A prayer for teachers at the start of the school year

Dear God, A new school year is about to begin and my classroom door will soon open to the students you’ve assigned to my care… Open my mind and heart to each of them and especially to the ones who will challenge me the most… Help me challenge my students, all of them, to study, [Read More...]

Creepy: one sperm donor, 150 children

And now people are wondering if that was such a good idea after all. Details: Cynthia Daily and her partner used a sperm donor to conceive a baby seven years ago, and they hoped that one day their son would get to know some of his half siblings — an extended family of sorts for [Read More...]

Boom: New Orleans gets largest seminary class in a quarter century

Details: After years of relative scarcity, the Archdiocese of New Orleans opens the academic year with a bumper crop of young men entering seminary studies for the priesthood — the largest group in 26 years. Thirty-six men have enrolled at either St. Joseph Seminary in Covington for undergraduate training, or Notre Dame Seminary in New [Read More...]

What does the SSPX think about permanent deacons? Not much

In the combox for another post, media maven and blogger Deacon Keith Fournier left the comment below.  I posted on this issue back at my old place, Beliefnet, two years ago, but it’s worth a reminder: Dear Deacon Greg: I pray for healing with the SSPX and welcome the efforts of Pope Benedict XVI, the [Read More...]

Atheist group holds first meeting at Christian school

SMU — Southern Methodist University, home to Perkins Chapel, shown above — now has its own campus group devoted to atheism, and the student paper dropped by the first meeting: Homosexuality, creationism and religious acceptance were all hot topics at the Secular Humanist club’s first meeting Wednesday night in Hughes-Trigg. Though the club functions mainly [Read More...]

For Labor Day: "Let the River Run"

From Mike Nichols’ “Working Girl.” Ah, a flashback to the ’80s, complete with big hair, big shoulder pads, big Nikes to walk to work.  A great song (thank you, Ms. Carly Simon) from a great romantic comedy (and when was the last time someone in Hollywood made one of those, anyway?). And, as an added [Read More...]

Jesus gets a Facebook page — and more than 8 million fans

The New York Times looks at the web’s newest sensation, the Son of God: A North Carolina diet doctor has come up with a formula to create the most highly engaged audience on Facebook in the world, far surpassing marketing efforts by celebrities and sports teams. He draws on the words of Jesus and posts [Read More...]

Did you know they've used the Stanley Cup as a baptismal font?

I didn’t, until blogger (and deacon’s wife!) Kathy Schiffer wrote about it a few days back: Seven-week-old Alva Felicia Sundstrom, niece of Detroit Red Wings’ right winger Tomas Holmstrom, was baptized in “Lord Stanley” on July 25, 2008, in a private ceremony outside Holmstrom’s hometown of Pitea, in northern Sweden. Robert Sundstrom, who is Holmstrom’s [Read More...]

For Labor Day: Want to succeed? Get happy!

Want to know the secret of greater productivity at work? Some researchers are happy to tell you: Over the past decade, we researched the micro-level causes behind this macro-level problem. To gain real-time perspective into everyday work lives, we collected  nearly 12,000 electronic diary entries from 238 professionals in seven different companies. Our study charted [Read More...]

What happens when a chimp sees sunlight for the first time?

You gotta see this. HuffPo notes: RTL, a German television station, provided this tearjerking footage of lab chimps taking their first steps of freedom outdoors and into the sun. It’s in German, but we can gather that this was the first time the animals had ever been let loose in natural daylight. Feel-good footage aside, [Read More...]