TheLastWord

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...

Last Word: One of the Least

A story about becoming the aged and infirm Jesus has called you to love, or, "the tenderness of the Trinity playing itself out on another level."

Last Word: A Late Confession

I spent hours into the night in my small convent room, praying that I would get through the next day's lessons without breaking down or bolting. Bolting from Edward.

Last Word: Room for Both?

A low voice emerged: “Welcome to my home. Please, sit.” My host and I shook hands, and I took the chair opposite. I remember the details because he was a terrorist.

Last Word: The Silent Treatment

When a person is in pain or becomes ill, and then tells you—what do you say?

Last Word: Brimstone on the E Train

On boarding I realized we’d committed to the wrong car: A subway preacher was in full roar. For a Catholic schoolgirl from Milwaukee, this was quite dramatic.

Last Word: The Last Leap

In the end, after all, the experience of a Christian death amounts to an act of trust, which is just another name for faith.
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