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The Catholic Culture Podcast

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Musician and writer Thomas V. Mirus explores Catholic arts & culture with a variety of notable guests. Dedicated to the Holy Family. An extension of

Musician and writer Thomas V. Mirus explores Catholic arts & culture with a variety of notable guests. Dedicated to the Holy Family. An extension of


United States


Musician and writer Thomas V. Mirus explores Catholic arts & culture with a variety of notable guests. Dedicated to the Holy Family. An extension of




114 - A Children’s Book About Accepting Your Nature - Matthew Mehan

Writer Matthew Mehan returns to the show to discuss his new children's book co-authored with painter John Folley, The Handsome Little Cygnet. This lovely tale about a family of swans in Central Park is a much simpler book than their previous outing, but introduces children to the idea of accepting one's God-given nature. That is no small matter in a world which tantalizes the young with offers of a more exciting new identity just around the corner. But we need to know what we are in order to...


Is realism in modern fiction an aberration? w/ Joshua Hren

In this outtake from episode 113, Thomas asks writer and editor Joshua Hren whether the turn to realism in modern fiction, a historical anomaly, is also a problem from a religious and philosophical point of view. Episode 113, Can a Novelist "Create" a Saint? This podcast is a production of If you like the show, please consider supporting us!


113 - Can a Novelist "Create" a Saint? - Joshua Hren

In his new book How to Read (and Write) Like a Catholic, fiction writer and editor Joshua Hren lays out an approach to Catholic literature that spans all the way from St. John Henry Newman called “a record of man in rebellion” to the other end of the continuum, which is a representation of the Beatific Vision. Topics discussed include: Joshua Hren is the founder and editor of Wiseblood Books as well as, with James Matthew Wilson, founder of a new creative writing MFA program at the...


Apology and Retractions about the Vaccine Episode

Thomas Mirus apologizes for and retracts some things he said in Episode 106 of the Catholic Culture Podcast, a discussion of the morality of COVID vaccines.


112 - Walker Percy's Angelic-Bestial Future - Jessica Hooten Wilson

"Now in these dread latter days of the old violent beloved U.S.A. and of the Christ-forgetting Christ-haunted death-dealing Western world I came to myself in a grove of young pines and the question came to me: has it happened at last?" So wonders Dr. Tom More, a descendant of the great English martyr, in the first sentence of Walker Percy's third novel, Love in the Ruins: The Adventures of a Bad Catholic at Time near the End of the World. Written in 1971, this prophetic work presents a...


111 - Sir Gawain and the Green Knight - Anthony Esolen

Today we discuss one of the greatest Arthurian tales, told by one of the most virtuosic poets in the history of English, an anonymous priest of the 14th century. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight tells us a lot about courtesy, original sin, and grace, all bound up in an enormously entertaining story about a giant, decapitation-surviving green knight. Poet and critic Anthony Esolen joins the show to discuss the poem, its Middle English dialect, and the tradition of alliterative verse. Watch...


Highlights: Garrigou-Lagrange, Dana Gioia, Tolkien's metaphysics, and more

This episode contains clips of highlights from episodes 38-41 and 44 of the Catholic Culture Podcast. 38 - Garrigou-Lagrange, The Sacred Monster of Thomism - Matthew Minerd 39 - Composing Liturgical Music That's Noble, Accessible...and Sacred - Paul Jernberg 40 - Tolkien...


BONUS: Interview with Lourdes documentary writer Sixtine Leon-Dufour

In this interview originally from Criteria: The Catholic Film Podcast, Thomas Mirus and James Majewski interview Sixtine Leon-Dufour, writer of the new Lourdes documentary, one of the best religious films in recent years. She discusses: -Her background caring for the sick at Lourdes -How she convinced the Lourdes authorities to give secular filmmakers unprecedented shooting access to this holy place -How a documentary about a Marian pilgrimage got the support of a large French secular...


110 - Woke Idols, Woke Pathologies - Noelle Mering

Noelle Mering joins the show to discuss her new book Awake, Not Woke: A Christian Response to the Cult of Progressive Ideology. Topics discussed include: Proof that ideology is what really matters to the woke, more than membership in a victim group How Frankfurt School thinkers, who combined neo-Marxism with neo-Freudianism, influenced the training of American schoolteachers The feedback loop between immorality, ensuing misery, and bad ideas Why today's progressivism is driven to...


109 - A Catholic in the NYC Ballet - Claire Kretzschmar

Claire Kretzschmar, a dancer and soloist with the New York City Ballet, joins the show to discuss her path to becoming a professional dancer, the challenges and joys of being a Catholic in the ballet world, and the spiritual value of dance. She also discusses a beautiful dance film which she choreographed for the NYC Ballet this year, and the Catholic arts community she founded in New York City, of which Thomas is a part. In the YouTube version of this interview, Claire's full dance film is...


