January 19, 2021

Yesterday at the Conspiracy, I wrote on MLK’s legacy of peace. Today I want to look at one of his oft-quoted statements on riots: “I think that we’ve got to see that a riot is the language of the unheard.” Here’s a Time article from 2015 discussing that year’s riots in Baltimore in light of Martin Luther King Jr.’s reflections on rioting and racial injustice. Here’s the Grosse Point Historical Society’s complete text of a speech MLK gave that puts the… Read more

January 16, 2021

Two different conversations on-topic with this coming weekend’s conference* converged on this morning’s readings.  The questions posed, both within the context of our nation’s fractured political discourse, are: How do I love this group of people I find so utterly repulsive? How do I dialogue with people who have no common basis for deciding what is real and what matters? There is an answer for this, which is illustrated in today’s Gospel.  However, caveat, Jesus-level intensities of love and forgiveness… Read more

January 14, 2021

Topic change, but hardly a breather.  After a long hiatus from online reading, I was scrolling the news in my feed reader, and came across this terrible story out of Wisconsin about infanticide. Because the parents murdered their child, they’re being charged accordingly. Allow me to be very clear: Infanticide is gravely evil.  No way around that.  I won’t excuse it under any circumstance. And yet.  And yet . . . what these two young parents are guilty of is… Read more

January 8, 2021

This morning after half a cup of coffee, what I wanted to write was a political commentary about the Banned Teenagers of Instagram.  Maybe another day, because, dagnabbit, I sat down at the PC and felt guilty about breaking the only spiritual rule I even kinda-sorta* have right now, which is: No internet until I’ve prayed the day’s readings. Result of my reluctant correspondence to grace+, we’re getting an exegesis of today’s Gospel, through the lens of cantankerous internet discourse. … Read more

January 6, 2021

Later this month, I am co-hosting a small, pro-bono conference-retreat for Catholic communicators — professional and amateur writers, speakers, media personalities, and social-media conversationalists of every level. You can learn more about the conference, and request an invitation, here. The only firm requirement for attending is that you be someone who truly wants to eliminate bitterness and vitriol from your work as a Catholic evangelist. This is an area that is difficult for me to get my head around. Like… Read more

December 15, 2020

This morning’s Gospel is the perfect text for conference-retreat I’m co-hosting in a month-and-change from now. Short version: If you or someone you know is tired of being bitter, obnoxious, and confrontational, but you also recognize that your passion for the truth of the Catholic faith is a gift from God, you aren’t alone.  Please pass along the link to the Good Discourse conference-retreat coming up online the weekend January 22-24, 2021. Now, back to the Word from our Sponsor:… Read more

December 2, 2020

I don’t always agree, even remotely, with what Rod Dreher has to say, but today he hits an awful lot of nails on their heads, in this fantastic reflection on sin, mercy, and the frailty of faith. To clarify before you go read it: I don’t think that the sins of Catholic priests are a good reason to leave the Church.  I do think, though, that Rod’s story is one that every evangelist needs to hear. A few excerpts that… Read more

November 11, 2020

Happy Veteran’s Day!  My favorite veteran-related post (from my own archives — many other people have done more and better) is here. The deceased veteran, a young man I never got to meet in person, son of a longtime internet friend and whom every year at this time I remember the most among all the veterans I have known more personally, is memorialized here. *** Blog silence over the past week or so is because I haven’t had anything helpful to… Read more

October 27, 2020

Suggested Bible verse for conservatives who are raucously celebrating the confirmation Amy Coney Barrett: Proverbs 16:18. I say this as someone who has zero reservations about ACB’s appointment to the Supreme Court.  I recognize that the Republicans who made excuses in 2016 rather than just saying, “We have the ability to block Obama’s nominations, and we do not like them, and therefore we will exercise our power to provide a check on the executive branch,” were foolishly, shamefully dishonest. Still, there… Read more

October 23, 2020

This is a post about my feelings, and if you aren’t too thrilled with these feelings, welcome to the club.  I write about them not because I’m going to tidy up the loose ends at the conclusion with a neatly reasoned-out policy recommendation, but because I think I am not alone in feeling this way, and so I think my current feelings are pertinent to the public discourse. Here is the feeling I am having: I am a never-Trumper who… Read more

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