Sarah and I are pretty good at letting our inhibitions down with each other. A sign of a good…
Times the Panther Pride (or Lion Love) was more than entertainment
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Busted Halo contributors look at the intersection of faith and politics and examine the role of the Catholic Church in contemporary society.
We all know there’s a presidential election going on, right? And presidential elections are serious affairs with serious candidates running for a serious job with serious consequences. But with campaigns running effectively nonstop for years (Mitt Romney started running in 2007 and hasn’t really stopped since), all that seriousness gets very tiring. Maybe it’s time for some laughs — a little humor to go with all of the speeches, campaign rallies, candidate…
Both of my parents believe in God. I can’t say much more about what they believe because religious beliefs are so idiosyncratic and personal and tangled up in who a person is deep down in their marrow it seems presumptuous to try to articulate any but one’s own. Also, to be perfectly frank, my parents very seldom shared these beliefs with me. We did not go to church. We did not pray as a family. We did not read the Bible. I had the freedom to discover God on my own. And even though there…
Last night’s debate between President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney was a slugfest focusing on taxes and the economy. Romney came out swinging, commanded the stage, and set the agenda. Obama seemed listless, tired, and resigned. Both candidates appealed to middle class voters, the unemployed, and those concerned that they pay too much in taxes. But what about another type of voter…?
Next week, for the first time in our nation’s history, two Roman Catholics,…
Last week, I realized poor people don’t matter.
I was spending some time in New York City — specifically Manhattan’s Upper West Side. I met with a friend for lunch at an Italian restaurant a few blocks from Central Park. We were in one of New York’s more posh neighborhoods, home to the wealthy who have the time and money to enjoy all that New York has to offer. After saying goodbye, I headed for the subway to travel up to the Bronx. I was off to Fordham University to attend …
The Democratic National Convention is going on in Charlotte, North Carolina, this week, a city where Evangelical legend Billy Graham’s career remains a powerful presence.
Pre-Convention activities began Sunday with a group called Charlotte 714 hosting a non-partisan prayer service that called for repentance and renewal in Charlotte and across the United States.
A group of about 200 Muslim activists also gathered for prayer in Charlotte Friday, with organizers choosing…
At the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, a bit of religious history will be made when Mitt Romney, a Mormon, and Paul Ryan, a Catholic, are nominated for president and vice president. This will mark the first time in history that no Protestant is on the GOP ticket. And when President Obama and Vice President Biden are re-nominated next week, it will mark the first time that no white Protestant is running for the nation’s highest offices.
Religious leaders will…
I have a morbid fear of the ocean. I am not now nor have I ever been (nor, in all probability, will I ever be) a strong swimmer. Also, I am unilaterally opposed to entering any body of water the murkiness of which prevents me from seeing my own feet or the subaquatic creatures most likely poised to wreak all sorts of mischief on my unshod, obscured tootsies. I do, however, love being near the ocean. I love the sound, the smell, the vastness, the mystery, the treasures it reveals as it lifts…
The U.S. Bishops’ Fortnight for Freedom campaign is finished, but the Romney campaign hopes to capitalize on some Catholic bishops’ efforts against the Obama administration’s contraception health care mandate by recapturing Catholic votes in key states such as Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio. The magic bullet? Religious liberty. The campaign believes questions over religious liberty have united Catholics, and voters of all faiths, across the spectrum.…
At the beginning of the summer I took a one-week cruise with my family to Bermuda. There’s nothing like it. Not only are your meals, entertainment and accommodations included in the deal; you get to see other parts of the world. Holland America Line, the cruise line we were sailing with, always has a priest on board, which meant my brother and I had the chance to go to daily Mass. Priests are scheduled through the Apostleship of the Sea, an official ministry of the Church. They…
Died: October 3, 1226
Religion: Roman Catholic
St. Francis was the founder of the Franciscan Order and is the Patron Saint of Ecology. Following the example of Christ, he lived in poverty and preached the Gospel to all around him.
