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Pontifications

Pontifications

July 2008 Archives

The Feast of St. Ignatius

posted by David Gibson

The Society of Jesus, popularly known as the Jesuits, today mark the feast of their founder, Ignatius Loyola, a saint (and order) for whom I have especial affection. Besides, my daughter was kind enough to be born on this date! […]

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“And also with your spirit under my roof”…Welcome to the new Mass translations.

posted by David Gibson

Coming soon(ish), depending on subsequent approvals, all-new prayers and responses for the Mass, courtesy of that old-fashioned fellow, Pope Benedict XVI. Why this tradition-minded pope is pushing so many retro innovations is another topic. And I’m sure anything to do […]

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Praise Cheesus!

posted by David Gibson

Or rather, the Jesus Cheeto, as it’s being called. Yes, we’ve found Mother Teresa in a cinnamon bun (until it was stolen) and of course the Virgin Mary everywhere (check out this gallery). Now we have Jesus in a Cheeto, […]

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Pope’s fur faux pas

posted by David Gibson

When Cardinal Ratzinger was elected Benedict XVI, one of the first–and perhaps more surprising, given its liberal bent–endorsers of the choice was PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. PETA has never been shy about invoking Christianity in its […]

Humanae Vitae at 40: The sound of one hand clapping?

posted by David Gibson

The most remarkable thing about last week’s 40th anniversary of the release of Humanae Vitae, Pope Paul VI’s watershed encyclical upholding the ban on artificial contraception, is how little comment it aroused. That’s because birth control is at once a […]

Batman and Lambeth?

posted by David Gibson

Never thought you’d see that connection, eh? Well, think again. I’d forgotten in my earlier Batman post to refer to one of my favorite superhero pastimes, figuring out the religious affiliation of comic book characters. ReligionLink.org has an edition dedicated […]

Catholic Channel surfing: John Paul & Howard Stern?

posted by David Gibson

Any satellite radio subscribers out there? I’m not–yet–but I’ve been on the Catholic Channel on Sirius Radio a couple of times, mainly with Fr. Dave Dwyer and the Busted Halo crew, who are probably more my speed than the channel’s […]

Burke v. Lears, St. Louis v. NCR

posted by David Gibson

The case of the interdicts against Sr. Louis Lears, who attended an illicit ordination of women as priests, continues to heat up with a debate over NCR’s coverage of the story. Chief among the archdiocese’s critcisms is that they did […]

The soul of “The Dark Knight”

posted by David Gibson

It is a dark soul indeed, and that is what makes the movie–which I saw last (k)night–so powerful. I can’t qualify as a comic-book or action-hero or sci-fi geek (though my geekiness is evident in other areas), and I am […]

Women priests? The debate continues…

posted by David Gibson

Even as many Catholics watch with concern–and perhaps not a little schadenfreude–as the Anglican Communion at Lambeth splits up over homosexuality, back home in Rome and elsewhere the One True Church is still debating the issue of women and holy […]

Pope meets sex abuse victims: Is it enough?

posted by David Gibson

According to the latest AP report, Benedict XVI celebrated a private mass with four hand-picked sexual abuse victims on his last day in Australia: “He listened to their stories and offered them consolation,” the Vatican said in a statement. “Assuring […]

The Gospel of Saint Oprah?

posted by David Gibson

Speaking of book clubs, Oprah Winfrey has not only inspired a cult-like following–and a book by my religion writing colleague Marcia Nelson, called “The Gospel According to Oprah”–but now she has the sort of Christian critics that real cult leaders […]

Summer reading: A can’t miss suggestion

posted by David Gibson

In my humble opinion, at least–the suggestion would be “Say You’re One of Them,” a collection of short stories from Uwem Akpan, a Jesuit priest from Nigeria who is, remarkably and courageously, teaching at a seminary in Zimbabwe, at least […]

The end of the world as we know it?

posted by David Gibson

Or more of the same? Only I haven’t been paying attention–in fact, this brief item in a recent NYT was the first I’d heard of a program called “Baby Borrowers.” To wit: The American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry […]

Heck with the swallows–let’s all go back to Capistrano…

posted by David Gibson

A nice Orange County Register piece about the fifth anniversary of Father Art Holquin’s ministry at Mission San Juan Capistrano, the premier historic mission in California, dating back 232 years. Tradition couldn’t keep the mission in decent shape, however, and […]

Missionary proposition: Work the home front?

posted by David Gibson

The growth of short-term mission trips by young Americans has often struck me as little more than what is derided as “religious tourism,” although I am ambivalent in my criticism: Missionaries and church leaders and young people themselves talk about […]

Faith and Prayer: The untold side of Ingrid Betancourt’s hostage drama

posted by David Gibson

The dramatic rescue of Ingrid Betancourt and others held hostage by Colombia’s FARC thugs riveted the world for days (which is an eternity of sorts in media years). But a signal aspect of her captivity–and her survival–was her intense devotion. […]

Is the iPhone Catholic? Is the PC Protestant?

posted by David Gibson

These and other questions will press in on the true believer as Apple releases its new and improved version of the iPhone. Or perhaps this “Second Coming,” as the NYTimes’ tech writer David Pogue puts it in his column, isn’t […]

Richard John Neuhaus for President!

posted by David Gibson

OMG! Damon Linker was right! First Things is the center of a vast theocon conspiracy! And RJN is its leader! Check out the news story clip here… (H/T: First Things blog.)

