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An Easter of War — and the Dying West

The flames of war, violence, and terror blaze across the world on this Easter of 2024. While Russia attacks Ukrainian cities with its hypersonic missiles, an attack strikes the heart of Moscow: the massacre is claimed by ISIS and is consumed with the same heinousness with which Hamas attacked the State of Israel on October 7. Europe, lapped by war on its borders, at the March 20-21 European Council in Brussels, reveals its inability to arm itself to defend itself. Italian Defense Minister Guido Crosetto,…

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Saint Dismas: the Good Thief

The Church’s Latin liturgy remembers on March 25 Saint Dismas, the Good Thief, to whom Jesus said on Calvary, “Today you will be with me in Paradise.” The choice of March 25 is not accidental. This date is not only that of the Annunciation and Incarnation of the Word but according to an ancient tradition it is also the day on which the Savior of Humanity consummated his supreme sacrifice. The Gospel tells us that on Calvary they crucified Jesus with two Thieves, placing one…

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Putin, the United States elections, and the upcoming Conclave

A mantle of concern looms these weeks over the decision-making centers of the Western world.  On Jan. 24, General Patrick Sanders, chief of staff of His Majesty’s Army, said that British nationals may be called upon in the not-too-distant future to fight against Russia (https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-68086188). For Dutch Admiral Rob Bauer, head of the NATO Military Committee, it is also necessary to prepare for an imminent conflict (https://www.standard.co.uk/news/world/russia-war-nato-military-exercise-admiral-rob-bauer-brussels-cold-war-b1133399.html). In the same days, the Swedish Minister of Civil Defense, Carl-Oskar Bohlin, said that everyone must prepare for…

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The tears of Don Bosco and the hour of truth

Among the thousands of travellers who crowd the Termini station in Rome every day, some stop by the nearby Basilica of the Sacred Heart on Via Marsala. The church was commissioned by Pius IX, who laid the foundation stone of the new building in 1870, but due to the annexation of Rome to the Kingdom of Italy, the work was soon interrupted. In 1880, Leo XIII, who shared his predecessor’s esteem and affection for Don John Bosco (1815–1888), entrusted him with the difficult task of…