Out of the Closets and Into the Pews!

My piece for AmCon on gay Christians coming out is online! Coming out of the closet is the simplest tool of the gay movement, yet it’s proven to be the most powerful and even the most spiritually profound. On the political side, Pew Research data this year found that knowing someone who is gay was the most common reason people switched to supporting gay marriage, and the percentage of people who know someone openly gay has risen over 25 points since 1993. But on a more personal level, … [Read more...]

“A Long, Cold Lent”: I read David Adams Richards’s “Friends of Meager Fortune”

it's CanCon for AmCon!: I saved The Friends of Meager Fortune, the second novel I’ve read by Canadian Catholic author David Adams Richards, for the polar vortex. If anything can make Boston in January seem warm, it’s this relentlessly grim tale of the last days of man-and-horse lumbering, with horses crashing through the ice and bloodied hands freezing on the reins. I’m conflicted about recommending the book. What is good in it is immensely powerful. The story of the doomed love of … [Read more...]

“Defiled”

very, very powerful post over at Mudblood Catholic: Though I've mentioned it briefly before, this was a really hard post to write. Warning: it contains language and subject matter that may be triggering for people who've experienced traumas. To make myself feel better, and probably alienate my readers in the process, I will be interspersing inappropriately amusing photographs. ... When I was an adolescent, I was raped four times. Talking about it doesn't make you feel better, but not … [Read more...]

The Diversity of the Saints Is a Diversity of Pain

Speaking of the wild diversity of the saints--over the weekend I read this powerful & bluntly painful piece from Mudblood Catholic: "God is doing something in the dark." But what? And, really, "Why remain here in the dark?" And that post collided with a very intense night at the pregnancy center, and the readings from this past Sunday: For you love all things that are and loathe nothing that you have made; for what you hated, you would not have fashioned. And how could a thing … [Read more...]

“Unmaker’s Mark”: I review “What Happened to Sophie Wilder”

at AmCon: ...There’s a lot going on here. There’s Sophie’s quest for identity (she has three different surnames throughout the novel), a quest she seems to be trying to escape—she wants to surrender to an identity, sink into it, rather than having to go out and conquer and defend it. She doesn’t want her conversion and subsequent changed life to be about her search for self, but about her encounter with God. There’s a grim consideration of suffering and how it resists narrative. … [Read more...]

“Heeding Cries for Help from Discarded, Disconnected Young Men”: LA Times

feature--and do read to the end: ...Fifteen years ago, Ruett and Rhonda Foster were grieving parents in a courtroom. Their 7-year-old son Evan had been shot and killed by a gang member at Inglewood's Darby Park. Evan was clutching his soccer trophy in the back seat of the family car when bullets aimed at someone else tore through the windshield and struck him in the head. Three young men were convicted and sent to prison. And the Fosters began performing their own sort of penance, making … [Read more...]

“Deployment to War Doesn’t Figure in Majority of Military Suicides”: LA Times

reports: ...The most recent Pentagondata show that a slight majority — 52% — of troops who have committed suicide while on active duty were never assigned to Afghanistan or Iraq. The numbers, from the years 2008 to 2011, upend the popular belief that a large increase in suicides over the last decade stems from the psychological toll of combat and repeated deployments to war. To researchers trying to unravel the causes of the rise, the statistics suggest that the mental health and life … [Read more...]


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