#Synod14 — Annulment Talk: Resources for Beginners and Pundits Alike

Here are a handful of resources for those who are interested in following all the sex talk at the Synod, but are having a hard time making sense of the assorted news reports.For beginners, take a look at:This homily text from Fr. Jim Leblanc on marriage, divorce, and annulments. If I have my facts straight, Fr. Jim was a lawyer before he became a priest and canon lawyer; he's also a personable, genuinely pastoral guy.  He knows his stuff and will steer you right. Here's Fr. Jim's … [Read more...]

What California Consent Teaches Us About Women’s Needs


There's some exasperated amusement in St. Blogs over the new California laws concerning sexual consent on campus.We can learn about the human heart from doubtful laws.   Implicit in this law is the question, "Are you sure you want to do this?"Why do we ask that question?Because we know that sex outside of marriage is bad for women.If sex were, as corners of our contemporary culture so desperately insist, just this thing you do, a way to relax, a hobby, the new handshake, the … [Read more...]

#Synod14 – In Which Justice & Mercy Try Dating for a Bit

The overall theme of this month's Extraordinary Synod on the Family seems to be this: Catholics stink at being Catholic.  No, really, we're terrible at it.  Now what?The specific topic is everything that has to do with family life, marriage residing at the heart of that.  It turns out Catholics, like the rest of the world, aren't any better at marrying than we are at, say, remembering to read the parish bulletin.  And yet, weirdly, we still long for a deep, lasting, soul-rousing relationship … [Read more...]

Women Demystified: To Love Her is to Tell Her How Beautiful She Is

My daughter is in middle school, and I enjoy going clothes shopping with her.  How did such a thing ever come to pass?  That's what I'm writing about this month at CatholicMom.com.Let's clarify before you click:There is nothing you can do as a parent to take away your child's free will. Therefore, you can do everything "right" and still have a kid who's a nightmare to shop with, and who fights with you tooth and nail over your terrible, no-good, very bad judgment on appropriate c … [Read more...]

BREAKING: St. Paul Comments on the Synod for the Family

For those who are curious about the 2014 Synod of the Family, today's first reading gives you a preview of what to expect: Letter of St. Paul to the Galatians 1:6-12Brothers and sisters:I am amazed that you are so quickly forsaking the one who called you by the grace of Christ for a different gospel (not that there is another). But there are some who are disturbing you and wish to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel other tha … [Read more...]

Chris Tollefsen on the Case Against Incest

(UPDATE: Link fixed.)It just came to my attention that Chris Tollefsen has an essay up at Public Discourse on the case against incest.  Those who've been reading me for many years know I'm a longtime Tollefsen fan, that's just the way it is.   One reason is that Tollefsen is always getting into arguments on topics I've never thought about, and incest would be right up there.  My thinking on the subject until about half an hour ago consisted of, "Um, what?"The good news: It's about more th … [Read more...]

Waffle Syndrome and the Betrayal of Barb Webb

Kathy Schiffer has been covering the story of the firing of Barb Webb, a teacher at Marian High School who was dismissed after she became pregnant.  The story is much more complicated than that, for as Ms. Webb explains herself, all the other pregnant teachers at Marian don't get fired.Why are students, parents, alumnae, and faculty up in arms over this event?  Because it's a break with tradition.  Nobody minded that Barb Webb was in an active, public lesbian relationship.  Nobody minded whe … [Read more...]