Magic After Dark – Aimee Easterling, Christine Pope, Kim Richardson, Rebecca Chastain, M.J. Scott, Gary Jonas & K Gorman

Aimee Easterling, Christine Pope, Kim Richardson, Rebecca Chastain, M.J. Scott, Gary Jonas & K Gorman - Magic After Dark  artwork

Magic After Dark

Aimee Easterling, Christine Pope, Kim Richardson, Rebecca Chastain, M.J. Scott, Gary Jonas & K Gorman

Genre: Paranormal

Publish Date: March 4, 2019

Publisher: Wetknee Books

Seller: Aimee Easterling

Dive into the darker side of magic Enter the underbelly of city life, where werewolves, demons, and vampires stalk the streets. These six bestselling urban fantasy novels plus bonus novella will submerge you in a page-turning world of modern magic. Half Wolf by Aimee Easterling: When half-werewolf Fen is cast out of her home pack, she and an unlikely ally are forced to shore up her waning power in an effort to save half-shifters everywhere. Unquiet Souls by Christine Pope: When the hosts of the new Project Demon Hunters show investigate a demon-infested mansion, evil follows Audrey Barrett home…and she learns why her co-host is the last man she can trust. Dark Hunt by Kim Richardson: Tasked with tracking down a demon that's killing humans, hunter Rowyn is forced to partner with an angel-born warrior who has an ulterior motive. But Rowyn's own dark secret could upend everything… A Fistful of Evil by Rebecca Chastain: Madison actively avoids her soul-sight—until she witnesses ethereal monsters feasting on a stranger's soul…and the monsters notice her. Thrust into a dangerous new world, Madison must master her atrophied abilities fast if she has any hope of survival. The Wolf Within by M.J. Scott: Ashley Keenan just wants to be normal. But then her ex-lover, now werewolf, turns up with a lead on the vampire who murdered her family. To survive, she might just have to leave normal behind and embrace her inner monster. Vampire Midnight by Gary Jonas: Kelly Chan agrees to kill a vampire, but finds herself under his spell. How do you kill something you've been commanded to protect? Sylphide by K. Gorman: When a private investigator breaks into Allish Statia's apartment and threatens her with a gun, she is able to use her Wind Elemental powers to subdue the man—but he is only part of something much bigger. Something that wants the destruction of her, her husband, and every single Mage in the city.

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From The Vault – EP – Cassadee Pope

Cassadee Pope - From The Vault - EP  artwork

From The Vault – EP

Cassadee Pope

Genre: Country

Price: $ 3.99

Release Date: March 1, 2019

© ℗ 2019 Big Machine Label Group, LLC

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Episode 366 Scott Adams: Wears a Pope Hat and Evaluates the Morality of Your Walls


  • Pope Scott the Last, speaks out on the morality of walls

I fund my Periscopes and podcasts via audience micro-donations on Patreon. I prefer this method over accepting advertisements or working for a “boss” somewhere because it keeps my voice independent. No one owns me, and that is rare. I’m trying in my own way to make the world a better place, and your contributions help me stay inspired to do that.

See all of my Periscope videos here.

Find my WhenHub Interface app here.

The post Episode 366 Scott Adams: Wears a Pope Hat and Evaluates the Morality of Your Walls appeared first on Dilbert Blog.

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Kerry Washington Snaps Selfie With ‘The OG’ Olivia Pope At ‘Scandal’ Wrap Party

Will the real Olivia Pope please stand up?

Access Hollywood Latest News

I’m Not Your Pope (But Thanks for Asking)

A funny thing happened after my conversation with Sam Harris on the topic of President Trump. An avalanche of anti-Trumpers descended on my Twitter account and insisted I become their moral leader – sort of like their Pope. I have not accepted the job, but I can see the need.

Let me give you some context.

Sam Harris’ view on President Trump is that our new leader is a lying, unscrupulous, unethical con man. My view on President Trump is that he’s a skilled persuader who has offered to use his talents on behalf of the country. I have been silent on the ethics and morality questions because I trust people to make those decisions on their own. Personally, I would lie to a terrorist to save your child’s life. Some people would consider that immoral because lying is bad. I say every situation is unique, and we all have to make our own moral/ethical decisions as we go.

