden, where my wife spread it out two to three inches deep. This was not a bad way to celebrate Independence Day. There is something to be said for tending one’s own garden, more to be said for being left alone to tend...

audio clip by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 7, 2006

It was a long time in coming. But today, thanks to digital sound-mixing technology, the vocal register for which "On Eagle's Wings" was composed has been artificially replicated: THE VOICES of a tenor and his 13-year-old chorister son have been combined to produce the 18th-century sound of a...

how language develops by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 7, 2006

Bishop Joseph Adamec of Altoona-Johnstown, Pennsylvania, has penned a fascinating explanation of the new Mass translation approved by the US bishops' conference. The key point, he argues, is "that there is nothing here over which to get upset." Yup. Nothing to see here, folks. Move along. Put...

blind prejudice by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 7, 2006

The NYT editorializes on yesterday's NY Supreme Court decision that ruled denying marriage to same-sex couples does not violate the State Constitution: The ruling involved some twisted legal reasoning. Judges on both sides agreed that marriage is a fundamental right entitled to the highest...

Subset of the subset, arise! by Leila in "Off the Record" - Jul 7, 2006

More and more, listening to supporters of stem-cell research, I’m hearing the equivalent of the old playground “nya-nya” taunt: the brazen challenge that comes of knowing your opponent won’t take his best shot because he’s …a wimp. Michael Kinsley has a piece in today’s Washington Post about...

consecrated ground and all that by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 7, 2006

A lawn sale can often raise some quick cash when needed. Not all unused items look equally good on display in the front yard, though. From the Globe: The remains of dozens of bodies found in an abandoned, century-old Roman Catholic cemetery in Roxbury are being disinterred by the Archdiocese...

decisions decisions by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 8, 2006

"Senior care for tomorrow starts with family decisions today," reads the headline of an op-ed in The Tidings by the Executive Director of California Catholic Charities. An encouraging start. The piece itself, however, consists of a review of the problems of health care, prescription costs,...

the suspense is over! by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 8, 2006

Today's top news flashes: Couples married on July 8th, 1956, celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary today. Rain occurring in the area of Dubuque, Iowa, was reported to fall earthward. Also, the Church of England has voted to approve women bishops. (The Dubuque story is awaiting...

death spiral by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 10, 2006

Remember the old saw about swatting the ox between the eyes with a two-by-four "to get its attention"? In an LA Times op-ed, Beliefnet's Charlotte Allen takes the timber to liberal Christianity, the progressivist congregations Mark Steyn collectively calls the Church of the Flavoured...

that faith & values thing by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 12, 2006

Almost all absurdity of conduct arises from the imitation of those whom we cannot resemble. -- Samuel Johnson At the Democratic National Convention in 1988, held in Atlanta, the traditional red, white, and blue bunting was replaced by the designer colors salmon, cream, and lilac, because the...

yukking it up with the Swallow Patrol by Fr. Paul Mankowski, S.J. in "Off the Record" - Jul 12, 2006

Some folks just LOVE taking offense. And they know unfailingly where to find it. From this week's NCR: Emotions ran high among some participants in the Pentecost noon Mass at the Cathedral of St. Paul in Minnesota last month. There were tears, a break in the orderly queue to receive Communion,...

literalistically disinvited by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 12, 2006

Perhaps you were not aware that: Tuberculosis and malaria are major challenges-- no, the major challenges-- facing the Episcopal Church in the US today. Jesus is "our vehicle to the divine," but there may be another bus coming in a few minutes, and we certainly don't want to be "bickering...

coaching needed by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 12, 2006

The Los Angeles Tidings urges us to "Know the Five Steps to Protect God's Children." That sounds as if the well-being of children were more to the fore than, say, minimizing Archdiocesan liability. So check out Step Three: All adults should be coached on the importance of not being alone with...

Venus huic erat utraque nota by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 13, 2006

"Neuroscientist, once a woman, says he saw gender bias firsthand." Not a misprint, a headline in the Boston...

core values by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 13, 2006

More on the careful creation of Hillary. Her handlers think she can learn to fake naturalness. The problem is finding a natural self that will sell in 2008. The intense curiosity about Clinton -- as well as the challenge she faces in supplying politically salable answers -- is not new. In...

in their own words by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 14, 2006

The dominant trend in American conservatism today is made up of people who are "enemies of freedom, antidemocratic, antiequality, highly prejudiced, mean-spirited, power hungry, Machiavellian and amoral." OK, I found that claim in a op-ed piece, published in the pages of the notoriously...

Massachusetts and the rule of law by Phil Lawler in "Off the Record" - Jul 14, 2006

"The US Constitution guarantees each state 'a republican form of government,'" notes Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, in his "Washington Update." "The question is, is Massachusetts still a republic?" A republic is a polity in which the powers of the regime are defined...

elementary genetics by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 16, 2006

What happens when you combine a blue-eyed gene with a brown-eyed gene? You get brown eyes. What happens when you combine a "gay wedding" with a "Catholic wedding?" The thing is, when you put “Catholic” and “gay wedding” together, you come out with one inevitable conclusion: an extravaganza of...

