My Lenten Journey in Music

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In recent days, while reflecting on why music has always seemed to occupy such a large space in my life, I’ve come to realize that I use it in (mostly) two ways. Well, three, actually. Because the first — “first” as in “primary” — way is pretty much straight-up enjoyment, brought on by an appreciation of and a [Read More...]

Fat Tuesday Antics from the Susanka Seven

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The boys are gearing up for Lent with their usual enthusiasm. The Furious Five Eldest spent a lively breakfast hour engaged in “Give-Up One-Upmanship,” where each vies with the others in an attempt to come up with the most outlandish sacrifice. “I’m going to give up the iPad during the day!” Well, I’m going to give [Read More...]

A Day of Lamentation and Bitter Weeping

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Every Life is a Gift. #marchforlife — Pope Francis (@Pontifex) January 22, 2015 In all the Dioceses of the United States of America, January 22 (or January 23, when January 22 falls on a Sunday) shall be observed as a particular day of prayer for the full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right [Read More...]

GUEST POST: Being Charlie Hebdo

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Taking a moment from my website restructure to share a friend’s thoughts on the recent tragedy in Paris. (We’ll call this friend “Mrs. Joe.”) Before yesterday, I had never heard of Charlie Hebdo.  Would that that were still true. My first exposure to it, coming almost simultaneously with the news of the massacre at its offices, was [Read More...]

Pondering October’s Synod: “Where Have the Men Gone?”

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“Where have the actors gone? The play has ended; the curtains drawn. There’s no applauding now, no cheering crowd; No autographs, no curtain calls; An empty stage, a silent hall.” Morten Lauridsen I suppose it’s not surprising that I jumped so eagerly at the question when Elizabeth first proposed it as a topic for our symposium [Read More...]

Graham Greene’s “The Hint of an Explanation” Offers Much More Than a Hint

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I sometimes feel pity for that thing. It is so continually finding the right weapon to use against its Enemy and the weapon breaks in its own breast. It sometimes seems to me so… …powerless. In the midst of yesterday’s bizarre and unsettling Harvard Extension School/Satanic Temple story, all I could think about was “Where’d they [Read More...]

Lifestyles of the Young and Liturgically Impressionable

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A brief account of my favorite moment from the just-completed Triduum. (Well, OK. Fine. My second-favorite moment. Right after the Paschal Vigil’s tintinnabulous Gloria, which is always my favorite moment. Because I’m a lousy Lent person.) During Good Friday’s General Intercessions, our cantor intoned “Let us kneel!” beautifully, as is his wont. And then, after an [Read More...]

“Jubilate Deo!”

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He is risen! Sound the trumpets! Jubilate Deo omnis terra, quia sic benedicetur homo qui timet Dominum. Jubilate Deo omnis terra. Deus Israel conjungat vos et ipse sit vobiscum. Mittat vobis auxilium de sancto, et de Sion tueatur vos. Jubilate Deo omnis terra. Benedicat vobis Dominus ex Sion, qui fecit caelum et terram. Jubilate Deo [Read More...]

John IV of Portugal’s “Crux Fidelis”

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Crux fidelis, inter omnes arbor una nobilis: nulla silva talem profert, fronde, flore, germine. Dulce lignum, dulces clavos, dulce pondus sustinet. TRANSLATION: Faithful cross, above all other, One and only noble tree: None in foliage, none in blossom, None in fruit thy peer may be. Sweetest wood and sweetest iron, Sweetest weight is hung on [Read More...]

SVS: “Ostrov”

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It’s Good Friday. A potentially-awkward day to be recommending a movie, yes. Especially because I’m planning to go film-free today, myself — as, I’m sure, are many of you. But it’s also a day with a surprising number of options. And a day when I can honestly say that I’ve benefited from a bit of [Read More...]


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