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Commentary Archive

All Catholic commentary from August 2005

merits further study by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 1, 2005

Richard Ostling, on the evangelical thaw toward Catholics (via Get Religion): The political turnabout since the 1960 presidential campaign was neatly framed last year by religious right activist Gary Bauer: "When John F. Kennedy made his famous speech that the Vatican would not tell him what to...

hand in glove by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 1, 2005

The Toledo Blade runs a lengthy investigative article on the collusion between Church officials, police, and judges in hushing-up child abuse. As cases of child sex abuse gained greater national attention in the 1970s and 1980s, pressure began mounting on authorities to get tougher on...

all for the nuclear option, raise your hands by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 1, 2005

The nuclear threat delivered: If they were to eliminate all those [priests] who were homosexually oriented, the number would be so staggering that it would be like an atomic bomb; it would do the same damage to the church's operation. And again: Kim Sue Lia Perkes, an avowed lesbian, was...

behind the curve by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 1, 2005

Alan Wolfe is Professor of Political Science at Boston College (Chestnut Hill's Jesuit university) and director of the university's Boisi Center for Religion and American Public Life. Here he displays his grasp of the religion to which his host institution once professed allegiance: Offered...

what if... by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 2, 2005

Suppose an American bishop wrote: If the person intends to promote the killing of innocent life, s/he would be guilty of such sinful cooperation.... But this seems unlikely as a general rule. Should every Catholic politician who has voted for an unjust law favoring abortion be judged to have...

Bishops as Players by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Aug 2, 2005

In May several individual bishops in the Philippines called for the resignation of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo. Throughout June, the entire Philippine episcopal conference seriously considered making that call their own. During a three-day meeting ending on July 11th, the bishops worked on a...

specialists by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 3, 2005

The Archdiocese of Portland is reaping the whirlwind after its "unprotected intercourse" defense became public. Levada was on vacation and unavailable to comment on the controversial legal stance, but the attorney who came up with it, Richard J. Kuhn, said he wrote Levada's answer to the...

talk about parodies... by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 3, 2005

When a Republican acts like a Republican, is it a "parody of pandering," or is he acting "cravenly"? Hmmm. Could go either way. But if a Republican acts like a Democrat, we know that is a "rare expression of principle." Robert Kuttner's Boston Globe column has to be seen to be believed. But...

Allen on Benedict by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 3, 2005

I'm part way through John Allen's updated biography of Ratzinger, Pope Benedict XVI. It includes an interesting autobiographical preface in which Allen candidly identifies himself as a "Vatican II Catholic" and suggests -- accurately, I think -- that this designation refers to no particular set...

the betrayal never ends by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 4, 2005

The Archdiocese of Boston has betrayed children by allowing priests to abuse them; betrayed parents by failing to provide real Catholic education in parochial schools; betrayed donors by using money for purposes different from the ones cited when the money was collected; and betrayed parishioners...

not quite dead yet by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 4, 2005

Call it a Freudian slip: The headline writer said more than he intended: Brain-Dead Woman Dies After Giving Birth If she was "brain dead," how could she "die" after giving birth? Unless she wasn't quite dead...

throwaway lives by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 4, 2005

Why clone dogs? An ethicist explains to the New York Times: "There's sort of a dry run here for the human cloning debate," he said. "What we do with dogs we may well end up doing with our kids." Hmm. OK. So then what did "we" do with dogs? The Times reports: The group worked for nearly...

(gulp!) by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 4, 2005

Remember Romer v. Evans, the landmark 1996 decision in which the US Supreme Court struck down an amendment to the Colorado state constitution, barring gay-rights laws? Guess who was working behind the scenes, as a pro-bono advisor to the homosexual activists who won that case? Now keep in...

Amazing follow-up story on Susan Torres by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 5, 2005

Did you feel edified when Susan Torres gave birth to a child, long after doctors had declared her "brain-dead?" Did you feel-- as we did-- that this was a wonderful victory for life? There's more to the story. Congratulations to our friends at LifeSite News for a compelling follow-up...

