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All Catholic commentary from May 2019

Episode 36—Bridges to Hell or Heaven: “Toxic Femininity” and the Spirit of Anti-Mary—Carrie Gress by Thomas V. Mirus in "The Catholic Culture Podcast" - May 1, 2019

One of the core things that has gone wrong with our culture in the past several decades is the denigration of every virtue associated with the perfect woman, Mary. Gentleness, humility, (true) beauty and especially motherhood: these are all...

Theories that Francis is not the Pope (or can be deposed) destroy the credibility of the Church by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - May 2, 2019

This essay, originally published on November 7, 2017, explains why any effort to depose the pope or declare that he has automatically been deposed through heresy is not only untenable but fundamentally damaging to the Church. It is possible, of course, to advocate that a particular pope should...

His Excellency Theodore Hesburgh by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "The City Gates" - May 3, 2019

If you received a review copy of the impressive new biography of the famous Theodore Hesburgh of Notre Dame—the university president who firmly set this Catholic university on the spiritually devastating road to secular prominence—you may have hesitated to expend the effort to read...

Is the Pope a heretic? The danger of asking the wrong question by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - May 3, 2019

Was it sheer frustration that prompted a group of Catholic scholars to issue their open letter charging Pope Francis with heresy? If so, I can understand. I share the frustration. The silence of the Catholic hierarchy, in the face of confusion that is tearing the Church apart, is maddening. If...

On saving the Church by breaking the tensions intrinsic to the Church’s life by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - May 7, 2019

The furor over the question of how we should respond to Pope Francis’ alleged heresies reminds me of the tensions between the human and the Divine which run all through the Church, and the Faith, and Christian thought. In nearly every case, it is a refusal to be willing to live with this...

Episode 37—Sculpting Two Benedicts—Jago by Thomas V. Mirus in "The Catholic Culture Podcast" - May 7, 2019

The young Italian sculptor Jago is best known to Catholics for his marble bust of Pope Benedict XVI, which the Pope himself awarded with a pontifical medal. Upon Benedict’s resignation, Jago radically reworked the piece into its current...

Once the crazy talk starts, it is hard to stop by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "The City Gates" - May 8, 2019

The pope who took office in 1958 when I was ten was Pope Saint John XXIII. He died when I was in high school and so, understandably, he was the first pope whom I considered at all in relationship to the tensions in the Church of which I was slowly becoming aware. I remember that some people...

Harassment at an abortion clinic by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 8, 2019

Congratulations (of a sort) are due to Rep. Brian Sims, a Democratic member of Pennsylvania’s state legislature. He has done something that other pro-abortion fanatics have failed to do. He has captured videotape of harassment outside an abortion clinic. Hasn’t it ever struck you...

Good points and bad in new Vatican sex-abuse guidelines by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 9, 2019

The new canonical norms for the handling of sex-abuse complaints, issued by Pope Francis today, resolve some of the problems that have contributed to the scandal. Other important problems, unfortunately, remain unresolved. The bulk of motu proprio, Vos Estis Lux Mundi, is appropriately...

Cardinal Müller on the Truth by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - May 10, 2019

Gerhard Cardinal Müller, who served as Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith from 2012 to 2017, has sometimes been compared with his great predecessor, Joseph Ratzinger (Benedict XVI), who not only appointed him but filled that position himself from 1981 until his election...

St. Ignatius of Antioch’s Letter to the Romans on his way to martyrdom by Thomas V. Mirus in "Multimedia Blog" - May 10, 2019

Later this year, CatholicCulture.org is hoping to launch a series of free audiobooks of the Fathers of the Church, performed by actor James T. Majewski. If you have 10 minutes free, we could use your feedback on this test run, a recording of the letter to the Romans by St. Ignatius of Antioch...

New ebook collection on the books of the Old Testament by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "The City Gates" - May 13, 2019

In the Spring of 2017, I began to reread the Old Testament in order to note down the particular insights about each book which occurred to me as I entered the fullness of what Scripture calls man’s three score and ten. As the task unfolded, I began to write up these reflections and post them...

The most inspiring story I have covered by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 14, 2019

From time to time someone asks me to name the biggest story that I have covered (probably the death of Pope John Paul II), or the most surprising story (easily, the resignation of Benedict XVI). Only rarely am I asked to name the most inspiring story. My answer to that question might surprise many...

German Catholic women, in thrall to the world, boycott Mass by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - May 14, 2019

This may be stating the obvious, but there is a great deal wrong with the widely-supported decision of German Catholic women’s groups to boycott Mass and refuse Church work in order to protest episcopal inaction on (a) sex abuse, and, wait for it, (b) women’s ordination. It is one more...

Episode 38—The Sacred Monster—Matthew K. Minerd by Thomas V. Mirus in "The Catholic Culture Podcast" - May 14, 2019

The name of Garrigou-Lagrange has long been a byword for a fusty, rigid Thomism of days gone by, allegedly more concerned with centuries of accretions built up by scholastic commentators than with the original teaching of the Angelic Doctor...

Making the best case for that open letter on papal heresy by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 16, 2019

John Rist, perhaps the most distinguished scholar among those who signed the open letter charging Pope Francis with heresy, has explained his action in an interview with the National Catholic Register. I would strongly urge all concerned Catholics to read the entire interview. Rist is an...

The ‘distraction’ of priestly celibacy by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 17, 2019

In the five weeks that have passed since Pope-emeritus Benedict published his letter on the roots of the sex-abuse scandal, critics of the former Pontiff have been remarkably successful at repressing his message. Their strategy has been to question the propriety of Benedict’s...

