Howling Winds and Holy Souls: Let’s Talk Death

Irish Cemetery

As we swiftly move toward November -- what Rumer Godden calls a time "full of howling winds and holy souls," -- the Patheos Public Square is taking a multi-channel look at death and religious customs, with Remembering the Dead: Ancestors, Rituals and Relics.This is of interest to Catholics because, let's face it, we do death very well, we are often entertained by it (Tom McDonald has been writing about ghosts and floating songs about death all month!), and we are nearing the feasts of All … [Read more...]

Lady, Sing a Song to Your Dying Daughter…


And help the rest of us put things into proper perspective.How small we are. And how great.Too often we live as though we are looking through a constant spyglass -- things far away (and mostly irrelevant to our lives) seem huge and urgent, while our ordinary everydays can seem so small and dull. Here, a brave mom writes a song to her dying 18-year old daughter; it lands on Youtube and helps us to turn the spyglass around and discover that the big stuff is not out there.In truth, … [Read more...]

Terry Teachout’s Long Goodbye


Terry Teachout on the death of his mother:As always, I threw myself into work in order to stave off despair. Going to the theater three or four nights a week was as good a way as any to keep my mind occupied, but in between shows I thought the same blunt, ugly thoughts that had come to me at odd moments ever since December. What do I do if she starts to fail while my play is in rehearsal? What's the closest airport to Lenox? What if it happens on the morning of the dress rehearsal? Or on … [Read more...]