Something Beautiful for Christmas: Marriage, Faith & Alzheimer’s by Larry Peterson

Up at Catholic Writers Guild today, Larry Peterson is stealing the show with his beautiful essay on his first Christmas with Alzheimer's under the tree: The past ten years of her life seem to have literally vanished from her brain. She does not remember us getting married. (We were both widowed and married eight years ago. She has no clue.) So she asks me if we are really married. I show her our marriage license and pictures from our wedding. She is shocked. “I can’t believe it, ” she says. We r … [Read more...]

10 Reasons It’s Safe to Come to Mass this Christmas

You've no doubt seen Saturday Night Live's chillingly (hilariously) accurate tour of what you can expect at Mass this Christmas, but you might still be thinking, Hmmn.  Is it really a good idea for someone like me to go to place like that?  With Jesus in it and stuff?The answer is yes.  Here are my top ten reasons why:10. It really is the Church for anybody at all.  There might be other religions where you're expected to have your act together from day one.  Catholics, on the other hand, … [Read more...]

You Could Go Christmas Caroling Tonight

Tonight, you could go Christmas caroling.You don't need an official group.  You don't need an appointment. You don't need props.  You don't even need flashlights and song books, if you're willing to be humble and just sing first verses, which is about all that people standing in the door want to hear, anyway.Gather together some friends, go ring on likely doorbells, and break into song.A verse or two of whichever carols you happen know, then, "We Wish You a Merry Christmas," and on t … [Read more...]

Atheists Advise: Don’t Watch Just Anything, Be Discriminating to Safeguard Your Faith

The Washington Times reports that American Atheists have figured out what Catholics have long proclaimed: American Atheists unveiled Wednesday the “War on Christmas” line-up on its television channel, AtheistTV, featuring “original programs proclaiming the truth about Christmas on December 24 and December 25, featuring scholars and celebrities from the atheist community.”“Christmas is hard for many atheists, so we will provide programming free from superstition and fairy tales that allows  … [Read more...]

Something Useful: Cursive Worksheet Generator – You Specify the Text

What I'm thinking about today is . . . cursive.  This site rescued a child of mine this morning: Cursive Handwriting Practice Worksheet Generator.  You can make your own custom sheets with whatever letters, words, or sentences you like.  It's free to use for your private, educational use. … [Read more...]

Death by Bad Reasoning: Depressed Mothers Deserve Treatment Not Bereavement

In a mortifying follow-on to our discussion of why we mustn't do evil in an attempt at good, here's a case out of Australia that demonstrates the deadliness of bad ethical systems.  Mother and father are expecting a baby.  It's a desired pregnancy, and mother is doing just fine.  Then, in a routine ultrasound, an abnormality in the baby's hand is discovered.The mother, having been reared in a culture where any physical deformity is a source of both lifelong discrimination for the child and sh … [Read more...]

Subtle Smackdown: Vatican Report on American Women Religious is a Warning for Every Parish and Diocese

Don't let the headlines fool you, the freshly-released Final Report on the Apostolic Visitation of Institutes of Women Religious in the United States of America, 16.12.2014 is anything but glowing praise.  It's charitable and mannerly, but if you read closely and put on your thinking cap, the findings are harrowing.  All the more so because our religious orders don't exist in some bubble; every sister comes from a Catholic parish, and every sister in turn bestows her vocation on the Church.  W … [Read more...]