A touch of whimsy for Catholics by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - May 17, 2019

I don’t know about you, but there are days when I just want to enjoy myself. It is unhealthy to spend all of our time moaning about the state of the Church and the world when so many other pursuits are possible. There was once a young priest in our parish who, according to legend at least,...

Don’t call me ‘Doctor Lawler’—yet by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 20, 2019

When I was asked to deliver the commencement talk at Thomas More College, I accepted the invitation immediately because I love the place. Only later did I learn that I would also be receiving an honorary doctorate, and I probably can’t convey how delighted I was by that honor. Many years...

Starting the New Testament, with St. Matthew on the Messiah by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - May 21, 2019

Having finished my brief commentaries on the books of the Old Testament and wrapped them up into a cozy (and free) ebook, I find that I am ready to begin a similar series of reflections on the books of the New Testament, beginning with the Gospel according to Matthew. But while I can foresee...

Phil Lawler’s superb commencement address by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "The City Gates" - May 22, 2019

Do yourself a favor and take a little over twenty minutes to listen to Phil Lawler’s superb commencement address, given at Thomas More College of the Liberal Arts last Saturday, May 18, 2019 (linked at the bottom). Phil delivered the address immediately after receiving an honorary doctorate...

Mary, Our Mother by Jennifer Gregory Miller in "Liturgical Year Blog" - May 24, 2019

I think I’ve mentioned here before that my full-time day job the last few years has been the Elementary CGS catechist and assistant in a local Catholic Montessori School. Our Elementary class has 36 children ages 6-12. At different times of the year the extra activities with school and...

Quick Hits: Questioning the priesthood, dangerous ‘proselytism’, new rules on abuse by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 24, 2019

When The Atlantic published an essay entitled, “Abolish the Priesthood,” everyone who saw the magazine’s cover knew instinctively that the author, James Carroll, was writing about the Catholic priesthood. That’s a point that Father Paul Mankowski makes in the opening...

Modern culture in denial: Nothingness reigns in Argentina, too. by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - May 24, 2019

It is not news that those who are in favor of abortion—and especially those who regard it as a human right—are living in denial. You can always tell this is the case whenever deliberately deceptive language is reflexively adopted to obscure reality. “A woman’s right to...

How do we really know God is a Trinity of Persons? by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "Multimedia Blog" - May 28, 2019

In this presentation, Dr. Jeff Mirus explains how we know that God is a Trinity of Persons (three persons in one God), how we can at least begin to understand this mystery, and how important it is to an understanding of human life and love. This is the fourth video in the “How do we...

The Solemnity of the Ascension: The Feast Who Was Thursday by Jennifer Gregory Miller in "Liturgical Year Blog" - May 28, 2019

Bumping up this 2014 post for the feast of the Ascension, whether it is celebrated on Thursday or Sunday. The sixth week of Easter and the Seventh Sunday of Easter is a liturgical time with a bit of an identity crisis. This week was often referred to as Rogation Week before the revision of the...

Preparing for a Shift in the Liturgical Year by Jennifer Gregory Miller in "Liturgical Year Blog" - May 28, 2019

The Church is nearing the end of the Easter season. Depending on where you live, the Solemnity of the Ascension will be celebrated this Thursday or Sunday, and the following Sunday will close the Easter season with the Solemnity of Pentecost. The next day begins Ordinary Time, but first with a...

How do we really know God is a Trinity of Persons? (audio track from video) by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "Multimedia Blog" - May 28, 2019

This is the audio track from the fourth installment of our How Do We Really Know video series, for those who prefer audio only. To view the video or consult the supplementary print resources which are listed for the episode, go to the video entry page. Previous in series: How do we really...

Episode 39—Composing Liturgical Music That’s Noble, Accessible... and Sacred—Paul Jernberg by Thomas V. Mirus in "The Catholic Culture Podcast" - May 29, 2019

Paul Jernberg is a composer of sacred music and director of the Magnificat Institute, which offers education in the patrimony of Catholic liturgical music. He tells Thomas about his career, including an interesting digression about gospel music...

New interview, new revelations damage Pope’s credibility by Phil Lawler in "On the News" - May 29, 2019

In his latest interview Pope Francis says that he does not remember whether or not Archbishop Vigano told him about Theodore McCarrick’s sexual misconduct. He also insists that he knew “nothing, obviously, nothing, nothing” about McCarrick’s misconduct. Those two claims do...

Pope Saint Paul VI: Hope in the desert of Catholic renewal by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "On the Culture" - May 30, 2019

The very first feast of Pope Saint Paul VI was yesterday, May 29th, and his canonization late last year ought to be taken as a sign of hope for the rest of us. Yes, I know that some Catholics think this pope was a weak, imprudent and ineffective man who should never have been canonized, but...

The unjust punishment of a scholarly papal critic by Phil Lawler in "The City Gates" - May 31, 2019

Last year when he issued new rules for the governance of pontifical ecclesiastical faculties, Pope Francis called for a “culture of encounter” that would encourage “wide-ranging dialogue.” But there are limits, apparently, to how widely the dialogue should range. This...

Infiltration: An idiot’s guide to the problems of the Church by Dr. Jeff Mirus in "In Depth Analysis" - May 31, 2019

To my great sadness, Sophia Institute Press has just published Taylor R. Marshall’s Infiltration: The Plot to Destroy the Church from Within. The publisher is offering it under its “CRISIS Publications” imprint, designed to address problems “with clarity, cogency, and...