To me, that all seemed clear enough. I completely understand Sam’s criticisms of President Trump’s use of hyperbole and his casual relationship with the facts on the stuff that generally doesn’t matter. (As I like to say, President Trump is consistently “directionally accurate” even when he is playing loose with the facts. Persuasion looks exactly like that.

Anyway, my critics – who are also President Trump’s critics it seems – called out to me on Twitter to clarify the ethical and moral dimensions of this presidency. I didn’t think my opinion on that topic was useful because no one gets their ethical guidance from cartoonists. I figured people could work out the morality questions on their own. But I was wrong. The anti-Trumpers need a Pope. And apparently they want it to be me. I didn’t see this coming.

I will consider the job over the weekend and let them know my decision. If you see white smoke coming from the man-cave in my garage, it means I have accepted the position. 

You might enjoy reading my book because I’m sort of like a Pope to my critics. But without the cool hat. (Not saying I won’t get one.)

I’m also on…

Twitter (includes Periscope): @scottadamssays​

YouTube: At this link.

Instagram: ScottAdams925

Facebook Official Page:

Scott Adams’ Blog

Cassadee Pope and Rian Dawson End Their Engagement

Cassadee Pope and Rian Dawson have broken off their engagement. 
Pope, who won the third season of The Voice in December 2012, and Dawson, the… Music News

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A Call to Arms: Book II of Manticore Ascendant (Unabridged) – David Weber, Timothy Zahn, Thomas Pope

David Weber, Timothy Zahn, Thomas Pope - A Call to Arms: Book II of Manticore Ascendant (Unabridged)  artwork

A Call to Arms: Book II of Manticore Ascendant (Unabridged)

David Weber, Timothy Zahn, Thomas Pope

Genre: Sci Fi & Fantasy

Price: $ 21.95

Publish Date: October 6, 2015

© ℗ © 2015 Audible Studios

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At Synod Opening Pope Francis Reminds Everyone That The Catholic Church Is Against Gay Marriage

Pope Francis on Sunday reaffirmed Catholic opposition to gay marriage as he opened a three-week gathering of bishops from around the world but said the Church had to show love and understanding towards all.

Francis presided at a solemn Mass in St. Peter’s Basilica to open the meeting, known as a synod, on the theme of the family in the modern world.

But the run-up to the synod, attended by some 300 bishops and other delegates, has been dominated by gay issues.

On the eve of the gathering, the Vatican dismissed a Polish priest from his Holy See job after he came out as gay and called for changes in Catholic teachings against homosexual activity.

Conservative Catholics held a conference in Rome just before the synod started on how homosexuals can live by Church’s rules that they should be chaste while Catholic gay activists held another demanding full acceptance of active gays in the Church.

Francis dedicated one third of his homily to the topic of love between man and woman and its role in procreation.

“This is God’s dream for his beloved creation: to see it fulfilled in the loving union between a man and a woman, rejoicing in their shared journey, fruitful in their mutual gift of self,” he said.

He also spoke of the “true meaning of the couple and of human sexuality in God’s plan,” a clear reference to heterosexual marriage.

But Francis also stressed that the Church must be more welcoming, charitable, compassionate and merciful to all people, particularly those whose lives have been wounded and who those find it difficult to adhere to all of the Church’s regulations.

The leader of the 1.2 billion member Church said the person “who falls or errs must be understood and loved.”

“The Church must search out these persons, welcome and accompany them, for a Church with closed doors betrays herself and her mission, and, instead of being a bridge, becomes a roadblock,” he said.

In its explanation of the firing of the Polish monsignor on Saturday, the Vatican said his very public coming out was intended to put undue media pressure on the synod on gay issues, which are expected to be only a small part of the bishops’ discussions.

The story made the front page of nearly all Italian newspapers, with one headline calling it “An Earthquake in the Vatican”.

At a preliminary synod last year, bishops watered down a initial statement that was seen as a major change of tone toward homosexuals. That statement spoke of “gifts and qualities” of homosexuals but was changed after a backlash by conservatives.

