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Author Archive: Donald R. McClarey

Cradle Catholic. Active in the pro-life movement since 1973. Father of three and happily married for 30 years. Small town lawyer. President of the board of directors of the local crisis pregnancy center. Easily amused as demonstrated by the fact that he blogs for amusement.

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Nuns of the Battlefield

November 10, AD2016 0 Comments
Nuns of the Battlefield

Visitors to Washington DC might be surprised at first to encounter a monument, across from Saint Mathew’s Cathedral, to nuns and sisters entitled Nuns of the Battlefield.  It was erected by the Ladies Auxiliary of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in 1924 to honor the some 600 Catholic nuns and sisters who during the Civil War nursed […]

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Hero of the Maine: Father John Chidwick

October 3, AD2016 0 Comments
Hero of the Maine: Father John Chidwick

Night, February 15, 1898, the American battleship USS Maine lay at anchor in the harbor of Havana.  Although tensions were running high between the US government and Spain, the colonial power occupying Cuba, the night was calm.  Suddenly, at 9:40 PM,  a huge explosion devastated the forward section of the Maine, an external explosion setting off the […]

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John McCloskey,The First American Cardinal

September 6, AD2016 0 Comments
John McCloskey,The First American Cardinal

Born on March 10, 1810, to Irish immigrants in Brooklyn, New York, John McCloskey when he was seventeen had a life altering accident.  Driving a team of oxen pulling a wagon full of heavy logs, the wagon overturned and buried John beneath the logs for several hours.  For the next few days, he drifted in […]

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Quotes Suitable for Framing: Thomas Babington Macaulay

August 21, AD2016 1 Comment
Quotes Suitable for Framing: Thomas Babington Macaulay

Joseph Stalin: “How many divisions has the Pope?“ Pius XII (later, to Winston Churchill) : “Tell my son Joseph he will meet my divisions in heaven.“ In all the hurly-burly of day to day events regarding the Church, it is sometimes good to take several steps back and take a very long view of the […]

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The Angel of the Trenches

July 7, AD2016 0 Comments
The Angel of the Trenches

Joao Baptista DeValles was born in 1879 in Saint Miquel in the Azores.  At the age of two, his family moved to New Bedford, Massachusetts.  His first name anglicized to John, he quickly proved himself a brilliant student, eventually becoming fluent in six languages.  Ordained a priest in 1906 he served at Falls River at Espirito Santo Church, […]

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“Angel of the Trenches”

June 21, AD2016 236 Comments
“Angel of the Trenches”

Joao Baptista DeValles was born in 1879, in Saint Miquel in the Azores. At the age of 2 his family moved to New Bedford, Massachusetts. His first name anglicized to John, he quickly proved himself a brilliant student, eventually becoming fluent in six languages. Ordained a priest in 1906, he served at Falls River, at […]

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John Adams and the Mass

May 24, AD2016 7 Comments
John Adams and the Mass

Adams was Unsympathetic to the Catholic Faith John Adams, second President of these United States, was a man of very firm convictions.   Once he decided to support a cause, most notably American independence, nothing on this Earth could convince him to change his mind.  In regard to religion, he was raised a Congregationalist.  Although described as a […]

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Anne de Gaulle

April 21, AD2016 1 Comment
Anne de Gaulle

Charles de Gaulle could be a very frustrating man.  Churchill, in reference to de Gaulle, said that the heaviest cross he had to bear during the war was the Cross of Lorraine, the symbol of the Free French forces. Arrogant, autocratic, often completely unreasonable, de Gaulle was all of these. However, there is no denying that he was also […]

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George Washington and Catholics

March 1, AD2016 2 Comments
George Washington and Catholics

America has been blessed by God in many ways but I suspect no blessing has been greater than His granting us George Washington to lead us in our struggle for independence and to be our first President.  Catholics have perhaps more reason than other Americans to keep the memory of Washington alive in our hearts.  In a […]

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The Almighty Has His Own Purposes

January 28, AD2016 2 Comments
The Almighty Has His Own Purposes

The problem of God allowing terrible things to happen to innocent people used to be of merely philosophical interest to me until my 21 year old son died in his sleep during the early morning hours of Pentecost in 2013. Endless words have been written on this subject, but I have always found moving the thought process […]

