Advertisement

The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench

April 2010 Archives

“Any idiot can have a blog…”

posted by jmcgee

Certainly, I’ve done my part to prove that, haven’t I? But don’t take my word for it: check out what my friend Mike Hayes says on the topic over at his fine blog Googling God: Since I started a media […]

Advertisement

What will tomorrow’s American church look like?

posted by jmcgee

Some fascinating possibilities, from John Allen, in NCR: First, the Catholic population of the future in the United States, like the country as a whole, will be older. The most rapidly growing demographic sub-segment of the American population is actually not […]

Advertisement

A baptism photo for the ages

posted by jmcgee

The startling picture above was e-mailed to me this morning, with the following message: This was taken at the baptism of Valentino Mora, son of Erica, a single mom of 21 who asked the photographer to take a picture of […]

Advertisement

Can you hear me now: the perils of P.A. systems and preaching

posted by jmcgee

Some provocative food for thought from Msgr. Charles Pope on the question of what the modern microphone has done to the art of preaching: I have discussed with brother priests before the concern I have at how too much microphone […]

“Happy to serve you”: creator of iconic cardboard coffee cup dies

posted by jmcgee

First the inventor of the trampoline dies, and now this. The creator of a true American icon has gone to the great lunch counter in the sky: It was for decades the most enduring piece of ephemera in New York […]

Blessings from lay people?

posted by jmcgee

My post yesterday about deacons giving blessings prompted a reader to write: My question is, as a eucharistic minister, would you have in your repertoire a short blessing that we can use when a non-Catholic or child comes up for […]

Hanging out with the pope

posted by jmcgee

If you haven’t seen it yet, drop by my Beliefnet blog neighbor Rabbi Shumley and read his account of meeting Pope Benedict: Gary introduced me to the Pope warmly with my formal titles. I gave the Pope a special gift […]

Ladies and gentlemen: the cappa magna

posted by jmcgee

Here’s something you certainly don’t see every day, from the Pontifical High Mass celebrated last weekend in Washington.    Not everyone loved it. One commenter at U.S. Catholic magazine called it “a ridiculous mountain of red silk,” and added: It’s […]

Commenting about comments

posted by jmcgee

After I made this announcement the other day, Jim Lackey over at the Catholic News Service took notice. He posted his own thoughts on the matter and is soliciting comments about comments. Check it out. There are some interesting observations […]

The last holdout

posted by jmcgee

Only one diocese in America declines to take part in the USCCB’s annual audit on compliance with the so-called “Dallas Charter”, which was created in the wake of the 2002 sex abuse crisis. And this week, opposing sides staged two […]

I hope I’m like this when I’m 70

posted by jmcgee

Which, now that I think of it, isn’t that long from now… Nonetheless…the lesson here: enjoy the dance of life!

The astonishing memo that helped change the church

posted by jmcgee

It was addressed to “Wilton” — then-Bishop Wilton Gregory, President of the USCCB — in early 2002 and was written by his chancellor.  It is only now seeing the light of day. First, the story behind it, from the St. […]

Deacon, will you bless me?

posted by jmcgee

I get that question a lot — as do many deacons, I’m sure. (Actually, more often, they ask me, “Father, will you give me a blessing?”  That ranks up there with “Father, can you hear my confession?” as one of […]

Cardinal Bertone: celibacy vow “not untouchable”

posted by jmcgee

At a time when more people are defending the discipline, someone close to the pope is suggesting the vow of celibacy might be changed: The vow of celibacy by the clergy may be open to review, the Vatican’s second highest […]

The Lord is my goalie: a homily on hockey

posted by jmcgee

It’s not every Sunday that a homily finds a connection between hockey and Jesus Christ. But a priest managed to do that last weekend: Father Paul Noble isn’t the only Blue Jackets fan to suggest that players from his favorite […]

Catholicism booming in Africa, Asia

posted by jmcgee

Some revealing new statistics just released yesterday by the Vatican help paint a clearer picture of the Church of today — and, of course, tomorrow: The Vatican Publishing House has recently released a new edition of the Statistical Yearbook of […]

In Poland, despite everything, faith endures

posted by jmcgee

Or so it seems, according to a new poll just released: Support for the Roman Catholic Church has risen in Poland, a survey showed on Tuesday, despite child sexual abuse scandals that have badly eroded its authority and reputation in […]

