Category Archives: Pope Benedict

Vatican II: A Great Gift to the Church

  I’m not a Vatican II scholar (I know, you’re shocked) but I’ve always had the notion that the Second Vatican Council was, all in all, a good thing. And I still do, but I don’t articulate why it was a good thing nearly as well as some other people do. I missed this article by George [...]

Pope Benedict’s Legacy

Father Thomas Reese, S.J., has an interesting and worthwhile article at the National Catholic Reporter on the legacy of Pope Benedict.  The piece is characterized first by an admirable generosity of spirit.  Fr. Reese explains that he had a rather serious and understandably distressing run in with the pope before he became pope: one of [...]

A 12 Days of Christmas Year in Review

What’s the best answer to Christmas sentimentality? The Christmas season liturgy. In the days that follow Christmas, the Church brings us the slaughter of innocents, the first martyr, and more. Christmas isn’t just sugarplum fairies and Santa Claus after all. It is good that the Church does this, because if you compare each day from [...]

The Pope Emeritus Responds to an Atheist

The National Catholic Register’s website has the full text of Pope emeritus Benedict’s letter in response to the Italian atheist, Piergiorgio Odifreddi.  Odifreddi had written a book –Dear Pope, I am Writing to You–which dealt critically with some of Benedict’s own writings, such as Jesus of Nazareth and Introduction to Christianity.  Odifreddi’s book came out in [...]

Mass in Middle Earth

I love my parish. Among other things, the liturgy is reverent and its music is truly beautiful. But I don’t usually appreciate these local blessings until I travel. Last weekend I visited Colorado. Since I needed to fly back home early Sunday morning, my friend and I caught a Saturday vigil Mass. The priest was [...]

Old, Good News

Usually, when Huffington Post, The New York Times, and The Daily Beast are giddy with excitement over something the Pope said about abortion, gay-marriage, or contraception, there’s either been a serious misunderstanding or the eschaton is near. For those who haven’t yet heard, America Magazine (and several other Jesuit publications worldwide) has just published a [...]

The Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Today is the memorial of the Queenship of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  Here are a couple of aids to reflection on this aspect of Catholic devotion to the mother of Our Lord. The Vatican website (which is a treasury of great materials) includes the text of Pope Benedict’s general audience on the Queenship of Mary [...]

Top 15 Quotes From the Pope’s New Enyclical “Lumen Fidei”

I set out this morning to identify my top 10 favorite quotes from Pope Francis’s new encylical, Lumen Fidei (“Light of Faith”) but it proved impossible to limit myself only to 10. So here are my top 15 favorite quotes! I hope reading this encourages you to read the entire encyclical, either online or as [...]

Thompson: “Fears for the health of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI”

Damien Thompson at the Telegraph is reporting that concerns have emerged for Pope Emeritus Benedict’s apparently rapidly fading health. Thompson writes: I think all of us were distressed by the fragility of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI when we saw him greet his successor, Pope Francis. The footage was almost too painful to watch. Now, according [...]


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