"Darwin's Compost" by Leila in "Off the Record" - Aug 5, 2005

I always find George Neumayr refreshingly direct. Today, writing about a comment elicited by a reporter from Bush on the subject of evolution, Neumayr wipes the floor with Darwinists, and leaves The Washington Post spread out for the dog. An honest headline on the story would read:...

theology from below by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 7, 2005

Remember Chuck Colbert, the erstwhile NCR contributor who planted himself in a Boston-area Mass in order to stage a little gay shock theater? A fellow commentator reports that he has tied one knot and severed a more important one: A friend, Chuck Colbert, has given me his thesis to read....

uppity laymen by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 7, 2005

Our renewed post-Conciliar Church is an open and welcoming Church, except where it's not. (Thanks to L.A....

honeymooners by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 7, 2005

The UK Telegraph reports -- to the surprise of no one except Neville Chamberlain -- that the treaty whereby clergy in same-sex marriages agree to live as brother and brother is a flop: The Church of England's crisis over homosexuality deepened yesterday after gay clergy said that they would...

perils of catechesis by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 8, 2005

The Irish archbishop is understandably concerned: Teachers will tell you that young children arrive in schools and don't know how to make the Sign of the Cross. That's bad; very bad. Thank goodness they're coming to Catholic schools, where they can be taught such things. But...

to please the scoffer, the lukewarm, or the vicious by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 8, 2005

Lutheran theologian Carl Braaten laments the doctrinal evisceration of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) -- "nothing remains ... but the aroma of an empty bottle" -- in an open letter to Bishop Hansen: The most damning thing in my view that can be charged against the ELCA is...

violence and the pro-life movement by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 8, 2005

Imagine the outcry if a prominent pro-life group referred to abortionists as "trash." Imagine the furor if the group's literature included a "superhero" cartoon, aimed at youngsters, in which abortion advocates were exploded, vaporized, and tossed into boiling water. Now imagine that the...

life begins at conception -- if you're a panda by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 8, 2005

Got this gem in the morning's e-mail: A 13-year-old giant panda gave birth to a cub at San Diego Zoo, but a second baby died in the womb, officials said Wednesday."--Associated Press, 3 August 2005 A cancer-ravaged woman robbed of consciousness by a stroke has given birth after being kept on...

is you is or is you ain't a catholic? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 8, 2005

There's an especially interesting exchange on liturgical abuses -- and the obedience of faith -- at Jeff Miller's blog. I found Miller's own remarks in this post particularly well targeted (he's answering a critic who does not support women's ordination "at this time"): Sorry, that won't do....

the mentor by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 8, 2005

Brother Anthony, 61, as a Marist Brother has dedicated his life to telling "the children that Jesus and Mary love them all very much." As the new principal at Sante Fe High School in Florida, he announced last Thursday that he wants to "spend more time on spiritual development." That...

a world upside down by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 8, 2005

The issue surfaces in Sydney. A doctor accused of inducing a late-term abortion has become the first medical practitioner in NSW to be charged over a termination since 1971. Dr Suman Sood is also believed to be the state's first doctor to be charged with the manslaughter of a foetus.The Sydney...

let's pretend by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 9, 2005

The Church of England's Clean Sheets Pastoral Provision -- unimprovably distilled by CaNN in the phrase "You may swim, provided you don't get wet" -- is running into some flak south of the Channel. In a Church Times article phlegmatically titled, "Akinola's Demand to 'Suspend' C of E Viewed with...

paint it black by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 9, 2005

Frances Kissling of Catholics for a Free Choice trains her attentions on World Youth Day, doing what she does best: COLOGNE, Germany, Aug. 8 /U.S. Newswire/ -- Today the Condoms4Life Campaign unveiled the newest phase of its public education effort to raise public awareness about the HIV/AIDS...

harmonious but different by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 9, 2005

The left-handed pitchers for the Beijing Olympics are already loosening up in the bullpen. Check out this essay on "harmonious benevolence" in the Chinese People's...