Is this Noah’s Ark?

posted by jmcgee

Definitely possibly almost absolutely…maybe: A group of Chinese and Turkish evangelical explorers say wooden remains they have discovered on Mount Ararat in eastern Turkey are the remains of Noah’s Ark. The group claims that carbon dating proves the relics are […]

BA: Bloggers Anonymous

posted by jmcgee

Part of the problem that gave rise to this post may well be anonymity. In the blogosphere, you can be anyone, or no one, and get away with almost anything. No one needs to be accountable, or own up to […]

“What is he? The Catholic Michael Jackson?”

posted by jmcgee

That’s what my assistant news director asked me when she saw me pull out a camera in the office so that I could have my picture taken with John Michael Talbot. She asked the question with the same arched eyebrow […]

A vandalized statue, a “teachable moment”

posted by jmcgee

A statue of Mary was desecrated over the weekend in North Carolina. Details: At the urging of their pastor, members of St. Matthew Catholic Church stopped at a rose garden on church grounds Sunday to pray for whoever knocked off […]

St. Louis church may reconcile with archdiocese

posted by jmcgee

A long and bitter feud may finally be about to be resolved.  From the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: In the strongest evidence yet that the long legal battle between the St. Louis Archdiocese and St. Stanislaus Kostka Church could soon be […]

No comments — and here’s why

posted by jmcgee

The following comment on one post struck a nerve: Deacon Greg, I haven’t posted a comment since you left blogspot, and that’s primarily because I no longer feel welcome. If the old saying, “If you can’t stand the heat, stay […]

Report: historic papal apology coming

posted by jmcgee

So says a leading newspaper in Great Britain. This, from The Independent: Pope Benedict XVI is planning to make the first general apology for the abuse of children and minors by Roman Catholic priests when he meets thousands of clergymen […]

SuBo to sing for B16?

posted by jmcgee

Reports indicate the Scottish singing sensation could well be warbling for the pontiff when he visits the U.K. later this year: The Roman Catholic Church in Scotland wants Susan Boyle to perform for Pope Benedict XVI during a visit to […]

A last hurrah for Poland?

posted by jmcgee

The recent tragic plane crash that left so many in Poland shocked and grieving — and praying — has this reporter below wondering how much longer the country can hold so tightly to its Catholicism. From the New York Times: […]

The Times defends its coverage of the Catholic Church

posted by jmcgee

The paper’s ombudsman, or “public editor,” Clark Hoyt offered some thoughts this Sunday about how the paper had covered the scandals in the Church. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the paper came out very well. After dissecting a couple key stories — including […]

Scranton’s “deacon friendly” new bishop

posted by jmcgee

That’s how a deacon has described Bishop-elect Joseph Bambera, who will be installed in Scranton tomorrow. From the Scranton Times-Leader: “Over the years I’ve known him in several capacities,” said Joe DeVizia, a Roman Catholic deacon who is also executive […]

Quote of the day: “Give a soul to the Internet”

posted by jmcgee

“Without fear we must set sail on the digital sea facing into the deep with the same passion that has governed the ship of the Church for two thousand years. Rather than for, albeit necessary, technical resources, we want to […]

The outrageous proposals for the pope’s visit to Britain — UPDATED

posted by jmcgee

I swear, sometimes I think the people generating the news these days all work at The Onion. But no. Evidently, this is legit. From the Times of London: The Government has apologised to the Pope over official documents that mocked […]

Putting out into the deep, with a NET…

posted by jmcgee

The good folks at the National Catholic Register have done a story about my station NET: When the Brooklyn, N.Y., Diocese decided to launch a new faith-based cable TV channel to replace their Prayer Channel, they had no trouble with […]

“Unbelievable Brian Kownacki!”

posted by jmcgee

See what happens when you are taught by Jesuits? A Fordham baseball player does something amazing. This kid is awesome. H/T Rod.

A church on the move

posted by jmcgee

What the — ? You have to read it to believe it. Check it out.

