Joined: Aug. 12, 2011
Restless, melancholic soul of Irish descent. Born and raised in Connecticut, married to a Dutchman, mother of two daughters and three sons. I love books, conversation, friendship, delicious food, gardens, long walks and beautiful places. I am easily ensnared in politics and web-browsing. I crave silence, sweetness, poetry and peace. I am always wanting to write and ever-failing to write. All my hope is in God’s power and will to save; all my trust is in His promise.
Nov. 21 at 9:46am | Comments: 9 | Most recent comment: Nov. 23 at 2:09pm
The operative ethical principle in our society seems to be: "Anything goes, provided there's no coercion. If it's between consulting adults, it's no one else's business." I had a conversation with a Catholic libertarian friend along these lines not long ago, when I linked this article about how Sweden has managed to dramatically reduce prostitution by adjusting its laws to focus on the problem of the exploitation of women. The clients are punished by law; the prostitutes are offered help...
Nov. 19 at 10:02am | Comments: 8 | Most recent comment: Nov. 23 at 12:48pm
I've heard many Christians, including priests, teach that "we have to stay in relationship" and that "nothing is more important than unity." In other words, they hold that it's not okay to cut ties. To me, this seems manifestly false—out of accord with Scripture, Church teaching, and ordinary moral experience. At 17, I took a life-saving course, and learned that a drowning person has to be approached from behind, because he will instinctively treat his rescuer as a...
Nov. 11 at 6:02pm | Comments: 0
Pope Francis upset many on the political right a few months back, when he said that "inequality is the root of social evil." They took him to be calling for socialist-style wealth-redistribution. I heard something different. I heard a deeper (true) point about human relations. Since the fall in Eden, all human relations have been menaced by the master/slave dynamic. Instead of the "communion-of-love" that characterized our original way of being together, all of us are now constantly...
Nov. 9 at 9:31am | Comments: 2 | Most recent comment: Nov. 10 at 9:14am
Some fortunate souls have mystical experiences. I'm not one of them. But all my life I've been subject to profound "moral experiences"—occasions I can only describe as dramatic breakthroughs in my understanding. Some come very suddenly; others are more gradual. They are existential in character, by which I mean, they're not a simple resolution of an intellectual difficulty, but a kind of illumination of my life and self. They are always accompanied by pain—the searing pain...
Nov. 5 at 10:35am | Comments: 6 | Most recent comment: Nov. 8 at 10:11am
When an editor at the National Catholic Register asked me to write an article expanding on my short post about the Synod, I came up with a long list of Pope Francis's words and themes that strike me as conspicuously personalist. I wanted to show, pace the anxieties of the traditionalists, how consistent he is with his two great predecessors, and really with all the post-conciliar popes. I only managed to develop one of those points: the emphasis on receptivity....
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