“Safety” is a Piss-Poor Pitch for Chastity


A recent First Things post aimed to arm its readers with a positive case for chastity, one that could appeal to non-Christian friends.  But I struggled to find anything positive or invigorating in the sample arguments presented.  For example: A case at University of Houston may serve. According to a legal complaint filed in U.S. District Court, the facts aren’t unusual. One evening, after attending a UH event, a male student went to a nearby bar and met a female student for the first time. They … [Read more...]

“It is Not Good for Man to be Alone” – a review of Gay and Catholic

A New Living Rainforest Experience Is Launched At London Zoo

A few weeks ago, our Dominican-run Adult Sunday School tackled the topic of "Deadly Sins and Lively Virtues" and the brother teaching walked us through St. Thomas Aquinas's classification of sins and their progeny (i.e. clamor (speaking so intemperately so as to lose the ability to say actual words) is one of the offspring of wrath).  As our Dominican friar kept expanding the flow chart of faults, the most surprising branch turned out to be the cluster of sins rooted in Sloth.(Editorial … [Read more...]

When Should “Effective Altruism Day” Occur?


Ozy recently asked a fun question -- how can people interested in effective altruism bring up the topic in a natural and inviting way.  Other ethical choices (like vegetarianism) call attention to themselves in the course of an ordinary day, but deliberations over donations happen privately and calling attention to them publicly is usually regarded as gauche at best, jerky at worst.Ozy suggests trying to popularize some kind of holiday that would make it easy to bring up the topic, in the … [Read more...]

Give Us Bread, Roses, and Benedict Options


Pascal-Emmanuel Gobry has posted a question on his blog for people who like "the Benedict Option" and I'd like to take a crack at answering it.  PEG asks: You have two extremes on the spectrum. On the one side, you have what you might call (humorously! don’t freak out!) the “David Koresh Option”: complete sectarian withdrawal, the Barbarians are flooding the Empire, and all we can do is huddle in the ark (mixing up my metaphors over here) and wait for the flood to end. And I think everyone invol … [Read more...]

Prelude to a (Platonic) Kiss


Eve Tushnet (whose book is now out, and you don't need to stand on ceremony waiting for me to formally review it next week to buy it for yourself) has a great point to make about the significance of the Kiss of Peace in an essay for On Level Ground: Words are great, don’t get me wrong, I pray words a lot. But we worship with our whole bodies. We kneel, prostrate, open our mouths or lift our hands to receive the Body and Blood of Christ. And so I wonder if one other thing the nascent celibate g … [Read more...]

When’s the last time I spoke to a *real* adult?

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This weekend, when I was hosting a debate on "R: Send Your Children to Public Schools" one of the speakers said she thought the most destructive assumption of the public school system was that children should all be partitioned into same-age groups, moved about in those sets, and that any cross-age interaction is abnormal and disruptive.  (I'll note that this tends to hold for most non-public schools as well).  Critics of homeschooling tend to bring up worries about "not being socialized" but, a … [Read more...]

But Who Will I Take Care Of? [Desire of the Everlasting Hills]


Last week, I had the pleasure of seeing Desire of the Everlasting Hills at a screening hosted by the Catholic Information Center.  The movie, which is available for streaming, is a documentary about three celibate, gay Catholics.  Eve Tushnet reviewed the movie for The American Conservative and wrote: There are some fascinating theological contrasts: Paul’s most direct experiences of God come when he is being rescued or spared something he expected to be unbearably painful—the most intense examp … [Read more...]