108 - Walker Percy's Moviegoer w/ Nathan Douglas

Thomas is joined by Catholic filmmaker Nathan Douglas to discuss Walker Percy's first novel, The Moviegoer. They examine the malaise-ridden protagonist Binx Bolling's "search" for meaning, which he ultimately finds through responsibility: not the responsibility urged by respectable "values", but that urged by love. They also look at how Binx searches for a deeper connection with reality through his moviegoing habits. Percy has some interesting descriptions of his characters finding moments...


Highlights: How men can help the angry feminist in their lives, and more

This episode features clips from episodes 34-37 of the Catholic Culture Podcast, including some personal stories from Thomas. Links The Memoirs of St. Peter w/ Michael Pakaluk Moral Blindness and Abortion w/ Abby Johnson Bridges to Hell or Heaven: “Toxic Femininity” and the Spirit of Anti-Mary w/ Carrie...


107 - Prayer as a Political Problem w/ Brandon McGinley

This is a discussion of an interesting little book from 1967 that has re-entered the discourse, Prayer as a Political Problem by Jean Danielou, SJ, recently reprinted by Cluny Media. In this book which seems confoundingly ahead of its time, before its time, and (irksomely) of its time, Danielou insists that prayer forms a constitutive part of the temporal common good. Governments, therefore, have a responsibility to create conditions making it easy for the common people to conduct a...


106 - Abortion-Linked Vaccines: A Moral Analysis - Michael Pakaluk, Jay Richards

Michael Pakaluk and Jay Richards join host Thomas V. Mirus for a discussion of the moral issues involved with the production and testing of vaccines using illicitly-obtained fetal cell lines, and the reasons for freedom of conscience for those who do not wish to take them. Links Read a full transcript of this discussion: Thomas Mirus's apology and retractions ...


105 - Confronting an Unprecedented Church Scandal - Phil Lawler

Catholic Culture's own Phil Lawler has written a new book addressing what he sees as flaws in the response of Catholic leaders and laity to the pandemic and advocating a different approach - Contagious Faith: Why the Church Must Spread Hope, Not Fear, in a Pandemic. Topics covered in this interview include: Watch discussion on YouTube: Links Phil Lawler, Contagious Faith This podcast is a...


104 - John's Gospel, Mary's Voice - Michael Pakaluk

Michael Pakaluk joins the show to discuss his new translation and commentary on St. John's gospel, making the case that this loftiest of gospels echoes the voice of the Blessed Virgin Mary (the evangelist's adopted mother) in subtle but profound ways. Watch discussion on YouTube: Links Mary's Voice in the Gospel According to John Episode 34 on Michael Pakaluk's translation of...


Highlights: Feminism and ideology; intuition, temperance and art; Great Books; Tolkien's visual art

This episode features highlight clips from episodes 26-30 of the Catholic Culture Podcast. Links Online Great Books opens a new enrollment period approximately once a month. Get in there using discount code “catholicculture” for 25% off your first three months! Or use this referral link: Tolkien: Maker of Middle-Earth exhibition book 29 - Catholic...


103 - Pope Leo XIII's NYC Hotel

Did you know there's a hotel in NYC named after Pope Leo XIII? The Leo House was founded in the 1880s as a boarding house for German Catholic immigrants, at the behest of the Holy Father, and is still operating today as a Catholic hotel providing charitable hospitality at a discount. In this episode you'll learn from the Leo House's chairman and president, Michael Coneys, about the hotel's fascinating history. The story involves Pope Leo's special care for the Catholic Church in Germany as...


102 - Becoming Cultured Without a Bow Tie - James Matthew Wilson

Poet-philosopher James Matthew Wilson returns to the show to read poems from his new collection, The Strangeness of the Good, including his "Quarantine Notebook" series, and to discuss the decay and renewal of Catholic intellectual life. Topics discussed include: The present narrowing of Catholic intellectual life in conservative/traditional circles His ideal approach to reciting poetry What needs to be done to build on the work in Catholic aesthetics done by figures like Maritain,...


101 - The Non-Reactionary Tolkien - Holly Ordway

J.R.R. Tolkien is commonly perceived as a reactionary who totally rejected the modern world, and whose literary influences began and ended with the Middle Ages. Holly Ordway's new book, Tolkien's Modern Reading: Middle-earth Beyond the Middle Ages, debunks that view of Tolkien's life and work. Ordway begins with an invaluable critique of the sources of this misconception, especially the official biography written by Humphrey Carpenter, who admitted his own bias and desire to portray Tolkien...