Monthly Archives: December 2007

Strong Daughters

Headlines like this always catch my eye. A good dad needs all the information he can gather. My wife discredits the notion of parent-as-friend, but I like this emphasis on father as ally: I think that one of the reasons … Continue reading

Posted in My Family | 1 Comment

“God bless all of you – all of you on the good Earth.”

It was thirty-nine years ago today the Apollo 8 astronauts sent their greeting to the people of the good Earth. Bill Anders: We are now approaching lunar sunrise, and for all the people back on Earth, the crew of Apollo … Continue reading

Posted in Astronomy, Scripture | 1 Comment

“Because our flesh stood most in need of Him”

(This is Neil.) Here are some reflections from Geoffrey Rowell, the Anglican Bishop of Gibraltar, based on a conversation on his recent  journey to Cairo. There are from his “Credo” column in Sunday’s Times. Since I probably won’t post again in … Continue reading

Posted in Neil | 1 Comment

History and Truth

As a follow-up to the thread on Rowan Williams getting misquoted, I wanted to offer a few reflections on history, truth, and related matters from the viewpoint of a science- and theology- educated lay person. First, thanks to the Enlightenment … Continue reading

Posted in Commentary, spirituality | 1 Comment

Jesse Tree Ornaments

From the land of Trautman, you can download Jesse Tree ornaments for your Advent observances.

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Studying Inactive Catholics

A few weeks ago, I saw this Rhode Island Catholic piece by Emily Donohue featured on the CNS News Hub, and I’ve wanted to post on it for awhile. This is my last “free” time before Christmas, so here are … Continue reading

Posted in Ministry | 5 Comments


The Australian diocese of Wollongong is pressing full speed in its WYD prep. Zenit reported a “Battle of the Bands” event. Executive director Daniel Hopper: “With dancing, cheering and a mosh pit, it was an outstanding night! It even had … Continue reading

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A Second Letter to the Romans?

It sounds like a Dan Brown kind of thing, just less sexy. When one opens a new Italian Lectionary, one might get that impression when the proclamation line preceding the Scripture passage reads: The First Letter of St. Paul to … Continue reading

Posted in Liturgy | 1 Comment

Automatic Tuning

The marketers are billing it as a robotic guitar. It will automatically tune your instrument. Technology Review gives more technical details, but a more pop news side of the story is linked here. For the past few years, if you … Continue reading

Posted in Music | 2 Comments

Joy in the Blogosphere

There’s nothing like a little misreading of a prelate to get the holiday internet juices flowing. Well, maybe quite a lot of misreading. The Archbishop of Canterbury raises doubts about the Gospel According to Hallmark, gets misquoted in the media, … Continue reading

Posted in Commentary | 7 Comments

RP 38-40: Adaptations

The final section of the introduction to the Rite of Penance details “Adaptations of the Rite to Various Regions and Circumstances” First, some adaptations are within the purview of national conferences, upon confirmation of Rome: 38. In preparing particular rituals, … Continue reading

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“Is it rational to celebrate Communion?”: Liturgy as Drama

(This is Neil.) Is it rational to celebrate the Liturgy? Most of us, I think, would answer positively, flinching from the suggestion that liturgical action is irrational. But what sort of rationality would this be? The Anglican priest and theologian … Continue reading

Posted in Liturgy, Neil | 14 Comments

Maria Schneider

My friend Joe and I were accompanying our parish children’s choir (under his wife’s direction) at their Union Station gig on Saturday. Before the singing started we got into a discussion about Maria Schneider. I had read that she picked … Continue reading

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“The Ox Knows His Owner”: The Nativity Icon

(This is Neil.) I wonder if some of my readers remembered – hopefully, in prayer – that yesterday marked the 300th anniversary of Charles Wesley’s birth. Actually, I’ll post something more substantial about Charles Wesley later. I want to quickly … Continue reading

Posted in Neil | 2 Comments

RP 36-37: Penitential Services

Leaving aside form III we come to non-sacramental penance services. These aspects of the rite are just about totally ignored. First a definition: 36. Penitential services are gatherings of the people of God to hear God’s word as an invitation … Continue reading

Posted in Liturgy, Rite of Penance, Rites | 1 Comment