There was a bitter irony in the treatment of Fr. Daniel Moloney, who was forced to resign as Catholic chaplain at MIT for suggesting that we should keep our heads and not lose them in […]
The recent edition of Living with Christ – yes, you know the one, the disposable missalette (which should be an oxymoron) has on its most recent front cover a photo of a young boy receiving Communion in the hand, standing, looking straight ahead, an image that would have shocked and scandalized Catholics a scant generation ago. What was a sporadic and informal abuse tolerated in many parishes, beginning with the indult of Pope Paul VI soon after the Council, became over time the effective norm, and Covid has now provided quasi-plausible justification for coercing upon one and all reception of the ‘Host in the hand’ only, posing a real crisis of conscience for many.
We should clarify from the outset that, whatever we may think of the practice, reception in the hand is not an intrinsic evil, for the Church could never give an indult for such if it were so. Yet, is it not as ‘good’ as reception on the tongue, and these few words will spell out some reasons thereto. We will then offer some suggestions for what Catholics may do.
Reception on the tongue, while kneeling (usually at an altar rail or predieu) has been the traditional practice of the Church for centuries, if not millennia. Customs signify something, and there are good reasons why the Church adopted what practices she did. We, in turn, should be very hesitant to change such customs and traditions, just as an a priori principle, even prescinding from what other ‘good reasons’ we in a particular historical epoch may think up.
A private art collector in Spain has been left stunned by the botched restoration of a painting by Baroque artist Bartolomé Esteban Murillo.
Recently, the bishops of California made a statement regarding the attacks on the statues of St. Junipero Serra in San Francisco, Ventura, and Los Angeles. While acknowledging that there are legitimate concerns about racism both historical and contemporary, we insisted that the characterization of Serra as the moral equivalent of Hitler and the missions he founded as tantamount to death camps is simply unconscionable…
According to World Bank statistics, almost three-quarter of the world’s population today wasn’t even alive in 1974, when a Greek Melkite archbishop from Syria named Hilarion Capucci was arrested in Israel for smuggling Kalashnikovs, pistols, dynamite and detonators for the PLO, presumably for use against Israeli targets.
A Kindle, or any comparable e-reader, can be a great convenience. If you’re packing for a vacation trip (which you probably aren’t doing this year, but that’s another story), it’s nice to know that you can bring along all of Shakespeare, all of Trollope, a few dozen mysteries, and the Summa, without making your suitcase any heavier.
Returning from a brief vacation, I find myself faced with St. John’s visions of the warfare between earth and heaven which characterizes the time remaining before Christ returns in glory. The Book of Revelation describes this in eschatological language—language which is symbolic of the battle between good and evil, God and Satan which fulfills and concludes our history.