Digital Communication and Schism in the Church

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 ******************************************************************************************************************  I started off Lent in a little disagreement with a woman at Church. For two days we'd been sending off emails, one after another, becoming increasingly enmeshed in battle. I pointed out a problem in her first note. She self-defended, and brought in someone else to blame. I defended the third party--and before I knew it, I was kneeling at Ash … [Read more...]

Friendship shared in letters: a review of Love and Salt


 Maybe fifty years ago, two young women could meet each other at school or a party, and rest assured that they shared some commonality of belief. In today's post-Christian American culture, those same young women would guard their belief like a neurosis, waiting for the moment when it would have to be revealed, probably in a piece of writing or a late night heart to heart, that they were one of those "God people." Such was the case for Amy Andrews and Jessica Mesman Griffith, who … [Read more...]

Pope Benedict has thrown me off again

 This morning Pope Benedict announced that he would step down from the Papacy at the end of this month. I'm both sad and encouraged.I came to love Pope Benedict XVI through his writing, a book of meditations called Benedictus: Day by Day with Pope Benedict. As with the best writers, his writing revealed little personal information about himself, but intimated that he understood humanity and its problems with belief very well. In fact, I'd never put down a book (each day, no less) … [Read more...]

Sex, Shame, and the Superbowl

 There was something very wrong about the Beyonce act during half-time of the Super Bowl. The thing that was wrong about it was also wrong with a commercial that aired several times during the bowl for a show called Two Broke Girls that featured the main characters of that show performing a striptease, with a pole, licking icing off their fingers, etc. It was also wrong with a "Go-Daddy" commercial in which the model Bar Rafeali, represented the "sexy" side of the business, and a … [Read more...]

Wonder Mother

Last night at 2 A.M. the storm sirens went off. I shook my husband awake to look at the news, and went upstairs to bring down the kids. The last thing I'd read before falling asleep earlier in the night, was a Smithsonian article about a Russian family who'd survived for forty years in the Taiga without encountering another human being. They'd fled their home due to religious persecution, taking seeds, a loom, and a spinning wheel. As supplies ran out, they became more and more … [Read more...]

Pop Music isn’t what it used to be

 My daughter received a three disk CD of the complete works of Raffi for Christmas-- hours and hours of happy, multi-cultural sing-along-songs. She puts them in the CD player and pulls a chair up to the speakers, gazing into the digital clock-face of the machine, waiting for the next Raffi song to come out. She sings along: "I have a little dreidel, I made it out of clay…and when it's dry and ready, my dreidel I will play." She listens to "Willoughby, wallaby wanya… an elephant sat o … [Read more...]

Baby Notes: thoughts on recently having a baby


*Everyone around here is tired of me being the patient. It's time to get up, get dressed, start doing something besides making goo-goo eyes at this Little Heavy.I love how after a newborn has just eaten, you can pick her up under the arms, and she hangs there like a loaf of bread dough with her mouth relaxed into a lackadaisical half-smile. Weirdly, this was the thing I most looked forward to while she was still cooking. *The phlebotomist on staff at the hospital … [Read more...]