Busted Halo
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Bill McGarvey :
99 article(s)

Bill McGarvey is co-author of Busted Halo’s Freshman Survival Guide. Bill was editor-in-chief of Busted Halo for six year. In addition to having written extensively on the topics of culture and faith for NPR, Commonweal, America, The Tablet (in London), Factual (Spain), Time Out New York, and Book magazine, McGarvey is a singer/songwriter whose music has been critically acclaimed by the New York Times, Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, Billboard and Performing Songwriter. You can follow him at his website billmcgarvey.com or on Facebook.com/billmcgarvey
November 30th, 2007
Mixing song, spirituality and social action
Brad Corrigan (aka Braddigan) certainly understands extremes. Dispatch, the trio he formed with college friends in the 1990s, became an independent music phenomenon. They spent years building an enormous following of rabid fans through the internet and touring only to break up at the height of their popularity (their 2004 farewell concert in Boston drew an estimated 110,000 people). Corrigan then returned to the drawing board and put together a three-piece acoustic, rock and reggae outfit, Braddigan— featuring Reinaldo De Jesus on drums and Tiago Machado on bass—and began dividing his time between playing clubs all over again and devoting energy to the various ministry and justice causes…
November 15th, 2007
BustedHalo's editor-in-chief discusses Springsteen's Magic
Musician and BustedHalo editor-in-chief, Bill McGarvey, discusses Bruce Springsteen’s new album, Magic on a podcast with America magazine‘s online editor, Tim Reidy. Listen to America Magazine’s podcast.…
November 6th, 2007
The Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist discusses fathers, sons, a vanishing America and Bridge of Sighs
Some believe him to be the “Bard of Main Street USA.” Throughout the six novels he has published since 1986, Richard Russo has created stories of small town American life worthy of Sherwood Anderson—the twentieth century American author of Winesburg, Ohio to whom Russo is ofen compared. Six years after winning the Pulitzer Prize for his 2001 novel Empire Falls, Russo returns with Bridge of Sighs, another richly observed rendering of a fictional small town, Thomaston, NY. Like other worlds of Russo’s making both as a novelist and a screenwriter (Nobody’s Fool, Empire Falls) Thomaston comes alive with the author’s gift for enormously descriptive detail. In true Russo…
October 10th, 2007
The Academy Award nominee talks about his newest film Lars and the Real Girl
For the sake of argument, I think it’s safe to assume that terms like “anatomically correct sex doll” and “sweet and tenderhearted” have rarely, if ever, appeared in the same sentence —at least not with a straight face (trust me, I’ve googled it). And yet somehow screenwriter Nancy Oliver has taken what on its surface sounds like a strange joke and fashioned it into a strangely compelling story. With the help of Ryan Gosling in the title role and director Craig Gillespie, Oliver’s Lars and the Real Girl for the most part manages to fuse the profoundly personal and the perversely plastic into a believably warm, human and—I kid you not—innocent…
September 20th, 2007
The young director of the Leadership Roundtable makes the connection between faith and best practices
It is a tragedy that appears to have no end. Recent announcements of enormous clergy abuse settlements in Los Angeles ($660 million) and San Diego ($198 million) underscore the sense that—more than five years into it—the full ramifications of the sex abuse scandal in the United States have yet to be fully understood. Add to that the corruption trial involving former diocesan officials in Cleveland and it would seem that Catholics in the United States have every reason to walk out in despair. And yet—for reasons also not yet fully understood—despite this endless stream of bad news, Catholic churches in the United States aren’t showing signs of emptying. While the ability of…
August 1st, 2007
The former New York Times reporter and author of the new book, If They Only Listened to Us: What Women Voters Want Politicians to Hear, talks about politics, abortion, and what women say in private about our political leaders
Melinda Henneberger, a former reporter for The New York Times and a former contributing editor for Newsweek magazine, spent 18 months talking to 234 women in 12 states—both “red” and “blue”—about the political issues that concern them most, from national security to abortion rights. Her findings, contained in the new book If They Only Listened to Us: What Women Voters Want Politicians to Hear (Simon and Schuster, May 2007) indicate that for many American women not all political issues are created equal—and that politicians on both sides of the aisle fail to take notice at their peril. BustedHalo.com: How did the idea for your book come to you? Was it incredulity
June 5th, 2007
The former rock journalist talks about her conversion and The Thrill of the Chaste
BustedHalo: Dawn, you and I have known each other for a long time. I knew you mainly as a rock and roll journalist, who did liner notes for lots of cd reissues and wrote for a bunch of magazines… Dawn Eden: (laughs) See, I love this because you having known me for a while can attest to the fact that I’m not just a poser. You know there are plenty of Christian writers who say, “Oh yeah, I was hip once, I was in the rock world once.” BH: I can vouch for the fact that you were once in the rock world. In fact you and I once worked together when you wrote press releases for my old band and on my solo cds. So this is a big turn for you. Talk to me a little bit about how your book came about, Thrill of the Chaste. And what got
May 24th, 2007
The man behind PBS' "Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly" discusses The Life of Meaning
