April 26, 2015

Saturday’s lead editorial in our local newspaper, the San Diego Union-Tribune, was titled “Who Should Represent California: Father Serra or Sally Ride?”

There is a movement afoot (and more than afoot: it seems to be running to the finish line with almost no opposition) to replace the statue of Junipero Serra that appears in Statuary Hall in the U.S. Capitol with a statue of Sally Ride. Serra’s statue has been there since 1931. Ride’s statue is yet to be commissioned.

Statuary Hall is located immediately south of the Rotunda in the Capitol. The two-story, semicircular room was where the House of Representatives met from 1807 to 1857. Every state is allotted space for two statues to represent figures important in the state’s history or culture. Statuary Hall is...

April 20, 2015

I know Salvatore Cordileone from his stint on the monthly canon law segment on Catholic Answers Live. That was when he was the auxiliary bishop of San Diego. Today he is the archbishop of San Francisco. The notoriety he obtained by broadcasting from our studio for one hour a month is nothing compared to the notoriety he has received since his transfer to the Bay Area.

A native San Diegan, Cordileone was appointed bishop of Oakland in 2009, served there for three years, and moved across the bay in 2012. Some San Franciscans want him to move again—to anyplace else....

April 19, 2015

And I say this not just because I am in the movie. But yes, I am in the movie. Don't blink, though, or you might miss me. I have two speaking lines (I play a soldier in a hospital to visit wounded comrades). I say this because it is a magnificent movie. It opens April 24th in theatres across the country.

“Little Boy” comes to us from Metanoia Films, the same people who gave us "Bella" back in 2006. Their very first film project, it, and they, took Hollywood by surprise by winning the Toronto Film Festival. There could have been no better title for what was a truly “beautiful” movie.

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April 15, 2015

There are usually a few Masses per year at which there can be expected to be a large number of non-Catholics present. Christmas and Easter Masses are popular with non-Catholics, mainly because they are visiting Catholic family and friends. Nuptial Masses, especially when one of the parties to be married is a non-Catholic Christian, will have large turnouts of non-Catholics (sometimes up to half the congregation). Non-Catholics can also be expected at Masses offered for other sacramental firsts and life-cycle events, such as confirmations and funerals.

This reality raises a common question for the apologists here at Catholic Answers: What should happen at Communion time? Here's a recent question I received on the issue.

At my granddaughter's First Communion,...

April 13, 2015

Dante’s Divine Comedy is a poem more known about than known. To the extent most Americans know about it at all, it’s in terms of Gustave Doré’s illustrations for the Inferno. Some will recognize snippets from the text, such as the inscription over the gate to hell: “Abandon all hope ye who enter here.”

Beyond that, the Divine Comedy is pretty much terra incognita for Americans. It’s a pity, because it’s one of the greatest works of literature ever fashioned, and, in my eyes, it’s the greatest epic poem ever written.

As impressive as the Iliad...

April 11, 2015

The toughest texts to deal with concerning the natural immortality of the soul are found in the Old Testament. These are the go-to verses for Adventists, Jehovah's Witnesses, and others who deny it. One way you can go about explaining things to them is to go to the manifold and obvious texts in the New Testament that clearly teach the human soul to be immortal. These would include Jesus' teaching about the afterlife in his parable of Lazarus and the rich man in Luke 16:19-31 (there Jesus indicates there is an immediate or "particular" judgment and either reward or punishment at the point of death), the various texts that teach of the eternity of Hell (Matt. 25:41; 46; Rev. 14:9-11; Rev. 20:10-15, etc...

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