Christians, Culture and Recreation by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Aug 10, 2005

Over the years I’ve noticed that those of us who are committed Catholics occasionally act as if we distrust even the simplest of life’s pleasures. Sometimes this takes the form of a disdain for literature and the arts, even as expressions of Christian culture. At other times it shows itself in a...

Call me irresponsible by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 11, 2005

Is it possible for a major pro-abortion group to become so completely irresponsible that it loses credibility even with the pro-abortion mass media? NARAL, the militant voice of the abortion industry, is testing the limits with a new ad condemning Judge John Roberts. The ad makes the claim that...

The Clerk's Tale by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 12, 2005

Three thoughts on the Clark crash: 1. Unless the news reports are total fabrications -- and Clark hasn't said they are -- he's guilty of a gross offense against the integrity of a marriage, which is an offense against justice, even if no sexual mischief took place. Further, the violation of his...

Sorry, Nancy, we got distracted for a second ... by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 12, 2005

PLEASE AVERT YOUR EYES FROM THE AD WE PAID MEGABUCKS TO PRODUCE AND PUT ON NETWORK TELEVISION AND KINDLY REFRAIN FROM MENTIONING OR THINKING ABOUT IT. "The debate over that advertisement has become a distraction from the serious discussion we hoped to have with the American public," [NARAL...

à propos of nothing by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 12, 2005

My copy of Trollope's Barchester Towers just happened to fall open to this passage: But Mr. Slope has never been an immoral man. Indeed, he had resisted temptations to immorality with a strength of purpose that was creditable to him. He had early in life devoted himself to works which were...

in shelob's lair by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 12, 2005

People who should know better are swallowing the right-wing spin. The head of Catholics for a Free Choice went out of her way to contact the NY Times and attack NARAL, a selfish, short-sighted backstabbing move. That's from a blog named LiberalOasis, to which your Uncle Di was directed by...

must read by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 13, 2005

Terry Mattingly at GetReligion has persuaded Ken Woodward and the Notre Dame Journal of Law, Ethics & Public Policy to let him post Woodward's exceptionally informative article on the language used by the New York Times in coverage of the abortion controversy. The pro-abortion advocacy position...

last things by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 13, 2005

"I believe that temporary suspension of the Church of England is the right course of action to take," said Anglican Archbishop Peter Akinola, "The Church will be subjected to the same procedures and discipline that America and Canada faced." His exasperation was prompted by the C of E's...

did not rise to the level of a crime by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 13, 2005

Here's an edifying story I meant to comment on earlier. You probably didn't catch it on CNN. A southern Ohio prosecutor announced -- with obvious regret -- that he is unable to bring charges against Planned Parenthood for aborting the child of a 14-year-old without the knowledge or consent of...

the widening chasm by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 15, 2005

The Washington Post has a story on the sit-ins staged in resistance to Boston church closings. "The crisis of the church in Boston is not about sex abuse anymore," they quote a Boston College prof as saying. "It's about a collapse of institutional authority." It's David versus Goliath, fine....

how they won the war by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 15, 2005

Photo caption from China's People's Daily: Pictured here is the ceremony for Japan's surrender to the allied forces held on the "Missouri" warship in Tokyo Bay, on Sept. 2, 1945. After 14 years of heroic struggle and bloody war, the Chinese people, under the banner of the Communist Party of...

bad vibes by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 16, 2005

Boston Globe columnist Joan Vennochi can't understand why NARAL ever approved the infamous TV ad. The tone was all wrong, displaying ignorance and arrogance about the public's current feelings about abortion. Well, yes. Also it was completely dishonest. Some people thought was more than a matter...

not as they do by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 16, 2005

JUST IN CASE you failed to draw the desired conclusions from the media coverage attending The Monsignor's Day Off, journalist Joshua Robin -- in what purports to be a hard news story -- helpfully connects the dots for you: Three gay-rights protesters stood outside the church's doors, demanding...

