Some of the exchanges shared via hashtag #Dolbert and #DolanColbert included:
-- Colbert, who teaches Sunday school at his New Jersey parish, stressed that he never jokes about the sacraments. Instead, he skewers people he believes use and abuse faith, especially in politics. "Then I'm not talking about Christ. I'm talking about Christ as cudgel," he said.
-- At one point, Cardinal Dolan introduced Evelyn Colbert, the comedian's wife, and kissed her cheek. "I can kiss your wife," he quipped. "You can't kiss mine."
-- Jabbing the cardinal about recent changes in the Mass, Colbert noted one bumpy Nicene Creed edit: "Consubstantial! It's the creed! It's not the SAT prep."
-- A student, via social media, asked: "I am considering the priesthood. Would it be prudent to avoid dating?" The cardinal said dating was a good idea, adding, "By the way, let me give you the phone numbers of my nieces." Colbert responded: "It's actually a great pickup line: 'I'm seriously considering the priesthood. You can change my mind.'"
-- Concerning his own struggles as a believer, Colbert said: "Are there flaws in the church? Absolutely. But is there great beauty in the church? Absolutely." And also, "The real reason I remain a Catholic is what the church gives me -- which is love."
-- Dolan to Colbert: "Do you feel pressure to be funny all the time?" Colbert back to Dolan: "Do you feel pressure to be holy all the time?"
The bottom line, noted Martin, is that humor has always been part of religious life, including the lives of the saints. Take, for example, that famous prayer from the young St. Augustine: "Lord, give me chastity ... but not yet."