Orwellian Catholicism? Archbishop Burke and the secret videotapes

posted by David Gibson

Following up on earlier posts here and here about the canonical penalties against Sister of Charity Louis Lears, formerly of St. Cronan’s parish in St. Louis: National Catholic Reporter just broke a story that the archdiocese authorized someone to videotape […]

More bad news for Cardinal Pell

posted by David Gibson

This morning’s update on the widening Aussie sex abuse scandal, also via dotCommonweal: Australia’s ABC News has obtained police wiretaps of a conversation between Fr. Terence Goodall and Anthony Jones, the man Goodall allegedly raped in 1982. Cardinal Pell had […]

Australia’s Cardinal Law?

posted by David Gibson

The archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell, often fills the role for the Catholic Church “Down Under” that Cardinal Bernard Law once did in Boston for the U.S. church: that is, a trenchant voice for “orthodoxy” and the commanding face […]

More turmoil at St. Louis parish

posted by David Gibson

The popular St. Louis parish of St. Cronan’s, which last week suffered the loss of pastoral associate Sister Louis Lears (read the post here) after she was put under interdict by the departing archbishop, Raymond Leo Burke, for actively supporting […]

Aussie Bishop on American Catholics: “My overwhelming thought was that, if the church loses these people, it has lost its very soul.”

posted by David Gibson

Bishop Geoffrey Robinson, whose lecture tour of the United States last month brought him critcism as well as praise thanks to his provocative book, “Confronting Sex and Power in the Catholic Church,” has returned home and has written up his […]

Indiana Jones move over: A real blockbuster find in biblical archeology

posted by David Gibson

Fascinating story just moved by The New York Times on a stone tablet which apparently came from the Dead Sea area and speaks of a messiah who will rise from the dead after three days…and it is dated to decades […]

Dropping a bomb on his way out: Archbishop Burke and the case of Sister Louise

posted by David Gibson

If nothing else, the recently promoted (some would say “kicked upstairs) former archbishop of St. Louis, Raymond Leo Burke, at least has a sense of timing. Just before he was named to St. Louis in late 2003, then-Bishop Burke of […]

For Independence Day, an independent woman

posted by David Gibson

Via the valuable resources of Christian History, a remarkable story that seemed remarkably apropos not only because of the holiday, but because “Mulan” has recently become the flavor of the day DVD in our house… The Revolutionary War was supported […]

The newest Popemobile?

posted by David Gibson

“Funky” and “Pope Benedict XVI” generally aren’t found in the same news item, but they are in this CNS blog post about the pontiff receiving a gift of a pair of Piaggio Ape-Calessino three-wheel, two-stroke putt-putt of the sort that […]

The Battle for the Catholic Voter

posted by David Gibson

Barack Obama is in a virtual tie with John McCain for the Catholic vote, the “Holy Grail” of the campaign, as Amy Sullivan puts it in her analysis of TIME’s latest poll which shows 45 percent of the 47 million […]

When does history become historic?

posted by David Gibson

That question came to mind as I was reading what seems like yet another round of talk about an Anglican “schism”-I put the word in quotes because many don’t describe it that way, or want to cast what is happening […]

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posted 2:38:01pm Aug. 27, 2012 | read full post »

Moving on, and many, many thanks...
So...my recent vacation and related absences also coincided with an offer from PoliticsDaily.com to cover religion for them, as editor Melinda Henneberger announces here in her roundup on the site's very successful first 100 days. That ...

posted 8:29:24pm Aug. 02, 2009 | read full post »

Calvin at 500, Calvinism 2.0
If you thought you knew John Calvin--who turned 500 last week--you probably don't know enough. For example, that he was French, born Jean Cauvin. And if he was in fact scandalized by dancing, he was also a lot more complex than that. I explored ...

posted 11:53:35am Jul. 16, 2009 | read full post »

Apologia pro vita sua...Kinda
 In my defense, I've had computer outages and family reunions and a few days of single-parenthood, which is always a bracing reminder of what many parents go through all the time. And this weekend it's off for a week's vacation. Anyway, ...

posted 10:51:36am Jul. 16, 2009 | read full post »

When Benny met Barry: "I'll pray for you!"
The first word via Vatican Radio and first image (that I saw) via Rocco: Speaking to Vatican Radio, Press Office Director Fr. Federico Lombardi said "moral values in international politics, immigration and the Catholic Church's ...

posted 12:54:28pm Jul. 10, 2009 | read full post »

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