Boy Scouts to pay millions over abuse cases

posted by jmcgee

And I’m sure it had something to do with celibacy. Right? From the New York Times: The Boy Scouts of America were ordered Friday to pay $18.5 million in a lawsuit that has focused new attention on the secret files […]

Vatican to fund adult stem cell research in America: “This is unprecedented” — UPDATED

posted by jmcgee

And it will happen at my alma mater, as a matter of fact. From the Catholic Review in Baltimore: The Vatican is expected to contribute several million dollars to an international consortium for adult stem-cell research, an effort that will […]

Behold, a prophet and a saint

posted by jmcgee

Check out this preview of an upcoming documentary on a modern martyr, “Monsenor: The Last Days of Oscar Romero.”  It looks truly extraordinary.

Smithsonian hosts exhibit on nuns in America

posted by jmcgee

The prominent Washington museum is hosting an unusual exhibition that will be hitting the road later this year — and it sounds like something every Catholic should try to see. From Catholic San Francisco: A gallery at the Smithsonian Institution […]

English and Welsh bishops urge penance for abuse

posted by jmcgee

Earlier, I posted this proposition from a deacon in Alaska, suggesting that deacons join bishops in public acts of penance. Now, another idea is taking root in the United Kingdom. From CNS: The bishops of England and Wales are asking […]

For priests: “God’s great works are accomplished in darkness”

posted by jmcgee

That is just one part of a remarkable and inspiring address delivered recently by Archbishop Emeritus John R. Quinn from San Francisco. You can read the whole thing at America magazine, but here’s one nugget among many: I was a […]

For Earth Day: the pope on “God’s wondrous creation”

posted by jmcgee

“For some of us, it might seem like we have come to the end of the world! For people of your age, however, any flight is an exciting prospect. But for me, this one was somewhat daunting! Yet the views […]

Cardinal removed from historic mass over sex abuse scandal

posted by jmcgee

This bit of news is so rare and exceptional, it may even be unprecedented. From CNS: The group organizing the first pontifical solemn high Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington in 45 […]

Gathering no moss: a Catholic life after the Rolling Stones

posted by jmcgee

The name Mandy Smith may not ring many bells these days — but her teenage fling (and subsequent marriage) to Rolling Stone Bill Wyman made headlines decades ago. Now she’s set her life on a decidedly different course: Many people […]

Priest accused of breaking seal of confession

posted by jmcgee

I can’t remember the last time I read about an incident like this, or saw it reported in the media. But here it is, one of the most serious charges a priest can face, reported in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel: A […]

The joy of text: teens texting 100 times day

posted by jmcgee

Hard to believe, but true. From Reuters: A third of U.S. teenagers with cell phones send more than 100 texts a day as texting has exploded to become the most popular means of communication for young people, according to new […]

Christmas in July: “Mad Men” returns 7/25

posted by jmcgee

Let the countdown begin! From the Hollywood Reporter: AMC will premiere Season 4 of “Mad Men” on Sunday, July 25, answering fans’ burning questions from last season’s cliffhanger finale. With the disbanding of ad agency Sterling Cooper and the marital […]

And now, Lutheran abuse victims speak out

posted by jmcgee

The sex abuse scandal in the Catholic world may be sending out ripples to other faiths, according to AFP: Publicity around paedophilia in the Catholic Church has prompted victims of sexual abuse in Finland’s Evangelical Lutheran Church to speak out, […]

A deacon’s proposal for public penance — UPDATED

posted by jmcgee

A deacon in Alaska sent me the letter below and, with his permission, I’m printing it here in full. I’d like to hear what readers, especially deacons and priests, think of this proposal for public penance: As I know you […]

“Be proud that you are Catholic”

posted by jmcgee

Those words conclude this remarkable speech, delivered by a non-Catholic businessman in Ohio way back in 2003!   You’ll want to read it all, but here’s a sample: The Church today, and when I say the Church keep in mind […]

“I firmly resolve, with the help of thy grace…”

posted by jmcgee

Could those familiar words of the Act of Contrition help the Church to heal itself? Over at the Huffington Post, Fr. James Martin goes on at great length on the subject of penance, finally concluding: What would a real penance […]

From “Great Silence” to “Greater Love”

posted by jmcgee

Those of us who saw and loved “Into Great Silence” may also want to check out a new documentary about Carmelite nuns, “No Greater Love.” The Anchoress found an enthusiastic review, and I discovered a trailer for the film on […]

