2013-01-25

Date: 
Friday, January 25, 2013

‘The Gospel Is Hard’

One of the most striking things about Jesus as recorded in the Gospels—at least to me—is how directly he speaks to people. Yes, he often taught through parables—...

Catholicism in culture

Suburban PrideI want to register a belated thank you to Eugene McCarraher (“Morbid Symptoms,” November 23, 2012) for allowing me to see myself as I really am: a...

Heroic Manipulator

In the heady days of JFK and Camelot, young Ivy Leaguers on the Washington social circuit regaled themselves with a snide one-liner: “Whatever happened to Lyndon...

Friendly Competition

Not so long ago, neighborhood and nationality were everything when it came to church membership. Either your street address or your ethnic identity tied you to a...

Monsters with Human Voices

Nowhere have the revelations of child sexual abuse been more painful than in the various exposés of Catholic priests and religious. Once the silence about abuse in...

Name It & Claim It

The historian Wilfred Cantwell Smith has noted that to believe in God used to mean putting faith and trust in a being who was assumed to exist, whereas now it means...

Sonnet for Zia

Ballroom partner to a broom swept overKitchen scraps, you spun to Dorsey, scuffingUp the floor, and waving withered hands,And flashing past a husband puffing ...

Valiant Efforts

That winter the Plymouth Valiant supplanted the boat-like wagon we’d always used for the ride to Mass. The reasons were unclear. Maybe it got better mileage. Maybe...

The ‘Catholic Muslim’

On October 31, the eve of All Saints Day, I offered Mass—on the fiftieth anniversary of his death—for Louis Massignon, a scholar of Islam and something of a patron...

Devices & Desires

Leo Tolstoy hated theater, or at least the more stylized varieties of it. The author of some well-received plays as well as his much more famous novels, the Count...

Imperial Illusions

On the morning of October 9, 2009, Barack Obama learned that he had been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. That afternoon, in an irony that would probably not have...

Is the Government ‘Defining Religion’?

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops continues to oppose the Affordable Care Act because of its contraception mandate and the Department of Health and Human...