What should I do at churches offering open communion?

 Over the summer, while I was working in DC, I decided to visit every church within walking distance of the place I was living, so I saw a wider variety of services that the Catholic Mass I attend every week with my boyfriend.  This led to a whole new range of stresses for me.Whenever I enter a new religious ceremony, especially if unescorted by an initiate, I immediately become convinced that there is a giant blinking sign above my head that says ATHEIST, and that I will somehow … [Read more...]

Is My Ignorance Invincible?

Thanks for all the responses to my post this weekend asking for advice on RCIA and the tone of the blog .  Tomorrow, I'll be returning to the ongoing series about Diane Duane's Young Wizards books and what they've taught me about religion, but I wanted to take a break today to deal with some questions Saturday's post brought up.Kevin brought up a problem that goes to the heart of the blog and one that I've heard before. This kind of argumentation just isn't what makes people religious. … [Read more...]

Chatting with a Catholic Deacon tonight… what should I ask?

The deacon at the local parish has been kind enough to set aside some time to chat with me tonight.  I'm not having a debate, but a conversation.  I've been reading plenty of apologetics and having debates of my own, but I was planning to have this be a less academic-themed discussion.The main question I'd like to discuss is what sustains him in his faith.  I'm curious as to whether it's mostly the kind of academic/philosophical ideas that I've been discussing here or the more experiential th … [Read more...]

The handy dandy guide to converting me

Thanks to all the theists who spoke up on last week's post and told what evidence might convince them that their religion was false.  As promised, this week's challenge takes the opposite tack, asking what could convince atheists that a particular religion was true.  As always, if you'd like to respond to a Monday Call to Arms in longer form as a guest blogger, please email me at leah (dot) libresco (at) yale (dot) edu. --- While kneeling in the pew at Mass one week, I tried to imagine what I w … [Read more...]

Lessons in the Lacunae: The Omitted Scripture

While looking up the readings for this week's Mass in the Catholic liturgical calendar, I noticed that the Old Testament readings skipped around in the chosen chapters. I've looked up these omissions before, and usually the gap is just an irrelevant sidenote (a timestamp for the event, some geographical digression, etc). However, this week the meaning of the passage is distorted by the edit. (passage below, cut sections in bold) 7 Thus says the LORD God of Israel: 'I anointed you king of … [Read more...]