A beautiful coffee table book showing
everyday life in the Vatican
Vatican, in promoting values-based movies, states that young people can learn
from movies "...how dangerous
hatred is, how unacceptable racism is, how destructive religious
ignorance is," and reminded us that the Catholic Church "...is
always on the side of the weak and the forgotten. Movies have "...been able to give a
voice to many who have been rejected."
Vatican, in keeping with the Church's
historical sponsorship of art, will have a pavilion at the 2011 Venice
Bienniale International Contemporary Art Festival. "We are reminded
of the urgent need for a renewed dialogue between aesthetics and ethics,
between beauty, truth, and goodness not only by contemporary cultural
and artistic debate, but also by daily reality," said Pope Benedict
"Designed to be used in the
confessional, this app is the perfect aid for every penitent. With a
personalized examination of conscience for each user, password protected
profiles, and a step-by-step guide to the sacrament, this app invites
Catholics to prayerfully prepare for and participate in the Rite of
Penance. Individuals who have been away from the sacrament for some time
will find Confession: A Roman Catholic App to be a useful and inviting
tool." - Little iApps
"Semanarian," a painting by
Jean Prachinetti from the book, The Catholic Priest - Image of Christ
through Fifteen Centuries of Art, by Edizioni Cantagalli
The entire collection of the of the Actae Sanctae
Sedis (A.S.S.) and the Acta Apostolicae Sedis (A.A.S.)/Acts of the Holy
See from 1865 to 2007
Father Gabriele Amorth, President of the
Association of Exorcists, has been the Holy See's chief exorcist for 25
years and has performed over 70,000 exorcisms. "The Devil
resides in the Vatican and you can see the consequences. [The Christmas
Eve attack on the pope, priest abuse scandals] He can remain hidden or
speak in different languages or even appear to be sympathetic. At
times he makes fun of me. But I'm a man who is happy in his
work." Father Amorth describes someone possessed by the devil:
"From their mouths anything can come out – pieces of iron as long
as a finger but also rose petals. When the possessed dribble and
slobber and need cleaning up, I do that too. Seeing people vomit doesn't
bother me. The exorcist has one principal duty - to free human beings from
the fear of the Devil." Father Amorth said that the 1973 movie The Exorcist is
Ecce Homo/Behold the Man
Sculpture by Gregorio Fernandez
The Sacred Made Real an exhibit
at the National Gallery of Art in Washington D. C. from February 28 until
May 31 consisting of 22 sculptures and paintings from 17th-century Spain
realistically portraying Jesus, Mary, and the saints.
The Diocese of Bridgeport [Connecticut]
is holding its Second Annual Confession Campaign. During Lent all 87
parish churches will be open from 7:00 P. M. to
9:00 P. M. to hear confessions.
The Vatican Observatory is launching an
iPhone App. The App will have images of space and Vatican sites as
well as daily and weekly audio and video inspirational and devotional
content with bonus transcripts, scripture references, and insightful
commentary by Father Michael Manning. The Vatican Observatory, with
observatories in Rome and in Arizona in the U. S., was founded by Pope
Gregory XIII in 1582.
"Join Father Peter Vasko, OFM, on a
pilgrimage of faith: These pilgrimages exploring the Holy Land will
provide an opportunity to open a new chapter in your own faith journey and
your own response to God's generous grace. Now is the time to
reach out in support of our Palestinian Christians. Your presence
can make a difference. For information or ro receive a brochure call
toll free (866) 905-3787.
The Church Heritage Museum in Vilnius,
Lithuania, in Saint Michael the Archangel Church, is located at Sv. Mykolo
Street 9. The museum's collection of monstrances, paintings, and
sculptures were supposed to be sent to Moscow during communism but was
hidden instead. Saint Michael's was used as the Museum of
Architecture during the Soviet era.
Referring to The Simpsons
television show, the Vatican's newspaper, L'Osservatore Romano, wrote,
"serious analysts praise the realism and intelligence of its
Israel is refusing to return to the
Catholic Church the room on Mount Zion in which the Last Supper was held
"Jazz represents freedom - freedom
musically and politically," said Catholic Jazz musician Dave Brubeck
who was made famous by Time Out.
Pope Benedict XVI's Christmas CD
The Archbishop of Charm by Robert
Kolker in the September 28, 2009, issue of New York Magazine is
an article about Archbishop Timothy Dolan of the Archdiocese of New
York. In the article, Archbishop Dolan tells how Pope Paul VI gave
him a rosary to give to his parents "to thank them for giving their
son to the Church." Archbishop Dolan said his mother keeps the
rosary safe in her purse, "...right next to the lottery
ticket." Archbishop Dolan: "God made me with a
particular soft spot for a martini."
