September 11, 2022

On this day of national mourning, those lives lost twenty-one years ago burn in our souls like votive candles before the icon of the world’s immense agony. This day calls us to remember what is lost every day. For the dead keep piling up, the metronome of history. The question: is this general wasting the kingdom of the underworld overtaking the earth, or is it a long rapture into a world invisible and yet to come? What decides the matter... Read more

June 21, 2022

[To extend the celebration of Juneteenth a bit, I re-present a piece written in 2020, before the holiday was federally recognized.]      Jesus preached the good news that the Kingdom of God had arrived to end the anguish of history—and that Word has not ceased to resound. The last slaves in the former Confederacy to hear the good news of the Emancipation Proclamation and, indeed, Union victory in the Civil War, finally heard the glad tidings of their freedom... Read more

April 16, 2022

Suffering forces us into a tight space, like a stone tomb, as the etymology of “anguish” indicates. How narrow is the way of Jesus, into the throat of abandonment and death.   If you have been transfixed by overwhelming sorrow, you have been conformed to the posture of the One who loves to the end. Holy Saturday shows us the truth of our dark nights: we have been forced to be still, for passion must be brought to the pitch... Read more

March 25, 2022

Today, in hiddenness and smallness, the axis-tree of the world is replanted in an abyss of light. It is the Annunciation. Yes. Our Lady says, Yes. And she becomes the gateway by which the Kingdom breaks through, after the long and longing years that would not relent. In her, the Word is made flesh, God dwells among us in the blood and germs of human life. Now all of our words and all these mundane actions of ours must become... Read more

February 28, 2022

At the Frontier   Above the fighter jet, There is an azure dome; Below, the golden steppe Waves heedless of the chrome.   Another needy alpha Invades the dream of peace; Himself his maranatha, He wills geographies.   How does it go? Defunct The KGB and still The boy thrills to the trump Of spies who like to kill.   He doesn’t need the silver, Betraying history: This strong man gets his shivers By punching mystery.   Just like the... Read more

April 30, 2021

[This was originally published at Ethika Politika on 17 January 2019. At the moment, the link at EP isn’t live, and I wanted to provide a live link for another piece I’m writing. It is being reprinted with permission.] Students years ago heard me complain how imprecise it was to translate the Fifth Commandment as “Thou shalt not kill.” As a moral theologian, I would note that “kill” is too generic, lacking specification by a moral object. It should be... Read more

April 2, 2021

If we have eyes to see and ears to hear, is the maternity of Jesus not evident from the story of Good Friday? Read more

December 20, 2020

Is there such a thing is a kingdom without end? Would we even want such a thing? The kingdom of David and his heirs certainly came to an end, and a nasty, fratricidal one at that. So what are we to make of Nathan’s prophecy in the first reading for this final Sunday of Advent? The angelic message in the Gospel reading from Luke draws a direct connection to the birth of Jesus as the fulfillment of this prophecy. The... Read more

December 13, 2020

In a world full of suffering, violence, slavery, and death… A new day is about to dawn. Read more

December 8, 2020

In Marian apparitions such as Our Lady of Guadalupe and Our Lady of Lourdes, the radiant woman speaks as one having authority and power. Read more

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