Catholic News

Pope’s Wednesday Audience: “Tribulations are part and parcel of evangelization”...

Speaking to the faithful gathered in St. Peter’s Square for the Angelus prayer, the Pope reflected on the liturgical reading of the day in which Jesus said to his disciples “Fear no one” but instructed them and prepared them to face the trials and persecutions the would suffer. “Jesus’ mission, he said, did not guarantee the disciples success...

Chasing Ernest: A journey to South Georgia to retrace the steps of Ernest Shackleton...

Twelve hundred miles off the southernmost tip of South America, there is a legendary place among travelers and historians. They speak of South Georgia Island in hushed, almost reverent terms. This small and mountainous island, with peaks above 9,000 feet, is located hundreds of miles from the closest beaten path. But the rugged and remote wilderness is famous for another reason...

Why Phoenix's flights can't take off in extreme heat...

Phoenix just provided another reason to hate flying: the heat. With temperatures there expected to hit 119 degrees Fahrenheit, airlines canceled more than 40 flights today. Wait. What? Airplanes can't fly because it's too hot? That's crazy. No, not really. According to news reports, the heat poses a particular problem for the Bombardier CRJ airliners...

Bracing for the next news story: Was Bernie Sanders actually pushing ‘secular humanism’?

Does anyone remember the days, a decade or two ago, when the official boogeyman of religious conservatism was a cultural tsunami called "secular humanism"? I sure do. That nasty label was being pinned on people all over the place. The only problem was, when I went out to do my religion-beat reporting work, I never seemed to run into many people whose personal beliefs actually fit under the dictionary definition of "secular...

Decide now whom you will fear: A homily for the 12th Sunday of the Year...

The Lord speaks to us today of one of the most central struggles in our life: fear. Yes, fear is one of our deepest drives and though it has a positive purpose, too often we miss the mark in directing its energy. The positive role of fear is to alert us that something is wrong and to divert us from danger. With our fallen nature...

Springfield Bishop Thomas Paprocki decrees: No Communion or funeral rites for same-sex couples...

Before LGBT Pride celebrations begin in Chicago this weekend, Bishop of Springfield Thomas Paprocki issued a formal decree calling on all members of the Catholic faith to enforce the Church’s longstanding policies on the issue of homosexuality.

Did Jesus really rise from the dead? ...

Some Christians confident in their own faith may not immediately see the need to read this book, given their solid belief in the Resurrection. However, answering the challenges and serious questions of those around us, including family members far from such faith, is motive enough to take up Carl Olson's deft exposition of "the reason for our faith...

The symptoms of dying (which you're going to do someday, so go to confession)...

You and I, one day we’ll die from the same thing. We’ll call it different names: cancer, diabetes, heart failure, stroke. One organ will fail, then another. Or maybe all at once. We’ll become more similar to each other than to people who continue living with your original diagnosis or mine. Dying has its own biology and symptoms...

A good eggsplanation of why bird eggs are shaped like eggs...

When Mary Caswell Stoddard started measuring bird eggs from hundreds of species, she wasn’t expecting to learn that most eggs are not egg-shaped. Think about an egg and you’ll probably conjure up an ellipse that’s slightly fatter at one end—the classic chicken egg. But chickens are outliers. Hummingbirds lay eggs that look like Tic Tacs...

Why Syria’s Christians oppose efforts to depose Assad...

In Syria, most Christians and other religious minorities, primarily Alawites and Druze, support Assad, certainly according to conventional wisdom. Polling data such as they are indicate that a majority of the total Syrian population, not just religious minorities, backs him in the civil war. “Even the Sunnis” will take Assad over “the extremists...

The Dismas Option: Why you shouldn't wait to come back to God...

Sometimes I wonder how many people fall away from the Catholic Church and live apart from God for many years, with the plan to return at the end of their lives. Their plan is to live the way they want, to “have their cake and eat it, too,” to “beat the system.” Jesus warned against this thinking in His Parable of the Thief in the Night in Matthew 24:42-44...

Former San Francisco Archbishop John Quinn dies at 88...

For the second time in a month, the City of St Francis is made to bury an archbishop... yet this time, it's the "Big One." The figure who enshrined a progressive style of Catholicism to fit the nation's most liberal city, Archbishop John Raphael Quinn died early this morning at 88. Head of the San Francisco church from 1977-95...

St. Thomas More’s prison cell in the Tower of London...

For a pilgrimage earlier this year, I made arrangements to visit the cell in the Tower of London where St. Thomas More was imprisoned as he underwent trial for refusal to take the Oath of Supremacy imposed by King IMG_0560Henry VIII. St. Thomas is my patron saint in Confirmation, and today (June 22) is his optional memorial. Although the Tower of London was used to detain the King’s prisoners from time to time...

Where did devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus come from?

This year on June 23, the Catholic Church celebrates the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. But where did that tradition originate? Devotion to the wounded heart of Jesus has its origins in the eleventh century, when pious Christians meditated on the Five Wounds of Christ. There grew up among the faithful prayers to the Sacred Heart...

Is Vatican II to blame for the sex abuse scandal?

The Catholic Herald UK reports: Mgr Peter Smith, former chancellor of Glasgow archdiocese, said the Church accepted conventional wisdom of the 1970s that it was “better to repair the [abuser], to fix them or to redeem them”, than punish them. In that era priests accused of abuse could be sent for therapy rather than face criminal charges...

This exposé of the LA trucking industry shows why Rerum Novarum is more relevant than ever.....

Samuel Talavera Jr. did everything his bosses asked. Most days, the trucker would drive more than 16 hours straight hauling LG dishwashers and Kumho tires to warehouses around Los Angeles, on their way to retail stores nationwide. He rarely went home to his family. At night, he crawled into the back of his cab and slept in the company parking lot...

Too many ill-formed priests treat Mass like it’s Howdy Doody time.....

Three or four times each month, Father X (as I’ll call him here) celebrates the noontime daily Mass I regularly attend. I’m grateful for his homilies, which are almost always thoughtful. Thus in a recent commentary on Jesus’s debate with the Sadducees over the resurrection of the dead, Father X gave a lucid and moving explanation of the “communion of saints” and how it functions in our Christian lives...

How the recovered bones of Julia Greeley reveal her true grit...

Hundreds of people were drawn to the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception on June 7 for the transfer of Julia Greeley’s mortal remains, which were exhumed as a part of her cause for canonization. Few records about Julia exist, but her remains confirm what was passed on orally: Julia was a woman of remarkable perseverance and conviction who should inspire us all to pursue holiness...

Why is God silent? He’s silent because, as Cardinal Sarah tells us, silence is the language of God.....

In the Catholic world, it was a year of silence. Martin Scorsese fulfilled his longstanding dream to adapt Shusaku Endo’s novel Silence for film. The book chronicles two young Jesuits in Japan searching for their lost mentor, rumored to have abandoned the faith. Japan experienced a massive number of martyrdoms as the Emperor banned the newly established religion in 1587...

Fortnight for Freedom: Please spend some time working and praying to protect your religious liberty...

There has been a steady erosion of religious liberty in the United States in recent years. It has been challenged through a broad range of incidents, requirements from the medical world, health insurance mandates, and court decisions. We often take our religious freedom for granted, but it is under substantive though sometimes subtle challenge...
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