“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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Honoring Friendship on St Aelred’s Feast Day

...which I totally missed. But there's always next year (if the Messiah tarries):I don’t know how you might choose to mark Aelred’s feast day today, or if you’re even comfortable marking saints’ feast days, but I’d encourage you to try something, be it small or large. I myself am planning to make a simple dinner for my housemates to give thanks for their company tonight. Perhaps you would want to start planning an “anniversary of friendship” trip to celebrate the years you’ve known a particul … [Read more...]

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From the Letters of St Gregory of Nazianzus to St Basil

What I wrote before about our stay in Pontus was in joke, not in earnest; what I write now is very much in earnest. O that one would place me as in the month of those former days, Job 29:2 in which I luxuriated with you in hard living; since voluntary pain is more valuable than involuntary delight. O that one would give me back those psalmodies and vigils and those sojournings with God in prayer, and that immaterial, so to speak, and unbodied life. O for the intimacy and one-souledness of the … [Read more...]

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“In Defense of Flagellation”: Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry

is right: ...During the podcast, the guests made several in-passing negative references to the monastic practice of self-flagellation, which were never challenged. In particular, they made a couple points: the first is that God, being fundamentally non-violent and opposed to suffering, could not condone such a practice; second, that monks who engage(d) in such a practice were trying to earn holiness. Yet we find that many great saints, who were in no dangers of such spiritual … [Read more...]

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Captive Virgins: St Gregory of Nyssa vs. … Well… Vs. Me, I Guess

and let's see what that title does for my search requests.Wesley Hill truffled up a really fine short article on Gregory of Nyssa's "On Virginity," which offers a much-needed corrective to the way I usually talk about vocations for celibate queer people. Here's an excerpt, but the whole thing is worth your time: ...Adults are single in greater numbers than ever before, but the singles who usually speak in public discussions are sexually active. Why is it that Christian adults who are single … [Read more...]

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Gay Catholic Book Extras: When the Going Gets Weird, The Weird Get Spiritual Direction

(Preorder the book!)In my post on celibate partnerships I noted that "the more unusual your vocation, the more actively you should seek out spiritual guidance from an outside party." But of course there's a catch-22 here: The weirder your vocation, the more you need spiritual direction; and the weirder your vocation, the harder good direction is to find. In both my book and the partnerships post I spoke mostly to the person seeking direction. In this post I'll try to speak mostly to people … [Read more...]

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“Journalists, Radio Hosts, Addicts, The Imprisoned, And the Pro-Life Movement”

an incomplete list of people St Maximilian Kolbe is the patron of. Whoa. His feast day is today. That list via David Freddoso. … [Read more...]

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