True Compass: A Memoir by Senator
Ted Kennedy was started five years before his death and completed just
before he died.
Letter written in French by Mary Queen
of Scots to Henry III of France at 2:00 A. M. before her execution at
Fotheringhay Castle in Northampshire near Oundle, England, at
8:00 A.M. on February 8, 1587, will be on display at the National
Library of Scotland in Edinburgh for one week beginning September
15. "Tonight, after dinner, I have been advised of my sentence:
I am to be executed like a criminal at eight in the morning. I have not
had time to give you a full account of everything that has happened, but
if you will listen to my doctor and my other unfortunate servants, you
will learn the truth, and how, thanks be to God, I scorn death and vow
that I meet it innocent of any crime."
Chief of Vatican restoration, Maurizio
De Luca, upon completion of the restoration of Michelangelo's frescoes in
the Pauline Chapel, and upon examining The Crucifixion of Saint Peter,
said that nobody could say with absolute certainty, but it is his opinion
that the face of the man on the horse is a self portrait of Michelangelo.
Actors Alan Alda and Jon Voight returned
to Archbishop Stepinac High School in White Plains, New York, to honor
Father Bernard McMahon, their former drama teacher.
The relics of 39 saints, including Saint
Benedict, was found at the British Museum in London inside a 12th
century German portable altar which became part of the collection of the
British Museum in 1902 but was not opened until now.
The New York Public Library has received
a gift from publisher Marilena Ferrari of what is said to be the world's
most expensive book 20 of which have sold for $100,000. It is a
62-pound, handwritten, marble and velvet book which took Italian
scribes six months to create and depicts the life of Michelangelo.
The book will be on display at the New York Public Library's main branch
at 42nd Street. The publisher wants to bring back appreciation for
the written book which she believes is being lost due to the internet.
DVD Rosary Stars Praying the Gospel
21 celebrities recite the rosary and
This movie dramatizes
the everyday practical problems citizens face in the Holy Land.
Because this Golan Heights/Israeli-passport bride is marrying a Syrian,
she will never be able to visit her birth family again because once she
crosses the border from her home in the disputed territory of the Golan
Heights - which both Syria and Israel claim - to mainland Syria, she will
never be able to return to visit her family because of passport stamps -
neither Israel or Syria allows people with the other's passport stamp to
enter. Movie is in Arabic,
English, and Hebrew.
Best Picture of the Year Slumdog Millionaire's Best Director of
the Year, British Irish Catholic Danny Doyle applied to a
seminary but was told by a priest that he did not have a calling.
"Whether he was saving me from the priesthood or saving the
priesthood from me, I don't know. But quite soon after, I started
doing drama." China is allowing Slumdog Millionaire to
be seen in its movie theaters. Only 20 foreign movies a year are
allowed into China.
The priests (from left to right) Father
Martin O'Hagan, his brother Father Eugene O'Hagan, and their school chum,
Father David Delargy, are priests in the Northern Ireland Diocese of Down
and Connor. The priests
signed a £1MM contract with Sony BMG's Epic Records.
Vatican on YouTube
Louis Gossett, Jr. received the Lifetime
Achievement Award from Catholics in Media Associates for his 50 years of
personal and professional achievement. Among Mr. Gossett's movies and performances are: An
Officer and a Gentleman, A Raisin in the Sun, Roots, Sadat, Iron Eagle, series,
Travels with My Aunt, Toy Soldiers and The Deep. Lou Gosset
founded the Eracism Foundation ”whose mission is the eradication all
forms of racism by providing programs that foster cultural diversity,
historical enrichment, education and antiviolence initiatives."
Responding to the award, Mr. Gossett remarks: “This is a gratifying
moment for me, and I am humbled by this award. I believe the gift of
acting is from God, my oath to God, and I want to make sure on a daily
basis that it is honed and deeply spiritual. I want to believe that the
audience believes my acting comes from this special place.”
Catholics in Media Associates Film Award
was given to the movie Doubt.
Screenwriter John Patrick Shanley responded, "I have been
fortunate in the uniformly positive reactions I have received from the
Catholic community to Doubt, and I am gratified beyond words.
American Catholicism has shown itself to be generous and robust in its
embrace of new ways of looking at the Catholic experience.”