scarlet women by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 16, 2005

Should you decide that Joan Venocchi and Derrick Jackson are right after all, Scarleteen has some gift suggestions for your children's birthdays. Blogger credit -- if that's the word I want -- to...

a case for hate speech by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 16, 2005

British PM Tony Blair has asked for new legal muscle in order to deport those he calls "preachers of hate." We all understand the pressures that make it an attractive political temptation to silence hate speech, but I think it's a temptation that should be resisted. Speaking from within the...

supervised ministry by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 17, 2005

Albany Bishop Howard "2-point-4" Hubbard has decided not to defrock abuser priests. A spokesman for the bishop actually said Tuesday that by not laicizing an abusive priest it actually keeps him subject to the church's authority -- otherwise he could just slip away and not be held...

we'll always have paris ... by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 17, 2005

Jack Dunn has the best job going: PR flak for Boston College. Not the editors of the National Enquirer, not Kim Jong Il's politburo, not the judges of the Miss Teen USA pageant enjoy such complete independence from reality, such sublime irresponsibility. Dunn works in a world of almost pure...

my brother's keeper? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 17, 2005

Dash-2 Bishop Lawrence Soens has been named in yet another abuse lawsuit: A long-time Catholic priest who served for more than 15 years in the Quad-City area before being named bishop of the Sioux City Diocese is being sued for the second time in three months under sexual abuse allegations.The...

product placement by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 17, 2005

Not -- appearances to the contrary -- a spoof: A new television drama featuring the struggles of an Episcopal priest with family, church politics and Jesus, his mentor and friend, and even his own nagging reliance on painkillers, is planned for the NBC 2005-2006 mid-season line-up. "This...

sites -- and parasites by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 17, 2005

Catholics for a Free Choice has set up a dummy WYD blog to shill for the transparently bogus "international youth coalition" that just happens to echo CFFC's talking points, etc. There are some amusingly bad attempts at forging spontaneous reactions in the comments boxes. *** For the good...

the reluctant apostle by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 18, 2005

New Zealand Bishop Peter Cullinane enters the public conversation about the civil response to abusers of children. Painful reading. The public is right to insist on protecting people against thugs and sexual deviants. True. But the public needs to set aside understandable but...

a sign of contradiction by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 18, 2005

The Ad Limina Apostolorum site has an interesting report on some "evangelical vandalism" in Cologne. I'm pretty sure the mention of Planned Parenthood must in fact be a reference to the efforts of Catholics for a Free Choice. We heard some of the WYD staff discussing some of the events the day...

humbug! by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 18, 2005

Deutsche Welle reports that Ebenezer Scrooge is going multimedia in Cologne. A number of organizations critical of organized religion, including the International League of Non-Religious and Atheists, have also decided to set up a "religion-free zone" in Cologne for people looking to get away...

Last Judgment by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 18, 2005

Via Dawn Eden, a story of moral...

teamwork? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 19, 2005

NCR's John Allen on WYD: "As Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, he was like the church's bulldog," said Pedro Russell, a 21-year-old from Bitteroot Valley, Montana, who cuts quite a figure -- tall, with bright green hair, and a rosary around his neck. "He was puttin' the smack-down on heresy," Russell...

just between ourselves by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 19, 2005

The website of a Texas abortion clinic makes it very, very clear that they don't want their customers patients taking their complaints to outside agencies. Our approach has produced excellent results, with hospitalization very rarely needed, mainly due to ectopic pregnancies or clotting...

