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The Insights eNewsletter

Insights provides critical perspective on the issues that affect your life as a Catholic today.

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The Ways of Evangelization Mar. 3, 2015

Thomas Van dominated our commentary over the weekend. Most importantly, he has given us the next in his series on the Fathers of the Church: Introduction to the Greek Apologists. This is another stage in spreading and confirming the Faith. I've been thinking about evangelization again, too, and...

The Complexities of Persecution Feb. 27, 2015

I've been thinking a good deal about the situation in Ukraine, and what I chiefly realize about it is that we are foolish to make pronouncements. See Ukraine: A great lesson in thinking like a Catholic. Interestingly, the Major Archbishop in the Ukraine seems to emphasize one thing, and Pope...

Considering the World of Film Feb. 24, 2015

The title is an anachronism, of course, but by film I mean to call attention to the importance of video entertainment in our culture. First, let me note that our solidarity campaign is still going well. We need just 92 more gifts to make our February goal of 700. Small and large count the same....

##ashtag Feb. 20, 2015

I continue to be pleased with the results of our solidarity campaign. If you haven't donated in February, a small gift now will count just as much as a large one toward our goal of 700 gifts. We've received 147 gifts over the past three days, and have just 207 to go! Now, what else is new?...

Stocking the Church with...Men Feb. 17, 2015

Before I call attention to the new materials on CatholicCulture.org, let's see what a little solidarity can do. This month we are emphasizing not the bottom line but solidarity in donation participation. We are shooting for 700 gifts in February. If you haven't already made a donation...

The Politicization of Just about Everything Feb. 13, 2015

Our culture seems to have a need to politicize everything, and I think this shows how weak the culture is in so many other respects. Politics has become the key to cultural relevance! In his latest On the News commentary, Phil Lawler worries about the politicization of science, which seems not...

More Signs of the Times Feb. 10, 2015

This message is all about reading the signs of the times. Consider, for example, the Canadian Supreme Court's mandate for assisted suicide. This is a clear sign of the death of democracy and the rise of paganism. I explain in my latest In Depth Analysis: O Canada! Assisted suicide, the...

An Emphasis on the Wrong Syllable? Feb. 6, 2015

In a continuing effort to clarify the legitimate moral positions involved in the debate over vaccinations made from fetal tissue, I've added my own two cents to the comments by Phil Lawler mentioned in my last message: Thinking morally about vaccinations: My turn!The Pontifical Academy for Life...

Issues across the Spectrum Feb. 3, 2015

It sometimes amazes even me how many different topics get addressed on CatholicCulture.org. Over the weekend, Thomas Van reviewed a biography and unexpectedly explored a saint's attitude toward endowments: St. Katharine Drexel shows how spiritual poverty and submission to Providence go hand in...

The Human Mix of Good and Evil Jan. 30, 2015

It never ceases to amaze me how prone we men and women are to mix good with evil. We find it so hard to get things exactly right! Much of our commentary this week seems to address this mix. For example, Phil Lawler reflects on our responsibility to vaccinate our children, which has become a...

Rich Spiritual Instruction Jan. 27, 2015

I have been frustrated in my desire to write articles lately, because we find ourselves in a bit of a fundraising crisis for January. The Action Alert on our website tells the story in brief. It is with considerable frustration that I once again must ask your help. Amazingly, however, Phil...

On News Both Good and Fun Jan. 23, 2015

Today Phil Lawler raises a question about the strengths and weaknesses of Pope Francis (all popes have them). See Guess who thinks Pope Francis shouldn't give so many interviews? However, since Tuesday's message focused on problems, today let me emphasize recent developments that are either...

A Myriad of Problems for the Church? Jan. 20, 2015

When we scan the news, we encounter a seemingly unlimited range of problems with which the beleaguered Church must cope. I highlight one, theological in character, which causes too many divisions today. I refer to mistaken ideas about the Gospel. See my latest On the Culture: Christ freed us...

Growing Divisions, or Signs of Growth? Jan. 16, 2015

While it is never difficult to find good news among the followers of Christ, it seems clear that we are living through a time when political and social pressures against the message of Christ are growing stronger. This actually creates a paradox as the West increasingly lives in denial of...

Theater of the absurd? Our cultural and social choices Jan. 13, 2015

It seems we are constantly faced with bad alternatives. For example, over the weekend, Phil Lawler attempted to make sense of the Hobbesian choice which afflicted so much coverage of the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack. Do we really have to choose between blasphemy and terrorism? See Murder,...

