Two Links About Wesley Hill’s Fabulous New Book “Spiritual Friendship”

Oh so much more on this book from me coming soon!First, Wes is interviewed by Jonathan Merritt for RNS: RNS: Let’s start with the foundation. How do you define friendship in a sentence or two?WH: According to Christian writers of the past, spiritual or Christ-centered friendship—the kind of friendship I’m writing about—is a bond between two (or more) people who feel affection for each other. But it’s also a bond that has a trajectory. It’s a relationship that’s about helping one another … [Read more...]

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“Metaphors of Brotherhood and Sisterhood”: I’m at Spiritual Friendship

with a short post: This is just a quick post to note that we don’t use sibling metaphors a lot on this site, and maybe we should. They played an important role in articulating the meaning of vowed friendship in both Eastern and Western Christianity (the terms adelphopoeisis and “wedded brotherhood” both use this metaphor) and they reflect an understanding of friendship as a form of kinship.Wesley Hill quotes me talking about the way that certain friendships, over time, take on the quality of … [Read more...]

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“What’s Hiding Behind Our Identity (Politics)?”: I’m at AmCon

having massive esprit d'escalier about this piece, but it does some good stuff I think: ...And so I wonder, when I see the multiplication of identity-politics terms and initials—LGBTQIAABBQLOL and all that—what might be hidden in these terms. Right now our discourse around the spread of identity labeling mostly takes place entirely on the labels’ own terms: Are asexuals “really” queer, or do they just have victimization envy? Is “demisexual” even a thing, or is this just how people who don’t lik … [Read more...]

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Where Do Men Still Cuddle?: Vlad Chituc

writes: ...If it weren’t so threatening to seem gay, there wouldn’t be a need to police the appearance of it so firmly. Culture has been giving us a choice since the latter half of the 20th Century: seem gay or be lonely. That so many chose “be lonely” shows only the depth of our collective gay panic.I’m not just speculating, as [Anthony] Esolen does. This is at heart an empirical question—in what conditions is platonic male affection common and in what cases is it restricted? One way to go … [Read more...]

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“What I’ve Learned As a Gay Catholic”: I’m at LifeTeen

doin' my thing: ...So far I’ve only written about what you as an individual gay Christian might be called to do. But we are all responsible for one another; and Catholic communities often fail in their responsibilities to their gay members. We need a critical obedience, which takes the Church as Mother and guide but stands in solidarity with all the people harmed by Christians. I have friends who were bullied in Catholic schools, who were forced or pressured into damaging “reparative therapy,” w … [Read more...]

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“Inside the Seminary”: Disturbing report

in Commonweal:...From 2008 through 2010, I was a seminarian in St. Paul, Minneapolis, an archdiocese now entrenched in its own abuse scandal. My experience there led me to believe that the problem of priestly sexual abuse is due, at least in part, to the failure of seminaries to provide adequate human and sexual formation to men studying for the priesthood. More specifically, my seminary formation failed to confront the questions surrounding sexual abuse in a candid and psychologically … [Read more...]

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Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig Reviews “Gay and Catholic”

for AmCon. Really like the point about my book being specifically lesbian rather than gay--and it should've been much more lesbian! If I had it to do over I'd do a LOT more research into the history of love between women, e.g. Boston marriages, "romantic friendship." This piece focuses more heavily than the book does on the specific, perhaps outre case of vowed friendships, which I'm presenting as a beautiful possibility grounded in tradition and not some kind of universal Solution to the … [Read more...]

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