The heroes of Dachau

Seventy years ago, on April 29, 1945, the largest monastery in the world was closed by the U.S. armed forces.

    The death of debate

    With two decisions this spring, the Supreme Court of Canada set laudable boundaries between the necessarily neutral state and the exercise of religious freedom.

      Jordan Spieth proves nice guys can finish first

      With his wire-to-wire win at the Masters golf tournament this month, Jordan Spieth proved an old adage wrong: Nice guys don’t have to finish last.

        Cardinal George stayed true to Church’s mission

        Cardinal Francis George, recently retired archbishop of Chicago, died in his bed at home, as he said he would. In his latter years, the intellectual leader of the Catholic Church in the United States was famous for his bleak view of the future of religious liberty in America.

          The great collaboration

          This Sunday marks the 10th anniversary of the election of Joseph Ratzinger as Pope Benedict XVI, a treasure for the Church in his long theological service as a scholar, his more than 20 years at the side of St. John Paul II as the chief lieutenant of the signal pontificate of our era, his eight years as perhaps the clearest and most profound papal preacher and writer of our time, and finally for the courage and humility of his abdication.

            Beware sleight of hand

            There’s a moment in Al Pacino’s new film Danny Collins when the eponymous character, alone in his dressing room, touches the ornate Cross nested in his ancient rock star chest hair. The gesture is cinematic sleight of hand.
            In the next frame, Collins uncaps the crucifix and pours out a few lines of cocaine to put up his nose so his show can go on. The sign of our faith, in the fingers of a pop icon, turns into yet another clever cache for the pursuit of becoming comfortably numb.

              Tragic murders trigger varied treatment

              The pre-Easter tragedies of the German jet deliberately flown into the French Alps and the terrorist attack at a Kenyan university have several links, some not all that obvious.

                Return to the Garden

                Every year during Holy Week, when the Church’s liturgy gives us an enormous amount of Scripture — two readings of the passion, good chunks of John’s Gospel for Holy Thursday and Easter Sunday, and the history of creation and salvation at the Easter Vigil — there is usually one verse or two that strikes me anew, as if I had never heard it before, or least, never in quite that way.

                  Easter invites us to choose the kingship of Christ

                  The drama of Holy Week is a story about a king. The crowd that welcomes Jesus on Sunday, waving their palm branches, acclaims Him: “Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord,
the king of Israel!”

                    Faith is common life

                    The day the Supreme Court released its decision in the case involving Montreal’s Loyola High School, I thought it was merely more judicial zaniness on offer.

                      A tale of two Catholic high schools

                      Recent stories about two Catholic high schools are terrific examples of how government policies can sometimes produce the exact opposite effect as intended.