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Yahoo Watch: John Zmirak

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Just when you thought that at least Catholics of all stripes understood we have no business telling Muslims when or where they can build a mosque, along comes Mr. John Zmirak writing in the pages of InsideCatholic.com.

Zmirak's unique contribution to the debate is to lay it at the feet of multiculturalism. Thus, he writes, "Bishops throughout Europe are so desperate to maintain their multiculturalist bona fides that they tacitly support the ongoing influx of orthodox Muslims into their countries and echo the false charges of racism against those who fear the imposition of Islamic law." Zmirak advocates attending a rally this coming Saturday to protest the mosque. I will say this. If you want to go see a bunch of bigots, at least now we know where to go to see them. Maybe they will burn a few Korans while they are there!

Q & A: Christopher Lamb

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This week at Q & A, we are hearing from editors at the British Catholic weekly The Tablet about Pope Benedict's visit to the UK next week. Today, we hear from Tablet news editor Christopher Lamb.

The question: What is the most important thing Pope Benedict must say or do while he is in the UK?

Christopher Lamb: While many describe Britain as secular there is also clear evidence of a hunger for spirituality. On one level this is seen at the popularity in “new age” phenomenon such as horoscopes, astrology and crystal readings. But there is also interest in the Church’s contemplative tradition. The popularity of the BBC’s The Monastery which filmed five men who spent 40 days at Worth Abbey, West Sussex is one such example.

Election Time: KY-Senate

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UPDATE (10/25): This race just keeps getting nastier and nastier, mostly because Democrat Jack Conway has otherwise been unable to close the gap and has resorted to re-telling some nasty episodes from Rand Paul's past. The centerpiece has been a report in GQ magazine about Paul's college days when he allegedly joined an anti-religious organization and, with some buddies, tied up a woman and made her bow down before an "Aqua Buddha" idol. The story is strange, and Conway's spreading it doesn't seem to have improved his chances.
Fivethirtyeight.com gives Paul an 89% chance of holding the seat for the GOP and Nate Silver suspect he is right. But, as I write that sentence, I realize that putting Paul in the Senate is not the same thing as electing a standard issue Republican. His "constitutioanl conservatism" reinforced by the confidence that comes with winning an election virtually guarantees that Mr. Paul will, in the Senate, be a big ole pain in the butt for his fellow Kentuckian, Sen. Mitch McConnell.

Blast From the Past: Leo XIII

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Last Sunday, Pope Benedict XVI went to the village of Carpineto Romano to commemorate the bicentennial of the birth of Pope Leo XIII. The visit did not garner much attention from the press, but it should have. Leo was a truly great Pope.

Leo XIII is already, and most widely known, for his authorship of Rerum Novarum, the seminal encyclical that launched Catholic social teaching in the modern era. But, his contributions to the life and health of the Church were more varied. One of these was his attempt to rebuild the Church in France.

Q & A: Elena Curti

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In anticipation of Pope Benedict's visit to the UK next week, here at Q & A, we are discussing what the Pope should say and do when he is there. Our commentators are editors at the British Catholic weekly The Tablet, and today we hear from Elena Curti, the deputy editor.

The question: What is the most important thing for Pope Benedict to say or do when he is in the UK?

Elena Curti: While the Church in England and Wales now has solid procedures in place aimed at protecting children, as Catholics we still feel tainted by the cover-ups and evasiveness that have characterised the Church's response to the scandal.

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August 29-September 11, 2014

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