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Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary
Catholic Culture Trusted Commentary

Commentary

The refusal to preach purity in the face of sexual license

This incident reveals how determined our modern secular culture is to assert the control of personal desire over being, as long as the desires in question are destructive of both our human nature and our relationship with God. Transgenderism simply extends the litany of the confused sexual desires which afflict our fallen nature, and which must be re-ordered through a combination of respect for reality, self-discipline, grace, and human growth—including spiritual growth.

Man Found Dead in Graveyard

It is fair to speculate that John the Baptist even refuses the "prophet" label. It waits until Jesus confers it on him.

Deaconesslessness

The questions arise every few years, and each time they're news. Who were the "deaconesses" in the early Church? What was their role? Why did the role vanish in the first millennium? Should the role be revived? The questions are never answered to everyone's satisfaction. Why must that be so?

Citizen Kane (1941)

For decades critics said Orson Welles’s Citizen Kane was the greatest film ever made. Unfortunately, that intimidating label sometimes keeps people from sitting down and watching the thing. It needn’t be so. Kane is eminently watchable and entertaining. It also definitely isn’t the greatest film of all time, but it’s one of the most technically impressive, especially considering it was directed, producted, co-written and starred in by a 25-year-old who’d never made a movie before.

St. Paul Center: Impressive, spiritually nourishing new books

Here is a winning list of books published by the St. Paul Center over the past couple of months.

The Vatican, China, and the ‘spirit of dialogue’

"I swear to... abide by the national constitution, safeguard homeland unity and social harmony, love the country and religion, and persist in the principle of independent and self-managed churches, adhere to the leadership of the Catholicism of my country in China, actively guide Catholicism to adapt to socialist society and contribute to the realization of the Chinese dream of the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation."

Confession and the Art of Boiler Maintenance

Saint Thomas teaches that the Sacrament raises imperfect contrition – fear of punishment – to perfect contrition and provides a clear and serene conscience.

Advent-Christmas Ebook released for new liturgical year

Our free liturgical year ebooks offer a rich set of resources for families to use in living the liturgical year in the domestic church. Resources include biographies of the saints to match each feast day, histories of the various celebrations and devotions, descriptions of customs from around the world, prayers, activities and recipes.

Neutrality is not an option

Recently I heard a conservative television commentator say of the sexual revolutionaries that “they’re coming for your children.” That, I think, was a particularly dull observation. They came for your children years ago; did you only just now notice?

John Dryden—Two Poems in Honor of St. Cecilia’s Day

But bright Cecilia rais'd the wonder high'r; / When to her organ, vocal breath was giv'n, / An angel heard, and straight appear'd / Mistaking earth for Heav'n.

Religious liberty: A bad political tactic?

The thing that bothers me is that arguing adherence moral issues on the basis of religious liberty is already a concession to those who deny reality.

War Dispatches from the Incredible Shrinking Man and the Good Thief

Death is inevitable. But is death a dead end?

A Congressional assault on religious freedom

The Act promises to respect my beliefs as long as I respect same-sex marriage. But believing as I do, I cannot recognize same-sex marriage. So the legislation requires me either to renounce my beliefs or maintain my silence.

148—Being Is Better Than Not Being—Christopher Mirus

How does Aristotle identify goodness with the ability to be contemplated – even in the sphere of ethics? What is the relation between friendship and contemplation? How can we call “beautiful” things as different as a morally virtuous human action, the parts of animals, the orbits of the heavenly spheres, and God Himself? What does Aristotle mean when he says that being is better than not being?

Even Catholic social transformation must be rooted in prayer

In a culture with the intensely secular first rule that religious belief is merely a personal sentiment, so shut up about it, the plush slipper is always on the other person’s foot. Granted that it is also dangerous when the plush slipper is on the Catholic foot, our own battered and uncomfortable boots today appear to be good only for walking away, or perhaps occasionally stomping away. We wonder in every aftermath whether our ineffective witness is worthy of anything but the Confessional.

The single-issue newspaper?

What would you say about the competence of a journalist who headlined a story: "New York Times chooses new editor for pro-abortion propaganda campaign?”

Second free ebook on Faith in series by Fr. Pokorsky

The last decade has seen the acceleration of errors in Catholic doctrine. Church officials seem increasingly unable to distinguish between their sacred duties as pastors in promoting Catholic principles and the indispensable role of the laity in applying those principles in everyday politics. Maybe these clusters of articles will help reaffirm our faith and desire for heavenly glory.

The Art of Killing a Conscience

If you plan to kill your conscience, do NOT read Psalm 51. Ever.

What ‘active participation’ really means

Our goal is active participation; yes. But active participation in what?

147—The World Is Falling Away—Jane Greer

Catholic poet Jane Greer joins the podcast to read from her third collection, The World As We Know It Is Falling Away. She discusses the spiritual challenges that came with the great success of her previous book, Love Like a Conflagration, which connects to a major theme of her new book: fallen man’s thwarted desire to exceed divinely ordained limits to earthly delights, in the face of death and apocalypse – along with the real beauty of the gifts God has given us to enjoy in this life.

Quick hits: tough talk about Vatican II and the aftermath

“Let’s be plain: the Church has been in schism since 1968, if not earlier."

Pope Pius XI—Casti Connubii: On Christian Marriage | Full

“Matrimony was not instituted or restored by man but by God; not by man were the laws made to strengthen and confirm and elevate it but by God, the Author of nature, and by Christ Our Lord by Whom nature was redeemed...”

Fame kills: Sunset Boulevard (1950)

A discussion of Billy Wilder's acerbic and vastly entertaining critique of Hollywood avarice and vanity, Sunset Boulevard.

The Gentle Intervention: Frontline Church Discipline

Many ideas that seem peculiarly modern actually have deep Christian roots. This is true of much of the terminology of addiction and recovery. Today we look for the roots of "intervention" in the Gospel and the works of the Fathers — and find applications for ordinarily life, even beyond the orbit of addiction.

The moral beauty of Catholicism: Reversing the perspective

Considering the motives of credibility that might attract others to the Church before they accept her doctrines, is it possible that those who have sought to live an authentically Catholic life now for many years can see within themselves something mysteriously compelling that they could not possibly wish to be without? This question may produce genuine insights into the nature of the dreadful chasm that separates the way of Christ and the Church from every other possibility.

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