Spotlight on the Vulnerable

Any major American newspaper would immediately fire a reporter who was caught using composite characters or inventing quotations for his stories. Hollywood naturally plays by different rules. A film “based on” a true story is considered acceptable; “recreated” dialogue is the norm. We expect . . . . Continue Reading »

Olivia Pope and the Virgin Mary

It is Christmas Eve, and Olivia Pope, star of the ABC melodrama Scandal is about to get an abortion. In an episode that aired Thursday night, she lays in the operating bed while the music of “Silent Night” plays. We watch her face run through the emotions of anxiety, uncertainty, and pain while . . . . Continue Reading »

Francis Gives New Hope to Abuse Victims

The Vatican’s recent announcement that Pope Francis has accepted the resignation of Bishop Robert Finn, of the diocese of Kansas City–St. Joseph, has given relief and new hope to victims of sexual abuse in the Church. Technically, the Pope didn’t directly “remove” Finn, as the media has . . . . Continue Reading »

The Uses of Clerical Scandal

When the Pope visited the United States last fall, the media indulged in a predictably frenzied examination of the general state of “crisis” in the American Catholic Church. Oddly, though, few reporters devoted space to what only a few years previously would have been described as the . . . . Continue Reading »