Local Catholic News

Philadelphia priest chaplain earns Bronze Star for ministry in Afghanistan

After Mass at a typical parish, it’s fellowship over coffee and donuts. But for troops stationed in Afghanistan, after Mass it’s cigars smoked down to the nub. Father Stephen McDermott, a priest of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and a U.S. Army chaplain who recently was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for his service in Afghanistan, just completed a year-long tour of duty in the country. “I never realized the power of a cigar when it comes to ministry,” he said.

‘Theology of beauty’ explored at La Salle U

The broader context of the role of beauty in the spiritual life is the focus of a July 12-17 conference open to graduate students and the public. All the evening sessions are free.

Morrisville parishioners wrote the book on Lectio Divina prayer

A group at St. John the Evangelist Parish so enjoyed the ancient practice of Bible-based meditative prayer that they wrote a book, "Conversations with Our Father: Prayers from Heart to Heart." At St. John's, Lectio Divina begins a conversation with God and not just between the individual and God. It is a shared experience with the group.

La Salle U plans to build $35 million building for business school

The new 78,000 square-foot building is slated to open for classes in January 2016 and create approximately 600 jobs during construction. It will expand the university's West Campus, located in the Olney section of Northwest Philadelphia.

Almost gone: Photographer captures final stages of abandoned churches, factories

Local photography teacher Matthew Christopher specializes in recording for posterity abandoned buildings of all sorts – factories, power stations, hotels and yes, churches. He has documented the interiors of many abandoned factories, schools and resort hotels all over the country, plus local churches and Byberry Hospital in Philadelphia. Christopher exhibited some of his work at Philadelphia’s American Catholic Historical Society on Oct. 29 and he will have a reception at St. Joseph’s University on Nov. 21.

Archdiocese invites lay, clergy input on marriage and family life for Vatican meeting

In what is billed as a “unique opportunity for the clergy and faithful,” Catholics of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia are now able to participate in a “consultation” with the Vatican in preparation for next year’s Synod of Bishops in Rome. The archdiocese announced Nov. 15 that it has posted a form on the archdiocesan website for Catholics to provide input on current challenges to marriage and the family.

Archbishop announces 8 clergy assignment changes

Most Reverend Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M. Cap., Archbishop of Philadelphia, announces the following appointments effective as noted: PASTOR Reverend John F. Babowitch, from Pastor, Saint Barnabas Parish, Philadelphia, to Pastor, Our Lady of Calvary Parish, Philadelphia, effective December 2, 2013 Reverend Robert G. Suskey, from Parochial Vicar, Our Lady of Good Counsel Parish, Southampton, to […]

Legatus marks 25 years of helping executives spread Catholic faith

The Philadelphia Chapter of Legatus, an organization for Catholic CEOs and other very high ranking executives, has often held its monthly meeting at the Union League, so it was a logical choice for its 25th anniversary celebration Nov. 12. When you think of a gathering of CEOs, it’s easy to imagine a bunch of rich guys sitting around and plotting for ways they can all become richer. Nothing could be further from the truth in this case.

Prayer, song, reflection, procession: Thousands enjoy Magnificat Day

In one of the best-run liturgical celebrations for Philadelphia in years, Magnificat Day drew some 3,500 people to the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The day included an encouraging talk for Philadelphia Catholics by speakers such as Father Robert Barron, and began and ended with eucharistic liturgies led by Archbishop Charles Chaput.

Archdiocese, CRS to take up collection for Philippines’ relief

Archbishop Charles Chaput is calling for a special collection to support recovery efforts in the Philippines following the destruction wreaked by Super Typhoon Haiyan. He asked all priests of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to take up the collection in parishes the weekend of Nov. 23 and 24, and extend the invitation to Catholics attending Mass this weekend, Nov. 16-17.

Women signing up fast for first conference in Phila. next month

The Catholic Women’s Conference titled “Feminine Genius: Every Woman’s Gift” will meet in Philadelphia Dec. 7. More than 350 women -- married, single and consecrated religious -- have registered so far, and there is capacity for 700 attendees to the all-day event at the Pennsylvania Convention Center.