“A Most Misunderstood Saint”: Fr James Martin, SJ on St Aloysius Gonzaga

book excerpt: June 21 is the Feast Day of one of the most misunderstood saints in the Catholic church: St. Aloysius Gonzaga.  A little history, then, may be in order to help us begin to understand this complex and holy young man, today one of the patrons of youth.  One must, in a sense, recover the real Aloysius, and the true Luigi.Aloysius Gonzaga needs rescuing from the hands of overly pious artists. On holy cards and in countless reproductions, the young Jesuit is usually depicted clad i … [Read more...]

Job-Seeking in Community, Not Alone: A BenOp Mitzvah

This strikes me as a great idea:...Next up on my end: I’ve been using the two questions “What do I do alone that I could do with others?” and “What do I do privately that I could do in public?” as prompts for BenOp-ish ideas, and, thus, I’m opening my living room sometime soon for a little salon for people between jobs to work on applications, get feedback on resumes, practice interviews, etc. Job applications always make me miserable, especially because the slew of rejections (or rather “So … [Read more...]

“Indie Music’s Christ-Haunted Women”: I’m at AmCon

with some answers to a question I asked here recently: I listen to a lot of what you could call “Christ-haunted” music. Your Mountain Goats, your Weakerthans. Not music made by believers necessarily (although sometimes, unexpectedly, yes), but music made by people who can’t quite escape the stories of Scripture and the language of Christian faith. Cain, resurrection, David, sorrow for sin; a desperate rosary or a hospital vespers. You could add to this list stuff I don’t personally quite grok, b … [Read more...]

Corpus Christi Weirdness and Beauty Around the World

Today is the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus so we're still celebrating, I guess, Jesus' body parts. Roll with it. Here are some photos from our big, old, weird church. My favorites are the sawdust and flower carpets. … [Read more...]

Three Corpus Christi Links: Staying Catholic, Seeing Christ, And Ye Olde Romoeroticism

PEG says some stuff I can really relate to: “Where would we go? You have the words of eternal life.”Peter’s words here are the words of a desperate lover, which is definitely what he was. Peter almost never understood Jesus, at least until Easter, but he knew he loved him, and that was enough for him.That’s what we need to do. Hold on to love. Desperately. Like a life preserver in the storm. Nothing else saves, everything else is straw. more! also PEG IS BLOGGING AGAIN Y'ALLBad Cath … [Read more...]

Where Are the Lady Mountain Goats?

A cri de coeur! Where are the women who write weird, metaphor-laden personal songs about their fraught relationship with the Lord? Are there Sufjanes out there? I would really like music by women, in just about any genre, with lots of Christian stuff (they don't have to be actual believers, just people with really intense relationships with God and the Church) and not prettified but raw. Not Avengers-type stuff about anger at the Church, or anyway not only that, but about complex longings in … [Read more...]

A Clarification on My “You Don’t Have to Grok Natural Law” Shtik

(I'll take any excuse to jam both "grok" and "shtik" into the same headline.)Now and then I find myself saying that you can accept Catholic teaching on [whatever, usually about gay stuff somehow] without being persuaded by or caring much about natural law theory. E.g. in the book I say, "This book is not a theological treatise defending the Catholic Church's teaching on sexuality. I admittedly don't always understand that teaching, and I don't think you need to understand every single … [Read more...]


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