There is a lot going on in the Church of SoNoGo

South Park – North Park – Golden Hill

Friday, December 4, 2020

Is the pandemic making people more generous -- or more selfish?

How Eric Metaxas went from Trump despiser to true believer

Religion News Service: How a onetime aspiring public intellectual and Trump doubter turned into a true believer in stolen elections.

NPR: Collins, himself a regular churchgoer who speaks often about his Christian faith, discussed measures that church leaders can take to protect their congregations in a Zoom conversation on Thursday.

The Atlantic: Justices’ drive to promote “religious liberty” may only become more intense.

The Los Angeles Times: An associate pastor for a megachurch in San Bernardino County died of COVID-19 about a month after the facility reopened indoor services.

Vox: The data on how people are giving in 2020 may surprise you.

What kind of relationship with God?

Singing through Advent, Part Two: The Magnificat

By Peter M.J. Stravinskas on Dec 04, 2020 08:00 am
Some preliminary considerations The context for Our Lady’s canticle of praise, overall, is the Gospel according to St. Luke and, more specifically, within his Infancy Narrative. Only Matthew and Luke offer a “pre-history” to the [...]
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Analysis: Is there a road back for Cardinal Becciu?

By Catholic News Agency on Dec 04, 2020 01:40 am
Washington, D.C. Newsroom, Dec 3, 2020 / 03:00 pm (CNA).- Two months since his fall from grace, Cardinal Angelo Becciu remains in the news, and out of any future papal conclave. And despite the disgraced [...]
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The little known and often-surprising history of Catholic Confederates

By Piers Shepherd on Dec 03, 2020 08:02 pm
There exists a stereotypical image of the American South as a militantly Protestant and strongly anti-Catholic environment. Gracjan Kraszewski’s fascinating book Catholic Confederates: Faith and Duty in the Civil War South should do much to [...]
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What I saw at the Abbey of the Genesee: The crisis in the Church and the universal call to holiness

By Larry Chapp on Dec 03, 2020 03:31 pm
I was reading an article the other day about an ongoing miracle in Italy that dates back to 1336.  In December of that year a young, pregnant woman named Egidia Mathis was walking home at night [...]
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Decline of the Catholic school system in the U.S. continues, with no end in sight

By Russell Shaw on Dec 03, 2020 01:59 pm
A little over two centuries ago—in 1810, to be precise—a brave, devout woman named Elizabeth Ann Seton launched two tiny schools, an academy and a free school. The site was a former farmhouse in rural [...]
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Wokeness and Catholicism

By James Kalb on Dec 02, 2020 10:45 pm
Many people have noted that “woke” ideology, which views inequality as an intolerable evil caused by pervasive racism, sexism, homophobia, and the like, has a religious quality: it defines good and evil, explains life and [...]
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Forgiven and Free: Advent and Confession

By Fr. Charles Fox on Dec 02, 2020 08:48 pm
The Season of Advent challenges us to “prepare the way of the Lord” and to “make straight his paths.” The Sacrament of Penance is especially important as a way to bring order into our hearts [...]
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Once beloved Colorado priest among newly identified clerical abusers

By Catholic News Agency on Dec 02, 2020 05:39 pm
CNA Staff, Dec 2, 2020 / 09:40 am (CNA).- Investigation into the history of sexual abuse by Catholic clergy in Colorado has found nine diocesan priests with “substantiated” sexual abuse allegations involving 70 more underage [...]
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Books for Christmas – 2020

By George Weigel on Dec 02, 2020 03:01 am
How bad a year has it been? Let me not count the ways. Good books can hearten us in 2021 and beyond, though. Herewith, then, some suggestions for Christmastide book-giving: Prison Journal, Volume 1, by [...]
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The logic and danger of Pope Francis’s approach to selecting cardinals

By Filip Mazurczak on Dec 01, 2020 04:34 pm
On Saturday, Pope Francis created thirteen cardinals in a consistory, nine of whom will be eligible to vote in a future conclave. Of these, two are officials of the Roman curia while just two others [...]
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Doing some real Advent spiritual work

