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Parish books (said to have been) fiddled with


Brooklyn parish claims "someone" fudged books to justify parish closing

Parishioners at a Brooklyn church that defied both its bishop and a powerful politician over a local development scheme say someone exacted revenge on them by fudging their books to justify the diocese shutting the house of worship down.

Juan Ramos and other worshipers say the decision to shutter Our Lady of Montserrat Church in Bedford-Stuyvesant by the end of January and combine operations with nearby All Saints Church is "payback" by Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio for crossing Brooklyn Democratic Boss Vito Lopez and publicly opposing the nearly 1,900-unit Broadway Triangle housing project Lopez is pushing.

Diocese of Brooklyn spokesman Shane Kavanaugh, however, said the Vernon Avenue church is being closed because it’s a money pit and "the decision wasn’t politically motivated" – despite DiMarzio and Lopez’s longtime alliance.

Digging out


Like many in the Northeast, here in the New York we are emerging from a night of 60 mph winds and a blizzard that brought between 20 and 30 inches of snow to the metropolitan area. Lightning and thunder even accompanied the squalls. The blizzard was the sixth largest snowfall in New York City history. Interestingly, four of our top six snowfalls occurred in the last fourteen years. The other two storms took place 1888 and 1947.

The Northeast isn’t alone in battling extreme weather. The Minneapolis Metrodome collapsed two weeks ago after the fifth largest snowfall in the Twin Cities’ history deflated its roof. Last week, Great Britain was crippled by unprecedented snowfall, while Russia has been plagued with a severe ice storm that has shut down electricity to its major airports. Thousands are stranded, many without food or water.

Ongoing questions about ND's handling of the Seeberg case


The University of Notre Dame is a U.S. Catholic success story. Through a mixture of romance and reality, myth and fact, football glory and Catholic identity, Notre Dame, for many, occupies a special place in the cultural imagination. One can understand, then, how much incentive exists to protect the institution, the brand, the value of the name.

But when does acting to protect the institution begin to erode the institution’s integrity and thus the very reputation that’s being protected?

The disturbing question is powerfully raised by Notre Dame alum and Politics Daily Editor in Chief Melinda Henneberger in a succession of essays, the latest of which can be found here, regarding the case of Lizzy Seeberg, the ND freshman who committed suicide a week and a half after accusing an ND football player of molesting her in his dorm room.

In today’s piece, questioning the pace of the investigation into Seeberg’s charges and the recent explanation by university president Fr. John Jenkins, Henneberger writes:

On this day


On this day the Church celebrates the Feast of Saint John, Apostle, Evangelist.

In spite of the two titles used in the Church calendar, modern scholars no longer accept the idea that John the fisherman, the son of Zebedee, the brother of James, and one of the first four apostles chosen by Jesus, was the same person as the evangelist.

This is evident in The Apostles, by Pope Benedict XVI. He refers to the "Evangelist John" and "John the Evangelist" several times, including a reference to the evangelist's description of Jesus' first encounter with Peter and Andrew, James and John, never conflating the evangelist with the apostle.

Pat Robertson's Standup Stand


For many decades, Pat Robertson has been a go-it-alone evangelist. He has built a large organization for the conversion of souls on the strength of his own leadership and has kept a respectful distance from other television preachers, many of whom have fallen victim of their wanton hungers.

He has embraced right wing, sometimes conspiratorial politics, which deluded him into considering himself a valid presidential candidate, and his geo-political-apocalypticaltheology flirts with lunacy (earlier this year I noted his bizarre claim that Haitians had brought the horrid earthquake by having made a pact with the devil long ago) but he is a smart guy with no small amount of dash and savvy when he sticks to what he knows.

This week his courage and open-mindedness were on full display when he announced that he had become the subject of conversion on the issue of marijuana.


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In This Issue

November 20-December 3, 2015


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