17 results
July 13, 2016

When I was a teenager I read a science-fiction short story about a bet between two supernatural beings: which of them, by meddling in human affairs, could create the largest effect by the smallest stimulus? One of the beings triumphed by convincing a man to change one letter in his last name, starting a causal chain that wound up averting a nuclear war. (Nuclear war being what my generation feared before sentient machines and zombie apocalypses.)

With the...

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...

February 9, 2015

A few months ago, I wrote a blog post on the availability, or lack thereof, of sacraments for the homebound, titled Have Sacraments, Will Travel. After writing that post, I searched for an appropriate image to illustrate it. I settled on a photo of two pairs of hands, both female, one pair of hands placing the Eucharist into the obviously older hands of the other. Click on the link to that...

January 12, 2015

I usually write blog posts late in the evening on Sundays so that they can "go live" for the public first thing Monday morning. Recently though, I had spent the weekend battling the flu and wanted to get to bed early. But I had yet to write a blog post and could not think of anything to write about. Desperate for an idea, I threw up a bleg on my Facebook page, asking Friends:

Say you've...

December 15, 2014

I recently received a couple of apologetics inquiries that may not seem related on the surface, but that I believe are suggestive of a common problematic approach to the Mass. The first was about the propriety of Christmas pageants in church. The inquirer was very obviously put off by the common custom of small children acting out the Christmas story for the benefit of parishioners, and wanted to know if this kind of spectacle was appropriate in a church dedicated to the worship of God:...