Depressed and Catholic: Learning It’s OK to Live

If you "live with major depression," you understand what a paradoxical phrase that is. The disease of depression may not ever express itself in completed suicide, or even in attempts, plans, or ideation. But the voice of this disease is anti-life. And it is insidious as hell.Undiagnosed or untreated, we try to silence that YouWantToDieYouKnowYouDo brain elevator music with the people's pharmacopeia of numbing agents: alcohol, sex, food, rock n roll, self-injury, drugs. The problem is they're … [Read more...]

5 Reasons Why Catholics (of All People!) Should Make Earth Day Holy

Today, Earth Day, should be a holy day of obligation for Catholics. That's not exactly a majority opinion, I know.To look around the blogosphere this week, you'd get the notion that many Catholics consider Earth Day---and anything even vaguely approaching concern for non-human creation---to be a communist Hollywood pagan plot, a form of idolatry perpetrated by no less an antichrist than That Guy in the Vatican (cf. Maureen Mullarkey's, um, malarkey at First Things). At the very least, it's … [Read more...]

What’s Really Wrong with Catholic Religious Education? Everything. UPDATED

[UPDATE: A year later, on the way to LA RE/Congress 2015, I'm still asking these questions. You don't need to comment with last year's arguments, many of which were convincing, once y'all realized I wasn't serious about wiping children's catechesis off the map. But I will be in Anaheim this year looking for signs that lifelong catechesis of adults is A Thing deserving of even half the energy we put into supplying training, resources, and networking support for making kids Catholic. I will share … [Read more...]

Pope and African Bishops to Cardinal Kasper: “Can you hear us now?”

Presented for your consideration: Pope Francis has named Cardinal Robert Sarah of Guinea (which, for the Eurocentric, is an African country) as Prefect for the Congregation of Divine Worship. Listen up.Deacon Greg Kandra has the story at The Deacon's Bench, via The Vatican Insider:The Vatican has an African cardinal leading a Vatican Congregation once again. Nigerian cardinal Francis Arrinze was Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments from 2002 … [Read more...]

The Magdalene’s Cave: Thoughts on Priesthood and Women

I've said it before. I am a Catholic woman who once believed, passionately and thoroughly, that women were called to ordination in the Catholic Church. And now I don't. On the feast of the Magdalene, that Apostle to the Apostles and patroness of uppity women, some thoughts.First, though, a caveat. My changed position is not really about thinking. When people ask me why I no longer have issues with a male priesthood, I could say, like a certain president, that my thinking on the subject has … [Read more...]

Looking East Clearly: More on Orthodox Divorce and Remarriage

My recent post on the "Orthodox solution" has provoked a lot of conversation here and on social networks. Most of the reaction has been from Catholics who do not wish to see the Church alter its practice of denying the sacraments to divorced Catholics who remarry, and interpreted calls to look to Orthodox practice as a signal that the upcoming synod might seek such an alteration. My purpose---and, I believe, the purpose of Cardinal Kasper and other Church leaders who recommend exploring what … [Read more...]

People, Look East: Exploring the Orthodox Experience of Divorce and Remarriage

We're divorced and remarried, but we love God and love the Church. Are we excommunicated? Why can't we receive Communion? I heard Orthodox Christians can!In anticipation of the upcoming Extraordinary Synod on the Family, the question of pastoral care for the divorced and remarried has emerged as an issue of great concern. In areas of the world where divorce is common, this question rated high urgency on the surveys sent to bishops' conferences to prepare for the synod. (In other parts of the … [Read more...]

Harrow Us, Lord: A Holy Saturday Prayer

 It was never my intention to give up blogging for Lent. But Lent, like life, like any pilgrimage, is never driven by intention; it is a surrender to the road and the will of the One who calls us to walk it.On this Holy Saturday morning, deep in the seeming silence of the garden of the tomb, think about it. How was your Lent? Where did it take you? What intentions and expectations were abandoned, jettisoned beside the road as unexpected turns and steep ascents called out of you more … [Read more...]