One key topic at the synod will be how to reach out to Catholics who have divorced and remarried in civil ceremonies.

They are considered by the Church to be still married to their first spouse and living in a state of sin. Some bishops want a change to the rules that bars them from receiving sacraments such as communion.

Last month, Francis made it simpler and swifter for Catholics to secure a marriage annulment, the most radical such reform for 250 years, and told bishops to be more welcoming to divorced couples.

(Reporting By Philip Pullella. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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Divorce – The Huffington Post

Need to File for a Divorce!

Pope Francis — I Don’t Support Kim Davis

The Vatican is using the “smoked but didn’t inhale” excuse when it comes to Pope Francis’ meeting with anti-gay county clerk Kim Davis … acknowledging their meeting but denying there was any exchange of support. Davis, who was jailed for not granting…


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The Totally Real Transcript Of Kim Davis’ Meeting With Pope Francis


Pope Francis: My child, it is a blessing to meet you.

Kim Davis: [Bawling, with arms raised above head] POPE FRANCIS! I can’t tell you how excited I am to meet you. I went to Dress Barn and everything! [Spinning, faster and faster]

PF: Please. Stop spinning, my child. I wanted to say that I applaud your courage and I urge you to keep fighting for you religious beliefs.

KD: I KNEW you were on my side, Pope Francis! The whole time I was denying gay people marriage licenses I kept sayin’, “Pope Francis wouldn’t let these gays get married! Pope Francis wouldn’t let them ruin the sanctity of marriage! If you agree with Pope Francis then you agree with me! Pope Francis and I think they’ll all burn in hell!”

PF: Wow. OK. Kim, my child, I agree that it is important to fight for what you believe. But homosexuals are people too. We should not hate them. Also, please never speak for me. 

KD: I think you mean homosexuals are people who spit in the face of God and will be sent to the Clay Aiken depths of hell for their sins, right?

PF: We should love —

KD: No, but that’s correct though?

PF: What’s important is – 

KD: Excuse me, they’re going to hell for being gay? Yes or No?

PF: The job of the Church is to —


PF: Yes, that is what the Church believes.


PF: … If only I was allowed to wed! OK, well, I’m sure I have a sermon to give so I must be going.

KD: WAIT! Don’t you wanna know what I said at this big rally that Mike Huckabee threw for me when I got outta prison? Yer gonna love this! I grabbed the microphone and I said, “It’s Adam and Eve …”

PF: … not Adam and Steve. 


PF: Yes, I hear that joke 12 times a month. [To his aides] Start the car.


PF: [To his aides] I said start the car.


PF: Jesus Christ. GET ME SOME HOLY WATER! [Splashing Kim with holy water] In the name of the father and the son and the holy spirit —

KD: Mike Huckabee wrote me this song on his bass guitar? WANNA HEAR IT?!

PF: [To aides] WHERE IS THE CAR?!


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Kim Davis, Clerk Who Refused To Issue Marriage Licenses To Gay Couples, Claims She Met The Pope

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A Kentucky clerk who went to jail for defying a federal court’s orders to issue same-sex marriage licenses says she met briefly with the pope during his historic visit to the United States.

The Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Federico Lombardi, didn’t deny the encounter took place but said Wednesday in Rome he had no comment on the topic.

Rowan County clerk Kim Davis and her husband met privately with Pope Francis last Thursday afternoon at the Vatican Embassy in Washington, D.C., for less than 15 minutes, said her lawyer, Mat Staver.

Davis, an Apostolic Christian, spent five days in jail earlier this month for defying a federal court order to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. In a telephone interview late Tuesday, Staver would not say who initiated the meeting with the pope or how it came to be, though he did say that Vatican officials had inquired about Davis’ situation while she was in jail. He declined to name them.

Davis was in Washington for the Values Voter Summit, where the Family Research Council, which opposes same-sex marriage, presented her with an award for defying the federal judge.

Pope Francis did not focus on the divisive debate over same-sex marriage during his visit last week. As he left the country, he told reporters who inquired that he did not know Davis’ case in detail, but he defended conscientious objection as a human right.

