Jesus embodies true sense of selflessness

Selflessness. That most admirable quality seems to be fighting extinction in our me-first society.

Religious voice is essential in euthanasia debate

A few years ago I interviewed then Bloc Quebecois MP Francine LeBlanc. In 2010 she introduced a bill in Parliament to legalize euthanasia. At that time there didn’t seem a snowball’s chance in hell of it passing, but the introduction of the bill was at least a chance to talk about the issue.

A glimpse of today’s Church

One of the lovelier aspects of Catholic culture is the love that Catholics have for their priests. Most priests have many stories of how complete strangers have shown special warmth and affection upon seeing the Roman collar. As for one’s own portion of the flock, parish priests and chaplains know how eager Catholics are to love their priests.

Seeing is believing

Christmas came early to our house this year. Very early. Pre-Advent early.

Riled up atheists show Francis is on to something

Three atheists got me thinking about Pope Francis the other day.

The gift of the Lateran Basilica

Nov. 9 is a rather obscure feast on the liturgical calendar — the feast of the dedication of the Basilica of St. John Lateran. Obscure, but most important. A year when we are praying for a new Pope is a good occasion to revisit its significance.

Ignatieff’s honesty sets his apart from other political memoirs

In his Songs of Innocence William Blake wrote: “The strongest poison ever known / Comes from Caesar’s laurel crown.”

Our fascination with death

At the heart of the liturgical year are the great feasts of Christmas and Easter, the feast of eternal life becoming earthly in a new baby, and the feast of earthly life becoming eternal in the Resurrection. The Christian calendar hangs upon the great feasts of life. Yet notwithstanding the principal feasts, the opening days of November, the month in which we pray for the dead, are a direct answer the Church gives to the mystery of death. All Saints Day celebrates those who have died and are already enjoying the life of beatitude in heaven. All Souls Day prays for those who have died and, while still being purified in purgatory, will one day be in heaven. The Church does not ask us to look away from death. To the contrary, in November she forces us to look straight at it.

Faith is on our side

In a third-season episode of the insanely good TV series Breaking Bad, students at chemistry teacher/ drug lord Walter White’s high school gather in a gym for a post-modern public grief ceremony.

Standing up where apathy won’t

Now that the annual costume-and-sugar festival called Halloween has passed, I will comment on what I believe is a new low reached this year in the sale of adult Halloween costumes.

Technology sure has a hold on us

The other day, I lost my so-called smartphone. It was kind of dumb of me. But the episode set off a range of emotions; from the pit-in-my-stomach initial feeling to panic and stress at figuring out what to do next, including a little prayer to St. Anthony, to contentment realizing life without that digital albatross around my neck actually feels pretty good.