Art

Conspiracies and Catholicism: Demons

Conspiracies and Catholicism: Demons

| 03-12-AD2014 | [4]

Conspiracies and Catholicism (formerly Conspiracy Theories and Catholicism) is a series of posts about things like albino assassin monks, hidden Bible books, pagan Santas and secret councils— popular culture related to Catholicism, sometimes in unexpected ways. If you have a suggestion for a future article, please leave a message in the comments or email me. Prior […]

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Gift of Self

Gift of Self

| 03-11-AD2014 | [2]

Every person’s most fundamental vocation, moral responsibility, and source of fulfillment is authentic self-giving. I think this claim can be discovered by reason and experience. I also believe it permeates Sacred Scriptures and the life of the Church. It has been beautifully articulated in Vatican II’s Gaudium et spes §24. Here is the passage: God, […]

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The Grammys, Sex, and Satan – For God’s Sake, Just Buy a CD!

The Grammys, Sex, and Satan – For God’s Sake, Just Buy a CD!

| 01-31-AD2014 | [12]

Watching an Amish documentary last Sunday, I heard the following exchange: Among a busload of visitors to Amish Country, someone asked an Amish gentleman, “What’s the difference between you Amish and us ‘English’?” The Amish gentleman replied, “How many of you own televisions?” The hands of all tourists went up. “How many of you are […]

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How to Find Faith at the Movies:  The Road Back

How to Find Faith at the Movies: The Road Back

| 01-15-AD2014 | [2]

In this series of posts HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, John invites readers to take a hero’s journey in search of faith through watching movies. As seen in our ordinary world, John has us first encounter The Fool’s Quest to Understand and asks “Where are you coming from?” Next we consider how each […]

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Conspiracy Theories and Catholicism: Vampires

Conspiracy Theories and Catholicism: Vampires

| 01-14-AD2014 | [12]

Albino assassin monks, secret Bible books, pagan Santas and secret councils—this is a series about popular culture claims related to Catholicism. If you have a suggestion for a future article, please leave a message in the comments or email me. Prior posts available by clicking my name. Through mere glimpses of him, however, demonic accuracy […]

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I Hope You Dance

I Hope You Dance

| 12-25-AD2013 | [5]

It was a homily I almost missed as the words droned and my mind wandered this past Sunday, but something caught my ears and pulled me back in. Father reminded us that Christmas comes at the darkest time of year as a light to us in the darkness. It got me to thinking about how […]

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Bethlehem Redux

Bethlehem Redux

| 11-30-AD2013 | [1]

Three years ago, Jeff Miller (aka the Curt Jester) posted a somewhat-lengthy discussion of the Christmas movies he’d been watching. Along the way, he noted just how many of them hit the same themes over and over: 1) Family is important; 2) Materialism is bad; and 3) Santa Claus is real. On the other hand, […]

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You Cannot Lose My Love

You Cannot Lose My Love

| 11-28-AD2013 | [8]

There is an old saying that says, “You can take a girl out of Texas, but you can’t ever take Texas out of a girl.” Being a born and bred Texan, I always thought this to be true. I have been very blessed to be able to see many other areas of the country, but […]

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Holy Distraction: The Case for Sacred Art and Architecture

Holy Distraction: The Case for Sacred Art and Architecture

| 10-26-AD2013 | [5]

We were traveling for Thanksgiving, visiting Joel’s family. It was the feast of Christ the King, and we were looking for a Saturday vigil Mass. There were two options. The first one was just a few minutes from our hotel; the second was across town. Knowing nothing about the first, we chose the second. We […]

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How Ani Difranco Enhanced My Catholic Faith

How Ani Difranco Enhanced My Catholic Faith

| 10-20-AD2013 | [3]

I used to think I was a Christian before I converted to Catholicism. I was baptized in the Methodist Church when I was a month old, and grew up going to Sunday School and Church, until I reached the age of 13, when my parents divorced. After that, my mom quit going and consequently, so […]

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Thrills, a Poem

Thrills, a Poem

| 09-27-AD2013 | [3]

Hollow, empty spaces All the world so wide Distraction filling silence While the soul abides. The ego dances freely With the vapid little thrills Temptations on the cutting edge Yet older than the hills. We put ourselves atop Above the petty rest Never clear enough to see What we’ve made second best. For if God […]

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The Effects of Depression and the Universal Remedy

The Effects of Depression and the Universal Remedy

| 09-16-AD2013 | [19]

On December 8,1992, an article appeared in the science section of the New York Times under the headline “A Rising Cost of Modernity:  Depression.” The piece tells of a report published by the Journal of the American Medical Association, which delivered the results of a long-term, international, multi-generational study of depression. The main point was […]

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HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Seizing the Sword

HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Seizing the Sword

| 09-09-AD2013 | [6]

In this series of posts HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, John invites readers to take a hero’s journey in search of faith through watching movies. As seen in our ordinary world, John has us first encounter The Fool’s Quest to Understand and asks “Where are you coming from?” Next we consider how each of us is called to adventure through […]

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A Lesson on Text Criticism and the Beatles’ <i>Let it Be</i>

A Lesson on Text Criticism and the Beatles’ Let it Be

| 07-30-AD2013 | [86]

One of the commonly asked questions of Sir Paul McCartney is whether his lovely song Let It Be is about the Virgin Mary. Here is the song: It is a beautiful song. A studio outtake reveals that the earliest version had a nearly-solemn quality. Of course, many know that Paul McCartney and John Lennon had […]

