“The Church challenges all its members, in different ways over different issues.” Just like Life Itself

Two great reads for you as I head out to Adoration:1) Sister Mary Ann Walsh hits a homerun as she observes the media going batshit crazy over basic Church teaching as though it's all brand-new:It amazes me when basic church teaching is received as if it were somethig brand new. This morning's New York Times brought the latest example with the headline: "Dolan Says the Catholic Church Should Be More Welcoming to Gay People." A glance at other media outlets finds similar news accounts. … [Read more...]

Man Walks in with Chick-fil-A Swag and a Gun…UPDATE

It almost sounds like a joke, right? "Stop me if you've heard this one, before: A man carrying some Chick-fil-A swag, a coupla rounds of ammo and a gun goes into the Family Research Center and...":A suspect is in FBI custody after a security guard was shot in the lobby of the Family Research Council, a conservative Christian organization based in downtown D.C.Authorities are calling the guard a hero for wrestling the gun away from the shooter and preventing him from hurting anyone … [Read more...]

Do Long Marriages Mean Better Presidents?

Two weeks ago, back on November 3, I noted that a long-standing and scandalous "legend" about Newt Gingrich was being refuted by his daughter:We’ve all heard the story about how Newt Gingrich — heartless, horrible man — went to his cancer-stricken wife’s hospital bed and told her he wanted a divorce.We heard it so often, we believed it. I admit, I believed it. Did you?Of course, I was far from the first to notice; Doug Mataconis explored the story back in May of 2011, after Andrew Su … [Read more...]

Say hello to Elizabeth Duffy!


A couple of weeks ago, Elizabeth Duffy, the proprietess of BettyDuffy.com, shared her Examination of Conscience in Real Time with us, here at Patheos, and her voice was so fresh and singular, we asked her if she'd like to join our ever-growing gang of columnists and bloggers in the Catholic portal.And were we ever happy when she said, "why, yes!"So, say hello to Elizabeth Duffy and her new, twice-monthly column, The Constant Convert, which she launches this week with New Love, New … [Read more...]

Gay Marriage, Eden & Our Constant Illusion – UPDATED

My column at First Things this week completes the journey I began three weeks ago, and I have to say the timing of the whole thing seems oddly coincidental, to me. I've had the idea of discussing homosexuality and God, otherness, nature and nurture and calling and depth of longing and marriage for a while, but never felt like it was the right time to bring it up, and then -- even though I wasn't paying much attention to the headlines when I began -- it all seems to have landed at the same time … [Read more...]

Ah, this is Romantic and Sound

Tim Muldoon's piece this week really is both profound and romantic and profoundly romantic:On the day this column is published, a woman named Sue will make a decision that will affect the rest of her life. To be more precise, she will reaffirm a decision that she has already made 6,574 times: to spend the day married to me. On this day, she and I will celebrate eighteen years of marriage.In days like these when fewer people choose to marry, and when the ideas of what marrying means are … [Read more...]

Dating, Si; Cohabiting, No?

WRITTEN BY MAX LINDENMAN:Yesterday, I was impressed to see so many readers celebrating the royal wedding as a validation of marriage. At First Things, Meghan Duke takes a slightly different approach: she sees it as a rebuke to the practice of permanent cohabitation:“It’s probably best that they live together before making a commitment,” one random fellow interviewed by the AP opined. According to anonymous “Royal commentators,” cohabiting on and off with his girlfriend has put Prince Wil … [Read more...]

The Royal Wedding: Do You Care?

I confess, I don't. Maybe it's reverse-snobbery: the less I hear about my socioeconomic betters, the better -- that's why I never got into Desperate Housewives or Mad Men. Or maybe it's sheer perversity: whatever the world loves, Lindenman must despise -- that's why I have never, to this day, seen any of the Rings movies.Or it may be something even more basic: the envy I feel toward people of whatever station who are happily married. One time last year, a friend literally thrust her … [Read more...]