I’m a student of pubs. Maybe it’s because my dad owned one. Maybe it’s because they smell so good, especially that front-door bouquet of stale beer, hamburger, air conditioning, and disinfectant. The flavor profile at my dad’s place included the unmistakable overlay of nicotine, but even Read More ››
Monthly Newspaper • DIOCESE OF BRIDGEPORT
My mother hated the house on Speedwell Avenue. She may have had her reasons. The kitchen was small, the sink was too far from the stove, there was one bathroom for six people, and the whole place drooped slightly so the bedroom doors wouldn’t close. Then Read More ››
My friend’s 5-year-old son came home from school and started to share the day’s events with his mother over a glass of milk and cookies. He told her about the show-and-tell that featured a daddy who worked in the hospital emergency department. He told her about Read More ››
When our parish’s Mothers’ Group asked me to be a guest speaker, I jumped at the chance. I love to share my faith. And I love being a mother. I was thrilled for the opportunity. But at the same time, I was scared.
I’m a perfectionist. For Read More ››
My younger sister, who has MD after her name, regularly sends family members and friends advice on how to live healthy and happy lives so our bodies make it to the average life expectancy of 78.6 years—if not Abraham’s 175 years or Noah’s 950.
It can get Read More ››
“What is truth?” (Pontius Pilate, John 18:38)
Truth is a serious matter. Truth is the pathway to happiness and freedom. The Book of Sirach tells us that all our human misery comes from mistaking where our true satisfaction lies (cf. Sirach 15:16-17), and there are Jesus’ words Read More ››
The thing about spring is you forget how great it’s going to be. Life can be a drag. Winters can overstay. But spring is about hope, and hope is the thing that pokes its way out of a robin’s egg.
We take family walks. By the pond Read More ››
Years ago when I was teaching religion in junior high school, the topic turned to God’s will, which can be a pretty daunting subject even for adults like Augustine and Aquinas, never mind adolescents.
I thought I’d done a pretty good job explaining it to 32 seventh-graders, Read More ››
Again it is stern November— “no butterflies, no bees, no fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds—November!” (Thomas Hood). The aged year is near its end; proud Winter is close at hand.
Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just Read More ››
Our Billy is a growing boy. He had his first birthday over the summer and has recently taken up toddling. He’s also an early riser, and wants his breakfast on the tray about two seconds after his butt hits the high chair.
Did I mention he’s a Read More ››
“They come! The merry months of beauty, song, and flowers. They come! The gladsome months.” (William Motherwell, “The Merry Summer Months”)
A new summer has begun. We have the gift of another summer, when life is at the apex.
For me, it is in summer when one really Read More ››
I feel pretty good about myself after reading that the average American wastes 13,471 hours a year fiddling with the remote control, trying to find something to watch on TV, which probably doesn’t include the time spent actually watching TV—more than four hours a day or Read More ››
I didn’t always have five children and a wife. It wasn’t that long ago that I had no children and zero wives. On TV, they make bachelorhood seem a paradise of freedom and adventure. Not for me it wasn’t.
The missus and me just blew past our Read More ››
We made a family confession. I know that sounds like we subjected ourselves to some bizarre public humiliation ritual. We didn’t.
The director of religious education at our parish graciously arranged for interested families to come for the sacrament together on a Saturday morning. Our priests graciously Read More ››
Without intending to, Pope Francis dashed my hopes of becoming the next Mother Teresa when he said a real sign that you’re headed for sainthood is you never speak ill of anyone.
In modern America, is there anyone who has never criticized someone, who doesn’t backbite Read More ››
Life as we know it is inextricable from change. Nothing stays still. Everything that has its beginning on earth must someday come to an end; all flesh is grass. As we all come to know, no happiness lasts. There is the problem of “beauty that must Read More ››
I know a guy. I can’t tell you his real name. Let’s call him Joe Boots. He’s a great fellow. One of the best. Joe Boots works hard. He’s up early every day. Sometimes he’s at his desk by sunrise. He gets the job done—and done Read More ››
Isaiah prophesied during the eighth century B.C. He is said to be the prophet who brings out the eloquence in God (“For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you” (Isa.54:10).
A general theme of Isaiah is Read More ››
Clara is studying the flute. She practices at home in the evenings. She gets in 15 or 20 minutes of work, on average, every day. There are days when she’s not into it. She gets frustrated.
“Remember,” I say by way of encouragement. “Anything worth doing is Read More ››
Some people get depressed at Christmastime. My father-in-law, Bill Reel, was one such guy. He never could get into the spirit of the season. Couldn’t wait for January to come. “Christmas music is supposed to cheer us up, but it makes me sad,” he once wrote.
Mr. Read More ››