“It is a right. And if a person does not allow others to be a conscientious objector, he denies a right,” Francis said.


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Watch Shakira Perform ‘Imagine’ for the Pope

Shakira performed for the Pope and the U.N. General Assembly.
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ADULT ENTERTAINMENT NEWS UPDATE:Gabby Love’s top pick! Click and enjoy!

Sister Sledge Performs for Pope Francis in Philly, Readies to Release New Single

Sister Sledge needs only three words to identify them: “We Are Family.”
That 1978 breakout hit rocketed the Philadelphia foursome of Debbie. Joni, Kim and Kathy Sledge to fame. The latter has since gone solo, but nearly 40 years after the song’s release, the sisters were back at it Saturday, belting out the song for Pope Francis at the Festival of Families.
In a phone interview earlier this week, Joni Sledge said, “This song in particular is a gift. In this particular case, it was made for this day.”
And no matter how much of an anthem it has become, the song’s relevance remains intact, Joni Sledge said. “It’s just as powerful today. That’s one of the good things about it. It teaches respect. It’s kind of deep and teaches [that] we don’t have to profile, we don’t have to wear the latest fashions — we can just be one big family.”
To be chosen to perform for the pope, the Sledges submitted a video that featured clips from their world tour last year to the festival’s organizers. They also wrote a letter together about faith, family and love, morals they share with the pope. “Growing up, we honored his view which is very open

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Pope-rock? Yes, the pope really did just drop a single off of his upcoming album

We’re pleasantly surprised.

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Kerry Washington Sees Pope Francis!

While attending a Purple Purse event, Kerry Washington takes a moment to watch Pope Francis ride by on the streets of NYC.

Access Hollywood Latest Videos

Infographic: Pope Francis’ U.S. Itinerary

Pope Francis is making his first visit to the U.S. this week, with stops in Washington, D.C., New York City, and Philadelphia as he speaks to government officials and conducts large-scale masses. Here is a full itinerary of the pope’s visit:


  • 4:00 p.m.: Check in with God to let Him know he got there okay
  • 8:00 p.m.: Catch some Big Bang Theory while stretched out in bed of Bethesda, MD Econo Lodge


  • 10:30 a.m.: Following meeting with Obama, receive standard White House parting gift of $ 35 million in foreign military financing
  • 1:00 p.m.: Segway tour of National Mall


  • 9:20 a.m.: Arrive at Capitol; revel in delight of meeting so many other people who also commune directly with God
  • 10:05 a.m.: Discover five minutes into congressional address that message of love and compassion …

The Onion

Infographic: A Primer On Pope Francis’ Views

Pope Francis has garnered much international attention in the first two and a half years of his papacy, taking a more liberal approach to women’s issues, the family unit, and the environment than his predecessors. Here is a primer on prominent global issues and the pope’s views on them:

  • Contraception: Goes against God’s plan for global population crisis
  • Climate Change: Opposes just as strongly as most other forms of change
  • Women Priests: Nope
  • Child Abuse: Must be eradicated entirely from church’s list of PR issues
  • Divorce: Tacit acknowledgment that perhaps not all differences are completely and beautifully reconciled by reciting the Nicene Creed
  • God: Generally in favor of
  • Wealth Inequality: Prays with only the least jewel-encrusted rosaries when visiting the poor
  • Birds: Fucking loves birds
  • Child Labor: Very helpful during mass
  • Homosexuality: Famously quipped, “Who am I to judge?” when asked about his views, before adding …

The Onion

News in Brief: Pope Cleans Up Dead Angel Who Flew Into Sistine Chapel Window

VATICAN CITY—Hurrying outside after hearing a disturbingly loud thud against the side of the church, Pope Francis was reportedly left to clean up the remains of a dead angel Monday that flew straight into one of the Sistine Chapel’s windows. “It’s really sad; it seems like one of these guys crashes into a window at least once a week,” said the pontiff, who appeared visibly distressed while sweeping up the feathers scattered around the angel’s lifeless body. “Most of the time, their necks break and they die instantly, but once in a while they’re still twitching a bit. That’s when I find it’s best to put them out of their misery with a shovel.” At press time, the Bishop of Rome was attempting to scrape off an angel splattered on the windshield of the Popemobile.

