Justice & Mercy have Kissed…

Mercy and truth have met each other: justice and peace have kissed. --Psalm 85:10What a humbling and inspiring story, brought to us thanks to Rocco (and via Cassy Fasano), and what lessons to ponder, here. We could think on this for the rest of our lives and not fully comprehend this mystery:...the most emotional and profound of the bunch came when the monthlong gathering was addressed by a Rwandan religious, Sister Genevieve Uwamariya, whose recounting of her own experience provides a … [Read more...]

Ted Kennedy, Healthcare & Purgatory – More UPDATES:

Edward Moore Kennedy, 1932-2009My baby-hood crush on John Kennedy, and my little-girl admiration for Robert Kennedy had kept Ted Kennedy on my periphery. I use this photo because it is the flashing image I always get when I think of Ted, because it was my first real notice of him.I remember being 11 years old and watching Kennedy make a statement on television after the death of Mary Jo Kopechne. What seems vivid in my memory is something I am no longer sure of: was he wearing a … [Read more...]

Taking Communion when not Catholic – UPDATED

Rick at Brutally Honest, for whom I have a deal of affection, and he's been a a provocative read for years, has been away from the Catholic Church for a long time.He and his wife have now decided to partake of Holy Communion within the Catholic Church, although without the sacrament of Confession or any sort of adherent "membership," in the church. He feels free to do this, because "no man has a right to stand between another man and Jesus." He believes Jesus would not turn him away, nor his … [Read more...]

Vanderleun on prayer…

Call this one your surprising (but not really) must-read of the day, Vanderleun on prayer:For a certain type of extremely stupid smart and educated person, prayer is something to be sneered at their entire life right up to the moment when they see the intergalactic candle snuffer descending on their head or the head of those they love. At this point, it is the rare wiseguy who does not spontaneously discover his or her capacity for prayer. Indeed, it strikes me that it is often the agnostic or … [Read more...]

SoulWow Clean, Cobb & other things

A friend of mine just dropped a hint - a veiled one, as in, "maybe I'll go to the church down the street and find out what it takes to become Catholic," which made me happy, of course. I gave him the line from noted conservative Paul Johnson: "come on in, it's awful!" We can keep each other company in exile.Anyway, that's cool. Pray for his discernment?While you're praying, please pray for Kim and her husband and their baby. I briefly mentioned their plight here, but was waiting for … [Read more...]

Lent Prep: Confession Primer

Been a long time since you've been to confession?Well...Lent is comingSo are hard times.If you're feeling fretful, you may want to try incorporating some prayer and spiritual discipline into your life. And if you're Catholic, and you want to get back into church, and begin to re-engage with the sacraments, or simply to get the most out of Lent, you might want to try going back to confession.I confess, I love this sacrament and lately have been partaking of it once a month, both for the … [Read more...]

Catholic books and radio

The folks at Inside Catholic have been ruminating over the question of what defines "Catholic Fiction" for a little while, and naming favorite books. Their interest in the issue has flowered into a feature idea - The Inside Catholic Book Circle that begins today, with a discussion of Ron Hansen's new novel, Exiles, which my Li'l Bro Thom - who has a bit more time to read than I do, lately - has pronounced "wonderful".Here's the scoop on the Book Circle: What is "Catholic" fiction? Is it … [Read more...]

Ted Kennedy's Crucible Singes…

The first time I wrote about Ted Kennedy, someone suggested I was too quick to leap to the political, which was probably not a bad criticism since, as I confessed in my follow-up piece, I - like other Catholics had added shame-to-shame and scandal-to-scandal with my imperfect charity.Clearly it won't be the last time I write about him, but Inside Catholic has my latest onthe Crucible of Ted Kennedy and all those ways we gather our own kindling with our beams and splinters.While over there, … [Read more...]

Kennedy's hard road & the privilege of prayer

AP photo of Sen. Kennedy surrounded by (counterclockwise) Ted Kennedy, Jr., stepson Curran Raclin, Rep. Patrick Kennedy, Daughter Kara KennedyThe emails about Ted Kennedy's illness have been interesting - I had a note from a gentleman living though his own hell of cancer and wondering why blogs and the press immediately took to focusing on the political ramifications of this news. I understood his meaning, but it is impossible to write about a Kennedy, especially in this election year, … [Read more...]

My Soul for a Cup of Coffee – UPDATED

After four days in the house, sleeping nearly continuously thanks to my oxygen-deprived and bleary state, I desperately needed to get out of the house today, and also I needed to buy a card/gift for the Mother-in-Law (who deserves much more than either card or gift), so I ventured out and basically drove a circuit: card shop, gas station (back tire needed air), post-office, church (getting on to the Vespers hour, so why not) and then - feeling totally beat - a reward of coffee to get me home. … [Read more...]