The Magdalene’s Cave: Thoughts on Priesthood and Women

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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┬ápatroness 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

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My┬árecent 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

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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...]

Strange Bedfellows, and Real Questions About Sex–UPDATED

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Yes, Planned Parenthood counselors enthusiastically provide "sex-positive" advice to teens who ask. What's more interesting to me is what kids are asking, and why. I admit I was more bemused than outraged by the Daily Caller's story on the release of Live Action's latest Planned Parenthood sting video. In the past, LA has used actors and hidden cameras to catch Planned Parenthood workers appearing to violate laws or policy with regard to sex-selective abortions or procurement of a … [Read more...]

Two Saints, No Waiting: Pope-pourri on Canonization Eve

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There's so much good stuff out there on Sunday's dual canonization of Popes John XXIII and John Paul II. I call your attention in particular, to Tod Worner's "St John Paul II: The 20th Century's Greatest Dissident" and Dr Greg Popcak's "Pope St John Paul II & Pope St John XXIII: Partners in the Universal Call to Holiness." My Patheos Catholic Channel neighbors, along with the entire Catholic media world, will continue to provide updates and reflections throughout the weekend and … [Read more...]

Harrow Us, Lord: A Holy Saturday Prayer

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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 than you … [Read more...]

I Was on Death Row, and You Walked with Me: Being Prolife out on the Margins

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So a priest, a nurse, and a lawyer walk into a prison . . . and they're all the same guy. CNN had a great profile Friday of Fr Neil Kookoothe, pastor of St Clarence in the Diocese of Cleveland. Fr Kookoothe's unique skill set---he got a nursing license and a law degree before entering the seminary---helped him free a man from Death Row, and led to legislation widening Ohio's discovery rules. D'Ambrosio, Kookoothe said, had no previous criminal record. He had neither an alibi nor motive. He told … [Read more...]

Everything But the Baby: Rethinking the Ed in Religious Ed

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I have updated my update to "What's Really Wrong with Catholic Religious Education? Everything" to include links to a wide variety of responses. The conversation continues here and in comboxes and on social media, and starting Monday the Patheos Catholic Channel home page will have a central link to posts tagged Rethinking Religious Education. But today's post from my friend and Patheos neighbor Sam Rocha deserves, I think, an endorsement all its own. Sam, a philosopher and father and … [Read more...]


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