Strange Gods Now on Kindle and my Sally Field Moment

Color me very grateful for the interest in Strange Gods and I have felt a little helpless when emails and social media messages asked when the book would be out on Kindle. The answer, finally, as of right now!I'm also grateful to folks who have been very kind in their assessments of the book, although I do have to admit that Terry Nelson from Abbey-Roads blog -- one of my favorite blogs, I don't link to enough -- gave me a start. I happened upon it this weekend and read: "At first I thought, … [Read more...]

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It is a strange thing to promote a book…UPDATED

I am a little late getting around to talking about the Patheos Book Club, which is currently featuring my book, among others. As I've expressed to some friends, I'm always really happy to promote books I like (and I like my book!) but promoting Strange Gods has been a little daunting for me. I'm not sure how to do it without sounding like this:Yeah, that cracks me up. But on the other hand, I'm always afraid this will happen:So, the book club is featuring an excerpt you can read … [Read more...]

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“The Whole World in Her Hands”: A Gyno-Maniacal War on Men? – UPDATED

My First Things column this week draws on the coarse and destructive hook-up culture that has been not only embraced by women but is in some ways being driven by them:Writing for The Atlantic in September of 2012, Hanna Rosin argued that the “hookup culture” so prevalent on college campuses and in the lives of young adults is “an engine of female progress—one being harnessed and driven by women themselves.” She wrote:To put it crudely, feminist progress right now largely depends on the ex … [Read more...]

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A Rave for “Save Send Delete”

"Outside of the subway, Catholic mass is the only place I have had that experience of diversity." -- Danusha Goska, Save Send DeleteSo, a month ago Julie Davis -- our dear, delightful bookworm, Jules, who is such a Happy Catholic -- made a kindle-gift to me of that book you see here, Save Send Delete, and I was caught somewhere between "thank you, that's so sweet" and "why are you sending me more to read, don't you know I have more reading than I can keep up with, already?"I … [Read more...]

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Catholicism and Nationalism Do Not Really Mix – UPDATED

The neighborhood where I grew up was a block of "mutts", and my own family boasted Irish-Italian-English-Scots-German muttage, but if you asked any of us "what are you?" the answer, our answer would have been "Catholic" and our Catholicism precluded all of our other labels, including "American." Our culture was American, yes, but it was first-and-foremost "Catholic". We didn't have a flag hanging out the door, but we had a Saint Jude on the doorstep, and the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the kitchen. … [Read more...]

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Talking “Strange Gods” on Catholic Weekend

When Maria Johnson invited me to come and chat with the gang at SPQN's Catholic Weekend, I said "sure" without really knowing what to expect. I didn't anticipate a party atmosphere at Google hangouts, and I was a little frightened at the idea of talking with four people at once. But when Maria greeted me with a tiara on her head and a tee shirt proclaiming herself "The Queen of Everything" I realized I could have retained my Donald Duck sweatshirt. Tiara aside, I felt overdressed!In this … [Read more...]

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“He listened to the girl on GPS. Then to me, for 200 miles…”

I totally forgot that while taping this interview with Tony Rossi, I had completely revealed myself to be the harridan I try to hide from you, on a daily basis. It's here at about 5:10 into the chat.Tony's blog Christopher Closeup is one of the places I go when I need to decompress, because he always has a perspective-changer up there, lighting "one candle" against the darkness with heartening regularity. I'm not much of a light, but he generously offered to talk to me about my … [Read more...]

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Pope Francis Endorses My Book, “Strange Gods”? – UPDATE

Well, no, not officially, but I had a little fun on Twitter this weekend, when several friends mentioned Pope Francis' latest tweet at @Pontifex:It just slips in so very well with the whole topic of my book, Strange Gods; Unmasking the Idols in Everyday Life, which will be hitting bookstores soon. In the introduction I write:Do we stop to think of what it means to have something "before God"? It means to put something "first", yes, but more fundamentally, it means to put something … [Read more...]

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A Blessed, Beautiful and Bodacious Theology of Womanhood

"Each woman's life, well lived, might be the best gospel anyone will ever read. But before the doing, before the carrying out of the mission, there is the being. The personhood of each woman, without her ever saying a word or doing a thing, is a sign of life.Womanhood. Life.Those terms are inseparable" -- Pat GohnOutside of my husband and sons and my heroic and saintly in-laws -- and my dear Benedict, who still astounds me -- I haven't got too many heroes in my life, but Pat … [Read more...]

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Interviewing John Thavis: Inside, under and atop the Vatican

After receiving an advance copy of John Thavis' timely new book The Vatican Diaries, and enjoying it immensely, as I relate here, I emailed a few questions to Thavis -- the "retired" former Rome bureau chief for Catholic News Services who is currently back in Rome covering the impending conclave, and even blogging at his own site.Since I am so highly recommending his book -- and I really urge you to pick it up as soon as you can, and read it as a lead-up to all the conclave coverage -- I … [Read more...]

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