Photographs from Miracle Village, A Florida Town for Sex Offenders

The Guardian writes: ...Sofia Valiente, a quietly spoken 24-year-old photographer who lives one hour’s drive from Miracle Village, came upon the community when she was photographing the small towns of south Florida. Intrigued, she started visiting the community and, having gained their trust, began documenting this enclosed world in portraits, landscapes and still lives. She even lived there for a time during the three months it took her to complete the project that has now become an intriguing … [Read more...]

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“Let’s Talk About Monks, Baby”: More of My Dialogue w/Justin Lee on Relationships for Gay Christians

at Respectful Conversations:I loved a lot of things about Justin's first contribution to this discussion. I'm going to give a kind of slantwise rather than head-on response. First I want to highlight the areas where he is modeling the way this conversation should go. Then I do want to suggest a way in which his approach is still too much shaped by contemporary American culture. And finally I will offer a different angle from which to approach the question.more--I don't love how the third … [Read more...]

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The Literature of Contempt: Some Rambling About DFW and Dostoyevsky

Over the holiday weekend I read through pretty much the entire Mockingbird archive of posts tagged "David Foster Wallace." Meanwhile I'm reading The Idiot for the third time (and finally retaining something other than the "worst thing you ever did" party game, I hope...) and slowly gnawing through Игрок (The Gambler) in Russian class. If you ever want to notice how super-contemptuous (презрительнейший! чрезвычайно презрительнейший!) both of these writers can get about everybody in the entire worl … [Read more...]

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“Doing Whatever It Takes to Create a Prison Garden”: Michele Scott

at the Marshall Project:I am a gardener in prison, if such a thing is possible. I tend a garden outside my housing unit — kneeling, kneading, watering. What I do for plants is very different from how this place handles me.more … [Read more...]

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“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...]

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“Tom Stoppard Plays With God”: I’m in AmCon

reviewing a new play: “The Hard Problem” is Tom Stoppard’s first work for the stage since 2006′s fantastic “Rock ‘n’ Roll,” and like “Rock ‘n’ Roll,” it asks whether there’s such a thing as a soul, or whether a human being is just “a pinball machine which thinks it’s in love.”But where the earlier play offered a clash between Marxist materialism and the pagan ecstasy of rock music, “The Hard Problem” is a more blunt and programmatic conflict between evolutionary biology and a sort of heavily … [Read more...]

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Penitence in Easter: Great Post by an Anglican Bishop

...The New Testament suggests that there is nothing more paschal in character, nothing more closely aligned with the great transitus of Jesus’ death and resurrection, than the transitional moment represented by our repentance and God’s forgiveness, which brings new life out of the death we’ve constructed for ourselves.Rowan Williams noted in his book Resurrection that the disciples’ experience of resurrection was inextricably linked to their own desertion of him and their failure as his frien … [Read more...]

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