After spending more than four decades covering world events for NBC news— including a stint in Moscow between 1989-1994 where he reported on the end of the Cold War—Bob Abernethy set his sights on covering a different kind of story. Raised in a family of devout Northern Baptists, Abernethy was aware that a serious discussion surrounding issues of faith was missing from the national media landscape and developed PBS’ Religion and Ethics NewsWeekly to fill that gap. A decade later the show he created has helped add nuance and depth to the frequently one-dimensional and shallow discussion of faith and spirituality in the United States. In his new book The Life of Meaning: Reflections on Faith,
April 5th, 2007
The Prayer of the Good Thief
It is a small scene in Luke’s Gospel— all of four verses—but it speaks volumes. Now one of the criminals hanging there reviled Jesus, saying, “Are you not the Messiah? Save yourself and us.” The other, however, rebuking him, said in reply, “Have you no fear of God, for you are subject to the same condemnation? And indeed, we have been condemned justly, for the sentence we received corresponds to our crimes, but this man has done nothing criminal.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” This brief encounter in which Jesus is defended by the repentant thief—or…
March 17th, 2007
The excerpt below is from an article written by BustedHalo editor-in-chief, Bill McGarvey for the March 17 edition of The Tablet a venerable London-based magazine of “progressive, but responsible Catholic thinking.” “Judas!” the voice cried out from somewhere in the darkened seating area of Free Trade Hall in Manchester. It was 17 May, 1966, and on stage, Bob Dylan was coming to the end of another concert on a turbulent tour. Audiences that had hailed him as a genius just a year earlier now chastised him for daring to go “electric” with a full band, and for moving beyond the topical protest songs that had made him the great young hope of the folk scene. It had been this way throughout…
February 23rd, 2007
The star and director of Amazing Grace discuss religion, politics and the life of William Wilberforce
Though less-renowned in the United States than in Great Britain, William Wilberforce (1759-1833) was a member of Parliament who fought an epic battle for two decades to end the slave trade in the British Empire. While he is remembered primarily as legendary social reformer, Wilberforce’s tireless commitment to justice was animated by his deeply held Christian faith. His convictions were nurtured under the mentorship of John Newton, the former slave ship captain who renounced his work and devoted the rest of his life to Christian ministry (he also composed numerous hymns including the timeless “Amazing Grace”). In the newly released film, Amazing Grace, Wilberforce’s life is…
December 1st, 2006
The former Bush staffer discusses his book Tempting Faith and the mutually seductive (and destructive) relationship between faith and politics
By the age of thirty, David Kuo was already a seasoned veteran in the highly specialized political warfare that takes place inside the beltway. First as an assistant to Bill Bennett and then later as a policy adviser to John Ashcroft and speechwriter for Ralph Reed, Pat Robertson, and Bob Dole, Kuo, a committed Christian, helped to articulate the vision and values that were at the core of the Religious Right’s agenda. But his devotion to politics took its toll and by the late 90s Kuo’s life began unraveling. His marriage had ended and he had left politics. After a detour working for a dot.com and an unsuccessful attempt to start a charity to help the poor, Kuo was contacted to write speeches for then Governor…
November 29th, 2006
Fr. Dave Dwyer CSP goes from website to satellite
Howard Stern, Martha Stewart, Eminem and now Father Dave? Beginning on Monday December 4, Paulist Father Dave Dwyer will join Sirius satellite radio’s growing roster of on-air talent when he launches “The Busted Halo Show” on the satellite radio network’s new Catholic Channel. Dwyer, who produced and directed television for MTV and Comedy Central before entering the priesthood, has been the Publisher of BustedHalo.com for over two years and co-founded the BustedHalo podcast with Managing Editor Mike Hayes one year ago today. The process that led to the creation of the Sirius show began back in May, when the Archdiocese of New York officially announced plans for a 24-hour Catholic…
November 17th, 2006
A brief guide to understanding meal blessings this Thanksgiving
In uncertain times, we are invariably drawn to absolute truths that help us make sense of the world. One such immutable verity is the ancient Thanksgiving Law: there can be NO turkey until we say grace. But in a pluralistic society such as ours how are we to know what is the appropriate expression of thanks? What if you were actually charged with offering grace this year? When the moment of truth arrived would you stand there frozen while the host stares impatiently at you holding a carving knife and fork ready to be given the final dispensation to go ahead slice up the bird? Fear not. After exhaustive research, BustedHalo offers these 7 tips for how to recognize and participate in the most common Thanksgiving blessings…
November 16th, 2006
A candid conversation about the papacy with the author of The Rule of Benedict
In the wake of the midterm elections that created such a seismic shift in the American political landscape it is easy to forget that, not long ago, the entire world waited anxiously to hear the results of a very different balloting. Though the choice to make Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger the next pope was only decided on by a small group of cardinals and not a popular vote, the impact of that decision has been enormous. Following in the footsteps of Pope John Paul II—one of the most significant world figures of the past 50 years—is not an enviable task. But as David Gibson’s insightful new book The Rule of Benedict makes clear, Pope Benedict XVI’s pontificate will not simply be a transitional…
November 9th, 2006
Faith, doubt and the midterm elections. A conversation with the author of The Conservative Soul.
