Category Archives: Catholicism

The Church of England approves women bishops

This week, the General Synod of the Church of England approved the appointment of women to the Anglican episcopate. “The synod’s House of Bishops voted in favor 37-2, with one abstention; the House of Clergy voted 172-25, with four abstentions; and the House of Laity voted 152-45, with five abstentions.” “The Church of England [subsequently] […]

Thoughts re the Hobby Lobby decision

The notion that a person should be forced to purchase a product that they believe to be immoral is a charmless one for which no eulogies should be read nor requiems composed. Had the Supreme Court actually killed the so-called “contraceptive mandate” in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby, decided today, we should say “good riddance.” Joyous […]

Altar girls, redux

Traditionally, altar service was a male-only business, but females have been permitted to serve the ordinary form since the early 1990s, subject to the general approval of the bishop and ad hoc approval of the celebrant of the particular Mass at which they are to be employed. “Altar girls” have remained controversial ever since, especially […]

Another update on Fr. Lankeit’s vocations program

In 2011 and 2012, I noted and voiced support for the decision of Father John Lankeit, rector of the Cathedral of Ss. Simon & Jude in Phoenix, AZ, to end the cathedral’s two-decade experiment with allowing female altar servers. See Straight talk on altar girls, 1 MPA 60 (2012). The idea was to stimulate vocations, […]

“That is what you call a bishop who’s not afraid to bishop.”

Because the Church has no authority to ordain women, and because of active resistance by those who dissent from that teaching, the Church provides a canonical response to simulations of the sacrament of Orders: “[B]oth the one who attempts to confer a sacred order on a woman, and the woman who attempts to receive a […]

Conservatives, traditionalists, and Traditional Catholics

In the Remnant, Chris Ferrara contemplates the question “What exactly is a traditionlist?” The nub of it is that a man who is, by Ferrara’s label, a “traditionalist,” is a Catholic who lives the faith as if the ecclesial calamities of the post-Vatican II epoch had never happened—indeed, as if Vatican II itself had never […]

The role of the ordinariates

Elsewhere, the Anglican Ordinariates are criticized: “If you want to belong to the Catholic Church then be a Catholic; if you want to be an Anglcan, be an Anglican. If you want a bit of both then you need to find a church with a bit of both. A foot in 2 camps doesn’t work.” […]

Of Humanæ vitæ and the approaching Synod on the Family

Ross Douthat and Msgr. Charles Pope have written blog entries pertaining to the approaching Synod and the anxiety it is provoking; Douthat’s piece follows up on his own New York Times column; Pope’s, in turn, on Douthat’s. Some background will help before we get to them. I. Phonegate This fall, there will be a Synod […]

A time for choosing

As it happened, Easter fell on 4/20 this year, the day on which addicts throughout America titter at the happenstance of the date resembling an early drug meme. (I don’t know whether drugs are harmful, but the foregoing suggests detrimental consequences to one’s sense of humor.) This coincidence underlines the choice before Catholics between the […]

The new ultramontanes

“The personality of the Pope alone contributed to it. His charm and open nature, so different from the reserved behavior of his predecessor, … gradually gave him … a popularity such as no pope had known before him.” Apposite though that line might seem, it was written of Pio Nono, and the “it” referred to […]