1. The Incarnation of God in the womb of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
2. Pope John Paul II’s encyclical letter on the Gospel of Life.
3. The destruction of the Ring of Power in the fires of Mount Doom.
4. The first Holy Mass in the English-speaking colonies of the New World, said by Father White.
So let us take a few steps down the road of American Church history.
Since we have recently been discussing the punishment of ecclesiastical malefactors, let us recall to our minds the episode called the “Hogan Schism.”
When I visited the church of St. Joseph in Philadelphia years ago, someone there explained that the church’s unusual architecture—which serves to hide it from view—was the result of anti-Catholic riots in the 1800’s.
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia endures some rough times as we speak. May justice be done, and may God comfort the innocent. But perhaps things are not as bad as they were back in the diocese’s nascent days…