Welcome to the Ink Desk
Enjoy the ponderings of the Star's contributors and add your own thoughts. As this section develops, we hope it may become a medium for an exchange of ideas among those who are working towards the cultural revival.
December 30th, 2013Gendercide: The Massacre of the Innocentsby Joseph Pearce
One of the sickest examples of diabolical double-think and feminazi newspeak is the way in which media pundits on CNN and MSNBC are perpetually describing the pro-life movement as waging a "war on women". In reality, "planned parenthood" is leading to widespread gendercide in India and China where an estimated 200 million girls have been aborted for the "crime" of being female. It is indeed ironically apt in this season in which we celebrate the birth of Christ that we also commemorate the slaughter of the Holy Innocents (December 28). Herod sought to make war on Christ and Christmas by ordering the death of all the baby boys in his kingdom. Today, abortion advocates have legitimized the killing of baby girls on a scale that outstrips not only Herod but also Hitler.» Continue Reading
December 29th, 2013The Duck Dynasty Clan are the Best Public Catholics in Americaby Kevin O'Brien
This needs to be said, now that the Phil Robertson controversy has settled down with A&E caving and with the Robertsons agreeing (as they always have) that True Tolerance (tolerance of sinners, but not of sin) is a Christian virtue.» Continue Reading
December 24th, 2013The Secret of Papal Historyby Daniel J. Heisey
Consider, please, three modern Popes: A gifted linguist with an intense Marian devotion who had to contend with the threat of Communism; an introverted, highly respected European scholar, fond of hikes in the Alps; a man of Italian peasant stock, a former seminary rector who as Pope made for good newspaper copy with stories about his beguiling humility.» Continue Reading
December 24th, 2013Christmas as D-Dayby Kevin O'Brien
We are, as Christians, not of this world.
“The world from which we must be detached, the world that is Satan’s kingdom, is not the planet, not matter, but our own greed and lust for it. The word for ‘World’ in the New Testament isaiōn. It is a time word, not a space word. It means ‘the old order’, ‘the fallen order’, ‘the Adam order’. Christ has invaded that kingdom, that order. Christmas was D-Day. We are liberated and called forever away from the old order.”
— Peter Kreeft from his book Back to Virtue.
December 23rd, 2013What We Die Toby Kevin O'Brien
I am corresponding with a blog reader who is struggling to find a word to describe "living for one's self; living without God or any independent authority; blindly doing what everyone else does because it's fun and we don't even reflect upon it."» Continue Reading
December 22nd, 2013Vanity Fairness - Homosexuality and the Human Conditionby Kevin O'Brien
Vanity Fair has published an interesting article on the Secret Life of the Vatican, an investigative report into the "gay lobby" of Rome
Though the article contains a good deal of what the author admits to be gossip and speculation, it nonetheless seems to present an accurate portrayal of what life as a "gay priest" at the heart of the Church entails.» Continue Reading
December 20th, 2013A Little Presentby Dena Hunt
Give yourself a little Christmas present. Read this, maybe when you are alone, preferably aloud:
Have a beautiful Christmas.» Continue Reading
December 19th, 2013Driving on Muddy Roadsby Dena Hunt
Fr. Dwight Longenekker has a way of identifying the kernel of certain issues that makes me sometimes suspect he has x-ray vision. For example, let’s ask a question that may rile some people because it pre-supposes failure of an endeavor dear to many hearts: Why will the “new evangelization” fail? Right. It makes one angry because it seems to pre-suppose failure. But read on:» Continue Reading
December 18th, 2013New Verse, New Voicesby Joseph Pearce
Philip Kolin, poet and editor of Vineyards, whose work has been featured regularly in the St. Austin Review, has just informed me that issue 3 of Vineyards is now published on-line» Continue Reading
December 18th, 2013“Why did you become a Catholic?”by Michael Lichens
"Why did you become a Catholic?"
