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May 13, 2013

The Lady of the Angels and Her City: A Marian Pilgrimage by Wendy M. Wright Liturgical Press, 2013 I can’t think of a better day than May 13, the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima, to bring to your attention Wendy Wright’s new book—and to make a wish for Wendy herself. The publisher’s description sums up well the author’s intent, and why this lavishly illustrated volume is of interest far beyond the widespread boundaries of the largest Catholic diocese in… Read more

May 10, 2013

When you’re locked in a rubber room, wearing paper pajamas that leave far too little to the imagination, trying to find patterns in the ceiling tiles as cracked as your brain, you wouldn’t expect to find yourself conversing with the spirit of an Irish teenager 1400 years dead—murdered by her own father, the story goes, when she resisted his incestuous advances. But that’s how it works when you’re Catholic and crazy. The communion of saints means we’re never alone, even… Read more

May 9, 2013

This started to be a story about attending my 45th high school reunion last Sunday. But it’s really more a story about the ways a good mother loves—which is to say, it’s a story about God. Alma Mater The first mother in this story is my alma mater, my soul-mother, Immaculate Heart High School. I’ve written before about the debts I owe the Women of Great Heart I encountered there—the Sisters of the Immaculate Heart who taught me and inspired… Read more

April 30, 2013

Recipe for Joy: A Stepmom’s Story of Finding Faith, Following Love, and Feeding a Family by Robin Davis Loyola Press, 2013 We’re all on a journey of faith, love, and family. It’s a journey with detours and U-turns, scenic roads and midnight breakdowns. But whether in Emmaus or Columbus or wherever (as the airline pilots say) our final destination may be, when we come to ourselves it is always around a table. I’m weighing in shamefully late, as in the… Read more

April 8, 2013

Today we celebrated the Solemnity of the Annunciation, liturgically transferred from March 25 this year because Holy Week and the Octave of Easter take precedence over any other feast. I love the art of the Annunciation, from its earliest Byzantine expressions through the many beautiful and thought-provoking contemporary depictions of the angelic greeting to Mary. It’s only right that this moment when the Word becomes flesh has inspired so much iconography. I usually celebrate this solemnity here by reviewing some… Read more

April 6, 2013

From last year, slightly updated, my tangled relationship with the Divine Mercy devotion: Oh the sisters of mercy, they are not departed or gone They were waiting for me when I thought that I just can’t go on And they brought me their comfort and later they brought me their song And I hope you run into them, you who’ve been traveling so long Yes you who must leave everything that you cannot control It begins with your family, and… Read more

March 29, 2013

Some reflections on the Passion in art and poetry, from last year’s Good Friday post. I find myself longing for the respectful quiet of the earlier Good Fridays in my life. I know that Church and State were, if anything, even more clearly separated when I was a child, but in the Catholic (with occasional threads of Bulgarian Orthodoxy) ghetto of our little neighborhood on the seamy side of Hollywood, you wouldn’t have known it. The TV, the radio were… Read more

March 28, 2013

Stop it. Stop it right this minute. Stop looking at the coverage of Pope Francis’s visit to the Casal del Marmo juvenile detention facility to celebrate the Mass of the Lord’s Supper and then going into full Three Stooges Slapfest Mode on social media about it. Stop charging the Holy Father with heresy for deviating from a liturgical instruction (reserving the washing of feet on Holy Thursday to males) that can technically only be dispensed with by Rome. The Holy… Read more

March 28, 2013

In response to a Patheos prompt inviting bloggers to explain, in 200 words or less, why they follow their particular religious traditions, here is my apologia. The “again” in the title of this post is meant in two senses: As a revert, I am a Catholic again after many years away from my cradle faith; and I offered my responses last year in a much longer (of course!) post, from which I’ve selected and edited the following key reasons, in… Read more

March 27, 2013

I didn’t sleep last night, playing out my crankiness over the Pope Wars in mental and spoken potential posts of staggering snarkiness. I raised my moralistic eyebrow higher and more uncontrollably than The Bachelor’s notorious Tierra, whose eyebrow had its own Twitter handle. What made me so cranky was the inevitable rebound effect. Lots of those folks who, early on, so resented enthusiasm for Team Francis expressed as criticism of Team Benedict are now turning the tables and expressing their… Read more




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