On Faith in God and Giving the Pope a Break Jan. 9, 2015

I thought it humorous but not unexpected that Phil Lawler felt the need this week to write about Pope Francis' pending encyclical on human ecology. It's the latest conceptual crisis of the Catholic chattering classes. As usual, Phil was right on target: Could we postpone debate on the Pope's...

Christmas Reviewed: Looking behind and ahead Jan. 6, 2015

In this first Insights message of 2015, the most important thing to note is that we Catholics should be still celebrating Christmas. How quickly we forget! So let's remember: Christmas does not end until The Baptism of the Lord on January 11th. Why not do at least three things to keep the...

A Blessed Christmas! Dec. 23, 2014

With all my heart, I wished to write something uplifting and full of gratitude for our users before Christmas. I particularly wanted you to understand how much I value your interest in and support of CatholicCulture.org. But the distributed denial of service attack struck last Thursday, and...

Denial of Service Attack: Success! Dec. 19, 2014

For the usual survey of new material, see below. For drama, start here: Yesterday about 1:00 pm, CatholicCulture.org was subjected to a distributed denial of service attack. This means that many different computers were pointed at our website and programmed to bombard us with so many page...

Speaking Softly to Women Religious Dec. 16, 2014

Let me first pause to ask those who have not yet done so to make a year-end contribution to CatholicCulture.org. We must still raise a little over $20,000 to meet our budget for the year! Now on to our new material: As Phil Lawler points out in On the News, In its showdown with American...

Very Catholic Comments Dec. 12, 2014

This has been a banner week for commentary on CatholicCulture.org. Let's simply proceed by author. On Wednesday I noticed a significant trend in Pope Francis' effort to take into account the concerns of his critics within the Church. I explain here: Francis listens to critics, clarifies the...

Action in Rome Dec. 9, 2014

After the long weekend in honor of the Immaculate Conception, we were faced with a big day for news today. For example, a new interview with Pope Francis was published in the Argentine newspaper La Nacion: Pope welcomes criticism as 'very healthy' in new interview. In this interview Francis...

Marriage is the Key Dec. 5, 2014

Good news: We matched the entire $45,000 Challenge Grant on December 3rd. Thanks to all who participated with prayers and donations! Now, let us turn to marriage, which seems to be at the center of everything today. This is not surprising, for Our Lord suggested that it was at the center of...

Reading Pope Francis Dec. 2, 2014

As of today, we have just $2,400 left to match to receive the $45K Challenge Grant. The deadline was December 1st, but if we wrap it up fast, we can still get the entire grant. Please offer a final gift quickly, while it will count twice! The Holy Father has been a spiritual gold mine over...

Getting Marriage Right Nov. 25, 2014

With $8,700 left to match of our $45K Challenge Grant, we have much to be thankful for. But we do need a final burst to win the entire grant. If you haven't yet, please do support us now while it will count twice! I see this week that marriage is back in the news. Phil Lawler gives an...

Anatomy of Conversion Nov. 21, 2014

In a message yesterday, I listed thirteen testimonials to our work from priests, sisters and lay Catholic leaders around the world. I was trying to complete the task of matching our $45,000 Challenge Grant. However, that email was met with what we might loosely call a resounding yawn. (OK, so...

Nuances of Leadership Nov. 18, 2014

Once again, let me begin by asking your continued support of our key effort to match our Challenge Grant. We have just $14,000 left to match by the end of the month! If you have not yet done so, please donate while it will count twice. Moving on, many have said that Pope Francis' homilies...

Chastity and Catholicism Nov. 14, 2014

With just over $22,000 left to match in our Challenge Grant, we have passed the halfway point! If you haven't yet, please donate any amount while it will be doubled! In our top commentary this week, Phil Lawler explains Why Cardinal Burke cannot lead a 'loyal opposition'. It is important to...

Another Significant Vatican Reform Nov. 11, 2014

With the deadline for our Challenge Grant on December 1st, we definitely need to step up the pace. We have $25,000 left to match. If you haven't yet, please contribute now while your gift will count twice! You'll recall that one reason Pope Emeritus Benedict resigned was that his strength...

New Vatican Policies Nov. 7, 2014

Once again, necessity forces me to beg you to support our Fall Campaign, if you haven't yet: We have almost $28,000 left to match, so your gift will count twice. Today Phil Lawler explains the significance of the new Vatican Secretariat for the Economy, under Cardinal George Pell. See New...

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