By Bishop Robert Barron on Dec 01, 2020 04:21 pm
We will never be adequately prepared for the coming of the Savior unless and until we feel in our bones that there is something we need to be saved from. If we don’t require salvation, [...]
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Pell surprised by ‘Technicolor criminality’ of Vatican financial scandals

By Catholic News Agency on Dec 01, 2020 01:37 am
CNA Staff, Nov 30, 2020 / 04:00 pm (CNA).- Cardinal George Pell has spoken of his surprise at the apparent extent of “criminality” involved in recent Vatican financial scandals. Speaking in an interview with Associated [...]
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A classic work on the commonsense of noncontradiction and finality

By Casey Chalk on Nov 30, 2020 07:38 pm
I recently started looking into nihilism… but then I realised it was pointless. For some, that joke is enough to expose the absurdity and illogic of a philosophy that holds that there is no meaning [...]
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French Catholic bishops win appeal against 30-person Mass limit

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 30, 2020 02:32 pm
Rome Newsroom, Nov 30, 2020 / 10:00 am (CNA).- The French Council of State has ruled that a proposed 30-person limit on Masses and other forms of public worship is a “disproportionate” government measure and must [...]
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The Materialist in the Mask

By Dale Ahlquist on Nov 30, 2020 02:05 am
In 1908, two of G.K. Chesterton’s most famous books were published, almost back-to-back. The first was the novel The Man Who Was Thursday, about a group of anarchists who are actively trying to undermine everything [...]
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The story of the rise, triumph, and nightmare of the modern self

By Deborah Savage, PhD on Nov 29, 2020 09:08 pm
Anyone wondering if man is capable of reason need look no further than the self-evident fact that he desires to understand. Indeed, he is frustrated when understanding eludes him. In those moments, he experiences what [...]
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Archbishop Cordileone: New COVID church closures violate right to worship

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 29, 2020 02:06 am
CNA Staff, Nov 28, 2020 / 09:07 pm (CNA).- As surging COVID-19 cases lead to new restrictions in the San Francisco area, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone said the treatment of churches is discriminatory and violates the [...]
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In Advent, we are called to prepare for the coming of Christ in three ways

By Fr. Matthew MacDonald on Nov 29, 2020 01:24 am
Everyone shall remember 2020 as a year of chaos and upheaval, both in the Church and the world. Recent current events have moved many people, especially Catholics, to look for answers that make sense of [...]
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What kind of relationship with God?

By Dr. Randall B. Smith on Nov 28, 2020 08:17 pm
Editor’s note: This is the second part of a two-part essay. Read Part One here. One sometimes hears preachers exhort their congregations to enter into a “relationship” with God. I have no desire to diminish [...]
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Advent at Home: How Catholics are preparing for a season of joy—even in 2020 

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 28, 2020 07:50 pm
Denver Newsroom, Nov 28, 2020 / 04:35 pm (CNA).- Wry jokes and memes about the decided awfulness of the year 2020 – with the pandemic, ensuing lockdowns and economic distress, as well as civil unrest [...]
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Communion on the floor and the trinity of disorientation

By Robert R. Reilly on Nov 27, 2020 09:14 pm
In the fourth century, St. Cyril of Jerusalem asked of those receiving Communion: Tell me, if anyone gave you grains of gold, would you not hold them with all care taking heed lest you should [...]
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Advent: Expectation, Exhortation, Eucharist, Eternal Life

By Carl E. Olson on Nov 27, 2020 05:00 pm
On the Readings for Sunday, December 3, 2017, the First Sunday of Advent [...]
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New biography of St. Thomas Becket dispels myths with serious scholarship

By James Baresel on Nov 27, 2020 04:54 pm
Perhaps the second best-known martyrdom in the history of the Anglophone world is St. Thomas Becket, killed in Canterbury Cathedral during Vespers at the hands of four knights motivated by King Henry II of England’s [...]
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Thursday, December 3, 2020

Covenant and Christmas in North Park

Why some evangelicals refuse to acknowledge that Trump has lost the election

 Protests, pandemics and politics: The top 2020 searches for Bible passages online

Religion News Service: Bible Gateway saw unusual spikes in related searches around the first COVID-19 lockdowns last spring, the racial justice protests that followed in the summer and the U.S. presidential election this fall.

