Saturday 21st January 2017

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In Praise Of Clarity

December 11, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on In Praise Of Clarity

By DONALD DeMARCO A hostess sent out party invitations to her friends that requested RSVPs. When she received a completely illegible response from a particular doctor, she asked her husband what she should do. Upon his advice, she brought the indecipherable letter to a druggist since members of the pharmaceutical profession are reputed to be experts in decoding bad handwriting. The druggist studied the letter for a moment, excused himself, and returned after a few minutes with a small package. “Here you are,” said the druggist cheerfully. “That will be $125.50, please.” For many Catholics these days, it’s not difficult for them to preserve the essence of this comedy of errors while changing the identities of the players. The doctor…Continue Reading

A Book Review… Missing Joe Sobran

December 10, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on A Book Review… Missing Joe Sobran

By CHRISTOPHER MANION Joseph Sobran’s Subtracting Christianity: Essays on American Culture and Society, $27.00; Hustler: The Clinton Legacy, $23.00 — both available postpaid from the Fitzgerald Griffin Foundation, 713 Park St., SE, Vienna, VA 22180, 1-877-726-0058. Or online at or at When Al Matt asked me some ten years ago to take over Joe Sobran’s column, I made it clear that, while I’d be honored to have my column appear in the same space, there was no way I could pretend to replace Joe Sobran. No one could replace Joe Sobran. And now you won’t have to: You can have the original in time to celebrate Christmas with the latest collections of his columns and essays (Subtracting Christianity:…Continue Reading

Restoring The Sacred… The Beauty Of Purity

December 9, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on Restoring The Sacred… The Beauty Of Purity

By JAMES MONTI Advent is a season we journey though in the company of our Lady. For her sacred pregnancy was indeed the first Advent, an Advent of nine months that culminated in the first Christmas. The Advent Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe testifies to this association, for the miraculous image of Guadalupe, revealed on December 12 during Advent of 1531, possesses details that show the Blessed Virgin in a late stage of pregnancy. The universally observed Advent Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception takes us back to the very first moment of Mary’s existence, when she came forth from the hands of God already fashioned for her future mission as the Mother of God. While this latter feast celebrates…Continue Reading

A Book Review . . . Proclaim The “Great Story Of Jesus Christ”

December 8, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on A Book Review . . . Proclaim The “Great Story Of Jesus Christ”

By DONAL ANTHONY FOLEY Forming Intentional Disciples: The Path to Knowing and Following Jesus by Sherry Weddell, Our Sunday Visitor, 224 pages; paperback, $16.95 plus shipping. See: https://www.osvcatholicbook The subtitle of Forming Intentional Disciples is, “The Path to Knowing and Following Jesus,” and that sums up what the book is about since we will not be able to follow Jesus very well — to become true disciples — unless we know and love Him. This book has come out of Sherry Weddell’s experiences of the process of evangelization, and in particular her discovery that “there is a chasm…between the Church’s sophisticated theology of the lay apostolate and the lived spiritual experience of the majority of our people.” Indeed, she…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101… “Why Euthanasia Is Wrong — From A Secular Viewpoint”

December 7, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on Culture Of Life 101… “Why Euthanasia Is Wrong — From A Secular Viewpoint”

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of chapter 23 of The Facts of Life, “Euthanasia,” e-mail him at + + + “You are a member of the first generation of doctors in the history of medicine to turn their backs on the oath of Hippocrates and kill millions of old useless people, unborn children, born malformed children, for the good of mankind — and to do so without a single murmur from the august New England Journal of Medicine. And do you know what you’re going to end up doing? You, a graduate of Harvard and a reader of The New…Continue Reading

A Book Review… A Poignant, Meticulous Biography Of John Senior

December 6, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on A Book Review… A Poignant, Meticulous Biography Of John Senior

By MITCHELL KALPAKGIAN John Senior and the Restoration of Realism by Fr. Francis Bethel, OSB. Thomas More College Press: Merrimack, NH: 2016; 452 pp.; $34.99. Available through Thomas More College Press, An inspiring, moving account of the life and thought of a great Catholic teacher and professor of literature who left a profound legacy upon his students in the Pearson Integrated Humanities Program (IHP) at the University of Kansas during the 1970s, this rich, complete study of Senior’s vision and philosophy of education illuminates the Catholic worldview and philosophical foundations that informed his greatness. Fr. Bethel’s book is a masterpiece: an honest, balanced, sensitive, and penetrating examination of a deeply human story filled with excitement, adventure, conversion, surprises, controversy,…Continue Reading

A Film Review . . . A Gift From Space Shows Future Suffering, But Evokes Courage

December 5, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on A Film Review . . . A Gift From Space Shows Future Suffering, But Evokes Courage

By DEXTER DUGGAN Does beauty lead to bad results? It can. That’s how sinful temptation lures one in. Does unsightliness lead to good results? It can. There was no comeliness in our Lord on Good Friday, but His sacrifice held the key to our salvation. We’re drawn instinctively to the attractive because it’s appealing, and we may intuit it as some spark of the divine. The good angels are beings of heavenly light and loveliness. But a distressful broken and bleeding victim may stir our compassion and impel us to extend virtuous healing assistance. Still, what would seem to be a highly encouraging messenger can raise doubts. When a glorious angel from God asked a Jewish girl to become mother…Continue Reading

Re-Sacralizing The Sacred

December 4, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on Re-Sacralizing The Sacred

By DONALD DeMARCO One of my better students, who was enjoying a course I was teaching, asked me if I would like to speak to the members of his Bible study group. I felt honored and happily accepted his cordial invitation. The study group, made up exclusively of young adults, met in the home of one of the students, an atmosphere most conducive to friendly discussions. I began my informal presentation by commending everyone present for taking the time and making the effort to study Sacred Scripture. The Bible, of course, I reminded them, has the great merit of being sacred. My eyes then fell upon a copy of a Sears catalogue prominently displayed in a nearby bookcase, which, so…Continue Reading

The Grand Impostor

December 3, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on The Grand Impostor

By DEACON JAMES H. TONER Proverbs tells us: “What a joy it is to find just the right word for the right occasion” (15:23 Good News Bible). So it is with the word imposturous, which ideally captures the essence of the deceit which characterizes what masquerades as social ethics. If an impostor is someone who pretends to be someone else to deceive or to defraud others, then imposturous refers to that deceiver’s intentions, promises, and actions. The Great Deceiver is Satan (Rev. 13:14), the father of lies (John 8:44). A lie is a false statement made with deliberate intent to deceive. Liars are impostors, and Satan is the arch-impostor. No one reasonably chooses to do those actions which will deceive,…Continue Reading

A Book Review . . . How Law Is Actually Made

December 2, 2016 Featured Today Comments Off on A Book Review . . . How Law Is Actually Made

By JUDE DOUGHERTY Vermeule, Adrian. Law’s Abnegation: From Law’s Empire to the Administrative State. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2016. 254 pp. “Law’s Empire” of the subtitle is a reference to Ronald Dworkin’s influential 1986 treatise, Law’s Empire. Adrian Vermeule, a professor of law, acknowledges Dworkin to be one of the great legal scholars of the 20th century, yet accuses him of ignoring a major drift in contemporary law. With considerable evidence, he maintains that Dworkin missed the impact that the creation of multiple federal agencies has had on case law. Dworkin, he says, assumed law’s integrity, that is, a strict division of powers between the legislative, the judiciary, and the administrative branches of government, a division which gave the…Continue Reading