The pope’s American lawyer

posted by jmcgee

With various legal cases pending against the pope and the Vatican in the United States, it would make sense for the pontiff to have his own lawyer in this country. Well, he does. From the Washington Post: This is a […]

Pope meets abuse victims in Malta — UPDATED

posted by jmcgee

Details are sketchy, but I expect we’ll learn more soon. From the BBC bulletin: Pope Benedict XVI has met alleged victims of sexual abuse by priests in Malta, saying the Church will do all in its power to punish abusers. […]

“The Vatican is not the same as the Catholic Church”

posted by jmcgee

Over at the Times, Maureen Dowd is resting this sabbath, and so her colleague Nicholas Kristof picks up where she left off, with a litany of complaints about the all-male hierarchy. Then, near the end, he offers this tribute to […]

A gumshoe for God: meet the deacon detective

posted by jmcgee

Here’s further evidence that deacons come from every walk of life. Check this out, from Arizona: In retirement, Mario Ortega does more in a week than many people do in months. This dedicated public servant is both a deacon for […]

Ugh! Ptooey! This coffee tastes like…

posted by jmcgee

…well, maybe not.  But still.  This ain’t exactly my cuppa.  From the New York Times: Goad Sibayan went prospecting recently in the remote Philippine highlands here known as the Cordillera. He clambered up and then down a narrow, rocky footpath […]

Benedict on “the shipwrecks of life”

posted by jmcgee

“Why this trip to Malta? There are many reasons. First, St. Paul. The Pauline Year for the universal church has ended, but Malta is celebrating 1,950 years since the shipwreck, and this occasion once presents us with the figure of […]

The lesson of trees

posted by jmcgee

A tree gives glory to God by being a tree. For in being what God means it to be it is obeying God. It “consents,” so to speak, to God’s creative love. It is expressing an idea which is in […]

Let us pray, anyway

posted by jmcgee

A judge ruled on Thursday that the National Day of Prayer is unconstitutional — but President Obama plans to mark the occasion anyway. From CBS News: “It goes beyond mere ‘acknowledgment’ of religion because its sole purpose is to encourage […]

Blame it on TV

posted by jmcgee

That’s what a bishop in Mexico is doing. He blames pornography, sex education and erotic TV progams for the sex abuse scandal. From SKY news: A Roman Catholic bishop in Mexico has sparked outrage by suggesting eroticism on television and […]

A reader writes: “This is why I hesitate to convert…”

posted by jmcgee

A comment at this thread, I think, deserves a wider airing.   (I’m closing off comments here, because I think this speaks for itself.) A reader writes: Just reading this comment thread makes me feel ill to my stomach. I was […]

“The old Vatican needs new blood”

posted by jmcgee

This week, in her Wall Street Journal column, Peggy Noonan looks at all the men crowding the hierarchy of the Catholic Church and says, in effect, “Enough”: Once, leaders of the Vatican felt that silence would protect the church. But […]

Pfleger apologizes

posted by jmcgee

One of the most controversial priests in Chicago — or in the country, for that matter — has apologized for remarks he made in last Sunday’s homily: Rev. Michael Pfleger — the South Side priest who has often found himself […]

Quote of the day: “Our jobs are not to judge…”

posted by jmcgee

“Our jobs are not to judge, not to finger-point, not to consign each other to flames of woe over what we understand of God’s mind, but to simply love each other, as created creatures, all doing the best we can […]

The pope speaks: “We see how necessary it is to do penance” — UPDATED

posted by jmcgee

The pontiff was apparently making a reference to the sex abuse scandal now rocking the Church: Pope Benedict said on Thursday the sexual abuse scandal shaking Roman Catholicism showed the Church needed to do penance for its sins, in a […]

Dolan after one year: “He’s a point of light”

posted by jmcgee

The New York Times — hardly the best friend of the city’s Archbishop — takes a long look at the man now occupying The Chair at St. Patrick’s, on the occasion of Timothy Dolan’s one-year anniversary: Among both defenders and […]

Too cute for words

posted by jmcgee

Ladies and gentlemen, the most adorable pet of the year: baby kangaroos. Perfect for keeping you company while you go jogging. Can they be housebroken??