Praying the Way of the Cross
featuring Liam Neesom
Stations of the Cross by Saint Alphonsus
1. Introduction: The Way of the Cross
Song: The Passion of Jesus Christ (Instrumental)
2. Song: To Jesus in His Passion
3. Way of the Cross, Station One
4. Way of the Cross, Station Two
5. Way of the Cross, Station Three
6. Way of the Cross, Station Four
7. Way of the Cross, Station Five
8. Way of the Cross, Station Six
9. Way of the Cross, Station Seven
10. Way of the Cross, Station Eight
11. Way of the Cross, Station Nine
12. Way of the Cross, Station Ten
13. Way of the Cross, Station Eleven
14. Way of the Cross, Station Twelve
15. Way of the Cross, Station Thirteen
16. Way of the Cross, Station Fourteen
Song: Stabat Mater Dolorosa (Sorrowful Mother, Gregorian Chant)
17. Song: To Jesus in His Passion, Part 2 (Instrumental)
New England Patriots quarterbackTom
Brady and Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen were married on February
26, 2009, at Saint Monica Church in Santa Monica, California. This
is the church where Bing Crosby was filmed in the movie Going My Way.
L'Osservatore Romano, the
Vatican's newspaper, celebrated the 40th anniversary of the
Beatles' White Album. "Forty years later this album
remains a type of magical musical anthology: 30 songs you can go through
and listen to at will certain of finding some pearls that even today
remain unparalleled. With rock songs like Back in the U.S.S.R. and
Helter Skelter, ballads like Julia and Blackbird, and
dreamlike pieces like Dear Prudence, the album represents the
creative summit of the Beatles' career."
Archbishop John Myers of the Diocese of
Newark said comedian Bill Maher misled Our Lady of Mercy Church in Park
Ridge, New Jersey, when he asked permission to film in the church by
stating that he wanted to film his Jewish mother in Our Lady of Mercy
because the church was a big part of her life being married to a Catholic
who attended Our Lady of Mercy. Instead Bill Maher used the filming
to mock religion in the movie Religulous.
American Bible Society presented Pope
Benedict XVI with the Biblia Polyglotta, a multilingual bible in
which the different texts are displayed in parallel columns. The Biblia
Polyglotta features the Old Testament in five languages: Aramaic,
Greek, Latin, English and Spanish; and the New Testament in four
languages: Greek, Latin, English and Spanish.
Catholic reviews of Paul Newman's movies
Regis Philbin, Martin Scorsese, and
George Carlin attended Cardinal Hayes High School
in The Bronx in New York City.
Chant - Music
Cistercian Monks of Stift
Capuchin Brother Cesare Bonizzi in
Milan, Italy, is the lead singer for a heavy-metal band called Brother
Metal. "I was overwhelmed and amazed by the sheer energy of it.
I do it to convert people to life, to undersand life, to grab hold of
Bienvenue Chez Les Ch'Tis/Welcome to the
"This is a comedy that is directed
at exposing French prejudices among communities that live in separate
regions of France. It is poised to become the most successful French
film ever released in France. It brings touches of French lightness,
warmth, and comic flair that leave you feeling much the better for having
Rating: Rated M (coarse language)
Peter W. Sheehan, Associate of the
Australian Catholic Office for Film and Broadcasting.
& God Bless Volume 1: A Guide to Convent & Monastery Accomodation in Europe
Volume One - Austria, Czech Republic, Italy, by Trish Clark is
a beautifully presented and well organised book opening the door
on religious hideaways throughout Europe that offer good value
accommodation and heartfelt hospitality to tourists and pilgrims
alike. - Marjorie Lewis-Jones, Insights
What did Catholic ex-Beattle Sir Paul
McCartney do for his 66th birthday? He got his kicks on
Route 66 - something he'd always wanted to do. Sir Paul drove a 1989
green Ford Bronco along the fabled 2,448 mile Route 66 from Illinois to
California camping most of the way. Route 66 was the road taken from
Illinois to California before the interstate highway system was
built. Along Route 66, Sir Paul stopped in local shops and
talked to people he met just as any tourist would as long as no pictures
were taken, (He did ask locals to take pictures of him with his camera),
and it was universally agreed that Sir Paul was a gentleman without
hubris. When Paul McCartney stopped into Record Rack in Amarillo, Texas,
owner Don Dunavin told Sir Paul that he named his son Jude after the
Beatles song Hey Jude, whereupon Sir Paul played his harmonica for
Jude. "Jude was smiling. It was such an incredible
moment," said his proud dad. It seems a favorite of Sir Paul's
along Route 66 was a souvenir shop named Things in Tucumcari, New
Mexico, which had zany items. By advance request, John Burros of
Nonna's Restaurant in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, prepared a meatless quiche
Lorraine for the vegetarian Sir Paul, saying, "I guess now the
only person bigger to cook for is the pope!"
"The Bonneville of the title is a
1966 automobile, one of those massive V8 convertibles that defined
American cars in the days when petrol was a pittance. It is driven by
three women on an odyssey from Pocatello Idaho to California to deliver an
urn of ashes to a funeral service. Writer Daniel D.