HuffPost: It’s more than just loyalty to the Republican Party, experts say. A “parallel culture” and prophecies play into evangelicals’ not accepting Joe Biden’s win.

Associated Press: Nine more Catholic priests, including one well known for helping Denver’s homeless, were found to have sexually abused children in an updated report on sex abuse in Colorado’s Catholic churches released Tuesday by state Attorney General Phil Weiser.

Religion & Politics: Harris withstood fierce political pressure, much of it coming from within her own church.

Vox: Roman Catholic Diocese v. Cuomo is one of the most significant religion cases in the past 30 years.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Logos, Shepherd, and Only King of All Creation

Singing through Advent: Part One

By Peter M.J. Stravinskas on Nov 26, 2020 06:00 pm
“Beauty will save the world,” says’s Dostoevsky’s Idiot. We need beauty. The preeminent theologian of beauty, we might say, was Hans Urs Von Balthasar, who rhapsodized on this notion thus: Beauty is the last thing which [...]
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Supreme Court overturns NY church restrictions, Brooklyn bishop says religion ‘essential’ during pandemic

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 26, 2020 04:33 pm
CNA Staff, Nov 26, 2020 / 01:23 pm (CNA).- The Supreme Court said Wednesday night that NY state restrictions  during the coronavirus pandemic are a violation of the First Amendment’s protection of free religious exercise. [...]
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Thanksgiving with the Saints

By Joseph Pearce on Nov 26, 2020 02:43 am
It is of course right and proper to keep Christ in Christmas, but can it be right and proper to introduce the saints into Thanksgiving? Isn’t Thanksgiving a secular holiday, as oxymoronic as that might [...]
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New history of Catholics in the United States full of scholarship, insight, humor

By Bradley J. Birzer on Nov 25, 2020 07:14 pm
Dr. Kevin Starr (1940-2017) was an amazingly prolific, talented, and innovative historian. His books on California, especially the five-volume California Dream series, which he completed while he was California State Historian, remain models of true [...]
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Kentucky dioceses keep Masses open despite governor’s request

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 25, 2020 06:54 pm
CNA Staff, Nov 25, 2020 / 03:00 pm (CNA).- Kentucky’s four Catholic dioceses will not suspend public Masses despite the governor’s request that religious services be held online only until December 13. Gov. Andy Beshear [...]
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It is bleak in weird London—but there are chinks of light

By Joanna Bogle on Nov 25, 2020 05:09 pm
At London’s Waterloo station the announcements have a ritual lilt: “You must wear a face-covering unless you are exempt…stay safe…social distancing…” I am inadvertently reminded of a scene from a film about St John Paul [..]
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Thanksgiving and the paradox of death

By George Weigel on Nov 25, 2020 03:01 am
The juxtaposition of Thanksgiving with the Church’s annual month of prayer for the dead hadn’t previously struck me with force; that it did this year has something to do, I expect, with my late sister-in-law, [...]
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Christ Child at the capitol

By Joseph M. Hanneman on Nov 24, 2020 08:52 pm
Nearly two-thirds of state capitol buildings in the United States will display a Nativity crèche this Christmas season, a nearly 50 percent increase in just two years under a partnership between American Nativity Scene and [...]
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Analysis: Archbishop Gregory says he won’t deny Biden communion. How will Catholics respond?