Open season on Chinese Catholics by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 19, 2005

Li Hua Zheng was frightened. A Chinese Catholic, she was at Mass one day in 2000 when police burst through the door, seeking to arrest the priest. Zheng helped the priest to escape through a basement door, brought him to her grandmother's house, and then-- fearing official discovery and...

counterpoint by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 19, 2005

While I can't account for the echo-effect between Ian Fisher's and John Allen's stories on WYD (see below), I have to give Allen credit for the lucid and balanced responses he gives to readers' e-mailed questions in this Washington Post forum. As Allen points out, it's not his task as a...

the news they decide you must hear by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 19, 2005

Liked this glance at the data taken by Papabile: To amuse myself, I went to Google News....Searches resulted in:*"world youth day" + gay -- 180 stories*"world youth day" + abortion --176 stories*"world youth day" + condoms -- 139 stories*"world youth day" + eucharist -- 42 stories*"world youth...

ex ore infantium et lactantium by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 20, 2005

Take a second to check out this blog maintained by a Catholic homeschooled high school student. A favorable...

the very stones shall cry out by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 21, 2005

L.A.Catholic lets the art speak for...

double bluff by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 21, 2005

Investigators are asking whether a Diocese of Gary priest was as versatile as he was mobile. A timeline compiled by The [Northern Indiana] Times of the Official Catholic Directories during the Rev. Richard A. Emerson's 26-year career in the priesthood shows nine different moves to various...

living bread by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 21, 2005

Pope Benedict, from today's homily: Yesterday evening we came together in the presence of the Sacred Host, in which Jesus becomes for us the bread that sustains and feeds us (cf. Jn 6:35), and there we began our inner journey of adoration. In the Eucharist, adoration must become union. At...

WYD 2008 by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 21, 2005

The Sydney Morning Herald seems a bit put out by the insinuation that Australia is mission territory: The Pope has issued a dire warning about the state of religious faith in Australia, saying mainstream Christianity is dying more quickly here than in any other country. In remarks to priests in...

converted by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 22, 2005

The gospel for the Sunday before last was the encounter with the Canaanite woman, right? And at every single Gather-Us-In Catholic parish in the anglophone world the faithful heard a 30-year-old homily arguing that Jesus was mistakenly trapped in a narrow Judean worldview until corrected by an...

ut unum sint by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 22, 2005

Amy Welborn makes the following modest proposal for WYD 2008: Wouldn't it be a great idea if, in the three years before Sydney, the call went out to teach young people everywhere the Pater Noster, Ave Maria and Sign of the Cross in Latin? We could avoid all of the "Ohmygawdprevaticantwo"...

the old potent spell by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 22, 2005

Here's a paragraph from this morning's NYT article on the Roberts confirmation hearings: Several Democratic senators said the hearings on Judge Roberts were shaping up as a risky balancing act. Failing to press him could look weak to their liberal base. But attacking too hard could draw...

the bishops' quick-response capability by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 23, 2005

In April 2002, the leaders of the US bishops' conference met with Vatican officials, and issued a joint statement that proclaimed in part: ...a new and serious Apostolic Visitation of seminaries and other institutes of formation must be made without delay... Yesterday Catholic News Service...

object lesson by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 23, 2005

An instructive anecdote from Clayton Emmer on Amy Welborn's blog: Just a week ago, I met Raymond Flynn, who was the [U.S. ambassador to the Holy See] under Clinton. He also spoke at my college graduation. I was part of a group that was reading a screenplay he has underway, based on his novel,...

Brideshead Revisitated by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 23, 2005

If Evelyn Waugh's 1945 novel had been written by the 1981-1988 Bishop Marshall Seminary Evaluation Team: One upon a time there was a happy Catholic family who, it gives us no small satisfaction to report, lived happily ever after. After extensive interviews and consultation, we found that the...

feeling no pain by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 24, 2005

When doctors operate on a child still inside the mother's womb-- a technique that's advancing quite rapidly-- they administer anesthesia. But any anesthesia involves some medical risks. Rosen said those risks are medically acceptable when the goal is to save the fetus but there's not enough...

indiscriminately by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 24, 2005

Cardinal Kasper plays hostess with the consecrated host. The New York Times approves. TAIZÉ, France, Brother Roger Schutz pursued many ecumenical dreams in his long life, but in death one of them came true: At a Eucharistic service celebrated Tuesday by a Roman Catholic cardinal for Brother...

why the long face, comrades? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 24, 2005

