Isaac Thomas Hecker died on December 22, 1888, at the Paulist House on 59th Street in Manhattan. As the following biography of Hecker illustrates, being…read more
Is being polite honest? Young adults aren’t quite sure. And as Christmas and New Year’s parties abound this time of year, there are lots of…read more
I accepted an internship with the hopes that it would turn into a full-time job. In March, I discovered it wouldn’t, so I started the…read more
I started taking personal retreats at Benedictine monasteries when I was a student at a Protestant seminary in Portland, Oregon. I was curious about…read more
Still struggling to find a Christmas gift for someone? Consider these suggestions we’ve made recently. If you have someone on your list who would appreciate…read more
As the days shorten and darkness covers our late afternoons and evenings, we naturally have some extra time to ponder significant moments of our lives. At holiday times, we remember Christmas and New Year celebrations of decades past. For those of us who grew up in households crossed by the affliction of addiction, holiday celebrations were often marred by unpleasantness, if not outright violence.
My Dad had numerous “worst moments” in his life, but it’s the holiday snafus that stand out in memory, when alcohol too often fueled his smoldering rage. One Thanksgiving was ruined when, after a liquid feast of Schmidt’s beer and Canadian Club instead of turkey, he lost his temper and started wailing on us kids. There was a Christmas when I was home from college, and Dad — who hadn’t lived with us for years — showed up drunk. Long and short of it, I had him arrested that Christmas Eve. The image of him, handcuffed, being led to the cop car past the trees he had planted in our front yard years earlier remains burned in my memory.read more