Davis drew on his own family for the characters even retaining their
names. His story, dedicated to the proposition that everyone should have a
big adventure, is always affectionate and life-affirming." Jim
Murphy, Australian Catholic Office for Film and Broadcasting
"After viewing this film, recycling
takes on a whole new meaning. Reynolds uses anything he can lay his hands
on (tyres, bottles, tins, and cans) to create eco-friendly structures. His
buildings take on an alien look; his structures are earthships (his term)
that aim to help people survive in a world that is threatened massively by
climate change. You know his cause is right and his personal struggle
shows enormous courage, persistence and resilience. Deep down, though, one
suspects that people like Reynolds will continue to face almost
insurmountable difficulties in pushing the environmental cause
significantly further." - Peter W. Sheehan, Australian Catholic
Office for Film and Broadcasting
New book, The Quest for Shakespeare:
The Bard of Avon and the Church of Rome by Joseph Pearce makes
the case that William Shakespeare was Catholic. Full
X-Files Movie Review by Father Peter Malone
24-hour K-Immaculate Heart Humboldt
Radio, KIHH, began programming after five years of planning on 1400 AM in
Humboldt County, California. The programming will be catechetical,
devotional, and inspirational. The catechetical programming will be
teachings from Catholic saints, devotional programming of Mass and the
rosary, and inspirational programming of people and faith.
Catholic Sir Paul McCartney gave a free
outdoor concert on Sunday, July 20, 2008, on the Plains of Abraham in
Catholic Quebec City, Canada, to celebrate Quebec City's 400th
anniversary. Beatles music played throughout the day in Old Quebec
City. Also performing were The Stills and Pascale Picard.
a movie produced by Catholic Kathleen
Slattery-Moschkau, exposes the marketing techniques of the U. S.
pharmaceutical industry: "For 10 years as a drug rep, almost
daily I experienced the comical marketing tactics of the industry as well
as their dangerous pursuit of profits that can, and have, come at the
expense of patients' lives. It was very difficult because the money and
perks are so seductive, but eventually I couldn't look in the mirror any
Mama Mia movie
"Mama Mia is one film that
is definitely critic proof. There is a lot of exuberant
choreography. The whole thing is rather camp in visuals and style.
But, at the end, fans are going to enjoy their favourite [ABBA] songs in a
colourful musical." - Father Peter Malone, Australian Catholic
Office for Film and Broadcasting
Webmaster Father Jeffrey Mickler states,
is a video, audio and image sharing site that allows users to have their
own blogs and blog addresses. It is a site that prohibits vulgarity,
violence, and bigotry. It has a relaxed and family friendly feel. It
was established by the Society of St. Paul, a religious congregation in
the Catholic Church dedicated to the use of media. The site will encourage
an ecumenical and inter-religious perspective and attacks on other
people's religions will be banned."
Diocese of Besançon in eastern France
has launched a new reality television show entitled Prêtre Academy as a
recruiting tool. The show televises the day-to-day life of three
Sister Dominic Dipio, who has a
doctorate from Gregorian University in Rome, and who wrote her thesis on
cinema, said, "The religious must permeate the secular realm and must
use the format of the mainstream to package religious messages. Our
values must enter in this public forum to influence the mainstream
Bishop Geoffrey Robinson, retired from
the Archdiocese of Sydney [Australia], has been asked by U. S. bishops to
cancel his speaking tour to promote his book, Confronting Power and Sex
in the Catholic Church: Reclaiming the Spirit of Jesus. "My book
is about the response to the revelations of sexual abuse within the
Church. Sexual abuse is all about power and sex, so it is surely
reasonable to ask questions about power and sex in the Church."
Two Picasso prints, his 1933
Minotaur, Drinker and Women and his 1963 The Painter and the Model,
were stolen from the Pinacoteca do Estado art museum in downtown São
Paulo, Brazil, along with two oil paintings by Brazilian artists Emiliano
Di Cavalcanti and Lasar Segal, having a combined value of 1MM
Pablo Picasso's The Frugal Meal
valued at $150,000 and Jacqueline Lisant valued at $300,000 were
stolen from the Gallery Biba in Palm Beach, Florida.
Mary of Nazareth: A Story That
Continues is an Italian musical play premiered at the Vatican.
The musical cast has 40 actors, 12 dancers, and a 60-piece orchestra.
Actor Martin Sheen has been awarded 2008
University of Notre Dame Laetare Medal for his humanitarian work.