Ecclesial feudalism is crumbling in Boston, gloat the editors of the NCR, "the serfs have been educated; unquestioning loyalty has been shown to be a dangerous idol; Boston as benefice has lost its luster." Mary Beth Carmody, a lawyer who is a member of St. Jeremiah Parish in Framingham,...

compassion: counterfeit & authentic by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 24, 2005

The National Catholic Reporter has an article by Kris Berggren about a Minneapolis group called Catholic Rainbow Parents who have authored a manifesto in response to what Berggren calls, "Vatican statements reviling the most precious thing they've raised -- their beloved children who happen to be...

currently under investigation by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 24, 2005

Here's an interesting case thrown up by allegations of child abuse in Alaska. Jesuit Father Richard McCaffrey denies charges that he abused a girl while working in western Alaska 25 years ago. Fairbanks Bishop Donald Kettler, within whose diocese McCaffrey was recently working, believes the...

Jack who? by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 25, 2005

I winced at this detail from Sandro Magister's follow-up on WYD. Cardinal Angelo Scola, one of the many bishops who came to catechize the young people during the first three days of the vigil with the pope, thought he would win them over with a ten-minute recitation from "On the Road" by Jack...

the ever more slippery slope by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 25, 2005

The latest addition to the Newspeak lexicon: "family...

News Flash: Babies recoil from jerks by Leila in "Off the Record" - Aug 25, 2005

Last week the New York Times published a good article, A Second Womb, by Paul Raeburn, on the treatment of premature babies. It's must reading for everyone expecting a child, and enlightening for everyone else. Heidelise Als is a woman with a mission to help neonatal professionals see the world...

thinking of you by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 25, 2005

Washington's Cardinal Theodore McCarrick returns from WYD at Cologne to communicate the insight: youth are young. I had the privilege of leading two catecheses. These are the talks that are given on three of the mornings during the week. One of mine was in a soccer stadium where we had 10,000...

Hard luck, my little lass. It's not in your best interest to breathe. by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 25, 2005

The parents of a brain-damaged baby in the UK have lost their appeal of a court order that rules she should be allowed to die if she stops breathing. The doctors, not the parents, have the call. Here speaks the spokeswoman for the company that owns the hospital: "Our doctors and nurses, who...

great expectations by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 26, 2005

The current Tablet features not one but two opinion pieces arguing that Benedict XVI showed his true liberal colors in Cologne. The Pope did not do or say anything "wrong". And in spite of his lament that "the influence of Catholic ethics and morals is in constant decline" and that "many...

taking pains by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 26, 2005

National Right to Life has a thorough dissection of the recent J.A.M.A. imposture. In brief, it's clear that the surgical termination of pregnancy causes no pain to the...

fetal cry by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 26, 2005

Video clip from the Sydney Morning...

welcome to my show by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 26, 2005

Tom Hennessy sings the praises of Jimmy Breslin's favorite priest: [Brooklyn's Fr. John Powis] kept his Sunday tradition of having the congregation sing "Happy Birthday" to members celebrating that occasion.Once when a little girl missed the cue to stand for the song, Powis caught her...

tidings by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 27, 2005

McBrien on Komonchak on Ratzinger, Part II. The other image [Cardinal Ratzinger] employed in his homily, that of the pastor as a "fisher of men," presupposes, Father Komonchak notes, that "it is a good thing for the fish to be caught and taken from their natural environment." Yes, Father...

sources of inspiration by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 27, 2005

James Kushiner posts this interesting item about the National Council of Churches on the Touchstone blog. He's quoting a Weekly Standard article by Mark Tooley: Although the NCC's income had fallen from over $10 million to $6 million, [General Secretary Bob] Edgar erased the deficit-spending...

no comment by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 28, 2005

The law firm of Greenberg Traurig represented more than 250 persons who claimed sexual abuse at the hands of Massachusetts clergy. Here's a typical clip from a 2004 story: [Greenberg Traurig attorney Roderick] MacLeish said he will seek full disclosure of all diocesan records regarding...

for Him who has been found by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 28, 2005

Here's an excerpt from the Pope's Angelus address for this Sunday: The search for Christ must be the incessant craving of believers, of youth and adults, of the faithful and their pastors. This search should be encouraged, sustained and guided. Faith is not simply adherence to a system of...