The vocations shortage…in Medjugorje

posted by jmcgee

While many may debate the “fruits” of Medjugorje, it seems the place has not been especially productive when it comes to vocations among the seers. Catholic Light has a lengthy posting on the subject that is well worth reading for […]

How have the Episcopalians handled abuse cases?

posted by jmcgee

According to this blogger — a clergywoman in the Episcopal church — the answer is decidedly mixed.  From Rev. Ann Fontaine, over at Episcopal Cafe: We have our own history of the abuse of power, secrecy, and denial. It was […]

A life of ups and downs: inventor of trampoline dies

posted by jmcgee

We’ve seen it everywhere and taken it for granted, but yes: someone did invent that stretch of canvas you see at the circus. And word came this week that he has bounced to that Big Top in the sky: One […]

Dershowitz: in defense of the Pope

posted by jmcgee

Some praise for the pontiff, from a surprising source, famed lawyer Alan Dershowitz: Nor is the Catholic Church the only institution that has faced problems of sexual abuse. Every hierarchical body, especially but not exclusively religious ones, has faced similar […]

Quote of the day: “I walk by faith and not by fright”

posted by jmcgee

“I happen to think this is a great and important time to be Catholic. Really. No joke. How often do we get to be right smack in the middle of an opportunity for radical Christ-based, Holy Spirit-generated change – and […]

Benedict’s birthplace vandalized

posted by jmcgee

Sad news but, unfortunately, not all that surprising: The house in which Pope Benedict XVI was born in the southern Bavarian village of Marktl am Inn was vandalized overnight with an “obscene” phrase spray- painted above the main door, police […]

“Queen of Heaven, rejoice, alleluia…”

posted by jmcgee

And now, a little palate-cleanser… This is one of my favorite chants, and one we hear often this season at my parish: the Regina Caeli. (Our cantor sang it after communion last Sunday, as she will every Sunday during Easter […]

In homily, priest calls for pope to resign

posted by jmcgee

In what may be a first, anywhere, an outspoken Massachusetts pastor this weekend used his Sunday homily to call for Pope Benedict’s resignation: The Rev. James J. Scahill describes himself as “rather a reclusive person.” He insists he is no […]

Vatican on Beatles: Let’s let it be

posted by jmcgee

I’s impossible to know if The Man in White listens to the White Album, but someone at the Vatican clearly loves the Fab Four: The Vatican has finally made peace with the Beatles, saying their drug use, “dissolute” lives and […]

Benedict the Great?

posted by jmcgee

That idea may seem farfetched to some, especially now. But Ross Douthat argues that Benedict may be remembered by history for being a better pope than his celebrated predecessor: The last pope was a great man, but he was also […]

It all began with ‘Yes’

posted by jmcgee

“The story of redemption began with a heroic ‘Yes’ by a young girl named Mary, when, in the spirit of humility and obedience, she said to the angel’s message announcing that she would be the mother of Jesus: ‘May it […]

Homily for April 11, 2010: Second Sunday of Easter

posted by jmcgee

The gospel today is about how challenging it can be to believe something you can’t see.  How difficult it can be to accept something simply on faith.  Well, this Easter season, nobody, I think, stands in contrast to that more […]

Bishop among those killed in Poland crash

posted by jmcgee

The shocking tragedy in Russia today includes the news that several prominent members of the clergy were among those killed: The Holy Father expressed his sorrow over the death of Polish President Lech Kaczynski and those accompanying him on a […]

At last, some news to give us joy — and hope

posted by jmcgee

If the grim news has left you feeling feeling bludgeoned and bruised the last several days, the video below should lift your heart.   As described at First Things: Fans greeted each other on Easter at a Sunday evening soccer match […]

Catholic women oppressed? “Staggering nonsense”

posted by jmcgee

That’s how Elizabeth Scalia succinctly describes Newsweek’s latest screed about women and the church. Scalia notes: The fact is, for all of the talk about how oppressive the church has been for women, there has been no other institution in […]

Benedict’s bishops

posted by jmcgee

Buried inside his characteristically insightful piece about the man who will soon be leading Los Angeles, NCR’s John Allen offers this nugget: As things stand today, there are seven archdioceses in America where the archbishop is almost certain to become […]