Immigration: Catholic Thought on Social Issues by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Jul 19, 2006

Mary Ann Glendon is Learned Hand Professor of Law at Harvard University. Among her many accomplishments, she served as Vatican representative to the UN’s Beijing Conference on Women in 1995, she is a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics, she was named one of the 50 most influential women...

unintentional sex-change operations by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 20, 2006

Roughly one-third of the male fish in British rivers are developing female characteristics, in a frightening trend that could severely upset the ecological balance of the waterways. What's more, the trend could affect humans, with a devastating effect on fertility. The problem is apparently caused...

media-friendly by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 21, 2006

Speaking at a meeting with journalists this week, Bishop Joseph Duffy, who chairs the Irish bishops' communications committee, asks: How do we improve the relationship between Church and the mass media? Do you feel a PR campaign coming on? Will the bishop try to jolly up the reporters? Tell...

bragging rights by Phil Lawler in "Off the Record" - Jul 21, 2006

Over on the First Things blog, editor Joseph Bottum furnishes an enthusiastic eyewitness account of a speech in which President Bush explains his veto of legislation expanding federal funding for embryonic stem-cell research: His body language and, particularly, the “on fire” look in his eyes,...

until _____ do us part by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 21, 2006

Led by Andrew Sullivan, gay-rights activists have argued for several years that if homosexuals and lesbians are allowed to marry, just like the rest of us, then they'll start acting just like the rest of us. In Massachusetts that proposition is currently being tested, and to some ways of thinking...

Who says A must say B by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 22, 2006

With admirable clarity the Wall Street Journal goes to the heart of the debate on embryonic stem-cell research recently conducted in the US Senate: Our own view is that the embryos from which stem cells are collected have the potential to be-- but are not yet-- human beings. This is the...

Crossing the Meditation Divide by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Jul 25, 2006

There are many people who, at one time or another in their lives, have trouble meditating. For example, they become incapable of focusing their minds on incidents from the life of Our Lord. They find themselves no longer able to turn over these scenes in their minds, or to draw spiritual...

Resolutions of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - Jul 25, 2006

The thirtieth annual meeting of the Confraternity of Catholic Clergy took place in Washington, DC from July 10th through July 14th. In addition to celebrating Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and hearing inspiring addresses by U.S. Senator Rick Santorum, Dr....

guide to the perplexed liturgist by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 27, 2006

Easing back into my normal work schedule after a short but welcome vacation (and thus a period of comparative silence, for which I apologize to my faithful readers), I spent some time cleaning up old files on my computer, and came across an agenda item that appeared in the May-July 1997 newsletter...

Fraud detected but unpunished by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 28, 2006

Jean Marie Marchant is one of the 9 women who claimed to have been ordained as Catholic priests in a surrealistic ceremony that took place last year in international waters. Like most of the other would-be priestesses, Marchant showed her courage by using a false name. But now she had...

second thoughts by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 28, 2006

For almost exactly one year, the woman who supervised health-care ministry for the Boston archdiocese thought she was a priest. I presume that the people who worked with her at the Boston chancery did not share her delusion. I'd love to hear public confirmation on that point. In fact, I'd be...

all very cordial by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 30, 2006

A Wisconsin woman who (surprise!) sits on her local parish council plans to participate in the sham "ordination" ceremony in Pittsburgh tomorrow. Kathy Sullivan Vandberg told her story to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. In part: Q: Did you speak with him? A: I have met with Archbishop Dolan....

free to be me (re-posting) by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 31, 2006

(This comment originally appeared in OTR just over a year ago, but in light of the ceremony scheduled in Pittsburgh today, it seems equally relevant. - Ed.) A Boston-area innkeeper has declared her intention to be ordained a Catholic priest today in a privately arranged service conducted by...

calendar item by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Jul 31, 2006

In England and Wales, Ascension Thursday will now fall on Sunday. The 4th of July will still be on the 4th of July. But in England I guess that doesn't really...

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Straws in the Wind 5 hours ago
Hans Urs von Balthasar on Renewal that Matters 7 hours ago
Wrongheaded diocesan legal defenses in abuse cases July 24
New HHS Mandate must truly eliminate complicity July 23
Self-Esteem: Beyond Pop Psychology July 23

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Vatican issues working document for Synod of Bishops on the family CWN - June 26
New management, new changes coming for reformed Vatican bank CWN - July 8
Sweeping reforms to Vatican's media, financial operations CWN - July 9
‘Even Genghis Khan didn’t do this’: Mosul emptied of Christians CWN - July 21