Readers interested in the Catholic Church's role in international development will benefit from reading three books which explain that the church long has been a formal presence in international development and that individuals rooted in Catholic tradition, prayer and Catholic social teaching can change the world.
But fair warning: Readers might feel inspired and uncomfortably challenged while reading them, for answering the call of Catholic social teaching, the books point out, is not an easy task.
"I am not writing a biography but a conversion story," Joseph Pearce explains in his new book, "Race With the Devil." His was a Christian conversion in the strict sense that it represented a full turnaround of his life.
A Catholic today, Pearce during his teens became a white supremacist in England, devoting his talents then and in his early 20s to promoting racism.
Al Kresta's book, “Dangers to the Faith: Recognizing Catholicism’s 21st Century Opponents,” shines light into all the nooks and crannies where the dangerous things lurk and sets us thinking about our own ambivalence and lack of action toward them.
I met George Weigel last year when he came to the Valley to speak about how the KGB tried to suborn John Paul II, if that were even possible. I told him that I read his book, “Against the Grain,” and it totally revolutionized my view of Just War Theory. He seemed surprised that someone had actually read, and, understood a book of his.
I read another one that he released in 2013 (our review schedule is full, but I insisted anyway), “Evangelical Catholicism,” and decided that this one simply blew me away, as the old cliché goes.
Since the advent of cinema in the late 1800s, faith has been treated on film in a wide variety of ways, from the respectful to the satiric. With the church's observance of the Year of Faith continuing, here in alphabetical order are capsule reviews of 10 films that engage with this often elusive topic in an accomplished and illuminating manner. Sometimes directly, in other cases only by subtle implication, these screen parables provide viewers with insights into the nature of faith — as well as its effects.
He’s a rockstar, literally bigger than life. His red cassock glows with the love of the Church. He’s a small town boy made good, real good, and this year he sat down with one-hundred and fourteen other cardinals to elect a new pope after Benedict XVI abdicated due to poor health, AND, he was elected president of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops.
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