St. Fluffy?

posted by jmcgee

A woman I know is grieving the death of her beloved cat after a long and difficult illness. The cat was 17. The woman is deeply religious, and she arranged for her pet to be sent off with a prayer […]

On this wobbly rock…

posted by jmcgee

“From the beginning and throughout history, Peter has often been a wobbly rock, a source of scandal, corrupt, and yet this is the one – and his successors – whose task is to hold us together so that we may […]

A Methodist clergywoman becomes Catholic: “Trust the journey”

posted by jmcgee

While many new Catholics this week are basking in the afterglow of their Easter baptism, one former Protestant (and a former clergywoman, at that) is reflecting back on her first year in the faith, with both gratitude and awe: I […]

Priests commit no more abuse than others

posted by jmcgee

If you think sex abuse is committed at a higher rate by priests…think again: The Catholic sex-abuse stories emerging every day suggest that Catholics have a much bigger problem with child molestation than other denominations and the general population. Many […]

The media on the Church: we distort, you decide

posted by jmcgee

Anyone who thinks the media has been treating the Church fairly over the last few weeks should take a moment to read what Sr. Mary Ann Walsh has to say in today’s Washington Post: Some quarters of the media in […]

“In the end, it’s not about them…”

posted by jmcgee

That’s how Melinda Henneberger concludes this heartfelt explanation of why she remains Catholic: Though Benedict has his admirers, I’ve not led any parades for him, and this is not my first or second rodeo with the rest of these cowboys, […]

Restless: St. Pio being moved

posted by jmcgee

One of the most beloved saints of the modern era is going to get a new resting place: The Capuchin friars of San Giovanni Rotondo have announced that St. Pio of Pietrelcina’s body will be moved into the new church, […]

“Now, I see the bigger family…”

posted by jmcgee

I just love this story: a poignant and heartfelt look at one new Catholic’s journey to baptism at the Easter Vigil. Take a look. And welcome, Javier.

Faith sells

posted by jmcgee

One of the best-kept secrets of advertising may be in the back of your church bulletin: Massage therapist Dan Snyder has discovered it’s better for business with God on your side. The 62-year-old owner of Dan’s Hands Therapeutic Massage and […]

Obama on “the lesson I take from Christ’s sacrifice”

posted by jmcgee

The President offered some words Tuesday morning on a topic you normally don’t hear him discussing — Christ and the resurrection: Speaking of Christ’s sacrifice and “the promise of redemption in the resurrection,” President Barack Obama welcomed Christian leaders from […]

Gomez the progressive…and the conservative

posted by jmcgee

The local press is taking a closer look at Archbishop Jose Gomez — and everybody seems to be scratching their heads: Gomez, 58, who will succeed Cardinal Roger Mahony, is a reflection of the future of American Catholicism. Born in […]

Benedict’s revenge?

posted by jmcgee

That’s how a London paper is characterizing his pick of Opus Dei bishop Jose Gomez to lead the Archdiocese of Los Angeles: Jose Gomez has been parachuted into the archdiocese of five million to try to lure the increasingly lapsing […]

Mahony on Gomez

posted by jmcgee

“I have known Archbishop Gomez since he became Auxiliary Bishop of Denver in 2001, and subsequently, the Archbishop of San Antonio in 2004. Over the years he has been a most effective leader working with priests serving the Spanish-speaking communities […]

“We are called to be witnesses…”

posted by jmcgee

“When we reread the New Testament narratives about the first Easter, we notice a common theme. Everyone who comes in contact with the risen Lord comes away from that encounter with the urgent desire to run and tell others what […]

Gomez to LA?

posted by jmcgee

That’s what the lead headline at New Advent is teasing, with an announcement reportedly set for tomorrow. Archbishop Jose Gomez, of San Antonio, has a fascinating resume — including being born in Mexico, and being ordained a priest of Opus […]

And now, meet Reverend Barbie

posted by jmcgee

I kid you not. Take a look: With her careers as veterinarian, astronaut and U.S. president behind her, Barbie has at last found her true calling: as a second-career Episcopal priest. The 11.5-inch-tall fictional graduate of Church Divinity School of […]

Our Fathers…?