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Lay Evangelist Michael Gormley Video Interview

Lay Evangelist Michael Gormley Video Interview

| 07-26-AD2013 | [2]

Coffee Interviews is a series of video interviews of interesting people I would love to have coffee with and pick their brains. Today I got to speak with Michael Gormley (AKA Gomer) about his life as a “sort of” full time lay evangelist. This guy’s sharp and knows his stuff. He gives some great insights […]

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HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Your Supreme Ordeal

HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Your Supreme Ordeal

| 07-18-AD2013 | [5]

In the series HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, I have invited you to take a hero’s journey in search of faith through watching movies. As seen in our ordinary world, we first encountered The Fool’s Quest to Understand and asked “Where are you coming from?” Then we considered how each of us is called to adventure through well-drawn questions that […]

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How Ani Difranco Enhanced My Catholic

How Ani Difranco Enhanced My Catholic

| 06-23-AD2013 | [4]

I used to think I was a Christian before I converted to Catholicism. I was baptized in the Methodist Church when I was a month old, and grew up going to Sunday School and Church, until I reached the age of 13, when my parents divorced. After that, my mom quit going and consequently, so did I. However, […]

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HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Your Real Agenda

HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Your Real Agenda

| 06-17-AD2013 | [5]

In the series HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, John has invited us to take a hero’s journey in search of faith through watching movies. As seen in our ordinary world, we first encountered The Fool’s Quest to Understand. Then we considered how each of us is called to adventure through well-drawn questions that present a true issue: Issuing the Call […]

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We Need A Little Disney Every Now and Then

We Need A Little Disney Every Now and Then

| 05-28-AD2013 | [5]

My wife and I had a rare opportunity to watch a movie together the other night, and after about half an hour of looking though every available title on Netflix and Amazon, wesettled on Secretariat, the story of the great triple crown winning horse. After we settled in and the movie started playing I realized […]

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The Great Gatsby’s Relevance

The Great Gatsby’s Relevance

| 05-21-AD2013 | [3]

The Great Gatsby, the popular American novel known for depicting the Roaring 20′s with striking honesty, is now a major motion picture, starring the great Leonardo DiCaprio and superhero Tobey Maguire. As I read the book, I had a chilling sensation as I realized that our culture seems to be sliding back into the sinful, sexual habits of that […]

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HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: The Power of Love and the Love of Power

HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: The Power of Love and the Love of Power

| 05-20-AD2013 | [6]

In the series HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, we have been taking a hero’s journey in search of faith through watching movies. As seen in our ordinary world, we first encountered The Fool’s Quest to Understand. Then we considered how each of us heroes is called to adventure through well-drawn questions that present a true issue: Issuing the Call […]

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HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Crossing Your First Threshold

HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Crossing Your First Threshold

| 04-22-AD2013 | [7]

Previously in his series HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, John has invited readers to join him on a hero’s journey, with the following posts:  The hero is seen in his ordinary world: The Fool’s Quest to Understand The hero is called to adventure: Issuing the Call to Adventure The hero is reluctant: The […]

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The Conceit of Denying God

The Conceit of Denying God

| 04-08-AD2013 | [13]

I read the news–all bad it seems–and invariably, I think about God. This predilection, not practiced for most of my adult life, now gives me great comfort. And compels me to tell a story. Once upon a time… I was in New York City on business visiting some bigwigs––a great address on Park Avenue for those […]

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Chesterton, New Evangelization, and Cheese

Chesterton, New Evangelization, and Cheese

| 04-04-AD2013 | [4]

The New Evangelization has been called many things, but cheesy is not one of them, and this is a shame. If the New Evangelization is to accomplish the task of re-evangelizing the cultures and communities of today, then the New Evangelization should be more like good cheese. “In each inn the cheese was good; and […]

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Same Sex “Marriage” Has Ruined Dr Who For Me

Same Sex “Marriage” Has Ruined Dr Who For Me

| 03-30-AD2013 | [4]

Cross-posted at Acts of the Apostasy. The second half of Season Seven of Doctor Who starts this Saturday evening [March 30] on BBC America, and I’m not going to watch it. I’m a huge fan of the show – well, at least I used to be – and when it returned to the airwaves back […]

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HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Encountering Your Wise Ones (Part Two)

HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Encountering Your Wise Ones (Part Two)

| 03-27-AD2013 | [7]

Previously, in John’s series of posts, HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, he described the ordinary world of the person seeking to decide about matters of faith in The Fool’s Quest to Understand. In Issuing the Call to Adventure, he invited us to begin one’s faith journey by stating the issue of faith to […]

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HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Encountering Your Wise Ones (Part One)

HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES: Encountering Your Wise Ones (Part One)

| 03-27-AD2013 | [8]

Previously, in John’s series of posts, HOW TO FIND FAITH AT THE MOVIES, he described the ordinary world of the person seeking to decide about matters of faith in The Fool’s Quest to Understand. In Issuing the Call to Adventure, he invited us to begin one’s faith journey by stating the issue of faith to be decided. […]

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HIDDEN MESSAGES FOR CATHOLICS In Shakespeare Movies

HIDDEN MESSAGES FOR CATHOLICS In Shakespeare Movies

| 03-10-AD2013 | [7]

Catholics who want to take a stand in our current, apparently threatening, political environment may want to read two books, Shadowplay: The Hidden Beliefs and Coded Politics of William Shakespeare and Shakespeare the Papist, watch some movies and then rethink how best to deal with religious persecution.     During William Shakespeare’s time, surely the religious […]

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