June 17, 2018

Because I am almost 50 years old, I grew up in an era when dads (within the entertainment industry) were portrayed with respect and dignity. In literature, television, and movies, I was immersed in an idea of fatherhood that seems to be disappearing from the big screen. Growing up, I read about fathers of integrity such as Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird and Charles Ingalls in the Little House on the Prairie series. On television, in addition to… Read more

June 10, 2018

As parents fret over the approach of summer, there are plenty of ways to help kids enjoy the school-free days without a reliance on screens. Recent research suggests that increased screen time leads to increases in anxiety and depression among babies, children, teens, and young adults. Research also demonstrates that the distractions found on screens (including the constant “pop-ups”) are changing the wiring of our brains. Studies indicate that on-line usage increases the quick decision function of our brain. However, the… Read more

June 6, 2018

The State of the Nation Can you read this article? Can your child? If you answered “yes” to either of these questions, you are among a group of Americans that is in decline. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Education and the National Institute of Literacy, 21% of adults in the United States read below the 5th grade level. That same report states that 19% of high school graduates can’t read. Indeed, the current literacy rate in the… Read more

June 3, 2018

On May 25, 2018, I asked every teacher in our school to begin their classes with a prayer for Ireland. I teach in a Catholic school – where every class begins with prayer. Therefore, it was not an unusual request. However, the plea for Ireland was due to the elections that were being held on that fateful day. Choose Life Throughout the day, I couldn’t help but think of Moses’ words to the Israelites as he approached his own death:… Read more

May 27, 2018

This past weekend, I attended a graduation ceremony at a Catholic university. The commencement speaker began her talk by noting that few adults can recall the speaker (or message) from their own college graduation ceremony. Following her address, I prayed that those in attendance would quickly forget her speech. Don’t get me wrong. The talk wasn’t vulgar or crude. Rather, it was a self-aggrandizing speech focused on her own professional and financial successes. Her main message to students: You, too,… Read more

May 23, 2018

New Beginnings At our recent high school parent-teacher conferences, a parent asked me a question that I had never been asked before during conferences. The mother of the 12th grade student asked: “What advice can you give to my child on the verge of beginning ‘life in the real world’?” What a great question! I have to admit that it caught me off guard, and I hesitated a moment before answering. In fact, in a time span of about 30… Read more

May 20, 2018

Pentecost Sunday is a day in which the Christian Church celebrates the Holy Spirit, the third Person of the Trinity (Acts 2). An important question to ask ourselves this year, as we again celebrate the descent of the Holy Spirit, is this: Who cares? Seriously. Why should we care about the Holy Spirit? As a high school theology teacher, this question is not meant to be flippant or even disrespectful. It’s a sincere question that students ask. It’s also a… Read more

May 16, 2018

Motherhood – A Decade Later – More Lessons Learned In 2007, I was asked to write an article for our church bulletin related to motherhood and my experience as a mom. That article was re-printed for The Privilege of Parenting on Mother’s Day of this year. Today, more than a decade later, I reflect upon what has changed since I wrote that article, and what has remained the same. To be honest, I marvel that over a decade has passed…. Read more

May 13, 2018

What is Motherhood Really All About? This Article was Originally Written in 2007 for my parish bulletin When asked to write an article on Motherhood for the bulletin, I have to admit I felt rather inadequate. Looking out at the pews on any given Sunday, I can count hundreds of other women who are more qualified than myself to write an article such as this. As the mother of five children, I have learned a few things in the short time that… Read more

May 9, 2018

“There’s a resort in Colorado with a hot spring and a cold spring side by side. People can wash up comfortably in one and get a refreshing rinse in the other. ‘Do you know how wonderful this is?’ a tourist marveled to a Colorado native who worked at the resort. ‘It’s not so great,’ remarked the employee. ‘Notice there isn’t any soap.’” Grumble, grumble, grumble.  (Homilies for the Active Christian, 2006). Recently in a high school theology class, my students and… Read more

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