Saturday, April 13, 2024

What a Piece of Work is Man


What a piece of work is a man, 
How noble in reason, how infinite in faculty, 
In form and moving how express and admirable, 
In action how like an Angel, 
In apprehension how like a god.

~William Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act 2, Scene 2

In the above-cited passage from Shakespeare's Hamlet, the titular character of Hamlet, speaking to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, comments on the promise and peril of the human condition, contrasting man's remarkable powers with the depravity of which he is capable. 

Saturday, April 06, 2024

Grace Blossoming Everywhere



For whosoever shall give you to drink a cup of water in my name, because you belong to Christ: amen I say to you, he shall not lose his reward. (Mark 9:41)

And there came a certain poor widow, and she cast in two mites, which make a farthing. And calling his disciples together, he saith to them: Amen I say to you, this poor widow hath cast in more than all they who have cast into the treasury. For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want cast in all she had, even her whole living. (Mark 12:42-44)

Friday, March 29, 2024

The Context of Cajetan's Comments on Praying for a Pope's Death


There was recently a little kerfluffle online after Dr. Peter Kwasniewski shared a quote from Thomas Cajetan (1469-1534) to the effect that Christians should pray for the removal of a bad pope (and given that popes historically reign for life, this functionally means praying for his death). Hyperpapalists, of course, were hyperventilating about the citation while traditionalists reacted with confusion as to how a quote from one of the greatest theologians of the Renaissance could occasion such vitriol.

Sunday, March 17, 2024

Do Not Reproach a Man Who is Turning Away from Sin



One of the most unpleasant things I see online is whenever there is a news story about some celebrity who converts to Catholicism, Catholics will make snarky comments about the conversion. They will question the celebrity's sincerity, say it is just a fad, he's doing it for show, we shouldn't be happy about it until we know if it's "real," and in general belittle the story.

Saturday, March 09, 2024

Review of Angel Studios' Cabrini

Tonight I went and saw Cabrini with my teenage daughter. I just got back from the theater and am fulfilling a promise I made on the Unam Sanctam Facebook page to post a review of it. This is going to be long, so I ask your forgiveness for the extensiveness, but I have a lot to say here.

Sunday, February 18, 2024

In Memoriam: Bob Christian (1941-2023)

I'm breaking my February hiatus from blogging to offer a eulogy to a mentor of mine who recently passed away, Mr. Bob Christian. Bob was a spiritual giant, one of the few people in life I've personally known whom I sstrongly suspect was a saint. I was graced to know him for 20+ years, from my infancy in the Church right up to the present day. In this post I will offer some reflections on his life and legacy.

Monday, February 05, 2024

February Hiatus

Hey friends! I'm probably going to be taking a blogging hiatus for February. Don't worry, I am fine, not burned out or nothing like that (if anything, I've got more writing ideas swirling in my head than ever before). I have some professional matters I need to clear off my plate and some writing commitments for other platforms I need to attend to, so I'll be busy with that for awhile. 

Take it easy, folks. Catch up with you mid-Lent.

Sunday, January 28, 2024

The Lord Weighs the Heart


In the aftermath of Fiducia supplicans, I think one of the greatest tragedies we are witnessing is the obfuscation of the way grace draws us despite our weaknesses. There are two aspects to this obfuscation, the first relating to our real capacity to obstruct grace, the second relating to the ability of grace to reach us despite our sins. We will consider each in turn.

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

A Segregated Church


Last month on the Unam Sanctam Catholicam website, I published a lengthy article chronicling the segregation of the Catholic schools and parishes in the Archdiocese of New Orleans following the Third Plenary Council of Baltimore (1884), which called for separate black facilities as a means of more effectively ministering to the needs of black Catholics. It is quite an illuminating article for those interested in American Catholic history and how the hierarchy navigated the "color line" that was so prevalent in late 19th century America.

Monday, January 15, 2024

Wisdom and Folly by Rob Marco

If you read Traditional Catholic content, you've likely come across Rob Marco. Rob is probably best known for his blog, Pater Familias, but he also publishes regularly in Crisis Magazine, and has also appeared in Catholic World Report, OnePeterFive, and various other outlets. Rob is also a friend and a longtime supporter of this blog—I actually first met him in the combox on my posts.

Tuesday, January 09, 2024

Recovering a Morality of Happiness

Recent events make it ever more obvious that the modern Church seems paralyzed when it comes to its moral teaching. There are so many today who openly dissent from fundamental principles of Catholic morality, many in the highest seats of power within the Church. This is old news. But even among those inclined to defend traditional morality, there seems a growing uncertainty about how to explain it. 

Saturday, January 06, 2024

A New Year and Epiphany Greeting


This is the seventeenth year I have posted one of these New Years' posts. Typically I sum up the year in blogging and highlight some of my favorite posts and projects I was involved with, then offer some concluding thoughts on the year as a whole.

Sunday, December 31, 2023

"I Carefully Block My Ears With Wax": Marcel De Corte to Jean Madiran

Today is the final day of 2023. What a momentous year it has been, for better and certainly for worse. But rather than offer my poor commentary, I'm going to post a correspondance from the respected Belgian philosopher Marcel De Corte (1905-1994) to French journalist Jean Madiran. De Corte was a neo-Thomist who taught philosophy at the University of Li├Ęge, specializing in ancient philosophy and moral philosophy. Like many Catholic intellectuals, Marcel De Corte was deeply troubled by the reforms following Vatican II. In February 1970, he wrote a letter to his friend, the journalist Jean Madiran (1920-2013), who at that time was chief editor of the traditional Catholic journal Itineraries, which Madiran had founded in 1956 to combat the errors of progressivism. The following letter was published in Itineraries, wherein De Corte describes his disgust with the New Mass as he witnessed it's early implementation in Belgium in the fall of 1969 and his disillusionment with the pontificate of Pope Paul VI, whom he sees as a man of frustrating contradictions.

Thursday, December 28, 2023

Bad Humanae Vitae Parallels


In the wake of scores of bishops rejecting Fiducia Supplicans globally, popesplainers have resorted to comparing Fiducia Supplicans to Humanae Vitae as a way to deflect criticism of the document. The hyperpapalist website Where Peter Is has said that critics of Fiducia Supplicans "need to be reminded of the reception of Humanae Vitae...before asserting that the public reactions to magisterial documents are markers of its "failure.'" Then there is this little gem, which was followed by a piece from the same influencer on all of the similarities between Fiducia Supplicans and Humanae Vitae

Sunday, December 17, 2023

Six Books I Worked On This Year

Happy Advent brethren! I wanted to take this opportunity to draw your attention to several excellent new books I've had the privilege of working on this year in an editorial capacity. Some of these are original works, others  reprints of Catholic classics, but all are excellent additions to any Catholic library. These were all published through my publishing imprint Cruachan Hill Press over the course of 2023.