Today is Pope Benedict’s 85th birthday. He’s exactly eight years older than Bobby Vinton. This Thursday marks Benedict’s seventh anniversary as pope. 

Stewardship 101: Like the shiny objects about which he writes, the title of James A. Roberts’ book,  “Shiny Objects: Why We Spend Money We Don’t Have in Search of Happiness We Can’t Buy” lured me to pluck it off the shelf at the public library. I’m glad I did. While never mentioning “stewardship,” he does, in fact, write a personal guide to that Christian principle. It should be a “must read” in every Catholic university’s undergraduate curriculum.

Numbers: During his Easter Sunday homily at St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Cardinal Timothy M. Dolan noted that 3,000 people were in the cathedral, “while one Timothy Tebow” was preaching to 25,000 people in Houston. The cardinal didn’t mention that the latter’s speaking fee is somewhere in the $50K to $70K vicinity. Speaking of the cardinal and crowds, if you are planning to attend his 4 p.m. Mass at Holy Hill on Saturday, April 28, visit here 16:30 so you aren’t surprised that day.

Let’s go for a walk: If you aren’t planning on going to Holy Hill April 28, you are invited to join members of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, including me, at the Beds4Kids Walk at 9:30 that morning at Mount Mary College. The money we raise will buy beds for children who don’t have one. Get the details at (414) 462-7837.

Misguided mission: There is a Planned Parenthood “Clergy for Choice” committee in northern California that is in the midst of “40 Days of Prayer” for abortion. According to a release from the Institute on Religion and Democracy, the group is praying for, among other things, “a cloud of gentleness to surround every abortion facility.” One has to wonder who includes that in his/her prayer intentions. By the way, no Catholic clergy are members of this “Clergy for Choice” group.

Break into song: This is National Karaoke Week.