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.
March 15th, 2013Beyond Politicsby Joseph Pearce
This is one of the best appraisals of the papal election that I've read. It's by Christopher Check of Catholic Answers. Read and rejoice!» Continue Reading
March 14th, 2013A Postcard from Romeby Joseph Pearce
This is a short and delightful eye witness account of the election of Pope Francis by Cornelius Sullivan, an excellent Catholic artist whose work has been featured in the St. Austin Review. It makes for edifying and entertaining reading and contains one of the funniest unintentional puns that I've ever seen. Read on and discover how the love of wine is truly divine!» Continue Reading
March 14th, 2013A Flower of St. Francisby Joseph Pearce
What do you get when you cross a Franicscan with a Jesuit? In the field of literature you get one of the greatest poets of all time. Gerard Manley Hopkins was a convert to the Faith, a Jesuit priest and one who was imbued to the core with the spirit of St. Francis. In many ways his philosophy and the poetry which it informed is a creative fusion of Ignatian and Franciscan spirituality. This same fusion is to be seen in the holy example of Father Ho Lung, founder of the Missionaries of the Poor, one of the fastest growing religious orders in the Church today.» Continue Reading
March 14th, 2013Hamlet the Catholicby Joseph Pearce
Here's an excellent article on Hamlet by Mitchell Kalpakgian in today's Crisis.» Continue Reading
March 14th, 2013Newman A to Z: Original Sinby Joseph Pearce
When man cast off God, his passions and affections rebelled against his reason, and his body against his soul.» Continue Reading
March 14th, 2013Les Misérables: Mercy and Miseryby Joseph Pearce
Last week, during my visit to Nashville, I went to see the new movie adaptation of Les Misérables with my friends Katie, Paige and Johnny Rees from the cajun band, L'Angélus. They had all seen it twice already but were keen to escort me to the theatre, convinced that I would share their great admiration for it. They were right. It's a truly great movie and as profoundly and movingly Christian, in its own way, and almost as intense, as Mel Gibson's Passion.» Continue Reading
March 14th, 2013Walking the Walk and Doubting the Doubtby Kevin O'Brien
I have one brief thing to say about our new Holy Father, Pope Francis. His fellow Jesuits in Argentina don't like him. And that is the best sign we've had yet that this man is holy and devout! The Jesuits have gone badly off the rails, and the corruption of the best is the worst. Since the Jesuits were at one time the best of the best, their corruption has produced, in most cases, the worst of the worst. But maybe that will change. The young Jesuits in formation show much promise, and now a Jesuit pope might make a difference, the kind of difference most current Jesuits are very much opposed to.» Continue Reading
March 13th, 2013Christianity Liteby Joseph Pearce
This excellent article by Mary Eberstadt, published in today's Wall Street Journal, seems an appropriate fanfare to welcome the papacy of Pope Francis:» Continue Reading
March 12th, 2013A Postcard from Wichitaby Joseph Pearce
It's a real challenge to find time to write for the Ink Desk when one is travelling hither and thither in this large country, which dwarves my native land in terms of size if not necessarily in terms of cultural inheritance. I sent a hurried postcard from Nashville a few days ago, and now, after a blissful two days at home with my family, I find myself in Wichita, Kansas. This is virgin territory for me. I've been to Kansas before but never to this particular corner of it. As a child it was known to me as the home of the "Lineman" whom Glen Campbell made famous. I know nothing else about it, except that it's in the middle of a prairie that's larger in size than England.» Continue Reading
March 12th, 2013Following the StARby Kevin O'Brien
The Bellarmine Forum, which is always a worthwhile read, has just published a list of recommended Catholic websites, and the St. Austin Review and its blog the Ink Desk make the top of the list.
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It's good to see that folks are following the StAR.
March 12th, 2013Bronte Viewed from the Heightsby Kevin O'Brien
I once asked Joseph Pearce, the most well-read man I've ever met, how he managed to get such a good education without going to college.» Continue Reading
"Kevin," he replied, "I am well educated BECAUSE I did not go to college."