That's a question every convert hears and it gets harder to answer year by year. The many reasons anyone has for converting are numerous and can be as innocuous as being married into it to a radical change in heart after one event. Indeed, I'd almost like to respond, "Well, why wouldn't I be one?"» Continue Reading
December 17th, 2013Is Peter Jackson Suffering from the Dragon Sickness?by Joseph Pearce
In the wake of the release of the latest installment of Peter Jackson's ridiculous version of The Hobbit I gave this video interview to the Catholic news agency, Aleteia. Is Peter Jackson the reincarnation of Smaug? All will be revealed:http://www.aleteia.org/en/arts-entertainment/video/fantasy-reveals-the-truth-our-video-interview-with-joseph-pearce-5836868339892224» Continue Reading
December 17th, 2013Bilbo in Spainby Joseph PearceInk Deskers who are able to read Spanish might enjoy this article on The Hobbit in which my interview with the author is quoted:» Continue Reading
December 17th, 2013Racing with the Devil on the Journey Homeby Joseph PearceI continue to be greatly encouraged by the interest in my conversion story. I flew to Ohio on Sunday to film an interview about my journey with Marcus Grodi for EWTN's "Journey Home", returning home last night. I understand that the program will be aired on EWTN at the beginning of February. I'm also gratified by this review of Race with the Devil on a Catholic website:» Continue Reading
December 14th, 2013Renovation of the Ruins: The Fall and Rise of Catholic Writersby Kevin O'Brien
Dana Gioia has a long and passionate article at First Things in which he laments the Great Divorce between culture and the Catholic Church. Here are some of his best observations (emphasis mine).
Sixty years ago, it was taken for granted that a significant portion of American writers were Catholics who balanced their dual identities as artists and believers. These writers published in the mainstream journals and presses of the time, as well as with specifically Catholic journals and presses. They also won major literary awards. Between 1945 and 1965, Catholic novelists and poets received eleven Pulitzer Prizes and five National Book Awards (six NBAs, if one counts O’Connor’s posthumously published Complete Stories in 1972). ...» Continue Reading
December 14th, 2013Homer Sapiensby Joseph Pearce
I've been in correspondence with someone on the subject of Homer's epics. I thought I'd share my most recent response in which I summarize my own position with regard to Homer's place as a theologian and a moralist:» Continue Reading
December 11th, 2013Santa Meets Thomas Aquinasby Joseph PearceI've been sent this wonderful, uplifting video of students from Thomas Aquinas College surprising Santa Claus and hundreds of shoppers at a shopping mall in Ventura, California. This is one very effective way to put Christ back into Christmas!» Continue Reading
December 11th, 2013Chesterton and the Meaning of Progressby Joseph Pearce
Here is my latest essay for the Imaginative Conservative:» Continue Reading
December 11th, 2013Lies, Damned Lies, and the Federal Government Excusesby Joseph Pearce
From the BBC Sitcom "Yes, Minister."Updated and Americanized by Brendan D. King.» Continue Reading
December 10th, 2013On Gollum and Graceby Joseph Pearce
I'm currently in New England with very little time to write anything for the blog. On Saturday I gave a talk on the Catholicism of The Hobbit at a Catholic parish in Stowe, Vermont, at which my compatriot, Fr. Benedict Kiely, is the pastor. Fr. Kiely will be known to StAR subscribers for his regular column, "The Sword of the Spirit". It was truly a delight to speak at his parish and to spend some time with the inimitable Fr. Ben. I'm now at Thomas More College, where I'm teaching classes on Chaucer and on The Lord of the Rings.In the absence of any time to write something myself, I'm posting a link to a truly excellent article on the theological role of Gollum in The Lord of the Rings:» Continue Reading
December 9th, 2013No Such Thingby Dena Hunt
There is no such thing as a fictional biography. Period. There is no such thing as a biographical novel. Period.
Biography is—and should be—non-fiction. It takes enormous research to write good biography, and imagination is not a substitute for that labor» Continue Reading