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...]

Just One Thing

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After the radio silence of my weekend in the wilds of Southern Indiana, many voices this morning: Former NYT editor Bill Keller, echoing the It's-time-to-get-outta-Dodge chorus that has included full-page ads from the Freedom From Religion Foundation in the NYT and WaPo, writes today (h/t Deacon Greg Kandra) that Catholics who disagree with Rome should stop dithering and vote with their feet. It's a sentiment, Keller notes, that appears to be shared by the hierarchy. He cites Bill Donohue on … [Read more...]

Of Divine Bondage: When the Ties of Religion Unravel

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Blest be the tie that binds Our hearts in Christian love; The fellowship of kindred minds Is like to that above . . .Two stories I was too dumbfounded by to blog about last night, and the tie that (pun intended) binds them.Story 1: Sr Joan Chittister, OSB, is interviewed by CNN's Christiane Amanpour. The piece, as Diane at Te Deum notes, epitomizes everything that is wrong with the media coverage of the CDF-LCWR interaction, and with the GPS system of the bus the LCWR sisters are … [Read more...]

Is There Healing for the Dialogue of the Deaf?

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Ouch. What a morning.So far I have already: Missed a meeting that I have inexplicably had in my calendar for two weeks as being scheduled for this afternoon, when it was this morning at 9:30---in Cincinnati. Been told that my post on St Patrick's Purgatory represents the worst of the "world-rejecting" worst of Irish Jansenism. (Yup. That's me. If it's a choice between the world and a place of pilgrimage, prayer, and penitence, I'm kicking the world to the curb.¬†Especially this morning.) … [Read more...]


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