The Onion

Join Funny Or Die In Praying That Pope Francis Makes A Sketch Video With Us

Join Funny Or Die In Praying That Pope Francis Makes A Sketch Video With Us

Join Funny Or Die In Praying That Pop…
The Pope is visiting NYC in September and we think if we pray hard enough we can get him to come make some content with us.
Submitted by: Kady Ruth Ashcraft
Keywords: pope nyc pope us visit papal visit pope nyc visit papal visit nyc pope francis pope francis in nyc pope francis in philly pope francis in washington dc pope francis st patrick's cathedral pope francis madison square garden pope francis msg
Views: 1,247

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American Voices: Pope Francis Urges Compassion For Divorced Catholics

Going against the Vatican’s long-held position that divorced Catholics cannot receive communion without officially annulling their marriage, Pope Francis encouraged the church this week to instead welcome them with “open doors” and praised those pastors who have practiced the “attentive acceptance” of such couples. What do you think?

The Onion

News in Brief: Frustrated Republicans Argue Pope Should Leave Science To Scientists Who Deny Climate Change

WASHINGTON—In response to a 184-page papal encyclical that urges immediate action to address the environmental and social consequences of global warming, a coalition of frustrated Republican leaders issued statements Thursday arguing that Pope Francis should leave scientific matters to scientists who deny climate change. “Frankly, it’s not really anyone’s place to make declarations about climate science or global temperature changes unless they’re a scientific expert who has spent years rejecting the concept of climate change,” said former Florida governor Jeb Bush, who added that the pope had neither studied climate science nor ever been among the 3 percent of researchers who stand in opposition to the overwhelmingly dominant position held by the scientific community on climate change, so he had no business speaking on the subject. “Personally, I would never trust anyone as an authority on climate change unless they had done years of research and …

The Onion

Pope Francis’s Comments On Heterosexual Parenting Alienate Gay Catholics

On Sunday June 14, Pope Francis addressed more than 25,000 faithful on the importance of heterosexual parenting during his general audience — just one day after thousands marched in Rome’s LGBT pride parade.

Heterosexual marriage makes for happier couples, the pope said, and is essential for healthy parenting.

“Children mature seeing their father and mother [happy],” Francis argued. “Their identity matures being confronted with the love their father and mother have, confronted with this difference.”

The pope called the differences between men and women fundamental, and said these differences make heterosexual couples strong. “What great richness this diversity is, a diversity which becomes complementary, but also reciprocal. It binds them, one to the other,” he said.

Francis’s comments may seem out of touch to many, particularly as several Catholic-majority countries have been among those leading the charge for legal same-sex marriage. Many of the nations that allow gay marriage — like Brazil, France and Spain — are also some of the most Catholic countries in the world.

Historically Catholic Ireland approved same-sex marriage by a popular referendum in May, leading Dublin archbishop Diarmuid Martin — despite voting against the measure — to say the church was in need of a “reality check.”

For LGBT Catholics, the pope’s comments are particularly hurtful. Marianne Duddy-Burke, executive director of Catholic LGBT advocacy group DignityUSA, is a parent of two adopted children. She told The Huffington Post that Catholics tend to be more progressive than church leaders on the issue of same-sex families. But not all LGBT families are willing to remain in a church they feel rejected by, she said. Attitudes like like those expressed in Pope Francis’s comments perpetuate a culture of exclusion.

“This leads to the refusal to honor and support families that don’t look like the model held up by church officials, and, even worse, the failure to see and address problems in families headed by heterosexually married couples,” Duddy-Burke told The Huffington Post.

LGBT families aren’t the only ones who might feel left out by the pope’s championing of heterosexual two-parent households, added Francis DeBernardo, executive director of Catholic LGBT advocacy group New Ways Ministry.

“Pope Francis’ message…is harmful to many others in the Catholic Church: single-parent families, families where emotional and physical abuse occurs, families who are separated geographically because of political or economic situations, to name a few,” DeBernardo told HuffPost. “In focusing his attention on a standard of male-female child-rearing, Pope Francis ignores the real economic, political, cultural, and psychological forces which harm contemporary families around the globe.”