Describing himself as a Catholic peace activist, Martin Sheen said,
"While acting is what I do for a living, activism is what I do to
stay alive." The annual Laetare Medal is given to a Catholic
"whose genius has ennobled the arts and sciences, illustrated the
ideals of the Church, and enriched the heritage of humanity."
Croatian pop star, Tatiana, now living
in the United States and known as Tajci, sings and writes Catholic
inspirational songs and gives free concerts in Catholic churches.
Catholic Worker celebrated its 75th
anniversary on May 1, 2008.
BBC has awarded $5,000 to Catholic
radio, Radio Pacis in Arua, Uganda, for winning first place as New Radio
Station of the Year. “Radio Pacis is a fine example of what a
community radio station outside the capital can do. It may have few staff
and modest resources, but it still addresses challenging issues including
providing advice on medical and health problems. It also offers debate on
matters of local interest alongside local and national news,” said BBC
World Service's Robin White. Father Tonino Pasolini of Radio Pacis
responded, “We would like to thank BBC World Service for honoring Radio
Pacis and making possible the launch of our new frequency.”
and Chico: The Life of Pope Benedict XVI As Told By A Cat is a
book for elementary school children which tells the story of the life of
Pope Benedict XVI when he was growing up in Bavaria, Germany. The
story is told by Pope Benedict XVI's next-door neighbor in Pentling,
Germany, Chico, the cat, who would visit Pope Benedict XVI often.
Pope Benedict XVI is a cat lover who fed stray cats in Rome and brought
one Roman stray cat home with him when he was a cardinal. The
Vatican doesn't allow animals, but when asked whether Pope
Benedict XVI brought his two cats with him when he moved into the
Vatican, the Vatican had no comment. The Introduction is by
Monsignor Georg Gänswein, Pope Benedict XVI's personal secretary.
Non-Catholic historian David McCullough
has received the 2008 Christophers' Life Achievement Award. "I
felt very proud, honored and gratified. There's also something about
that 'life achievement' designation that I hope doesn't mean that this is
my curtain call. I have a lot more I intend to do," said the
74-year-old John Adams biographer.
Forced Labor and the Catholic Church
1939 - 1945 is a 703 page book documenting the Church's use of 1,075
prisoners of war and 4,829 civilians as slaves in 800 Catholic hospitals,
cemeteries, and as domestics, and on the farms and gardens of monasteries
during World War II. German Cardinal Karl Lehmann said, "It's a
burden of history that our Church will keep facing up to in the
future. It should not be concealed that the Catholic Church was
blind for too long to the fate and suffering of men, women, and children
from the whole of Europe who were carted off to Germany as forced
laborers." Most slaves were from Poland and the Ukraine. The
main historian on the book, Karl-Joseph Hummel, said the Church used only
a small part of Germany's slave labor and has paid EUR 1.5MM as
compensation to the victims and spent EUR 2.71MM on 200
reconciliation projects in eastern Europe. Volkswagen, Siemens and
Deutsche Bank have also acknowledged using slaves. Karl-Joseph
Hummel said between 1940 and 1942, 300 monasteries and other Catholic
institutions were confiscated by the Nazis and thousands of Catholics were
sent to concentration camps, but the Church, "It should have clearly
said how its interpretation of loyalty, honor and the fatherland was not
the same as the Nazis' view."
Tenor Juan Diego Florez, called the
successor to Luciano Pavarotti, married Julia Trappe in his hometown
cathedral in Lima, Peru, The last wedding performed in the cathedral
was in 1949. The newlyweds were previously married in a civil
ceremony in Vienna. Mrs. Florez was raised in Australia. In
attendance were Peruvian President Alan Garcia, First Lady Pilar Nores,
and writer Mario Vargas Llosa.
Angelita Loturco/Museum of Sacred Art
Two mummies were discovered in the
basement of the Mosteiro da Luz Catholic Church in São Paulo, Brazil
Danielle Steel, best-selling author with
72 published books, had thoughts of becoming a nun when she was growing
up. "I wanted to be a nun when I was young. Religion is
what keeps me going. I would be utterly lost without it. I was
brought up a rabid Catholic, and there have been times I went to Mass
twice a day just to hang on. It's a very present support system for
Padre Marcelo Rossi is the most popular
pop recording singer in Brazil. Father Rossi donates his earnings to
Peter Malone review of the movie Son of Man: "It is a contemporary
rendering of the Gospel story spoken and sung in Xhosa and English. With
this film, African audiences have the opportunity to appreciate the
relevance of the Gospel to their own situations. Those from outside the
African tradition are offered a chance to look at familiar stories with
new eyes, with different perspectives."
