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January 5th, 2011
Encounters at the Jon Stewart - Stephen Colbert rally
Ask most any twentysomething in the United States where they get their news from these days, and one of their ...
January 2nd, 2011
How to know if it's time to walk down the aisle or go your separate ways
Matt, 29, and his girlfriend, Kelly, 28, have been dating for four years and living together for two. They were both raised Catholic, attend Church ...
January 1st, 2011

no-yarmulke-largeThey say opposites attract.  For example, in the play “Can I Really Date a Guy Who Wears a Yarmulke?” the protagonists are two people with very different religious views.  According to the play’s website “Eleanor is a smart, savvy, New Yorker, whose secular brand of Judaism might include the occasional latke but definitely does not include God. Aaron is Dr. Right – he’s got the brains, the looks, the wit…but wait! He’s also got a serious case of religion. Can Eleanor see past his yarmulke to find love?”

While the two characters struggle, ultimately they go for the happily ever after. That’s all well and good for fiction, but what about real life? I’m, for all intents and purposes, an observant modern Orthodox Jew (a Neo-Chassid, if you will). But my boyfriend (yes, boyfriend) is an atheist. So maybe opposites really do attract. I have a strong belief in G-d and he’s a science guy. I have faith in a higher power, and he says that he is jealous of those who do but he wasn’t raised with the notion of G-d.

We’ve been together for almost 3 months. From the start of our courtship it has been obvious that our differences would prove to be difficult. We’ve had conversations about where I see my life headed and what I want for my future family, and what he’s willing to compromise on. Apparently “compromise” is necessary for every relationship, but what happens when one partner strives to live her life with the presence of G-d in every moment and the other can’t see past religion as a derivative of some ancient need to explain why things happen in the world?

We went to see the play Monday night, interested mainly because we saw much of our relationship in the premise of the story. Yet it wasn’t the conversation-starter I hoped it to be. While Eleanor …

December 28th, 2010

In October, I wrote about a difficult week when three close friends and family members were admitted to the hospital. Last Saturday I found out the worst news when I was told my cousin Silvia would never make it home. After eight weeks of battling an infection, pneumonia and what they eventually found to be an extremely rare form of cancer, she passed away at the age of 56.

While I know no one is fond of death, wakes or funerals, this was especially hard and I, like many at times like these, started questioning my faith and God’s existence. Silvia was like an aunt to me and was even my confirmation sponsor back in high school. She was selfless and loved nothing more than spending time with her family. My heart broke for my two cousins, her daughters, only in college, who will have to go on without a mother.

What is the reasoning behind this?

Why would God allow such a thing?

I really don’t know. The answers never get easier. Even when I was on the alter reading from the New Testament’s letter of Timothy about fighting “the good fight” and having “kept the faith” at her funeral I couldn’t wrap my head around it.

On the mass card we received, only the last two lines made sense:

God saw you were getting tired

And a cure was not to be,

So he put his arms around you

And whispered, “Come to me.”

With tearful eyes we watched you,

And saw you pass away.

Although we loved you dearly,

We could not make you stay.

A golden heart stopped beating,

Hard working hands at rest.

God broke our hearts to

prove to us,

He only takes the best.”

Have you dealt with death? How did you make sense of it?

Originally published November 6, 2010.

December 27th, 2010
Given the painful revelations of the sex scandal, why are Catholic churches not empty?
Every Sunday, all around the globe, a minor miracle is occurring that has gone almost unnoticed: despite continuing revelations about the sex abuse scandal in the Catholic Church, somehow the churches aren’t empty. Despite all ...
December 26th, 2010
They block us from our full potential -- are you willing to let go of yours?
In my recent interview about the spirituality of being on time, I talked about the fact that the spiritual answer is not just to ...
October 15th, 2010

boobies-flashThis summer when we were visiting my family in El Paso I got to meet the boyfriend of one of my cousins.  She’s a younger cousin who just graduated from high school.  When I met him I immediately noticed the bracelet that he had on that said “i love boobies”.  I rolled my eyes and thought how tacky.  You’re meeting your girlfriend’s family and you wear something like that.  Then after him hanging around all day he brought our attention to the bracelet.  He took his arm out and waved it over the dinner table asking us if we had seen these bracelets.  He informed us that the bracelet was to support breast cancer.  In my head, my response was, “My a**.”  A guy in his late teens, early twenties is wearing something with the word boobies on it because he is truly committed to supporting breast cancer awareness.  Sure.