To combat the bias against LGBT families, Duddy-Burke said she will travel to Philadelphia for the pope’s visit in September. She and a group of Catholic families and bishops from around the world will ask Pope Francis to meet with them and hear their stories.

“Sizable majorities of Catholics readily embrace their LGBT members, and have grown comfortable with a wide range of family configurations,” she said. “They are impatient for the leadership to catch up!”

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American Voices: Pope Francis Calls On Catholics To Pay Attention To The Environment

Days before he is expected to send out an official encyclical letter on the issue, Pope Francis called on the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics to pay attention to environmental issues and act as “stewards of creation.” What do you think?

The Onion

Gods and Mortals – S.T. Bende, C. Gockel, Christine Pope, T.G. Ayer, Eva Pohler, Ednah Walters, Mary Ting, Melissa Haag, Laura Howard, DelSheree Gladden & Becca Mills

S.T. Bende, C. Gockel, Christine Pope, T.G. Ayer, Eva Pohler, Ednah Walters, Mary Ting, Melissa Haag, Laura Howard, DelSheree Gladden & Becca Mills - Gods and Mortals  artwork

Gods and Mortals

Fourteen Urban Fantasy & Paranormal Novels Featuring Thor, Loki, Greek Gods, Native American Spirits, Vampires, Werewolves, & More

S.T. Bende, C. Gockel, Christine Pope, T.G. Ayer, Eva Pohler, Ednah Walters, Mary Ting, Melissa Haag, Laura Howard, DelSheree Gladden & Becca Mills

Genre: Paranormal

Publish Date: March 29, 2015

Publisher: Gods and Mortals Press

Seller: Joy Sillesen

Fourteen urban fantasy & paranormal novels featuring Thor, Loki, Greek gods, Native American spirits, vampires, werewolves, & more.  Elsker by S. T. Bende  Kristia Tostenson just found out her new boyfriend is the Norse God of Winter, and an immortal assassin destined to die at Ragnarok. Her orderly life just got very messy.  I Bring the Fire by C. Gockel  Amy Lewis is being pursued by a very bad wolf. Can Loki God of Chaos and Mischief save her, or even save himself?  Sympathy for the Devil by Christine Pope  When the Devil tires of ruling Hell, his only hope for salvation is to capture the heart of one ordinary young woman.  Dead Radiance by T. G. Ayer  Bryn Halbrook, modern teenager, creature of myth. Dead Radiance makes Norse Myth a contemporary truth, pitting one teenager girl against Trickster gods, and mythical creatures.  The Gatekeeper’s Sons by Eva Pohler  A teen becomes entangled with the Gods of Olympus when one of them falls in love with her. Some give her gifts, others seek to destroy her …  Nolander by Becca Mills  A young woman from small-town Wisconsin discovers that monsters are real — and that she might just be one herself.  Crossroads Saga by Mary Ting  Protecting Claudia from the fallen was half-angel Michael’s his duty. Falling in love was never part of the plan.  Twin Souls by DelSheree Gladden  Uriah and Claire didn’t believe in their tribal stories until Claire’s poisoned and those myths spring to life to test their love and unravel destiny.  Blood Debt by Nancy Straight  A mythological romance: Camille is denied her father's identity until her mother's death. She discovers a family she never dreamed of and a world that should not exist.  The Forgotten Ones by Laura Howard  Can the magical Tuatha de Danaan, the forgotten people of Ireland, help Allison restore her mother's sanity?  Marked (Soul Guardians Book # 1) Kim Richardson  A sixteen-year-old girl suddenly dies and finds herself in Horizon as a rookie in the Guardian Angel Legion.  Relentless by Karen Lynch  Sara Grey lives a double life until a fateful encounter with a sadistic vampire and a fearless warrior exposes her powerful gifts and changes the course of her life forever.  Hope(less) by Melissa Haag  The world is on the verge of a Judgement that will change everything, and Gabby, a uniquely  gifted human, is the first key.  Runes by Ednah Walters  My new neighbor, Torin St. James, is the key to my father's disappearance, my mother's past and the secret they've been keeping from me–my destiny.  Each a first in its series or a standalone novel. Each filled with magic.

