March 16, 2019

Last year at Pascha, I went with my sister and brother Summer and Julian, along with Julian’s family, to St Nicholas’s Cemetery in Chicago. As is the custom in this Kyivan Church of ours, we sang Christos voskres — Christ is risen — to those who have departed from us. We were there for Julian’s father, Fr Pavlo Hayda, who had been killed in a bicycle accident far too soon when Julian was a teenager. He is buried with Fr Tom… Read more

March 11, 2019

I was just sitting down at an intentional Christian community’s arts sharing night when I got the message that my friend Fr Myron Panchuk had died. It was coated in euphemism at first. Fr Myron is in the hospital, my friend said. It doesn’t look good. I understood immediately. I am a pastor’s kid, and that is code for me to give my messenger my whereabouts and how soon I can be picked up to go immediately to the bedside of our… Read more

March 6, 2019

For those who are among the cheeky in the Latin Church, Ash Wednesday is what they call a ‘Catholic coming out’ day, as the ashes on the foreheads of those who walk our streets, work in our campuses, and go about their everyday lives mark those who have attended mass that day, unless they are very traditional and have the ashes poured on top of their heads. I hear that term less this year, perhaps because I am Eastern Catholic,… Read more

March 5, 2019

In this post, I want to gather up some of the fragments of my recent reflections and attempt to articulate them more coherently. In so doing, I am trying to say something about my own theological praxis. These acts take place from within the church in which I am located, which is the Kyivan Church, the local Orthodox church founded at Kyiv that has taken on global form as a Catholic church in its own right. However, what follows is… Read more

March 4, 2019

For much of my life, I have felt that I have inhabited two separate worlds simultaneously: school and church. I’ll leave it at that as far as it comes to the basic institutions that make up those arenas. No doubt, some will say that it’s obvious that the dividing line between those two sites is that one is secular, the other religious. I am not so sure about that, especially in my own life, because even when I was attending… Read more

March 2, 2019

I was a freshman in high school when my friend Sean died. He was the first friend of mine who was my age to die, and it was particularly poignant because we had made the transition together from the Pentecostal school in Fremont to the Catholic school where we were just beginning to be exposed to feminist and liberation theologies. One day he was in class, making snide comments about Joyce’s Dubliners and earning the derision of an English teacher who had… Read more

March 2, 2019

At Matins on the Sunday of the Prodigal, we begin to sing ‘By the Waters of Babylon.’ As if to dramatize the stichera that speak of the son who demanded his father’s inheritance and then wasted it in a foreign land, the exiled Hebrews in the psalm sing a haunting song about sitting by the waters of Babylon, unable to sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land. Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia caps each verse, almost in cruel irony, especially when they… Read more

February 28, 2019

Recently, I was at a talk given by the poetry professor Timothy Yu, and while I could name them and those with me, basic etiquette informs me that collegial relations are of a different order than family. The talk, simply put, was brilliant. It was also about poetry, which I did not expect to understand, except that the opening moves that were made situated the exegesis of some poems in one of my core disciplines, Asian American studies. I was… Read more

February 18, 2019

Over the next three weeks, I am teaching my friend and colleague Sylvia Chan-Malik’s book Being Muslim: A Cultural History of Women of Color in American Islam in my course on Asian American religions. Today was the first day. I could, as some friends have requested, write a full scale review of the book. Perhaps someday I will. But in keeping with the rule that only what is unpublishable elsewhere should be put on a blog as a record of thoughts… Read more

February 17, 2019

A wise monastic in our church said to me last year in a context outside of the Rite of Repentance and any session resembling spiritual direction that something that I would have to contend with over the course of my academic life is that I am going to ‘need to have a bit of an ego.’ There is no one in the academy that he knows, he said, who doesn’t have something like an ego, and while it is admirable… Read more

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