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November 22, 2017

Note from the Assistant Editor:

If you read only one article this week, let it be Ronda Chervin's reflection "The Joy of the Saints."  It has a sentence for everyone.  Mine: "Theirs is the joy of driving at a racing speed in contrast to the jerky pace of those who are trying to go ahead with one foot on the brake."

But also read the introduction to Brandon Vogt's remarkable book, Why I Am Catholic (and You Should Be Too).  "This isn't just a conversion memoir," he says.  "Choosing to be Catholic is emphatically a countercultural move.  I invite you, through this book, to carefully consider it, if only in the spirit of rebellion."

Then try an inspiring piece on a little girl's Catholic education in north Oxfordshire, as told by her father.  "At bedtime prayers yesterday she said, 'We pray that God's thorns in his head stop hurting him.'"

Roger Scruton's "The Religion of Rights" is worth a read, too.  "European society is rapidly jettisoning its Christian heritage and has found nothing to put in the place of it save the religion of 'human rights.'  And if you can claim something as a right, no reasoned argument can oppose you."

Then in simple — and visceral — language, Dominic Seldwood reminds us to "Never forget the bloody horrors of the English Reformation."  Read this and you won't.

There is much evil in the world.  But we end on a positive note: "In 2015, the most recent year for statistics, there was a 25% increase nationally in ordinations."  Never lose hope.  - Meaghen Hale

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"G. K. Chesterton was once asked by a reporter what he would do if the Risen Christ were now standing right behind him. Chesterton simply replied "but He is."

New Resources

The Joy of the Saints - Ronda Chervin - from Church of Love

The depth of joy which the saint experiences cannot be separated from his conviction of the reality of its source.

"Why I Am Catholic (and You Should Be Too)" - Brandon Vogt - Introduction to Why I Am Catholic (and You Should Be Too)

"Brandon Vogt's Why I Am Catholic lives up to its cheeky title. It is clear, direct, simple yet not simplistic.... Here is a friendly explanation from a live fish who is swimming happily upstream to the many fish who are passing him in the other direction." - Peter Kreeft

Don't dismiss Catholic schools out of hand — I've seen them pass on the faith - Stephen Bullivant - Catholic Herald

My daughter's primary school is brilliant at upholding a Catholic ethos.

Never forget the bloody horrors of the English Reformation - Dominic Selwood - Catholic Herald

Amid celebrations of the Reformation's 500th anniversary, we should remember the mass persecutions of 16th century England.

The least religious generation in U.S. history: A reflection on Jean Twenge's "Igen" - Bishop Robert Barron - Word on Fire

Jean Twenge's book iGen is one of the most fascinating — and depressing — texts I've read in the past decade.

The Religion of Rights - Roger Scruton - BBC: A Point of View

European civilisation is marked through and through by Christ's two commandments, to love God entirely and to love your neighbour as yourself.

As the Bard might say... - George Weigel - The Catholic Difference

Four centuries after his death, Shakespeare remains a peerless playwright because of his remarkable insight into the human condition.

On giving a certain sound - Father George W. Rutler - From the Pastor

The Baptist church in Sutherland Springs, Texas has been made a shrine, for the massacre there has left it a hallowed place for mourners.

33rd Sunday in OT - Father John Horgan - CERC

The parable of the talents.

Editorials of Interest:

Remembering Depths and Heights - The Catholic Thing
The Fight against Concupiscence - Integrated Catholic Life
The HollyChurch Double Standard - Catholic World Report
The Creative Catholic: Carl E. Olson - Catholic World Report

Editorials of Interest

Pope Francis: It makes me sad to see people using phones at Mass - Catholic Herald

The pope's remarks were part of a new series of talks on the Mass that should help people understand the true value and significance of the liturgy as an essential part of growing closer to God.

Understanding Pope Francis: the focus is on process, not results - Catholic Culture

Two perceptive essays in First Things offer a different sort of insight into the pastoral approach of Pope Francis and help the reader to understand this frequently puzzling papacy.

Why John Paul and Benedict say "Start your purgatory today" - Aleteia

We may readily accept that purgation will happen to us after death. But what we don't often consider is that the same love we will encounter after death is meant to cleanse us even now, while we are still alive.

Remembering Depths and Heights - The Catholic Thing

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) held its annual Fall meeting in Baltimore last week.

Homily of Cardinal Pietro Parolin on the Centenary of Establishment of the USCCB - via Whispers in the Loggia

Your assembly, while never wavering in that commitment to Christian charity, has proved to be an effective means for coordinating the pastoral outreach and evangelical witness of the Church in America.

Cardinal Burke Addresses the 'Dubia' One Year After Their Publication - National Catholic Register

After years of research, the US bishops are rolling out a new training program that takes some of the best risk-management practices from other industries and applies them to child protection in the Church.

US bishops' new child protection program aims to create culture of mindfulness - Catholic World Report

After years of research, the US bishops are rolling out a new training program that takes some of the best risk-management practices from other industries and applies them to child protection in the Church.

Killing, Adultery, and the Church's Witness to Christ - The Catholic Thing

The theory we are examining explicitly states that fear of losing an important good is a justifiable reason for departing from "Gospel ideals."

Warning about ordaining married priests — by a married priest - Rorate Caeli

Those who are advocating this change have little experience in living a typical and normal life as husband and father.

Muslims Are Converting to Christianity in Record Numbers - NC Register

In 2005, Al Jazeera TV was "reporting on the mass conversions of Muslims, as many as 6 to 8 million, in sub-Saharan Africa, and they have repeated the warning every year."

Why French women are quitting the pill - Mercatornet

Here are women's main reasons for dropping the pill.

Undoing the Dis-Education of Millennials - New Boston Post

Before I can teach you how to reason, I must first teach you how to rid yourself of unreason.

What Betsy DeVos Gets Right About Campus Sexual Assault - Time

Arguing that victims of assault were being denied justice, the Obama White House weakened traditional protections for the accused, like presumption of innocence and the right to cross-examine an accuser. DeVos said the system "is shameful."

Activist Richie Hardcore Speaks Out On How He Fights Porn Culture In New Zealand And Australia - Fight the New Drug

We objectify and dehumanize people in pornography, and when we do that, we dehumanize ourselves.

The Fight against Concupiscence - Integrated Catholic Life

Whenever we're tempted to give into despair, we should run to the sacrament of Confession.

Modest Dressing, as a Virtue - NY Times

What's really behind fashion's — and women's — love of concealing clothes?

Physician-Assisted Suicide: A New Pascal's Wager - The Catholic Thing

To hold that suicide ends all suffering is to depart from reason and science, and to take a leap of blind faith in one's own power of conjecture about the state of the rational self after the death of the body.

The HollyChurch Double Standard - Catholic World Report

God willing, if the long Lent of 2002 led to badly needed reforms for the Catholic Church, the long fall of 2017 will do the same for Hollywood.

Edward Pentin: Catholic Identity Conference 2017 - youtube

Vatican journalist, Edward Pentin of the National Catholic Register, offers his evaluation of hte current state of things at the Vatican.

How to Influence the Way the Lord Will Judge Us - Community in Mission

Judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful.

The Creative Catholic: Carl E. Olson - Catholic World Report

My understanding of the writer's vocation is to receive, to respond, and — to the best of one's ability — to reveal.

Blessed John Henry Cardinal Newman and
St. Justin Martyr, pray for us

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