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Jude Law Confirmed for Lead Role in Paolo Sorrentino’s ‘Young Pope,’ HBO Boards Series

The series revolves around a fictional American pope who becomes the most conservative one the Vatican has ever seen.

read more


New Pope

A high school history teacher was discussing the funeral of Pope John Paul II with his class. One student asked how they chose the new pope.

The teacher explained the process, finishing with, “So the cardinals pick him.”

A student in the back of class, asked, very seriously, “Why would they let a baseball team pick the next pope?”

Received from Pastor Tim.
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Pope Francis Recalls Starting Out At Some Real Shithole Churches

VATICAN CITY—Saying he never imagined he’d one day be filling a basilica as large and prestigious as St.

The Onion

Books: “How’m I Doin’?” Two Years In, Vatican Expert Talks Pope Francis, Women In The Church & What’s Next


By John L. Allen Jr.
($ 27; Time)

If you’ve paid any attention to news coverage of the Catholic Church at any point in the last 15 to 20 years, chances are you’ve seen or heard from John L. Allen Jr. Now on staff at The Boston Globe and a key contributor to their Catholic news website Crux, Allen has been covering the Vatican since he first headed to Rome in 1998. At the time, it was a backwater to most news outlets and almost no American media had a presence on the ground. So Allen had this beat almost to himself as far as US audiences were concerned.

After learning Italian and building up contacts, Allen found himself with an increasing worldwide audience thanks to the growth of the internet. In 2001, of course 9-11 made the “clash of civilizations” and Christianity and Islam central issues. Plus there were hot topics like the never-ending child molestation and cover-up scandals roiling country after country and finally the death of Pope John Paul II. The Vatican was hot again and Allen was here, there and everywhere, delivering solid journalism and working as a key analyst for outlets like CNN. Any other journalist helicoptering into the Vatican for a big event knew they could get a succinct quote and solid insight from Allen. (So, at times, could bishops and cardinals who wanted a little background on the latest news when they’d been out of the country. It never hurts to be a trusted source for your sources)

Allen has also written a string of increasingly confident books, including not one but two biographies of the man who would become Pope Benedict as well as a demystifying look at Opus Dei. Now with his latest work The Francis Miracle, Allen turns his eye on the pope with popularity ratings a movie star would envy as well as a Reagan-like ability to overcome any momentary stumbles in his off-the-cuff remarks simply because people like him. As Allen has put it, with Pope Benedict everyone felt the things they disliked about the Catholic Church were because of him. With Pope Francis, they feel the things they dislike about the Catholic Church are despite him.

Allen’s new book contains a biographical sketch of Francis and his life, mostly with an eye towards how those experiences might color the Pope’s worldview and the priorities he has for the Church. Then Allen looks at key issues facing the Church such as much-needed financial reform, the role of women, the child molestation scandals and the lack of accountability for those who covered it up for decades. It’s a snapshot of the Francis papacy, where it’s at today, how he is doing and what to look for in the future.

I talked with Allen in-depth, discussing his unlikely career path, the many controversial issues facing the Catholic Church, the personality of Francis versus Benedict and why non-Catholics need to be aware of the Pope and his priorities just as they would with any other major world leader. You can see the entire interview at Following are some key excerpts.


Allen talks about the first time he met the man who would become Pope Francis back in 2001 just days after 9-11. It was an almost accidental meeting because the late Cardinal Edward Egan had to back out of a previously arranged interview. (Egan died one day after our discussion took place.)


Allen talks about Pope Francis, how he broke new ground by working with and for women as a young man and why women are so far disappointed with his track record.


Allen talks about his unlikely career path that veered from religious studies to being the faculty adviser for a high school newspaper to hot rods and then — suddenly — the Vatican.

You can follow John L. Allen Jr. on Facebook and Twitter or at Crux and the Boston Globe. To see the full interview, head to and watch the video embedded on the front page.