Color of Skin: Encounters with Religion and Racial Injustice in America
is a book by Nigerian Holy Ghost Father Cajetan Ihewulezi. Father
Ihewulezi argues that America's religious leaders are simply not fully
addressing the problem of racism, along with its effects, and that their
continued silence in the face of increasing prejudice is cataclysmic to
humanity. Coming from another country, Father Ihewulezi is shocked at the
level of racial prejudice that is still going on in America. As a
sacramental on-call chaplain to various American hospitals, Father
Ihewulezi discovered that about 70 percent of his psychiatric patients
were poor African Americans, many of whom were dependents of African
American veterans of World War II and the Korean War, who were denied
their GI rights simply because of their skin color. To understand
the problem in order to offer solutions, Father Ihewulezi traces the
history of this quandary from the religious or pastoral point of view, and
the memoir is packed with personal stories and recommendations.
Father Ihewulezi's email address:
Actor Martin Sheen has won the 2008
University of Notre Dame Laetare Medal, an award begun in 1883 to honor a
Catholic "whose genius has ennobled the arts and sciences,
illustrated the ideals of the Church, and enriched the heritage of
humanity." Father John I. Jenkins, President of the University
of Notre Dame, said of Martin Sheen, "He has used that celebrity to
draw the attention of his fellow citizens to issues that cry out for
redress such as the plight of immigrant workers and homeless people, the
waging of unjust war, the killing of the unborn, and capital
Father Tim Dean's review of Dreams
From My Father by Barak Obama.
The Jammed won 2007 Film of the Year by the Australian Catholic
Film Office. Jury Chair Jesuit Father Richard Leonard said,
"The jury felt that The Jammed was a singularly courageous
piece of cinema. Even though the extremely violent world this film
portrays means many people would not want to see it, that does not allow
us to ignore the sex trade in women and children occurring in our nation.
This uncompromising and confronting film illuminates a dark, tragic side
of Australian society and thus makes a significant contribution to
increasing people’s awareness of an under recognised but important issue
of faith and justice. The Jammed plays the role of raising
our consciousness on this issue."
During 2008 Turkish bishops celebrated
the 2,000 anniversary of the birth of Saint Paul in Tarsus, Turkey:
"This event is for all Christian communities since Paul is a teacher
for all the disciples of Christ. However, the anniversary is of
particular importance for us living in Turkey. The apostle of the
gentiles is a son of this land, and it is here he exercised most of his
Journey to the East: The Jesuit
Mission to China, 1579-1724 by Liam Matthew Brockey received the John
Gilmary Shea Prize from the American Catholic Historical Association for
the best Catholic historical book in 2007.
Brokers of Culture: Italian Jesuits
in the American West, 1848-1919 by Jesuit Father Gerald McKevitt won
the American Catholic Historical Association's, Howard R. Marraro Prize
actor George Clooney received a bronze statue sculptured by Italian
sculptor Oliviero Rainaldo for "...efforts in favor of pacifying the
tormented region of Darfur and for helping save lives," by former
Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev's foundation.
Backstreet Boy Howie D/Howie Dorough
married Leigh Boniello at Saint James Cathedral in Orlando, Florida, on
Saturday, December 8, 2007,with all of the Backstreet Boys in
attendance. Howie D proposed to Leigh Boniello last New
Year's. "She wasn't expecting it, and I was quite nervous, more
nervous about proposing to her in front of 40 family and friends than
about performing in front of 40,000 people onstage," said Howie D.
Catholic filmmaker Martin Scorsese on
his movies: "I am much more
interested by the character than by the plot. There is no plot in Taxi Driver, not in The Last Temptation of Christ and in Gangs of New York there is not a lot of
plot. I was very close to my mother. She was one of seven children,
and all her family had a sense of humor. I find that the humor in my films
is from that side of the family, from my mother's side whose name was
Capa." Asked about the violence in his films, Martin Scorsese
said the violence reflected the world in which he grew up, "a very
small group of people in a certain part of Manhattan Island with Italian
descendance. The people I knew, the ones from Sicily who emigrated
to America in 1910, 1912, they were still very much involved in a way of
life which was very tribal. What I am saying is that the nature of
violence in the world I grew up in was not pointless violence, it was very
serious violence. The violence was something that I experienced. I
try to make it look the way I think I saw it on the block."
The World Catholic Association for
Communication (SIGNIS) and the World Association for Christian
Communication (WACC) has awarded Nick Higgins of Scotland the 2007 Human
Rights Award for the Best Documentary Film for A
Massacre Foretold. The movie
is about the massacre of indigenous Mexicans. Said Mr. Higgins,
"It is extremely gratifying to be recognized in this way by two such
prestigious international organizations so active in the world of
What Every Parent Should Know About "The
Vatican's critique of The Golden Compass
Father Peter Malone's review of the movie, Ratatouille.
