Robert Brehl

Robert Brehl

Robert Brehl is a writer in Port Credit, Ont.

When told this issue of The Register would be dedicated to not only a year in review, but a decade in review, the idea immediately intrigued me.

The Two Popes is an entertaining movie that is well-acted, well-written and visually appealing, especially when considering most of the movie is about two old men in frocks verbally jousting over weighty issues. But, make no mistake, it is a drama with lots of humour sprinkled in, not a documentary.

More than a decade ago, I worked with Ted Rogers in writing his memoirs. Recently, I’ve been asked to help revive stories of him to the younger generation who know the name Rogers solely as the corporate brand of the phone in their pockets.

Denying the Eucharist to U.S. presidential candidate Joe Biden out on the hustings last month set off new “wafer wars” that spilled across the border, rekindling painful memories for at least one Canadian politician.

Every day, we’re bombarded with the virtues of technology — from quantum leaps in health care to helping police solve crimes to simple conveniences enjoyed by holding more computing power in our hands than what was used to put humans on the moon.

As we near the end of the election campaign, many comments on social media remind me of something Mark Twain wrote 112 years ago: “I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”

Church attendance is waning and religious non-affiliation is waxing. That’s hardly news. Observe the empty pews.

Over the Labour Day weekend, there sure were a lot of U.S. politicians conveying their “thoughts and prayers” for the victims and their families of the latest mass shooting, but no visible action on doing anything about the American gun epidemic.

Scores of Catholic nuns bought, sold and bartered enslaved people in 19th century America, The New York Times unveiled in a fascinating in-depth account written by New York University professor Rachel Swarns.

At a recent barbeque, I was telling a long-time friend about a Colombian bishop who planned to exorcise his crime-ridden city of demons by dropping holy water from a helicopter.