Supposed to be teaching, “I feel like I’m babysitting!”

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The email was a cry from the heart from someone who really wanted to do the right thing:Dear Anchoress,I was asked to teach CCD to third graders making their First Reconciliation and First Communion. I am not a teacher. . .but having coached CYO (10-12-year-olds), and also having children (now adults), I agreed.I have been trying since September to "get into it." I prepare each week, sometimes for over a few hours. There are eleven kids in the class. They mostly show up, [but] if … [Read more...]

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Remember “Catholicism” and How I Raved? Welp…

word on fire sweepstakes

Okay, regular readers must remember how much I loved Catholicism: A Journey to the Heart of the Faith, both video series and book? I wrote about it a lot, because it was like a call to revolution -- a Revolution of Re-appreciation of the church, from its earliest beauties and truths. For me, Father Robert Barron's book (and video) remains one of the first great Evangelical tools of the new century.Okay, enough gushing. So, I get a note from Image books, asking me if I'd like to participate … [Read more...]

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The New School: Saving Education from Itself

reynolds new school

The Federal Reserve also found that those with student loan debt were less likely to purchase houses or cars than those without student loans. This isn't surprising. [Such debt] doesn't encourage people to live large. But with young people traditionally being a major source of demand in both the housing and auto markets, two areas deemed important to economic recovery and prosperity -- buying first houses and first cars and then moving up to something fancier every few years -- this burden is … [Read more...]

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Garlic? Honey, I’m like buttah. Like BUTTAH!

You know...all fat and salty!Anyhow, back in September I did an interview with Jonathan Merritt at the Religion News Service, talking about idols and the pope and whatnot, and today the piece has dropped:Pope Francis craze may be idolatry, says Catholic writer Elizabeth ScaliaElizabeth Scalia claims to be a shy person, happy to hang in the background. But the popular Catholic Portal editor at Patheos, writing as “The Anchoress”, doesn’t shy away from offering opinions as strong as ga … [Read more...]

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The Catholic Book Blogger comes to Patheos!

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Back when Strange Gods was first released, I got an email from a friendly fellow named Pete Socks whose site, The Catholic Book Blogger, was about six months old.He gave my book a spanking review and also shot me some fun and interesting questions for an interview, and I began to follow Pete's work. I was impressed with his energy, his willingness to read and read when the books sometimes flow in more quickly than most of us can manage them, and to conduct lively give-aways. Along with … [Read more...]

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Margaret Rose Realy Nominated for a Frankie!

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This happened while I was on vacation, so I'm a little late to it, but it's terrific news, and not too late to vote for her! The Catholic Spirituality Blogs Network has nominated Margaret, along with other great Catholic writers, for a Frankie Award honoring some of the year's best blog posts.Margaret is nominated for her brief but well-wrought post, "The Perils of Digging Potatoes".I wasn’t one to dig potatoes using a spading fork; I found I did more harm to the tubers by using it. With … [Read more...]

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Interviewing Brandon Vogt on Catholicism: New Evangelization

Catholicism NE

When, in 2011, Father Robert Barron's Word on Fire Ministries released the first part of its "Catholicism Project", the book-and-video series Catholicism, a Journey to the Heart of Faith, I called it "a course in revolution". Major blocs of the beautifully-wrought video were picked up and aired by PBS and the book is a stand-alone modern classic that I still frequently give as a gift because it is such a readable and thoughtful overview of the faith.The second part of the Catholicism … [Read more...]

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Absent Grown-Ups: Over-sexed and Material-Worlded to Death

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My column at First Things today is about what creates grown ups in the world, and what happens to the world when we resolutely refuse to be raised into it:A psychotherapist friend once confessed to me that she still makes each of her five grown children call her on rainy nights, to tell her they are safely at home. “So many mothers run away from their children or put them in nurseries or go out to work,” Dorothy Day noted, “because they can’t stand . . . the suffering that such love entails … [Read more...]

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Wood-Grain Pens; Advent Candles; Wreaths! It Begins!

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It's late for me; usually I am halfway through my Christmas shopping by now, but I'm doing a lot of "custom" stuff this year, and we'll know whether that was smart or not when we're ten days from Christmas.But my hubby, who loves pens, was looking through a writing instrument catalogue and wistfully eyeing a few. "They're so nice," he said, "but they're too nice. I could never be comfortable spending that much on a pen, and besides, I'd eventually lose it. Then I'd feel awful."The … [Read more...]

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Pope Francis and Strange Gods: “A Meme on the Rise”? – UPDATED

I'd generate a meme, if I knew how...

Yes, we've been joking for some time about how Pope Francis and I appear to be in some kind of mind-meld on the subject of idols -- he talks about them almost every single week, and brought them up in his encyclical, Lumen Fidei*. In today's homily, Pope Francis really hit hard on the theme:Once again, the liturgy of the Mass elicits from Pope Francis a reflection on the traps that punctuate the life of faith: To become an apostle of one’s own ideas, or a devotee of one’s own well-being, rat … [Read more...]

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