Am I a Cynic, or Simply Observant? Both?

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Since I am both socially inept and an introvert (not an automatic blend; I'm just a particularly clumsy amalgam of the two) to me, watching from sidelines is altogether preferable to deep engagement. This has made me pretty observant, or at least that's what I took from it when my mother -- reaching for an answer when queried as to why I was "so odd" -- said, "well, she's very observant..."Two really excellent columns by women I admire have crossed my screen today, and in both cases, I found … [Read more...]

Nuns and Bishops and Popes, Oh My! – UPDATES

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The sisters are all Joan of Arc and the Bishops are all Don Giovanni!Allow me to clear my tabbar of these numerous links touching on the Sr. Margaret Farley story, the LCWR leadership meeting with Rome story and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad menfolk -- offering "the contorted thinking of celibate men" -- who just don't appreciate the linear and perfect thinking of the celibate women.I guess female celibacy is superior to male celibacy and therefore confers credibility on … [Read more...]

The Talking, Thinking and Wondering Will Continue

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There is a saying attributed to St. Gregory of Nyssa, that I used to keep up on my header: "Ideas lead to idols; only wonder leads to knowing."I wonder about that phrase often, and continually draw new understanding as I apply it to different subject matters. It reminds me that I am not only free to ponder, but that as a Catholic, I am (quite contra-CW) required to think. Not to give in to the soft tyranny of sentimentalism until I'm so busy feeling that thinking is dismissed; not to … [Read more...]

Matt Damon gives Props to George W. Bush?

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Well that is a surprising headline. Here's an even more surprising one: Matt Damon wants to kiss George Bush on the mouth:Matt Damon, known for his liberal politics, gave credit where credit was due to former President George W. Bush.And he said he’d do it with more than just thanks.“I would kiss George W. Bush on the mouth for what he did on PEPFAR,” he told The Atlantic in an extensive interview about his charity work.From that piece:MD: I would kiss George W. Bush on the … [Read more...]

DC's Bad Kabuki & the Next Chapter of Trouble – UPDATES

Clearly, what we are getting out of Washington is not leadership, not from anyone. It is spitefulfulness; it is deceit; it is hyperbole unto madness and maneuvering and masterful manipulation, but it's not leadership.What it is, is pure Kabuki theater, but less honest.Or maybe it's not Kabuki, at all; maybe it's just a carnival with freakshow, burlesque and a magic act, all brought forward to engage our attention in misdirection. "Look right this way, folks, (no, not there or there, there … [Read more...]

O Come, O Come

Emmanuel, God-With-Us...Emmanuel, born in Haiti the day after quake in which father died. He did not survive/Photo, "Missionary Ed"Stricken with some sort of bug, over here, and it has me under the weather and working at half-speed. But while I try to pull myself together, here is one of the best versions of this haunting call I have ever heard:Video via Matt Labash, who is looking at this Christmas with a perspective permanently changed thanks to his post-earthquake trip to Haiti, his … [Read more...]

Ration me? Hey, Ration U2! – UPDATED

Regular readers know I am a big U2 fan. I've even slipped U2 songs into previous Advent posts.But if the phonies in Cancun are going to start talking about rationing the lives of others in order to save Gaia, they're going to have to start looking at other excesses they can eliminate, first. That's my Tuesday column: Rationing Bono & Other Gaia-Saving IdeasCuriously, no one at these conferences ever suggests that less-draconian measures, affecting a relative minority of human beings, … [Read more...]

Did Benedict Stir the Water on Purpose?

Did Pope Benedict know he was sparking a debate with his responses in Light of the World?I suspect he did. Benedict is not stupid, and he's not unsavvy about media; he knows the press is reactionary and slavish to the sensational - that they would grab his answers to Peter Seewald and run with them, and that after their first noise, some of them would actually settle down and seek to understand, while others never would.Meanwhile, the faithful would be jarred from their torpor, and … [Read more...]

Pope, Condom, TSA & Crucifix – UPDATED

With a title like that, what else could I be talking about but my Tuesday column:I had been driven to the crucifix because I had become overwhelmed with the media/internet cacophony that had followed L’Osservatore Romano’s weekend revelation of Pope Benedict XVI’s thoughts on the use of condoms in certain situations, and by the uproar over newly put-in-place TSA regulations on pre-flight searches and pat-downs.In both cases, reactions were swift, and they varied according to agendas but fe … [Read more...]

The Employment Rosary; on Currents

Last week, I had a chance to speak with Currents' Nathalia Ortiz about the idea of using the mysteries of the Rosary as a consolation and meditation for all of those who are seeking employment, or their family members who are anxiously watching them.The prayers and meditations are fleshed out in this little publication by Our Sunday Visitor, which I have written more about here.The great folks at NET-NY produce Currents (the only nightly Catholic newscast in the nation) have excerpted the … [Read more...]


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