For California natives, such as myself, St. Francis is automatically associated with the 21 missions built by Franciscans in the Golden State. These missions trace back the Spanish heritage of California,…
Country: United States/Brazil
Born: July 7, 1931
Died: February 12, 2005
Religion: Catholic, Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur
Sr. Dorothy Stang worked tirelessly for poor farmers’ rights and preservation of the Brazilian rainforest. Confronted by assassins on a deserted road, she opened her Bible and read the Beatitudes to them. She was shot six times.
Courage is not always a grand thing. Courage is not always a knight with sword drawn charging…
Country: South Africa
Born: October 7, 1931
Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa, Desmond Tutu helped end apartheid and heal the wounds it left behind. His peace and reconciliation work is deeply rooted in his faith and daily spiritual practices.
Desmond Tutu is perhaps one of the most famous prelates of the 20th century. His elevation to the position as the first black Archbishop of Cape Town, South Africa, in 1986…
Country: United States
Born: March 24, 1820
Died: February 12, 1915
Fanny Crosby was a prominent American lyricist, composer, poet, and advocate for the urban poor. She wrote approximately 8,000 sacred songs and is considered one of the mothers of American gospel music.
I started my journey into Christianity through the door of Pentecostalism. It was the first door opened to me in the great hall of Christian community. I entered gratefully and with an open…
Country: United States
Born: January 31, 1915
Died: December 10, 1968
Religion: Roman Catholic
Writer, poet, anti-war activist and Trappist monk Thomas Merton helped make Catholicism relevant for a new generation and introduced many to contemplation.
Thomas Merton — or more specifically, his best-known work, The Seven Storey Mountain — played a key role in the spiritual development of many postwar Catholics. This memoir eloquently related the struggles…
Country: United States
Born: December 29, 1937
Died: March 30, 1990
Religion: Roman Catholic, Franciscan Sisters of Perpetual Adoration
Sister Thea Bowman was an esteemed educator, talented singer, gifted leader, powerful preacher, and a passionate bridge-builder across racial divides within the Christian community.
As a religious, a scholar and a teacher, Sister Thea Bowman, F.S.P.A., was engaged in sharing her experience as an African-American woman coming of age…
Born: June 17, 1703
Died: March 2, 1791
Anglican minister John Wesley founded the Methodist Movement. He emphasized the need for both personal piety and social justice; that there was “no holiness, but social holiness” and that our faith could not be lived in isolation.
During Lent one year when I was in college, a group of us began to meet in the chapel early in the morning with the hope of creating a more disciplined life. We sought…
The second I got off the bus I realized that I had no idea where I was going. I was somewhere in Southern Poland — mountains to my right, Slovakia to my left — with a duffel bag slung over my shoulder. No idea where I was sleeping that night, phone dead, entirely by myself. I took a deep breath and started walking. I never was one to travel like this. I always had a plan. But today all I had was a picture and a mission.
I had just come off a week in Krakow, traveling to Poland on spring…
Died: September 17, 1179
Religion: Roman Catholic
Beloved by both Pope Benedict XVI and feminist theologians, found in the lists of both Catholic saints and New Age heroes, Hildegard of Bingen transcends categories.
My cat named Bingen passed away last year. There was nothing about her that recalled Saint Hildegard of Bingen, O.S.B., but I was moved 15 years earlier to honor Hildegard in this silly way. Long before Pope Benedict elevated …
I feel grumpy. And I mean truly grumpy. I can hear the tone of my voice when I talk. I listen as pointed comments slip out of my mouth with the intent of making others feel bad or criticizing them. And I can’t just blame it on being pregnant — have I mentioned that I’m pregnant? For a while I have not been able to shake this cloud that has been hanging over my head. I have been blaming it on being pregnant, which might have a little to do with it. But I’ve finally owned up to the fact…
Born: February 4, 1906
Died: April 9, 1945
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, German Lutheran pastor and theologian, was outspoken in opposition to the Nazi regime and its practice of genocide. He was arrested for crimes of sedition and executed at Flossenbürg concentration camp.
I am the wife of a moral theologian. As I type, there are approximately 4,000 books on the topic of moral theology poised to cascade from bookshelves, milk crates and …