Catholic Liturgy in the News

The Vatican’s Ecclesia Dei Commission has issued in instruction, “Universae Ecclesiae,” on the use of the “extraordinary form” of the liturgy (i.e., the mass that was common before Vatican 2, aka the Tridentine mass, aka the “old Latin mass,” aka the Missal of 1962). See Fr. John Z’s links and commentary. Let me sketch the…

Annulments and the Catholic Church

Our Sunday Visitor had an article on “Top 10 Annulment Myths.” It provoked this response from Bai Macfarlane (divorced in scandalous fashion by her Catholic celebrity husband, Bud). For more about Bai and her struggle to save her own marriage and the marriages of others, see Mary’s Advocates.

There Be Dragons

I don’t care what the critics say … I liked “There Be Dragons.” As in “The Mission,” Joffe juxtaposes two contrasting characters. He portrays men of faith (Fr. Gabriel in “The Mission” and Josemaria Escriva, here) sympathetically, without Hollywood cynicism. He may not be a believer, but he creates believable stories in which people of…

On the Revised Catholic Liturgy

Later this year, American Catholics will begin to celebrate the liturgy with a new translation. The translation currently in use dates to the early 1970s, and reflects the Zeitgeist of that era. The folks in charge of that translation were committed to “the Spirit of Vatican 2,” which they felt went beyond the actual texts…

“The Shame of John Paul II”

Jason Berry, one of the journalists who has done the most to report on the sexual abuse scandal of the Catholic church, has a compelling article in the latest issue of The Nation. I read it at BN … you can read it online. “The Shame of John Paul II: How the Sex Abuse Scandal…

John Paul II and the Legionaries

Time has an article about Marcial Maciel and the Legion of Christ that touches on a particularly sensitive issue: the promotion of the order by Pope John Paul II, now under consideration for canonization. The Vatican had investigated Maciel’s personal life as early as the 1950s; but John Paul, whose papacy began in 1978, showered…

The Late, Great, John Allen

John Allen began his career as a petulant young liberal whose journalism scored points for “the good guys” (as he saw them)–see his biography of Ratzinger, for example. As he matured, he realized he needed some journalistic objectivity, and intentionally sought to distance his columns for NCR from the editorial page’s clear bias. The result,…

Another Marian Dogma?

Inside the Vatican magazine and Thomas More College are sponsoring a forum on Mariology, addressing the question of whether the Catholic church should proclaim a fifth Marian dogma, namely, that she is Co-redemptrix and Mediatrix of all graces. Presently, the Church has proclaimed four dogmas regarding the Mother of Jesus: (1) her maternal role in…

Thoughts on the Legionaries of Christ

In Catholic theology and spirituality of religious life, founders of religious orders have a unique charism (gift of the spirit) that the church is affirming when it establishes that order. But what happens when it is revealed that the founder was evil? That’s what the Catholic church is wrestling with now in the wake of…

The Maciel Scandal Deepens

Could the scandal of Marcial Maciel, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, get any worse? First there were the accusations, throughout his life, of pederasty and drug abuse. Then, after his death, word that he had fathered some children and that the order had supported them. Now it is charged that he sexually abused the…

Kennedy’s Houston Speech After 50 Years

It was fifty years ago this September that John F. Kennedy spoke to some ministers in Houston: I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute, where no Catholic prelate would tell the president (should he be Catholic) how to act, and no Protestant minister would tell his parishioners for…

What’s a Megachurch?

Is it just a large church? Not according to Hartford Seminary researchers. To them, a megachurch has to be Protestant. And it has to meet these other criteria: … strong charismatic senior ministers, many associate pastors, large staff, robust congregational identity that empowers 100’s to 1000’s of weekly volunteers, an identity that draws people from…

The Legionaries of Christ

It’s been a year since the Legion of Christ admitted that the order’s founder, Marcial Maciel, fathered a daughter (and this came on top of lots of other charges of sexual abuse over the years). Canonist Pete Vere notes that apologies and restitution to victims have not been forthcoming from the order. And he’s not…

Medjugorje

For thirty years, some say, “Mary” has been appearing to some folks in Medjugorje. A leading Catholic mariologist looks at the phenomenon and has a lot of problems with it.

Advice to the Pope

Lee Podles gives some advice to the pope on how to deal with the sexual abuse crisis. He should immediately remove from the clergy all bishops who are known to be corrupt and abusers. There are about twenty, starting with Mr. Sanchez of Santa Fe (he of girlfriends A, B, C, D, E…). He should…

Dale Fushek

One of the most read posts on this blog each week is one I wrote over two years ago about Dale Fushek, the founder of the Catholic youth program, LifeTeen. He was removed from ministry because of accusations of sexual misconduct, but started his own quasi-church. This led to his excommunication and, this week, his…

Catholic Charities and USCCB Office Abetted Abortion

Rod Dreher links to Washington Times report: Federal authorities are investigating the actions of a Catholic charity in Richmond which helped a 16-year-old Guatemalan girl to receive an abortion in January, in possible violation of Virginia law. Officials have called the matter to the attention of U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) headquarters in Washington,…

Nothing to Hide

Russell Shaw has a new book: Nothing to Hide: Secrecy, Communication and Communion in the Catholic Church. A former communications director for the US Catholic Bishops, he is appalled at the culture of secrecy in the Catholic church, and the harm it has done.

Catholicism and the Bible

RNS has a story about the upcoming Synod of Bishops, noting that the synod’s Instrumentum Laboris, or “working document,” warns against literal understanding of the Bible. The section in question is quoting the 1994 document, “The Interpretation of the Bible in the Church.” Here’s a longer selection than what is in either the Instrumentum laboris…

Corpus Christi

Today in the Catholic calendar is Corpus Christi, the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ–a day established to honor the Catholic church’s dogma of transubstantiation, the teaching that “by the consecration of the bread and wine there takes place a change of the whole substance of the bread into the substance of the…

The Push For a New Marian Dogma

For some years now, some Catholics have been pushing to get the pope to declare a new Marian dogma, that she is “mediatrix of all graces” and “co-redemptrix.” Mark Miravalle of the Franciscan University of Steubenville is one of the most vocal proponents of this. In January, five cardinals wrote to Pope Benedict XVI and…

When Catholic Laity Complain

Rod Dreher tells the story of a Catholic layman in Dallas who complained about a priest to then coadjutor bishop Joseph Galante. The layman, Steve Sandifer (a lawyer), had recently been received into the Catholic church by Fr. Art Mallinson. He learned that Mallinson was involved in a ring of homosexual priests. The story Rod…