The Catholic Difference

Flannery O’Connor and friends, revisited

At the end, that is the deepest impression her letters leave: here is a woman of extraordinary courage whose configuration of her life to the Cross was a source of both personal strength and literary genius.
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Christmas, freedom and obedience

The Christmas story is a lengthy meditation on a counterintuitive but essential truth: true freedom, genuine liberation, comes through freely chosen obedience to God’s purposes.
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The well-fought fight

Alas, like many other hymns, “For All the Saints” is an endangered species today, gutted by parish music directors and pastors who commit the grave sin of not singing a hymn in its entirety — or worse, who bowdlerize the lyrics to coddle the sensibilities of the Church of Nice.
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What kind of “believers”?

Catholicism is dying in the German-speaking world, not because the Gospel has been proclaimed and found incredible or hard, but because it hasn’t been proclaimed with joy, confidence, and zeal.
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Heroism and priesthood, Dachau and Amazonia

The heroes of Dachau’s priest-barracks found a way to keep sacramental life alive, in full fidelity to the Church’s tradition. Is that impossible in Amazonia? Or elsewhere?
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The Ratzinger Diagnosis 

The Pope Emeritus did the Church a service by offering a diagnosis of the abuse crisis that should be taken seriously by anyone serious about healing the wounds inflicted on the Body of Christ by the abuse of Holy Orders for wicked, self-indulgent purposes.
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Cleansed and conformed to God’s will

We must all intensify prayer and penance. We should all be inviting to church those who have left out of boredom, anger, confusion, or disgust.
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A century after the Armistice

The Great War destroyed Western confidence in traditional authorities and bred a deep skepticism of, and even contempt for, “the great and the good” that remains a factor in our public life.
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The Summer Reading List

The vacation season is an opportunity to escape TwitterWorld and do some serious reading. These books will help make your summer enjoyable, instructive, or both.
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‘Roe v. Wade’ Derangement Syndrome

The defense of the indefensible leads to rage, and rage becomes a form of madness.
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