March 12th, 2013Alice von Hildebrand—90 Years Old Todayby Joseph Pearce
Alice von Hildebrand, wife of the late Catholic philosopher Dietrich von Hildebrand and a formidable philosopher in her own right, was born on this day in 1923. I have been blessed to know this wonderful lady for several years. As editor-in-chief of Sapientia Press, I was honoured to publish her marvellous book, The Privilege of Being a Woman, which is Sapientia's bestselling title ever. I've also met her on several occasions and am in awe at the sharpness of her mind. Although she is a great admirer of my own books, she perceives their flaws with incisive perception. Considering her reputation, I am humbled that she should have had the time or inclination to have read my own work, let alone that she should have done so with such care and attention. It is truly a privilege to know such a woman. Happy Birthday Dr. von Hilderbrand.» Continue Reading
March 11th, 2013C.S. Lewis on Purgatoryby Joseph PearceThe theme of the May/June issue of StAR will be "G. K. Chesterton and C. S. Lewis". The customary preview of the issue will be posted to the Ink Desk in a couple of weeks from now, as soon as the final selection of articles has been made and the issue is winging its way to the printers. In the interim, as a means of whetting your appetite, here's a link to a superb lecture on C. S. Lewis and Purgatory given last October at Houston Baptist University. The lecture is a little over an hour in length so wait until you have the time to give it your full attention. Believe me, it will be well worth your time.
March 10th, 2013St. James Answers Gollumby Kevin O'Brien
Lately I've been answering questions posed to me by a Protestant reader of my blog, and this time I'm going to let the Apostle James answer a question that no reader of any blog has posed to me, but that many of you could; in fact I could post it myself.» Continue Reading
March 9th, 2013The Audacity of Heaven - or - Heaven is a Slap in the Faceby Kevin O'Brien
We tend to settle for things.» Continue Reading
March 8th, 2013A Postcard from Nashvilleby Joseph PearceIn haste. In brief. I'm in a hotel in Nashville, having given a talk last night at Aquinas College on the greatness of Chesterton.» Continue Reading
March 7th, 2013At the Middle of that Tangled Web,by Dena Hunt
there sits a spider. Because of the recent flap over Colin’s post about language, which so offended a few sensitive souls, this little news bit jumped off the screen at me this morning: “Catholic Church Removes PB16 Portrait for Fear of Offending Gays.”» Continue Reading
March 5th, 2013Sede Vacanteby Trevor Lipscombe
While waiting for the train on the cold morning of February 28th, the following poem began to take shape. It seemed to me that the uncertain skies that day paralleled the uncertain time that lies ahead for the Church before the election of the next Pontiff.» Continue Reading
March 5th, 2013Newman A to Z: Mary, Devotion toby Joseph Pearce
Look at the Protestant countries which threw off all devotion to her three centuries ago, under the notion that to put her from their thoughts would be exalting the praises of her Son. Has that consequence really followed from their profane conduct towards her? Just the reverse - the countries, Germany, Switzerland, England, which so acted, have in great measure ceased to worship Him, and have given up their belief in His Divinity while the Catholic Church, wherever she is to be found, adores Christ as true God and true Man, as firmly as ever she did; and strange indeed would it be, if it ever happened otherwise.
All quotes in the Newman A to Z are taken from The Quotable Newman, recently published by Sophia Insitute Press.» Continue Reading
March 5th, 2013An Additional Speaking Engagement in New Hampshireby Joseph Pearce
Further to my earlier post listing my speaking engagements in March, I'd like to notify Ink Desk readers in New Hampshire of an additional talk, just confirmed, at Sacred Heart church in Lebanon. The talk, which will take place after the 10:30am Mass on Sunday, March 17th (St. Patrick's Day), will be on "The Three Paths to Faith: The Good, the True and the Beautiful".» Continue Reading