Split Decisions

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First up, thanks for all the support from my sisters and brothers in Invidia Anonymous. My post the other day flipped a light switch and revealed just how capacious and densely populated the Envy Closet is. Once one of us came out, the whole clattering mess followed, like the contents of Fibber McGee's cupboard (a reference only boomers will recognize from their parents' stories of radio days; the rest of you can Google it). Turns out Dean Martin (Google him, too) was only partially right: … [Read more...]

Sewn Shut with Rusty Wire

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"Of the seven deadly sins, only envy is no fun at all." ~ Joseph EpsteinImage sourceEnvy really is just miserable. Dante punishes the envious by having their eyes sewn shut with wire, because in life they drew pleasure from watching the downfall of others. In my experience, though, envy doesn't even involve the dubious pleasures of schadenfreude. It's less about wishing ill on others than it is about feeling the ills of being "less than others" too severely. It's ingratitude on a … [Read more...]

Pointing the Finger

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O God, who raised up Saint John the Baptist to make ready a nation fit for Christ the Lord, give your people, we pray, the grace of spiritual joys and direct the hearts of all the faithful into the way of salvation and peace. ~ Collect for the Solemnity of the Nativity of St John the BaptistOK, I get that the foam finger is fun. And I can sort of understand the kind of jonesing for F4F swag that some of my Patheos Catholic Channel neighbors have expressed. I've got nothing against … [Read more...]

Hope in the Heartland

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New York is where I'd rather stay! I get allergic smelling hay! I just adore a penthouse view! Darling, I love you, but give me Park Avenue . . .Like Eva Gabor's Lisa on the TV series Green Acres, I've always preferred the penthouse to the henhouse. A cornfield is a place that creepy Twilight Zone kid played by Billy Mumy will wish you into if you cross him. I've camped twice, once at Big Sur and once in Yosemite and both out of love for someone I was camping with, not for the … [Read more...]

Philadelphia Freedom

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Image sourceYesterday, on Day One of the USCCB's Fortnight 4 Freedom, Archbishop Charles Chaput pounded one more nail into the crucified Church in Philadelphia---which means, of course, that he pounded that nail into himself as well, and into the rest of us fingers and toes and noses and hangnails on the Body of Christ in Philadelphia and around the world.In the light of a $17 million deficit that excludes "extraordinary" legal and restitution costs incurred to deal with Philadelphia's … [Read more...]

Calling All Reverts!

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Image sourceCARA, the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, has just published some speculative demographics (h/t New Advent) on Catholic reverts---those of us raised as Catholics who leave the Church for a time and then come back. The numbers are interesting to me, as is CARA's contention that reverts, and not just immigrants, are helping to keep Church membership numbers steady in the face of attrition by mortality, low birth rates, and drift away from the Church. Who are the … [Read more...]

The Juiciest Tomato

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Appearing as it does on the day the Nuns on the Bus tour kicked off, Melinda Henneberger's appreciation of Corita Kent (h/t to Fran Rossi Szpylczyn) is well-timed. It's easy to invoke Corita, as Henneberger does, as a kind of forerunner and patron saint of the sisters who find themselves engaged in conflict with the male hierarchy over Rome's critique of the LCWR, as she was a Sister of the Immaculate Heart of Mary when that order went through a similar stretch of conflict nearly half a century … [Read more...]

The Vagina Demagogues

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Image sourcedecorum, n. Dignified propriety of behavior, speech, dress, etc.draconian, adj. rigorous; unusually severe or cruel (from the harsh law codes of Draco)vagina, n. (Anatomy) The passage leading from the opening of the vulva to the cervix of the uterus in female mammalsThe Toronto Star reports on today's "Vaginas Take Back the Capitol!" protest in Lansing, Michigan, during which a crowd of some 2,500 gathered to hear portions of the play The Vagina Monologues read aloud … [Read more...]


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