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Saint Thomas Becket, Sin and Contrition

December 29, AD2015 8 Comments
Saint Thomas Becket, Sin and Contrition

Today is the feast day of my confirmation saint, Saint Thomas Becket, the holy, blessed martyr.  His story tells us how foreign to our time the Middle Ages are. Becket was a worldly cleric who had risen to be chancellor of England for Henry II. Henry seized the opportunity to place his man, Becket, on […]

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Brother Orchid

December 5, AD2015 1 Comment
Brother Orchid

“When the heart speaks, Brother Orchid, other hearts must listen.” Brother Orchid (1940) Interested in seeing a screwball comedy-film-noir-gangster-western-religious flick? I am always on the lookout for oddball films for Advent and they do not come odder, or more heart warming, than Brother Orchid (1940).  I believe that this movie can teach us something about selflessness during […]

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Blessed Bernard Lichtenberg and Courage

November 5, AD2015 0 Comments
Blessed Bernard Lichtenberg and Courage

“Our wholehearted paternal sympathy goes out to those who must pay so dearly for their loyalty to Christ and the Church; but directly the highest interests are at stake, with the alternative of spiritual loss, there is but one alternative left, that of heroism.“ Pius XI, Mit Brennender Sorge We Americans tend to be an outspoken […]

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Columbus, Catholicism and Courage

October 8, AD2015 59 Comments
Columbus, Catholicism and Courage

  “This, indeed, is probably one of the Enemy’s motives for creating a dangerous world—a world in which moral issues really come to the point. He sees as well as you do that courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point, which means, at the […]

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Abraham Lincoln and the Catholic Church

September 14, AD2015 5 Comments
Abraham Lincoln and the Catholic Church

On July 4, 1864 Abraham Lincoln had much to pre-occupy his mind.  Grant’s drive on Richmond had bogged down into a stalemated siege to the south of Richmond around the city of Petersburg.  Grant, due to the appalling Union casualties of the campaign, was routinely denounced as a butcher in Northern newspapers, a charge echoed […]

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Saint Joseph the Worker and Dad

September 10, AD2015 1 Comment
Saint Joseph the Worker and Dad

Every Labor Day weekend two men always pop up in my mind:  Saint Joseph the Worker and my Dad.  When I was growing up I always associated Saint Joseph and my Father.  I thought of Saint Joseph as the strong, silent type.  The Gospels recall no speeches or quotes of Saint Joseph, but it does […]

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800 Years of Magna Carta

June 18, AD2015 0 Comments
800 Years of Magna Carta

At Runnymede, at Runnymede, What say the reeds at Runnymede? The lissom reeds that give and take, That bend so far, but never break, They keep the sleepy Thames awake With tales of John at Runnymede. At Runnymede, at Runnymede, Oh, hear the reeds at Runnymede: ‘You musn’t sell, delay, deny, A freeman’s right or […]

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Favorite Books of the Bible

May 12, AD2015 3 Comments
Favorite Books of the Bible

  Since my parents purchased a Bible for me, at my request, for Christmas 1970, I have read a chapter from the New Testament and a chapter from the Old each night.  What a magnificent collection of books the Bible is!  Prophecies, histories, court chronicles, songs, gospels, letters, codes of laws and so much more.  […]

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Make the Sign of the Cross and Go In!

April 20, AD2015 3 Comments
Make the Sign of the Cross and Go In!

Outside of his family, General William S. Rosecrans had three great passions in his life: His religion, Roman Catholicism, to which he had converted as a cadet at West Point, the Army and the Union. In the Civil War, all three passions coincided. Rising to the rank of Major General and achieving command of the […]

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Lent In a Sinless Age

March 24, AD2015 1 Comment
Lent In a Sinless Age

I have never much enjoyed Lent; of course the purpose of Lent is not enjoyment.  Repentance, mortification, fasting casts for me a gray pallor over this time of year.  Like many things in life I do not like, foul tasting medicine, judges who insist on strict adherence to the law, honest traffic cops, I benefit […]

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