Showing posts from June, 2013

Journalists have a duty to ‘point the finger’ when there is scandal

Raymond Arroyo has given some of his best years to being an anchor on a Catholic television network. And when you meet him it becomes clear that he has made a choice to prioritise Catholic television when he could have had his pick of jobs on secular television, as anything from producer, director, presenter or even actor.  

Not many people realise that Arroyo, the lead anchor of EWTN News, is also a gifted actor, tried and tested during four gruelling years studying under Stella Adler at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. When I ask what it was like to be one of Adler’s pupils (others include Marlon Brando, Judy Garland and Robert De Niro), he sighs and says: “There were originally 30 people in the class, and at the end, there were four left, because you had to audition to get in each year, and Stella would routinely send people away. On a day-to-day basis, when you came into class to perform a scene, she would stop you and say: ‘Get out, you’re lying. Get …

The histrionic reaction to the Pope missing the concert is unfair

I seem to be in a very lonely position as someone who is not criticising Papa Francesco for missing the concert on Saturday night, June 22nd. Some more conservative Catholics are up in arms that Francis suddenly scarpered before a performance of Beethoven's 9th Symphony.  

In a blog for The Catholic Herald, I sympathise with the musicians who prepared for the honour of performing for the Pope, but were disappointed.

 But I also argue that passing up an evening of sublime music, and fulfilling his 'urgent' commitments is in line with Pope Francis' character and his life choices.  As a bishop in Argentina, he could have gone to glittering parties, but chose to visit AIDS victims and keep them company, or help in a soup kitchen.

Raymond Arroyo on how Mother Angelica founded a TV network against all odds


My evening at the Oratory to hear Charles Moore’s talk on Thatcher


The best explication of abortion that I have ever read

Blessed Mother Teresa:  “The so-called right to abortion has pitted mothers against their children and women against men. It has sown violence and discord at the heart of the most intimate human relationships. It has aggravated the derogation of the father's role in an increasingly fatherless society.

It has portrayed the greatest of gifts--a child--as a competitor, an intrusion and an inconvenience. It has nominally accorded mothers unfettered dominion over the dependent lives of their physically dependent sons and daughters. And, in granting this unconscionable power, it has exposed many women to unjust and selfish demands from their husbands or other sexual partners.”

Mother Teresa was a young Loreto nun when she received “a call within a call” to found the Missionaries of Charity to serve “the poorest of the poor”.
After obtaining Indian citizenship she did basic medical training, which prepared her for working in the slums. So difficult was the first year that she resorted…

Spiritual Simplicity

Adding a small giver-of-grace which is unobtrusive can be quite easy. I put a miraculous medal onto a vintage tea pot that I'm very fond of. The medal is gold, which colour-coordinates with the dark mustard coloured tea pot and the yellow orchid. So, instead of languishing in a cupboard or a box, the medal is pride of place on the ornament that acts as a nice background and highlights the medal. Not a good luck charm, the Miraculous Medal was designed according to Our Lady's instructions, and she promised St Catherine Labouré that 'great graces' would be given to those, 'who wear the medal with confidence'. Perhaps that not only applies to wearing the Miraculous Medal on a chain around the neck, but also to displaying the medal on an ornament 'with confidence'.

Three blogs by three young Catholics just added to my blog list

A friend asked me why I say, 'there are young Catholic bloggers blogging around Britain', but then don't have more links on my blog to young Catholics writing on the walls of the blogosphere.  Mea culpa: I have been negligent in updating my blog list with fellow young'uns (or 'yoof' as Eccles calls uz).  My conscience about including more bloggers on my blog roll was again pricked when I saw my blog address on Luke O'Sullivan's blog, and I remembered to include his blog on my list.
To remedy the lack of 'Yoof', I have put three blogs by three Catholic bloggers on my list. Drum-roll please...ladies first....

The Whistling Sentinel. The origin of the blog title comes from Chesterton, who wrote, 'it's not a question of theology, it's a question of whether, placed as a sentinel of an unknown watch, you will whistle or not.'  I derive the meaning of the blog title to be that the Catholic state-of-being is to whistle whilst in a place…