Last Word: Kids in the Kingdom

My liturgical tastes used to tend toward the simple, but they’ve recently turned toward the chaotic.

Last Word: Damascus Road

In prewar Syria,  I found a place of beauty, peace, and coexistence that most Westerners either never knew of or have already forgotten.

Last Word: Watered Down, or Dried Up?

Reducing faith to political checklists can neither lift Christianity above the superficiality of bourgeois religion nor reverse the disaffiliation of the young.

Last Word: A Smiling Skeptic

Does Montaigne resemble the contemporary essayist who writes about faith? The short answer is that he does not—at least not in easily recognizable ways.

Last Word: When in Hebron

In Hebron I learned that the facts on the ground in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict tell a story Americans intent on "international diplomacy" don't want to hear.

Last Word: Two Confederate Flags

While my husband snapped photos of the flag, I stood in silent debate with Big Ed. And then I spied another Confederate flag; an unwelcome sensation came over me.

Last Word: Max Baer in Chicago

Chicago, 1932. The night before he would knock Ernie Schaaf unconscious, the second time a fighter would die from one of Max’s blows. We were standing at the bar.

Last Word: Flick, Flick

These idle moments when we used to be alone with our thoughts are being decimated by devices. A casual but crucial meditative dimension in our lives is disappearing.

Last Word: Senioritis

Often the way our society treats "senior citizens" assumes that as bodies age, individuality decreases. But aren't whiskers and white socks a sign of unique wisdom?

Last Word: Crumbs of Grace

Worshipping with families of Antiochian Christians in Philadelphia, you are an interloper. At the coffee hour, they pile your plate with pastries—"you are new, yes?"

Last Word: Things Fall Apart

Despite hard work, sound planning, lifestyle adjustments, and unusually well-behaved Irish genes, I find myself—to paraphrase Yeats—“where all the ladders” end.

Last Word: Measured Pains

Can we become spiritually tougher by means of small self-mortifications? Perhaps hair shirts do have a place in authentic Catholic spirituality...
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