Can a Saint be a Badass?

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Can a saint be a “badass”? Can a saint be tough, sometimes abrasive, embodied, highly imperfect, and sensual? Can a saint be married, possibly divorced, but still God-centered? Author Maria Morera Johnson’s clear response in her new book is “Yes.” Or as Oscar Wilde asserted, “every saint has a past and every sinner has a [Read More...]

Staying Put: Stability and Novelty in the Spiritual Journey

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Carl McColman’s Befriending Silence: Discovering the Gifts of Cistercian Spirituality presents a mystical spirituality for everyday people. You don’t have to be in a monastery to experience God. You can be an everyday mystic, while you’re fixing breakfast for your children, driving to work, caring for an elderly parent, or giving your spouse a massage. [Read More...]

Finding Spirituality in Suffering: Heather King’s “Stripped”

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Stripped, Heather King’s new memoir on faith in the midst of a cancer diagnosis, brought to mind words from Viktor Frankl: “There is one thing I dread: not to be worthy of my sufferings.” Pain and illness, loss and persecution, are moral and spiritual issues. They may drive us away from God. We may seek revenge on [Read More...]

Wherever There is Truth, God is its Source: On ‘The Gospel of Happiness’

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Book Reflection: The Gospel of Happiness by Christopher Kaczor Can science and faith work together for the common good? Are the aims of psychology and theology similar in nature? Can psychology illuminate theology and theology support human flourishing as envisioned by psychology? Christopher Kaczor once saw faith and psychology as inhabiting two different and parallel [Read More...]

Mary as One of Us: A Conversation with Denise Bossert’s Gifts of the Visitation: Nine Spiritual Encounters with Mary and Elizabeth.

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In her new book, Gifts of the Visitation, Denise Bossert chronicles her adventures in discovering the role of Mary as a spiritual guide and model for her own spiritual formation. Her journey takes her from evangelical Protestantism to an orthodox understanding of Roman Catholicism. Along the way, she encounters Mary as a unique spiritual figure, divinely [Read More...]

The Grace of Interdependence: A Response to Jamie Arpin-Ricci’s ‘Vulnerable Faith’

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As a child growing up in the Salinas Valley in California, I grew up singing that grand evangelical hymn “Just as I Am,” popularized by the Billy Graham Crusades. Jamie Arpin-Ricci’s Vulnerable Faith brought me back to the revival meetings and evangelical theology of our small town Baptist church. While I no longer hold the [Read More...]

Saints Everywhere: On Brandon Vogt’s “Saints and Social Justice”

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Although I am a progressive Protestant and by inclination feel some discomfort in setting apart certain people as saints, I found Brandon Vogt’s Saints and Social Justice: A Guide to Changing the World is an inspiring book. While many of the stories of saints belong more to legend than fact, what shines through is that [Read More...]


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