TV comedy series Ugly
Betty was honored by Catholics in Media Associates at
its 15th annual luncheon. Executive Producer Ben
Silverman said the show "tackles issues unapologetically," and
celebrates the "goodness in all of us, wherever you come from,
whatever you're about."
television star America Ferrera addressed Los Angles Catholic high school
students: "Every opportunity that faces you is really defined
by how you accept that opportunity."
will be broadcast in China with the title Invincible Ugly Woman.
Catholic actor and comedian Dick Van
Dyke was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from Catholics in Media
Associates at its 15th annual luncheon.
Father Peter Malone's review of the movie, Eastern
Vatican condems the movie, Elizabeth:
The Golden Age as a "distorted anti-papal
travesty." King Philip II of Spain is depicted as a “ferocious,
fanatical Catholic, swinging his rosary like a weapon and roaming the
Escorial Palace like a madman, full of impotent fury, dreaming of
subjugating the world to the Catholic faith.”
Dominican Father Cayet Mangiaracina,
parochial vicar of Holy Ghost Church in Hammond, Louisiana, co-composed
the 1950s hit, Hello Mary Lou, Goodbye Heart,
made famous by Rickey Nelson. "The embarrassing
thing about the song, which I wrote as Merry, Merry Lou, is that it
sounds like I got jilted." Before Father Mangiaracina entered
the seminary, he was the piano player for the rock and roll band, Sparks.
Father Mangiaracina sent royalties from Hello Mary Lou, Goodbye Heart
to his mother until her death in 1988, and now royalties are given to the
Dominicans. "Last year it was $35,000. About three or
four years ago, I got a check for $90,000," said Father Mangiaracina.
Father Antoniu Petrescu is a priest in Sorbo, Italy, and an
Elvis Presley impersonator.
review by Father Peter Malone: When
Did You Last See Your Father
Stations of the Cross
Aboriginal artist Shirley Purdie won the
2007 $15,000 Blake Prize for Religious Art with this traditional ochre
painting of the Stations of the Cross. Blake Society Chair Father
Rod Pattenden said the painting also reflects the massacre of Aboriginees
by European settlers in the 1920s and 1930s. "Within living
memory, these people have a very visceral, connected experience of
suffering," said Father Pattenden.
New England Cable News in Newton,
Massachusetts, received the 2007 Gabriel Award as TV Station of the Year,
and KNOM Radio in Nome, Alaska, received the 2007 Gabriel Award as Radio
Station of the Year by the Catholic Academy for Communication Arts
Professionals. The Gabriel Award is awarded for station programming which
maintains human dignity and values.
Sinead O'Connor sings Psalms from the
Old Testament on this CD
Documentary film Father G and the Homeboys is a movie about Jesuit Father Gregory Boyle and
his anti-gang program, Homeboy Industries, in gang-ridden East Los
Angeles, California. Former gang enemies landscape, answer phones,
make T-shirts, and knead bread in the bakery. The movie is narrated by Martin Sheen.
Review of Spider Man-3
Al-Fikr Al-Masihi, an Iraqi
monthly, received the 2007 Gold Medal from the International Catholic
Union of the Press. "Al-Fikr Al-Masihi, published in Arabic,
survived the worst of crises in the history of Iraq, and it did so by
becoming a reference point for all peoples: Muslims, Christians, and other
religions; and all types of ethnic and language groups," said the
International Catholic Press Union.
Synopsis of the movie
Pope John Paul II
starring Jon Voight
Following the premature death of his
mother, Karol Wojtyla is brought up by his father in the Polish city of
Krakow during the first half of the 20th century. An
outstanding student with a magnetic personality, he dreams of becoming an
When his homeland is invaded by the
Nazis in 1939, he and his friends secretly oppose the systematic
persecution of their Polish culture. But, with the death of his father and
the lacerating solitude which accompanies this loss, Karol’s personal
“resistance” takes on a new form, and he decides to follow a priestly
vocation. At the end of the war, Poland falls into the grip of Soviet
The newly ordained Karol is constantly
surrounded by young people whom he teaches to safeguard and defend human
dignity. He could be considered a serious threat to the regime, but the
Communist authorities merely see him as an innocuous intellectual and even
encourage his nomination for the position of bishop. Karol Wojtyla is the
youngest bishop in the history of Poland. When he is appointed Cardinal,
Karol is more intransigent in the spiritual guidance of his homeland,
becoming a real and proper thorn in the side of the Communist government.
And the whole Catholic world begins to wonder who he is. On the
death of Pope John Paul I in 1978, the cardinals of the Conclave decide
that Wojtyla is the right man to lead the Church into the new millennium.
