Movie Recommendation and Books Received

I don’t like to expose much about plots of movies I see because I detest spoilers.

Yesterday (being Tuesday, my movie day, $5 all day and free popcorn), I saw The Martian (from the book HERE).  Gorgeous martian landscapes, apparently filmed in part in Jordan.  These sci-fi movies, with the special effects, are getting to be amazingly real.

The plot had a lot of points for reflection on a) will to survive, b) solving problems c) being prepared for anything.

It was a movie presentation on Zuhlsdorf’s Law:

Since the legendary Murphy was an optimist, therefore…

  • When you need your technology to work, that is when it will fail.

  • The extent of the failure is proportioned to the urgency of the need.

  • When you want to show someone the great gizmo or program you have, that is when it won’t work.

You may bite your nails a couple times during the movie despite a suspicion (which I won’t confirm or deny) that the protagonist might make it (but at what cost?).

Books pour in from publishers faster than I can read them.

I received Inventing Socrates by Miles Hollingworth.  This is the fellow who wrote the book on St. Augustine that was so impressive HERE.

Behold the Man: A Catholic Vision of Male Spirituality by Harold Burke-Sivers

No link for this yet. Maybe they’ll decide they want to sell some of them.  I’ll let you know. It has Card. Burke’s address at Steubenville.  Impressive.

Sins of the Press: The Untold Story of The Boston Globe’s Reporting on Sex Abuse in the Catholic Church by David F. Pierre Jr

The Coup at Catholic University: The 1968 Revolution in American Catholic Education by Fr. Peter Mitchell

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Matt R says:

    There was a discounted pre-order for the book containing the essays written on the instrumentum laboris along with His Eminence’s talk. Emmaus Road Publishing printed it here in Steubenville. Someone interested might want to contact them… I already have my copy.

  2. andia says:

    Thanks, I love Pierre’s Work!

  3. John Grammaticus says:

    I’m due to Start a wonderful illustrated version of the Illiad tomorrow, followed by Hayek’s “The Fatal Conceit” over the weekend

  4. Sonshine135 says:

    I had the pleasure of meeting Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers at our Men’s Conference a couple of years ago. He is a fascinating and strong soldier in God’s Army. He has a rosary with bullets as the Pater beads. Every time he prays the rosary he pops 5 caps in Satan’s…….well…you know!

  5. Tim in Dixie says:

    Good interview with Fr Peter Mitchell on Catholic Answers Focus ( about his book The Coup at Catholic University.

  6. Sarochka says:

    Dear Father,

    Whilst on the subject of book recommendations, I wanted to bring to your attention the ‘I Am Margaret’ series of books by a young English Catholic novelist, Corinna Turner. It is young Catholic fiction for the 14+ but perhaps more for the 18+ as there’s some martyrdom: people are literally ‘recycled’.

    She is an Oxford University graduate in English Literature and wrote this tetralogy after having a dream whilst being on retreat with the Dominican Sisters of St Joseph in England. It is all about the persecution Christians will have to suffer in the end times.

    The English FSSP magazine ‘Dowry’ has just published a good review of the books which can be found on the Latin Mass Society website: See page 12. It is loosely based upon the life of St Margaret Clitherow but set in a future dystopia.

    American publishers, Chesterton Press, have just published the 1st 3 of the books. Number 4 is due out before Christmas.

    Could I please have an address for you, Father, so that I can send you signed copies of the books? Or, if anyone is reading this who has Fr Z’s address, please send it to me via email: my email address being saraharveycraig at yahoo dot com. Many thanks.

    God bless,

  7. Adaquano says:

    I’ve been interested in Deacon Harold Burke-Siver’s book since hearing him on the radio a few weeks ago. How does The Martian compare to Gravity?

  8. Scott Woltze says:

    John Carmichael’s “Drunks and Monks” is definitely worth a read. It follows the sufferings and eventual conversion of a LA entertainment lawyer who descends into alcoholism and basically drops out of life after his wife leaves him. Then he discovers the Norbertine monks and the old Latin Mass community at St. John Capistrano mission. It’s an old school conversion that is often hilarious.

  9. acardnal says:

    Fr. Uwe Michael Lang, one of your favorites Fr. Z, has a new book out which you will want to add to your wishlist unless you get a review copy: “Signs of the Holy One – Liturgy, Ritual and Expression of the Sacred”; Ignatius Press.

    [Thanks for that!]

    Fr. Z's Gold Star Award

    Amazon Wish List
    Amazon Kindle Wish List

  10. Andreas says:

    Father Z; I teach a graduate level course on Human Systems Integration wherein the impacts of technology on systems design and human performance are discussed at length. I would be grateful for your permission to cite ‘Zuhlsdorf’s Law’ during the course of our discussions. Blessings from the Tirol!

  11. Dr. Zagano has a new book out. Surely her publisher has sent you a review copy?

  12. Samuel J Howard: Dr. Zagano has a new book out. Surely her publisher has sent you a review copy?

    I’ll start waiting by the mailbox each day.

    I’ve been reading a lot of serious, scholarly work lately. I need a change of pace.

  13. Dr. Sirilla says:

    Dear Fr. Z,

    I am the editor of “From the Beginning…” Thank you so much for including it in this post. Here is a link to the product page: That page also has a link to the video of Cardinal Burke’s keynote address at Franciscan University.

    I am pleased to say that faithful Catholics “on the ground” in Rome during this synod – including the Voice of the Family and a well-placed cardinal in the curia – have requested and received multiple copies of this book, the essays of which adroitly redress multiple problems in the “Instrumentum Laboris” (e.g., the “Kasper Proposal”). They have been distributing copies of the book to synod fathers in the hope that this will help them in their work of defending the Church’s discipline regarding Communion for the divorced and “remarried” – among other issues.

    In addition to Cardinal Burke’s essay on the canonical issue of the criteria for nullity, there are two other essays I’d like to mention: 1) Dr. Bergsma’s essay in which he shows that the charge of “pharisaism” actually applies to those seeking to accommodate divorce and “remarriage” and not to those who (“rigidly”!) defend its indissolubility; and 2) Dr. Peter Kwasniewski’s essay in which he shows that the revisions of the new lectionary can actually contribute to the confusion about marriage since certain biblical passages (present in the old lectionary) are elided from the new. If you or your readers peruse this volume, my own essay might also be of some help. In it, I show that Cardinal Kasper’s proposed change of discipline constitutes a grave sin of scandal in the strict sense….

    In Christ,
    Dr. Sirilla

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  15. JonPatrick says:

    My wife and son both watched The Martian and came back with bad reports saying don’t bother. They were expecting something like Interstellar and were disappointed. One particular scene that many Catholics would find offensive.

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