To Suffer With Us: the Duty and Privilege of Priesthood

farmingdale crash

Here on Long Island, the little town of Farmingdale is reeling as they deal with the stark pain that comes of burying five teenagers, all lost in one horrific car accident. Families, students at their high school, even perfect strangers within the community are bound in grief, and our prayers must fly to heaven for their sustenance and consolation. Frequently quoted amid the many reports is Father Michael Duffy, an associate pastor at Saint Kilian's Church. The parish is located not far from … [Read more...]

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

Image courtesy of shutterstock.com

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 … [Read more...]

Sebelius meets Major Major’s Catch-22 – UPDATED

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What could you possibly say to him? Major Major wondered forlornly. One thing he could not say was that there was nothing he could do. To say there was nothing he could do would suggest he would do something if he could and imply the existence of an error or injustice in Colonel Korn's policy. Colonel Korn had been most explicit about that. He must never say there was nothing he could do. "I'm sorry," he said. "But there's nothing I can do." Catch-22, Chapter 9 Because most of the … [Read more...]

Men on Strike: Fathers, Family, Frank Talk and First Things

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Two weeks ago at First Things, I wondered what it would be like if Rep Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) had her way and women ruled the world. This week I'm continuing on the theme of men and women and families and faith: Family illiteracy, [author Mary Eberstadt] says, “breeds religious illiteracy.” In turn, increasing our scriptural literacy is one way for Christian communities to help their members understand and form families. Eberstadt’s book...has, in tandem with Helen Smith’s Men … [Read more...]

“A Very Safe Place” in a world so thin of them…

blue mountain

The value of a musical education begun during the early years of childhood has been well-documented; students who are exposed to musical instruction while young tend to do better in math and language arts and -- more importantly -- they develop a musicality that will remain with them for as long as they choose to use it, and can always be re-gained. At a recent family event our sons brought out a guitar, a uke, a mandolin and (and a fiddle for a guest) and it was kind of delightful to have a … [Read more...]

Expert Truth: Is DOJ Wise to Depend on Advice from APA?

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Received several emails last night and this morning passing along this headline: DOJ: Children Do Not Need—and Have No Right to--Mothers. As some headlines go, I'd say thatsa some-a spicy meataball! Here's what CNS News says: The Justice Department’s argument on the superfluity of motherhood is presented in a brief the Obama administration filed in the case of Hollingsworth v. Perry, which challenges the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the California ballot initiative that amended … [Read more...]

“Abortion Ends Life? So What?” Here be Monsters. – UPDATED

here be monsters

So, here is a title, over at Salon: "So what if abortion ends life?": Writes Mary Elizabeth Williams: Of all the diabolically clever moves the anti-choice lobby has ever pulled, surely one of the greatest has been its consistent co-opting of the word “life.” Life! Yeahhhh, wanting and affirming life over death; that's...diabolical! Here’s the complicated reality in which we live: All life is not equal. That’s a difficult thing for liberals like me to talk about, lest we … [Read more...]

“Monstrous Evil” Indeed

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If I were not already feeling sick this story found by Mark Shea would get me there. Mark calls it a "monstrous evil" and he is correct -- this is nanny-statism and bureaucracy out-of-control, and it's only going to get worse: Even after Marie Freyre died alone in a nursing home 250 miles from the family in North Tampa that loved her, Marie's mother had to fight to bring her home. In March 2011, state child protection investigators took 14-year-old Marie from her mother, Doris Freyre, … [Read more...]

Will’s Poignant Admiration: Why Life and Love Matter

George Will's son, Jon, is turning 40. With Down syndrome apparent at his birth, Jon's entrance into the world was greeted with a sterile question from the doctor to the parents: "do you want to take him home with you?" The Wills wondered, "isn't that what new parents do with infants?" Will has written a beautiful piece in honor of his son, whose well-lived life is a pointed and dignified rebuke to a society that now aborts 90% of all babies suspected of carrying an extra chromosome. It … [Read more...]

Hilary Rosen, Ann Romney and the Credentialists – UPDATES

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Although I use it during the day mostly to promote Patheos writers, after hours I consider Twitter to be something of a virtual pub; it's a place to wind down, engage in some casual conversation, yell about baseball and then say goodnight. Last evening, I tootled in to find the tweets flying fast and um, furiously. "Wha'd I miss?" I asked someone. It seems lobbyist and Dem operative Hilary Rosen had gone on CNN last night and spoken unwisely not once, but twice, first declaring that the … [Read more...]


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