My Adorable Elder Son is 30 Years Old!

Little angel

I mean, I just blinked!And poof!And now he is married to a lovely woman and they live in another state, and I am become one of those annoying ladies who tells young mothers "appreciate it, even though it's hard, because it goes so fast...."The sweetest baby, most relaxed baby ever born -- and still the same dreamy planet he was the day he arrived:...despite all of my best and worst days of parenting – [my sons] are pretty much precisely the people they w … [Read more...]

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Like Christianity, Islam Must Face Itself or Lose Credibility​

aradaphotography / Shutterstock.com

As I am still intent on a writing project, it is my pleasure to bring you this guest post by the esteemed scholar, and Franciscan Friar, Elias D. Mallon, who writes to caution Muslim friends that increased Islamic outreach and dialogue is urgently needed, if their credibility is to be preserved in the face extremist factions like ISIS and Boko Haram, and their continued crimes against humanity.An Examination of Conscience is Not Just for Christians If these specific things had not been … [Read more...]

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My Hoo-erdom Hashed-Out and Explored in a Q&A

hooer cover final

It's been an odd couple of months, wherein I have found myself interviewed several times, and via surprising venues. First Tom McDonald got me yapping about prayer.And then America got me going on and on about blogging (which generated tweets from Catholic people who actively hate me in humbling ways I hadn't then-imagined).I had totally forgotten, but around the same time, Patheos' Book Club asked me to discuss why I Don't Want to be a Hoo-er, if I can help it, which surprised me. … [Read more...]

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Baseball: the most virtuous, and Catholic of games

Image via Shutterstock.com

As George Harrison said, "it's been a long, cold, lonely winter." And it feels like years since baseball has been here.But what joy to flip on the television in my office and find Yankees in blue pinstripes, standing in the bright April sun! As I type this, they're losing 5-0 but it doesn't matter. There is the whiff of ball against leather glove; there is the crack of bat-on-ball. There are the crowd noises as A-Rod gets his first hit of the season. There are new names and old names and … [Read more...]

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Tree Change Dolls: Because Mary Anne Over Ginger

tree change dolls2

I love this.When my nieces wanted Bratz dolls, I couldn't bring myself to buy them.Had I had an option to buy fresh-faced dolls that actually look like the girls who play with them? I'd have gone nuts with them.But then, I always did think Mary Anne was prettier and in all ways more interesting than Ginger. … [Read more...]

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“It is Consummated”: The “Mad Eros” of the Cross

Christ the Bridegroom fra angelico

On the Cross, God’s eros for us is made manifest. Eros is indeed – as Pseudo-Dionysius expresses it – that force “that does not allow the lover to remain in himself but moves him to become one with the beloved” ("De divinis nominibus", IV, 13: PG 3, 712). Is there more “mad eros” (N. Cabasilas, "Vita in Cristo", 648) than that which led the Son of God to make Himself one with us even to the point of suffering as His own the consequences of our offences?Dear brothers and sisters, let us look a … [Read more...]

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Triduum Arrives Just in Time for a World in Need

triduum

The world needs prayer.Last year, heading into the Triduum, I had a spiritual experience that stayed around. This year, I am thinking how fortunate we are -- in the midst of so much social and political chaos -- once again within the Easter Triduum, a time of great spiritual power.Let us pray together the Office of Vespers (Evening Prayer).And here are the liturgical prayers for Good FridayThings are about to get quiet around here, for a little while. Just until the time when … [Read more...]

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RFRA Tempts Kristallnacht but Sane Voices Arising?

The day after Kristallnacht, Public Domain, WIkimedia Commons

Well, America -- pitching between lunacy and sorrow -- seems to be reaching a tipping point.The Indiana RFRA story has inspired hypocritical businessmen to declare they won't sell their wares to the Midwestern rubes who won't settle down and think right.It has lured dependable establishment shills into bravely expressing the exact moral outrage guaranteed to get a cheer from the audience.It has assured some in the press that cutting off the microphone of a guest who will not buckle … [Read more...]

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How is the RFRA Issue Like the Rape Culture Issue?

Photo by Justin Eagan via WikimediaCommons

Been working on a project and late to the headlines, but something occurred to me after reading this and this and this and this and all of these, and watching this and this.There is a staggering amount of hysteria and outrage being spewed about Indiana's RFRA by many of the same people who -- just mere weeks ago -- were spewing in hysterical outrage about the nation's growing so-called "rape culture", and this despite disputed claims that 1 in 5 women are raped on college campuses, and a … [Read more...]

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Indiana’s RFRA: Questions for Christians & Those Crying “Bigotry!”

Image by bikeriderlondon, courtesy of shutterstock.com

The other day Melinda Selmys guest-posted here about Indiana SB101 and made some people happy and a lot of people annoyed. I'm going to take a brief break from my project to touch on it, as well. Unlike Melinda, I believe I will annoy a lot of people, and please almost no one, but that seems to be how I roll, lately.At First Things, I already detailed my position on legal compulsion and whether Jesus would bake the wedding cake, and my feelings haven't changed.In light of this new law, … [Read more...]

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Resurrection: Eden’s Book Makes Great Easter Reading!

thrill of the chaste

If you take a look at Dawn Eden's excellent book, The Thrill of the Chaste: Finding Fulfillment While Keeping Your Clothes On, you'll see a little blurb from me that says:"Dawn Eden's book helped me to understand that virtue is about much more than our sexuality; its pursuit is a positive action applicable to our work, our relationships, our prayer, our play, our daily bread--indeed, it is applicable to every aspect of our lives. So is this book."I meant all of that. Having spent … [Read more...]

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Blurred Lines: Religious Freedom and Indiana SB101

Image public domain via Wikimedia Commons, blurred.

Melinda Selmys believes some lobbyists behind Indiana's SB 101 intend to blur important lines of distinction between authentic religious freedom and “Christian freedom.”[While I am still on book-writing break, Melinda Selmys guest-posts about important distinctions that are becoming blurred in our national discourse on religious freedom and the inviolability of an individual's religious conscience. Melinda is a convert to Catholicism, a contributor at Spiritual Friendship, and the author of 4 … [Read more...]

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Empty Tomb: The Improbable First

Mordechai Meiri, courtesy of Shutterstock.com

As part of Patheos' Easter coverage, some of us are pondering what that morning would have been like for the witnesses of the Resurrection. Imagining the soldiers has been my contribution. For more 'accounts' and other resources for Holy Week, visit the Patheos Engaging Easter page.Empty Tomb: The Improbable First What the soldiers saw by Elizabeth ScaliaHe was not afraid. Of course he was not.Only, he could not seem to open his eyes.The air was soft, light on his skin. In … [Read more...]

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What Did Mary Get From Visiting Elizabeth?

Gifts of the Visitation

I have been so busy working on my project that I have nearly forgotten to point you over toward the Patheos Book Club, where they are looking at Denise Bossert's lovely little book, Gifts of the Visitation: Nine Spiritual Encounters with Mary and ElizabethI had the pleasure of meeting Denise during my sadly truncated visit to Israel, and she is one of those people who possesses such a natural depth of beauty and understanding that even casual conversations end up lodged in your memory, … [Read more...]

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