Donald R. McClarey

Keep Christ in Christmas

So said Pope Francis:   “In our times, especially in Europe, we’re seeing a ‘distortion’ of Christmas,” the pope said in his final General Audience of 2017. “In the name of a false respect for non-Christians, which often hides a

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Donald R. McClarey

Christmas at Arlington

I  choked up when I saw the above.  Go here to learn more about Wreaths Across America. Go tell the Spartans, passerby: That here, by Spartan law, we lie. Simonides, Epitaph for the Spartan dead at Thermopylae

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Donald R. McClarey

One Solitary Life

“There is no greater drama in human record than the sight of a few Christians scorned or oppressed by a succession of emperors, bearing all trials by a fierce tenacity, multiplying quietly, building order while their enemies generated chaos, fighting

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Donald R. McClarey

Norad Tracking Santa

When I was a kid, perhaps because I was the son of an Air Force veteran, I always thrilled to the tracking of Santa by Norad (North American Air Defense).  I am happy to see that Norad is still doing

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Donald R. McClarey

Star Wars Holiday Special

    Some things simply cannot be unseen no matter how strongly you wish that were possible.  From November 17, 1978.  For the masochists among our readers, the entire Holiday Special is available on You Tube.  It is amazing that

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Donald R. McClarey

The Plot to Overthrow Christmas

  How wonderfully daffy the golden age of Radio tended to be.  A broadcast on December 19, 1944 of the show This Is My Best:  Norman Corwin’s comedic poem The Plot to Overthrow Christmas, a hilarious look at a plot by Hell

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Bob Kurland, Ph.D.

The Wexford Carol

At the Wednesday night rehearsal of our parish instrumental group (trumpet, two clarinets, guitar, two flutes, tympani–and me on a bowed psaltery) the director played a recording of a carol we will play in the prelude before the 7:30 pm

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Donald R. McClarey

O Holy Night

“I am an historian, I am not a believer, but I must confess as a historian that this penniless preacher from Nazareth is irrevocably the very center of history. Jesus Christ is easily the most dominant figure in all history.”

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Donald R. McClarey

Festivals of Light

  Now Judas celebrated the festival of the restoration of the sacrifices of the temple for eight days, and omitted no sort of pleasures thereon; but he feasted them upon very rich and splendid sacrifices; and he honored God, and

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Donald R. McClarey

Linus and Saint Luke Explain It All

          As an explanation of why we celebrate Christmas each year, the below video is superb and concise.   The words of Linus are of course taken from the Gospel of Saint Luke: And there were

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Donald R. McClarey

Hark the Herald Angels Sing

  Something for an Advent weekend.   Hark the Herald Angels Sing.  Written by Charles Wesley in 1739, the hymn we enjoy today developed and changed over a century with input from many hands.  No hymn I think better exemplifies the

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Donald R. McClarey

A Clean Slate For Christmas

My bride, our son and I went to Confession today.  As always, I felt after Confession as if a ton of weight had just been taken off my shoulders, Here is the formula that I have followed for Confessions since childhood:

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A Proclamation

  The twenty-fifth day of December. In the five thousand one hundred and ninety-ninth year of the creation of the world from the time when God in the beginning created the heavens and the earth; the two thousand nine hundred

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Hark the Herald Angels Sing

Something for a Christmas Weekend.  Hark the Herald Angels Sing.  Written by Charles Wesley in 1739, the hymn we enjoy today developed and changed over a century with input from many hands.  No hymn I think better exemplifies the sheer joy

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Thirty Five Years Ago: Reagan Christmas Address

On December 23, 1981, President Ronald Reagan addressed the nation.  The video above is an excerpt from that speech.  The portion of the address dealing with the attempt by the then Polish Communist regime to crush Solidarity, the Polish labor

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Quotes Suitable for Framing: Virgil

Assume thy greatness, for the time draws nigh, Dear child of gods, great progeny of Jove! See how it totters- the world’s orbed might, Earth, and wide ocean, and the vault profound, All, see, enraptured of the coming time! Ah!

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Christmas “Nuts!” at Bastogne

    Seventy-two years ago at Christmas the American and German armies were fighting it out in the Battle of the Bulge, the last German offensive of the War.   Patton’s Third Army fought its way through to relieve the Americans

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Bishop Sheen on the True Meaning of Christmas

  First broadcast in 1956, Bishop Sheen puts his own unique spin on the eternal mystery of Christmas, God becoming Man, Creator becoming Created.  It is interesting how philosophical and complicated Sheen’s presentation is.  Recall that his show was broadcast on commercial

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Eddi’s Service

  The thirty-second in my on-going series on the poetry of Rudyard Kipling. The other posts in the series may be read here, here , here , here, here , here, here, here, here, here, here, here , here, here, here

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Boy Dies in Santa’s Arms

  Go here to read a story that I defy anyone to finish with a dry eye.  May the boy even now be enjoying the Beatific Vision and his first Christmas in Heaven.

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A Proclamation

  The twenty-fifth day of December. In the five thousand one hundred and ninety-ninth year of the creation of the world from the time when God in the beginning created the heavens and the earth; the two thousand nine hundred

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Good Lives On

      [27] She hath looked well to the paths of her house, and hath not eaten her bread idle. [28] Her children rose up, and called her blessed: her husband, and he praised her. [29] Many daughters have gathered together

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Christmas at Bastogne

In 1944 at Christmas the American and German armies were slugging it out in the Battle of the Bulge, the last German offensive of the War. Patton’s Third Army rammed its way through to relieve the Americans desperately fighting to defeat the

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Santa Roosevelt

Death had to take him in his sleep, for if he was awake there’d have been a fight. Thomas R. Marshall, Vice President of the United States, on hearing of the death of Theodore Roosevelt One of his worst enemies

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Washington Refuses to be Beaten

    Each year, as Christmas is approaching, I think of a Christmas long ago in 1776.  The year in which we declared our independence from Great Britain was a year of military disaster for the United States.  Washington and

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Video Clip Worth Watching: Battle of the Bulge Sermon

A film clip from Battleground (1949), a rousing tribute to the heroic stand of the 101st Airborne at Bastogne at Christmas 1944, which helped turn the tide of the Battle of the Bulge. Seventy-one years ago on December 16, 1944 the Germans

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