Thus Karol leaves his beloved Poland to
become Pope John Paul II. His free, unconventional attitude alarms several
prelates, but immediately wins the hearts of the people. In an age
paralyzed by fear and ideology, the new pope shows everybody again the
overwhelming fascination of Christianity.
Pope John Paul II miraculously survives
an attempt on his life in 1981, and not even this event curbs his mission.
Thanks to his unshakable tenacity, Pope John Paul II helps to change the
course of history: The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 decrees the
collapse of Communism.
In the following years, however, Pope
Wojtyla goes through a period of both physical and psychological
sufferings. On the one hand, his physical infirmity and Parkinson disease
hinder his travels and prevent him from carrying his apostolic mission
through; on the other, his constant appeals to peace and defense of human
dignity are disillusioned by a series of wars and international conflicts.
But the tireless Pope goes on witnessing
faith and hope. With the Great Jubilee of 2000, Pope John Paul II
accomplishes his promise of taking the Church into the New Millennium.
With his journey to Israel, he tries to fill the gap between the Christian
and the Jewish, and he conquers the world with his decision not to hide
his physical weakness and bear his cross as Jesus did.
The day he dies, on the first Saturday
after Easter 2005, a large crowd of young people in love with the Pope
gather in Rome under the Pope’s window. Pope John Paul II was the first
who went searching for them, and now they’ve come to him.
Pope John Paul II's favorite movie
The Nativity Story premiered at
the Vatican in Pope Paul VI Hall on November 24, 2006, although Pope
Benedict XVI was not in attendance so as not to apppear to endorse a
film. Keisha Castle-Hughes stars as Mary, Elizabeth is portrayed by
Shohreh Aghdashloo, and Joseph by Oscar Isaac. The Nativity Story was
filmed partly in Matera, Italy, the same location as the filming of Mel
Gibson's The Passion of the Christ, and in Morocco. Regarding
consultants for the movie, said Oscar
Isaac, "Keisha had one who taught her how to milk goats. I had one
who taught me how to use first-century tools. I was actually building that
stone house in the film. So when you saw all those cuts and scrapes and
bruises on my hands, that wasn't acting." USCCB rating A-1,
General Audience, 93 minutes.
The movie Die Grosse
Stille/Into Real Silence,
set in the Grande Chartreuse in Grenoble, France, was named best 2006
documentary film by the European Film Academy: "Philip Gröning's
thoughtful film touches on the mystic quality of belief and our need for
stillness and silence in contrast to modern life. It appears that the
director, with a lot of patience, gained the trust of this enclosed
community and returned with amazing images and sounds. Die Grosse Stille/Into Real Silence, is a great film about
humanity and our shared European background." The movie is 162 minutes and documents the daily
life of monks. The director, Philip Gröning, spent six months
living at the Carthusian monastery.
Commonweal Review of Into Real Silence
Into Great Silence: A Film and Study
Guide which includes questions for reflection and conversation, prayer
and reflection suggestions for retreats or days of reconciliation, and
references and helpful resources for personal or group use, can be ordered
for $4.95 from Pauline Books & Media at 1-800-876-4463.
Turtles Can Fly
movie Turtles Can Fly won the Catholic
SIGNIS award at the International Film Festival in Hong Kong. The
theme of the movie Turtles Can Fly is the ways humans respond
to unspeakable circumstances. Turtles
Can Fly is set in an Iraqi-Kurdish refugee camp on the
Turkish-Iranian border. A Bahman Ghobadi movie.
The movie Tom White starring Colin Friels was
named 2004 Film of the Year by the Australian Catholic Film Office.
The theme of the movie Tom White is how mid-life crisis can
lead to mental illness and homelessness.
The movie Look Both Ways,
the 2005 Australian Catholic Film of the Year, is the story of a
50-year-old bachelor diagnosed with cancer who meets a woman at the scene
of an automobile accident returning from her father's funeral. Jury
Chair Father Richard Leonard said the movie Look Both Ways is "...a meditation on
how we should love our neighbors as we love ourselves."
Ahla Al Awqat/Best of Times
Tunisian Hind Sabri won Best Leading
Actress award for the film Ahla Al Awqat/Best of Times at the 53rd
Catholic Egyptian Cinema Festival. The movie
also won for Best Film, Best Production and Best Direction. The
theme of the movie Ahla Al Awqat is overcoming society's
The Passion of the Christ
Vatican Top 45 Movie List
USCCB Top Movies from 1965-2007
Australian Catholic Office for Film and
Catholic News Service Current Movie Reviews
Soul Food Cinema
Discussion of movies
from a Catholic perspective