I was a Catholic in a Protestant country. I was a gay boy in the Catholic church. I’m now an immigrant English person who came and made his life in America. I’m a conservative at war with the Republican party. Ahhh…and you thought your life was complicated? As the quote above makes clear, Andrew Sullivan resists easy categorization. Ever since rising to prominence in the early 90s as the outspoken editor of The New Republic, the author/pundit/blogger/public intellectual has been a provocative voice in the rough and tumble arena of political, cultural and religious thought. In his essays for Time or the constant commentary he publishes on his enormously popular blog “The Daily Dish”…
October 6th, 2006
The Franciscan Friar from the Bronx talks about the release of his third rap album
Chances are while you were having a cup of coffee this morning Fr. Stan Fortuna had already produced a new DVD, written a chapter for a book and recorded some new songs for an upcoming cd—depending on his mood it could’ve be jazz, Brazilian, hip hop or any number of the many styles of music he’s worked in over the past 20 years. Don’t worry, it’s not that you’re necessarily lazy it’s just that the “rappin’ Capuchin” as he is known to some is an unstoppable force of nature. Now in his late forties, Fortuna has the energy of someone decades younger. He speaks in an exuberant, non-stop, New York-ese that you’d expect to hear waiting in line outside…
October 1st, 2006
One of the most important whistle-blowers of the 20th century urges current Pentagon employees not to make the same mistakes he did.
He was a Harvard-educated PhD whose star was on the rise in Washington, a trusted adviser to several administrations with access to highly confidential information. All of that changed on June 13, 1971 when the New York Times published the first installment of a classified 7000-page document dealing with the war in Vietnam that later became known as “The Pentagon Papers.” Daniel Ellsberg was the source of the leak that exposed the deliberate deception that several presidents had engaged in regarding our involvement in Vietnam. President Nixon was so incensed by the revelation that he blocked publication of the document until the Supreme Court intervened and ruled against him. Ellsberg’s…
July 12th, 2006
The God Factor author Cathleen Falsani talks about her spiritual conversations with celebrities ranging from Bono to Elie Wiesel
If the general rule in polite company is always to refrain from discussing politics and religion, Chicago Sun Times writer Cathleen Falsani has spent a good deal of her career blatantly violating at least half of that maxim. The company she keeps doesn’t seem to mind though. The 35-year-old has interviewed dozens of celebrities—from rock stars and authors to athletes and politicians—about their spiritual beliefs and come away with some very surprising answers. “Inside the spiritual lives of public people” trumpets the subheading to her book The God Factor. Indeed the “God Girl,” as she’s been dubbed, convinced an eclectic group of public figures to…
June 25th, 2006
An interview with Tony Hendra, author of The Messiah of Morris Avenue
It is 2016 and America, led by President Sparrow 3 (the third member of his family to hold the office), is now an established theocracy. The Academy Awards are now faith-based and are broadcast from Grauman’s Christian Theater in the newly christened “Holywood.” The news has been reduced to rumor and gossip and an overwhelming number of Americans are certain that the Second Coming is imminent. Such is the satiric (and unsettling) backdrop for The Messiah of Morris Avenue the first novel by author/satirist/actor Tony Hendra. In it, Hendra imagines a world in which the Second Coming may in fact be occurring in the person of Jose Francisco Lorcan Kennedy, a 29-year old Hispanic/Irish-American…
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