Monthly Archives: October 2011

Straight talk on altar girls

America magazine has a singular talent for maximizing the irritation that one might pack into a single column, and this one is no exception. The immediate focus of the editors’ ire is Father John Lankeit, rector of Ss. Simon & Jude Cathedral, who has decided to use only males as altar servers. His statement is here, […]

Communion under both kinds

The time has arrived to say something here about the imbroglio that began after news broke that his excellency Bishop Robert Morlino (Madison-Wisconsin) would follow the lead of his excellency Bishop Thomas Olmsted (Phoenix) and begin restricting the distribution of the chalice at Mass. Before we get to my comments on the issue, let me […]

The Finn indictment

At the beginning of June, I noted an emerging situation in Kansas City involving his excellency Bishop Robert Finn: The diocese had failed to respond with due urgency to a situation involving allegations about presbyterial misconduct. In her comments, Elizabeth Scalia  observed that “[t]he fallout from all of this will land on Finn, as it […]

The foundations of the American ordinariate have been laid

Donald Card. Wuerl yesterday welcomed the first converting parish to the fold!

Mariology and today’s gospel reading

Like Mark 3:31-35, today’s gospel is one of the more difficult for the more extreme claims of mariology: While Jesus was speaking,a woman from the crowd called out and said to him,”Blessed is the womb that carried youand the breasts at which you nursed.”He replied, “Rather, blessed are thosewho hear the word of God and observe […]

The Pepsi aesthetic

RIP Steve Jobs. I believe that Jobs and I shared an aesthetic preference for simplicity: For clean lines and elegant design. The first piece of industrial design that I remember falling in love with specifically qua design was the Pepsi can. When I was a kid in England in the 1980s, in a world full […]

The hermeneutic for Vatican documents and Church law

Reading John Allen’s book All the Pope’s Men, which tries to explain Vatican culture to outsiders, I ran across an interesting nugget. Allen writes that in Italian culture, law is regarded as the expression of a human ideal, a descriptor pf a perfect state of affairs, and everyone realizes most people will fall short. This is […]