Girls at the Altar: Decompressing A Condensed Symbol

Yesterday, Michelle Arnold, a Patheos colleague, wrote in defense of altar service by girls and women. She reminds us that its history extends all the way back to the antebellum South and culminated in an endorsement from St. John Paul II, the same pope responsible for restricting the sacramental priesthood to men. What prodded Michelle [Read More…]

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On Abstaining from Communion

The other week at Mass, I remained in the pew when everyone else got up for Communion. I can’t remember whether I was praying fervently or daydreaming or nodding halfway off — the difference is sometimes academic – but in any case, my eyes were closed. Then I felt a whack on my shoulder. Turning [Read More…]

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“Without Getting All Freakish About It”

This is a story about saints and signs, and how the right word to the right person at the right time can change a life. At the beginning of 2011, I was brand-new to Catholic online media and utterly mesmerized by it. Everyone, writers and commenters alike, sounded insane – either ready to slit their [Read More…]

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