Two Cheers for Commercialized Christmas

By | February 8th, 2018|Categories: Culture, Spirituality|

Every year around two minutes past midnight November 1, when Halloween ends and the malls begin spewing out “Xmas Muzak,” Christians trundle out their well-worn complaints about the tinselly squalor of today’s commercialized Christmas. Don’t get me wrong. I, too, bemoan the ever-expanding catalogue of banality known as “holiday carols” which are little more than neutered [...]

Pro Sports as Substitute Religion

By | February 8th, 2018|Categories: Culture, Spirituality|

Man was made to worship. It's in his DNA, so to speak, to reach out towards and even to surrender to a Higher Power. The object of his worship will either be the one true God, or any of the myriad of false substitutes like pornography or alcohol (or other drugs) or even human esteem. One [...]

The HollyChurch Double Standard

By | February 8th, 2018|Categories: Culture, Spirituality|

Here’s a little thought experiment. Imagine the industry known in shorthand as Hollywood as a kind of parallel Catholic Church. Call it the First HollyChurch of Bel Air. (Remember, this is an analogy, not a simile.) In HollyChurch, the studio heads and producers are the bishops; the directors are the priests; and the celebrity actors are [...]

Off-Centering Prayer

By | February 8th, 2018|Categories: Culture, Spirituality|

A technique out there purporting to be a form of Christian prayer has made inroads in countless parishes across the US and Canada. Its promoters try very hard to sound Catholic and monastic, but it is, in fact, not really either. It’s called Centering Prayer, and the movement it spawned in a few short years was [...]

Small Is Huge and Beautiful

By | February 8th, 2018|Categories: Culture, Spirituality|

It may be simply that we have fallen natures and therefore tend toward the grandiose. I’m referring to the tendency among so many Catholics to talk about the Culture Crisis and to call for major overhauls, elaborate ideas about how to Turn This Crazy World Around, and dream about plans to fix the macro. I say [...]

The Most Natural Law Ever

By | July 17th, 2017|Categories: Books, Culture|

Have you ever had the experience of reading a book and wished for the life of you that you had a chance to ask the author a few key questions about that book? It happened to me recently and on a very important subject, the natural law. Before I drop the other shoe, let me say [...]

Comments Off on The Most Natural Law Ever

Je Suis Charlie Gard

By | July 3rd, 2017|Categories: Culture|

The heart-rending case of young Charlie Gard of England puts a most important question before us: Whose life is it anyway? If a young child is very sick, surely the parents, working in close concert with doctors, have the right to the final say regarding continued palliative or curative treatment for the child, or, God forbid, the question of disconnection from extraordinary measures of intervention. Charlie was born [...]

Comments Off on Je Suis Charlie Gard

Open invitation to Steven Crowder

By | June 24th, 2017|Categories: Culture|

Dear Steven: A fellow Canadian here (grew up in Halifax, went to grad school at McGill). I first saw you in the Fox News days and have appreciated your blend of comedy chops and conservative worldview. (Very few people doing that.) The fact that you're a pro-life Christian who makes no bones about it adds to the [...]

Comments Off on Open invitation to Steven Crowder

Catholics Cannot Be Pacifists

By | June 19th, 2017|Categories: Culture|

There is a romantic wistfulness for the pacifist cause. Last year’s Mel Gibson’s excellent film Hacksaw Ridge depicted the heroic actions of Desmond Doss, a Seventh Day Adventist who conscientiously objected to taking up a firearm during World War II. Gary Cooper played World War I pacifist sharpshooter Alvin York in the highest grossing film of [...]

Comments Off on Catholics Cannot Be Pacifists

Good stuff from guest-hosting Al Kresta’s show

By | June 7th, 2017|Categories: Culture|

  I had a blast guest hosting for my friend and mentor Al Kresta. Here are books mentioned on the air. Why Catholicism Matters by Bill Donahue Courage and Conviction: Pius XII, the Bridgettine Nuns, and the Rescue of Jews by Joanna Bogle The site by Deacon Steven Greydanus Citizen Hollywood and The Crusader by [...]

Comments Off on Good stuff from guest-hosting Al Kresta’s show