posted by jmcgee

My blog neighbor Rod Dreher this morning posted a reflection on the idea of a priest/pastor being a “spiritual father” — a concept, he concedes, that is increasingly elusive: Catholics and Orthodox (at least) have a different relationship with their […]

Why remain Catholic?

posted by jmcgee

In case anyone missed it, Elizabeth Scalia has some powerful, soul-searing answers: The darkness within my church is real, and it has too often gone unaddressed. The light within my church is also real, and has too often gone unappreciated. […]

Wuerl prays with sex abuse protestors

posted by jmcgee

When my wife and I called her parents last night, to wish them a Happy Easter, they asked if we’d heard about something extraordinary that the Archbishop of Washington had done during Holy Week. It was news to me. And […]

“It is morning in the church…”

posted by jmcgee

“It is morning in the church. It is opening day not just for the Yankees, but for all of us. Hope conquers despair.” — Archbishop Timothy Dolan, Easter homily, April 4, 2010

An important discovery on Easter morning

posted by jmcgee

The greatest food in the world? No contest. Hands down, it’s this: Second important discovery: it goes great with coffee first thing in the morning.

And how was your Triduum?

posted by jmcgee

A lot of people have written, asking: “How was your Triduum? How about the Exultet? Are you still alive?” Well, yeah. I’m here. Let me try to sort it all out. Here’s what I remember. Thursday Morning. Spent some time […]

Homily for April 3, 2010: the Easter Vigil

posted by jmcgee

A few days ago, I was contacted by a reporter at the New York Post. She was doing a story for Easter, all about being Catholic in 2010. She wanted to hear my thoughts, especially in light of some of […]

Rejoice, heavenly powers!

posted by jmcgee

Rejoice, heavenly powers! Sing choirs of angels! Exult, all creation around God’s throne! Jesus Christ, our King is risen! Sound the trumpet of salvation! Rejoice, O earth, in shining splendor, radiant in the brightness of your King! Christ has conquered! […]

Good Friday

posted by jmcgee

“The simple fact is: this can’t be a day like any other. Scripture tells us that on the day Christ died, the world – literally – cracked open. The earth quaked. To this day, we cannot help but remember what […]

Quote of the day

posted by jmcgee

“There are three great groups of victims in this story. The first and most obvious, the children who were abused, who trusted, were preyed upon and bear the burden through life. The second group is the good priests and good […]

Brundage speaks

posted by jmcgee

Last night on “Currents,” Fr. Thomas Brundage, who oversaw the case involving Fr. Lawrence Murphy, set out his own account of what happened. You can watch it here. I only wish we’d had more time to go into more depth […]

Message to Bill Donohue: shut up

posted by jmcgee

Whatever your noble intentions may be, Mr. Donohue, it’s time for you to slip away and, frankly, shut up.  Please.  You are doing more harm than good, and making our church look idiotic. If you truly love our faith and […]

Homily for Holy Thursday: Mass of the Lord’s Supper

posted by jmcgee

A few nights ago, The History Channel showed a documentary in which scientists attempted to create what may be the most realistic 3-D image of the face of Christ. They spent many months on the project, using sophisticated computer technology […]

Previous Posts

This blog is no longer active
This blog is no longer being actively updated. Please feel free to browse the archives or: Read our most popular inspiration blog See our most popular inspirational video Take our most popular quiz

posted 10:42:40pm Dec. 12, 2010 | read full post »

One day more
A reminder: "The Deacon's Bench" is closed! Please enjoy the archives!

posted 11:26:20pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »

Meet Montana's married priest
Earlier this week, I posted an item about Montana getting its first married priest. Now a local TV station has hopped on the bandwagon. Take a look, below.

posted 10:29:55pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »

Big day in the Big Easy: 10 new deacons
Deacon Mike Talbot has the scoop: 10 men today were ordained as Permanent Deacons for the Archdiocese of New Orleans. This group of men was formally selected on the day the evacuation of New Orleans began as Hurricane Katrina approached. The immediate aftermath of the storm for this class would be

posted 6:55:42pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »

Gaudete! And let's break out a carol or two...
"Gesu Bambino," anyone? This is one of my favorites, and nobody does it better than these gals: Kathleen Battle and Frederica von Staade. Enjoy.

posted 1:04:10pm Dec. 11, 2010 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.