November 19, 2020

When I was preparing to write a booklet for Catholic Answers on New Age beliefs and practices, my editor had a concern to share. He wanted me to be careful not to “humanize” New Age practitioners as I’d tried to do in my earlier booklets on witchcraft and Judaism. What he meant by this directive was that he didn’t want me focusing on helping readers understand why non-Catholics believe as they do; rather, he wanted me to focus on Pure… Read more

November 7, 2020

To say that my transition from a staff apologist at Catholic Answers to a freelance writer has been a bumpy one is an understatement, to say the least. Perhaps one of the more difficult aspects has been trying to navigate Twitter. On the one hand, freelance writers need Twitter to keep their names out there, to draw in readers for their work. That requires involving oneself in discussions, and doing so in a forceful, punchy style that draws interest. For… Read more

November 4, 2020

A recurring topic on “Catholic Answers Live,” a radio show produced by my former employer Catholic Answers, has been “Why are you pro-choice?” Hosted by the apostolate’s specialist in pro-life issues, my former colleague Trent Horn, the premise of the show is to invite people who are pro-choice to call into the show and talk with Trent about why they’re pro-choice. I have to admit that I didn’t bother to listen to “Catholic Answers Live” very often, so I can’t… Read more

October 26, 2020

When I was preparing to blog again for Patheos, I remembered one of the social media rules for freelance writers: “Thou must have a Twitter account.” Although I’d been active on Facebook for over a decade, I’ve long disliked the more public aspect to Twitter. The last thing I wanted to become was a Twitter pundit. Nonetheless, a freelance writer has to keep her name out there, so I held my nose and dived. But if I was going to… Read more

September 19, 2020

Last evening, as news spread of the death of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, social media predictably lit up with reaction. Admirers hailed her as an icon of the fight for equality and an inspiration to those who must carry on with their duties even as they suffer grave illness. Public officials on both the political left and right stepped up to offer condolences and commentary. Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden called Justice Ginsburg, “an American hero, a giant of legal… Read more

August 25, 2020

Every two years for the last sixteen years the calls, letters, and emails would start pouring into Catholic Answers during the summer before an election from Catholics wanting information about how to balance their moral obligations as a Catholic with their civic duties as a responsible citizen. Although I wasn’t involved in the development, writing, or publication of Catholic Answers’ Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics, first published in 2004, I suspect that one of the reasons it was created was… Read more

August 18, 2020

“What’s it like, being a female Catholic apologist in a field dominated by men?” *looks around* Oh, you’re asking me? Cool. I’ve always wanted to tackle that question. Let’s get introductions out of the way first. I worked for 17 years as a staff apologist for Catholic Answers, a Catholic apologetics and media apostolate in El Cajon, California (a suburban community in the Diocese of San Diego). Before that, I worked for Catholic Answers as a customer service representative and… Read more

December 29, 2015

We are a few days past Christmas Day, and Catholics are still caroling. Or, talking about Christmas songs. In a blog post for Aleteia, Simcha Fisher began a discussion of the secular Christmas tune, “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” If you’re unfamiliar with this song, which has become controversial in recent years, here is a taste of the lyrics (but do read the whole thing): (I really can’t stay) But, baby, it’s cold outside (I’ve got to go away) But, baby,… Read more

July 7, 2015

Do you remember when you were a kid, putting together your first “grown-up” puzzle? All those small, interlocking pieces, many of them with similar shape and coloring. It was easy enough to find the pieces that ringed the outside of the puzzle, but those inner pieces were more difficult. Sometimes a piece seemed that it must fit in a certain position, but just wouldn’t lock into place correctly. Unless someone older and more experienced with puzzles was there to stop… Read more

July 6, 2015

Every year around this time, I brace myself for the onslaught of social media posts and essays on St. Maria Goretti, whose feast day is July 6. Until a few years ago, I never realized how controversial St. Maria was, and how difficult it can be for some Catholics (especially women) to relate to her. But the more I see on the Internet about St. Maria, the more I understand why some Catholics do shy away from her. Which is… Read more

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