We all kind of nodded and went on with dinner.  I didn’t think much of this event at the time but recently I have seen an onslaught of inappropriate breast cancer awareness things that I just have to say something about.

I am completely in support of breast cancer awareness and I do applaud how breast cancer awareness propaganda has really made it trendy.  You can buy almost any item — jewelry, clothes, mixing bowls, coffee mugs, stamps, police cars — in pink to support breast cancer research.  This fundraising is smart because people are going to buy these items anyways so why not throw a few extra dollars to breast cancer research.  I mean, come on, even the NFL had breast cancer awareness day where these huge, athletic men wore neon pink shoes in support of the cause.

What I do not like is the further objectification of women in the name of wanting to campaign for breast cancer awareness.  I think it is a fair assumption to make that if you were to pick one part of a woman to really objectify it would be her breasts.  Our society is …

October 1st, 2010
A four-legged love story
"God is beauty." -- St. Francis of Assisi Here's what I expected to be able to rightfully call my own by the age of 35: ...
September 13th, 2010
God and Gospel meet African tradition in the South Carolina Lowcountry
"You sure you want to drive out there?" an 82-year-old farmer warns when I stop to ask for directions on a dusty, rutted road in the Lowcountry of South Carolina. "Ahead are the Gullah islands," ...
August 28th, 2010
The co-creator of Glee on being Catholic
The 62nd Annual Emmy Awards are being held this Sunday, August 29th. Glee has been nominated for a total of 19 Emmy awards. Ian Brennan, co-creator of Glee, ...
July 10th, 2010
Discussing faith, family and Derek Jeter with longtime Yankee Stadium announcer Bob Sheppard
Bob Sheppard, the longtime Voice of Yankee Stadium died this week at the age of 99. Sheppard's majestic elocution gave players and spectators goosebumps for over half a century. Sheppard was also devout ...
January 20th, 2010
On the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, a nun reflects on the abortion debate
This past January 22 was the 36th anniversary of Roe v. Wade and the legalization of abortion in the United States. There aren't very many ...
December 31st, 2009
And You Probably Don't Know His Name
Quick — can you give me the latest on the divorce drama between Jon & Kate Gosselin? Or why Paula Abdul isn't going to be ...
December 31st, 2009
Video 1 - "Ten years"
Nicole, a U.S. citizen, prepares to move her four children to rural Mexico to be with her husband who has been barred from reentering the United States. In this segment, Nicole explains how her husband was ...
December 31st, 2009
Seeking the sacred dimensions of daily life
Faith, spirituality and religion are too often looked upon as the province of “experts” who spend all their time in places of worship with their noses buried deep in holy books. At BustedHalo.com we frequently ...
December 31st, 2009
A traditional nun and her openly gay cousin discuss sexuality and the Catholic Church
Growing up just south of Los Angeles, Sr. Bernadette (Mary) Reis would see her cousin Paul Mages when her family took vacation trips to visit ...
December 31st, 2009
Recollections of mass and Sunday brunch with the professional wrestling legend
"Captain" Lou Albano (1933-2009) — professional wrestling legend and star of Cyndi Lauper videos — was what my grandmother called "a nice Italian boy." Never ...
December 31st, 2009
A plea for an end to our culture wars
The uproar over Notre Dame's honoring President Obama in late May exposed the fissures within American Catholicism that will no doubt be on display following ...
December 30th, 2009
A pilgrimage for my two mothers
When I was ten, my favorite movie was Mary Poppins. As it begins, British siblings Jane and Michael Banks write an advertisement listing their requirements ...
December 14th, 2009
A Holiday message from the Busted Halo staff
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