Thanks for reading. Michael Giltz is the founder and CEO of BookFilter, a book lover’s best friend. It’s a website that lets you browse for books online the way you do in a physical bookstore, provides comprehensive info on new releases every week in every category and offers passionate personal recommendations every step of the way. It’s like a fall book preview or holiday gift guide — but every week in every category. He’s also the co-host of Showbiz Sandbox, a weekly pop-culture podcast that reveals the industry take on entertainment news of the day and features top journalists and opinion makers as guests. It’s available for free on iTunes. Visit Michael Giltz at his website and his daily blog.

Note: Michael Giltz is provided with free galleys and final copies of books in the hope that he’ll review or write a story on them. He receives far more copies of books than he could ever cover.
Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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Pope Francis Reported To Have Met With Transgender Man At The Vatican

Pope Francis reportedly held a private audience with a transgender man on Saturday, in what would be another first for his papal record.

Diego Neria Lejárraga, who underwent sex-reassignment surgery and was subsequently rejected by his religious community, claims he reached out to Pope Francis in December and received a call from the pontiff on Christmas Eve, Spanish newspaper Hoy reported. On Saturday, Lejárraga and his fiancee told the paper they met with Pope Francis in his residence at the Vatican.

“After hearing him on many occasions, I felt that he would listen to me,” Lejárraga told Hoy.

Fr. Manuel Dorantes, Assistant to the Director at the Press Office of the Holy See said he did not have any information about the alleged meeting as of Monday afternoon.

Francis DeBernardo, Executive Director of New Ways Ministry which advocates for LGBT Catholics, said he wondered at the Vatican’s silence on the reported meeting.

“The Vatican’s reluctance to verify the meeting is another indication of why I don’t think their attitude can yet be called ‘acceptance,'” DeBernardo told The Huffington Post by email.

Even so, he said it would not surprise him if the meeting had taken place.

“This pope, through his many gestures of meeting with those who society and the church treat as outcasts, has made it his mission to lead by example, and to send a strong message of welcome and hospitality to all people, regardless of their state in life,” DeBernardo said.

Many advocates have criticized the church for failing to welcome LGBT members of their communities. Sister Monica, a nun who ministers to transgender people, goes by a pseudonym in her public communications for fear of reprisal by Catholic authorities.

“While there is no public, official position of the Catholic Church regarding people who are transgender,” Sister Monica wrote in a blog on HuffPost, “it would be safe to say that the hierarchy of the Church would likely forbid this ministry.”

DeBernardo argued that Pope Francis may have a genuine interest in opening the doors to the transgender community, however, as Saturday’s reported meeting would suggest.

“Pope Francis is an intellectual who values discussion,” DeBernardo said. “I think that his meeting with the transgender man was a gesture not only of pastoral care, but of genuine interest in learning about the transgender experience from a firsthand source.”
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Angelina Jolie, Pope Francis meet after ‘Unbroken’ screening

Angelina Jolie is accustomed to mingling with A-listers, but she took things to another level Thursday when she shook hands with Pope Francis after a screening of “Unbroken.

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The Paranormal 13 – Christine Pope, K.A. Poe, Lola St. Vil, Cate Dean, Nadia Scrieva, C. Gockel, Nicole R. Taylor, Kristy Tate, Becca Mills, C.J. Archer, J.J. DiBenedetto, Stacy Claflin, Kyoko M & Dima Zales

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Pope vs. Pope: World Cup Final Between Argentina And Germany Pits Francis Against Benedict XVI

The FIFA World Cup final between Argentina and Germany could herald a rift in the Catholic church, pitting Argentine-born Pope Francis against German Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI.

Pope Francis has almost surely been secretly rooting for Argentina, despite his pledge to keep his prayers neutral.

But Germany’s unbelievable 7-1 rout of Brazil during yesterday’s semi-final could make for an awkward final match for the Vatican’s holiest football fans.

When Francis first met Benedict XVI in person after his election, he declared, “we are brothers,” but family feuds have started over less.

Francis earlier joked of a “war” between him and his protectors, The Swiss Guards, during the Argentina-Switzerland match. But could we now see a holy war between two Popes?

No word from the Vatican as of press time, but fans are already speculating. The jury’s out on Jesus, however.

Comedy – The Huffington Post
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