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 24, 2020 08:36 pm
Denver Newsroom, Nov 24, 2020 / 04:25 pm (CNA).- Washington’s archbishop, who will be made a cardinal this weekend, told a journalist Tuesday that in his diocese, he will not deny Holy Communion to a [...]
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Horror begets horror

By Nick Olszyk on Nov 24, 2020 07:32 pm
Netflix, 2020 MPAA Rating: TV-14 USCCB Rating: NR Reel Rating: 3 out of 5 reels (Disclaimer: The following review contains spoilers.) There is no greater trauma in this world than the death of a child. [...]
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Chinese Patriotic Association announces ordination of new bishop

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 24, 2020 11:14 am
CNA Staff, Nov 24, 2020 / 08:00 am (CNA).- The Chinese Patriotic Association announced Monday the ordination of a new bishop of Qingdao. The episcopal ordination of Thomas Chen Tianhao,
陈天浩, took place on Nov. [...]
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Giving a damn (about work, life, and faith)

By Father Jerry J. Pokorsky on Nov 24, 2020 01:55 am
Remove modern cultural sentimental accretions from the Catholic faith, and a muscular Church Militant emerges from the Catholic tradition. We are in an epic, life-long battle for the salvation of souls. Hence, military metaphors are [...]
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What kind of relationship? On the “one”, the “many”, and things in the world

By Dr. Randall B. Smith on Nov 24, 2020 12:12 am
Editor’s note: This is Part 1 of a two-part essay. Should we consider “relation” a transcendental property of Being? That may seem an odd question. The transcendental properties of Being are those that belong to [...]
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Vancouver archbishop criticizes pandemic restrictions on Masses

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 23, 2020 11:59 pm
CNA Staff, Nov 23, 2020 / 08:00 pm (CNA).- Archbishop Michael Miller of Vancouver expressed disappointment with the government’s decision to ban religious services as part of a plan to curb the pandemic in British [...]
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“Axe-grinding and message spoil what you make”: An interview with Marly Youmans

By Carl E. Olson on Nov 22, 2020 09:41 pm
Novelist, poet, and story-teller extraordinaire Marly Youmans, author of fifteen books, has been described as “the best-kept secret among contemporary American writers” and “a novelist and poet out of sync with the times but in [...]
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“Thy Kingdom Come!”: Christ the King reigns in consciences

By Douglas Bushman on Nov 21, 2020 08:50 pm
That Jesus taught His disciples to pray for the coming of the kingdom (Mt 6:9–13; Lk 11:2–4) long before they could fully understand its true nature has long intrigued me. Clearly, Jesus intends to lead [...]
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McCarrick’s modus operandi: deceit, division, diversion, and discouragement

By Ines Angeli Murzaku on Nov 21, 2020 08:14 pm
How did Theodore McCarrick make it to the helm, becoming a leading bishop and a prince of the Church? His journey and thirst for positions, power, and ambition is quite remarkable: from his 1977 appointment [...]
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The McCarrick Report: A timeline

By Catholic News Agency on Nov 21, 2020 12:55 pm
CNA Staff, Nov 21, 2020 / 03:22 am (CNA).- The following is a timeline of important dates from the McCarrick Report. Published by the Vatican Nov. 10, the report examines the “institutional knowledge and decision-making” [...]
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The God Question Revisited

By Jack Gist on Nov 21, 2020 02:18 am
Walker Percy’s father committed suicide when Walker was a teenager. After his mother drove her car off a Louisiana bridge, he was raised by an agnostic first-cousin. Such experiences have driven many a young soul [...]
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Christ the Foolish King

By Stephen G. Adubato on Nov 21, 2020 02:10 am
The Gospel reading for the Solemnity of Christ, King of the Universe calls to mind Nietzsche’s critique of the foolishness of Christianity and its Founder: When we hear the ancient bells growling on a Sunday [...]
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Jesus Christ: Logos, Shepherd, and Only King of All Creation

By Carl E. Olson on Nov 20, 2020 03:30 pm
On the Readings for Sunday, November 26, 2017, The Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe [...]
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