• A priest who offered his life in reparation for the sins of priests

    The eyes of the world will once again be drawn to the painful reality of clerical crimes when Vatican Summit on the Protection of Minors meets this week in Rome. The damage such crimes have caused is almost incalculable. In the first place, of course, are the victims themselves, attacked by... Read more
  • The Saintly Life of Father Augustus Tolton

    Augustus John Tolton, the second of three children, was born into slavery on April 1, 1854, in Brush Creek, Missouri. His baptismal record reads, in part, “A colored child. . . . Property of Stephen Eliot.” His mother, Martha Jane Chisley, was given as a wedding gift to the Eliot family, on... Read more
  • Newman’s Canonization: A Summons to Truth

    Once the news came out today that John Henry Newman (1801-90) would soon be made a saint, after the Vatican announced that the pope had formally approved a second miracle attributed to the great convert’s intercession, many around the world will have rejoiced that the Servant of Truth in... Read more
  • St. Maximilian Kolbe on Our Lady of Lourdes

    St. Maximilian Kolbe cultivated a particular devotion to Our Lady under the title of the “Immaculate Conception.” He launched the “Knights of the Immaculata,” and Marian feasts were important to him, and none more so than Dec. 8.  But he also noted the significance of Feb. 11, the feast... Read more
  • This year’s World Day of the Sick puts Mother Teresa front and center

    MUMBAI, India - Although the Catholic Church has marked a World Day of the Sick every year since 1992, this time around it has a special twist: The observance launched two days early in Kolkata, formerly Calcutta, the city associated above all with Mother Teresa, the Church’s great patron... Read more
  • Martyrdom: Is it really about death?

    Thanks to secularization, modern people easily forget the true meaning of Christian words. Take, for instance, the saints we celebrate today: St. Paul Miki and his companions were martyred in 1597 on the outskirts of Nagasaki, Japan. A witness to the execution records St. Paul Miki’s final... Read more
  • Five Remedies for Sorrow from St. Thomas Aquinas

    One doesn’t usually go to the St. Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Theologica for advice on emotional matters. But for the feast of St. Thomas we shall indeed go there to seek advice on sorrow and consider some of St. Thomas’ remedies for it. (His advice is contained primarily in the Prima... Read more
  • “Vagabond of God”: The beatification cause of John Bradburne

    If all goes well, an English missionary who was killed during Zimbabwe’s civil war will be soon be named a saint. Martrydom in Rhodesia Perhaps it is best to begin John Bradburne’s  story with his death. In early fall of 1979, Rhodesia was embroiled in a 15-year civil war that was... Read more
  • Scripture Speaks:the Solemnity of Mary, Holy Mother of God

    What was it like for Mary to be the Mother of God?  Our Gospel reading gives some hints. Gospel (Read Lk 2:16-21) Included in the Octave of Christmas is today’s solemnity, which gives us an opportunity to think about Mary’s participation in the Incarnation.  We know, of course,... Read more
  • Mary: Our Hope in Scandal

    I remember when the Pennsylvania report first became public. I had been ordained a priest less than three months and now, on the cusp of the happiest day of my life, the Church in the United States suffered one the most humiliating and scandalous events in her history. In the days and months... Read more