Taize, intercommunion, and respect for the deceased by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 29, 2005

At the funeral for Brother Roger of the Taize community, at which Cardinal Walter Kasper presided, everyone-- Catholics and Protestants alike-- received Communion. How could that be justified, in light of the clear Church teaching against intercommunion? Many observers remarked that Pope...

this just in... by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 29, 2005

Bishop Skylstad has not yet released a USCCB statement on Hurricane...

opposed by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 29, 2005

The Sod Squad gives Roberts the thumbs-down: "For his entire adult life, John Roberts has been a disciple of and promoted a political and legal ideology that is antithetical to an America that embraces all, including lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people," Matt Foreman, executive...

today's church, tomorrow's treasure by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 29, 2005

XPQwire (August 29) "WE'RE BUILDING for the future," claims Los Angeles Archdiocesan Projects Manager Msgr. Bud Bradelstad. The man who directs its long-range planning explained that California's largest Catholic diocese designs its churches with a view to future use -- as warehouses,...

spectral by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 30, 2005

Pro-abortion Republican Senator Arlen Specter is stamping on the fingers of those who hoisted him into his present position. Prof. Hadley Arkes gives a lucid and trenchant analysis of Specter's latest missive to...

Scripture Alone: What Does the Bible Say? by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - Aug 30, 2005

A number of visitors have emailed us recently to correct “Catholic errors” by explaining what “the Bible says”. Some of these messages seem to have been triggered by our posting of the official prayer for the intercession of John Paul II. For example, we’ve been told that the Bible says there is...

splitting the difference by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 30, 2005

In a public address, Justice Antonin Scalia voices his contempt for the notion that federals courts should trump democratic process in settling public issues that hinge on moral convictions: "I am questioning the propriety -- indeed, the sanity -- of having a value-laden decision such as this...

losing it by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 31, 2005

The Weekly Standard's Wesley Smith issues a warning against dependence on the yuck-factor to safeguard our moral axioms. Most people take human exceptionalism for granted. They can no longer afford to do so. The great philosophical question of the 21st Century is going to be whether we will...

that noise you heard... by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 31, 2005

... was a crack in the protective wall set up by lawyers for the Los Angeles archdiocese to prevent disclosure of how Church leaders handled sex-abuse complaints. Cardinal Mahony and his legal team have been fighting tooth and nail to shore up the legal defenses in southern California. Just one...

You'll never guess who agrees with Pat Robertson by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 31, 2005

Why, it's Robert F. Kennedy, Jr! You might not have the patience to read all the way through his wild rant on the "Huffington Post," in which the young Kennedy argues-- seriously!-- that President Bush and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour are responsible for hurricane Katrina. But if you jump...

upwardly mobile by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 31, 2005

The Archdiocese of Boston has released Msgr. Paul McInerny from pastoral duties in order to study in Rome and serve as secretary for Cardinal Law: Asked why the archdiocese is paying one of its priests to be secretary to the disgraced ex-archbishop, archdiocese spokesman Terrence C. Donilon...

blame the Vatican by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 31, 2005

The next time someone asks you to comment on the prospects of rapprochement between the Vatican and the Russian Orthodox patriarchate of Moscow, think about this. OK, so there's one historian ready to blame the Vatican for an 18th-century war between Russia and the Ottoman Empire. It takes all...

it is as it was by Diogenes in "Off the Record" - Aug 31, 2005

Who takes the fall? Sandro Magister (on his blog, not in his Chiesa column) relates a testy exchange of swipes between Joaquin Navarro-Valls and Secretary of State Cardinal Sodano following the diplomatic flap consequent on the omission of Israel from the Pope's Angelus address on July 24 and the...

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