Monthly Archives: January 2011

Make of it what they will

It’s always interesting to see the media and other Church-haters jump up and down with glee when they dig up some material they consider juicy in the quest to prove that the Church is out of touch and/or not worth believing in. Many of you will recall the hoopla over the writings of Mother Teresa. In her letters, it was revealed that, like most Christians, Mother Teresa had times when her faith was not as strong as at other times. … Continue reading

Who is the Church?

Over at one of The Catholic Soapbox’s sister projects, Being Frank, an author has asked a series of good questions. Unfortunately, with a large proportion of New Zealanders being in the middle of a long weekend, the comments seem to dry up. This is no exception. I want to share the thoughts of Voice in the Wilderness with a few more readers, though. He raises some interesting questions that I think are worth pondering. I don’t know what most Catholics … Continue reading

The Vatican Rag (no, not the newspaper)

Earlier this week, a friend of mine introduced me to the comic musings of a gentleman named Tom Lehrer. He was a big name in comedic circles in the late 1960s and the 1970s. Now, some Catholics might find the piece I’m highlighting here is the sort of humour that borders on sacrilege. I am not one of those Catholics. I think it’s a good laugh and I believe that Catholics can get into the habit of taking ourselves a … Continue reading

It’s not a popularity contest, but…

I’ve been having some fun — well, was it fun? — today working through a long list of Catholic twitter accounts and adding them to my list of people or organisations I’m following. If you’re not already doing so, you can follow me at @catholicsoapbox Anywho, it got me thinking about the respective popularity of Catholic blogs and, in a stroke of providence, jumping on Twitter tonight saw me come across a link to a website that claims to rank … Continue reading

Ten Catholic heroes…

There is no shortage of controversial topics when it comes to the Catholic Church. Wikipedia normally has a section on “controversies” or a similarly-headlined piece on its pages, and I suspect the Catholic entry would be longer than most. One area of controversy, though not always as widely publicised as some others, is the role of Catholics in World War II to assist people — Jews in particular — who were being hunted down and killed by the Nazis. The … Continue reading

Online, Christian soldiers

If you’re reading this, you’re already part of the ever-growing number of people who seek a little light — and sometimes not-so-light — entertainment on this Internet thingy. It’s quite mind-boggling to think that only about 15 years ago, I was just dipping my toe into the world of email and now at least four people read my blog. Amazing. In those 15 years, to state the obvious, the Internet has revolutionised the way we communicate. And that includes the … Continue reading

Children as commodities

Infertility must be a terrible burden for some married couples. Having made a commitment to each other for the rest of their lives and promised to welcome children into the world (as Catholic couples do), to discover that nature won’t support the conception of children is a cause of much pain and anguish for couples. The natural reaction is to find some solution to the problem. For decades (or more), adoption was the obvious first choice. Now, though, as modern … Continue reading

Say a little prayer for them

On this stormy Sunday evening in Auckland, I am saying a little prayer for the Christian missionaries who devote their lives to spreading the Gospel, through word and through their own example, in dangerous parts of the world. Last weekend, as Independent Catholic News reports, a religious sister working as a nurse was shot and killed by rebels in Africa. She is one of the first religious killed while on mission in 2011, but there are typically two or three … Continue reading

Shame — on all of us

CathNews is a very valuable news service based in Australia. It has a useful website and also disseminates daily email news bulletins that share some of the big stories from the Catholic world, as well as some of the more quirky stories with a bit of a Catholic twist. CathNews also runs a blog that is pretty good, but not as good as the blog you’re reading right now, of course Today, the blog post looks at an interesting topic: … Continue reading

Katy Perry vs Madonna

I’ve never really considered myself one to get caught up in the celebrity catfights over this, that or the other thing. Sometimes, though, a headline from the entertainment section of a newspaper or website catches my eye. Today is one of those times, when I came across a report on current pop diva Katy Perry taking Madonna — the Queen of Pop — to task for the latter’s use of religious imagery and symbolism in her music videos and concerts. … Continue reading