Busted Halo
May 16th, 2004
How Urban Music Can Touch the Soul

Two months ago I became the managing editor of an urban music magazine, despite the fact that I know nothing about urban culture, hip hop, or rap. But that’s okay, since my job entails unhip tasks like managing the staff, taking care of budgets, and putting out the various fires that are ignited in an office setting.
However… when I do read editorial copy for basic sense and style, I often feel left out because I’m not at all connected to what is a passion for most of the young, eager editors on my staff. Plus, this is a genre of music that always seems to be topping the album charts.
I wanted to know more.
A melting pot of sounds…
Like with modern art, where many pieces baffle some viewers, hip hop music is

May 16th, 2004
Saving the Sacred from the Absurd in Church

“Why is there a monkey on the tabernacle?” my friend asked herself as she walked into church one Sunday morning.
Apparently, a religious education teacher was planning a discussion on Noah’s Ark for the second grade and had placed inflatable animals all around—even on the small chamber which holds what we as Catholics believe to be the Body of Christ.
Aside from its Bizarro nature, that story struck me as being indicative of a larger problem in the modern Catholic Church.
Celebration timeSince the Catholic Church went through the changes
of the Second Vatican Council in the 1960s, there has been a greater emphasis on Mass as a communal celebration of Jesus’ death and resurrection…

May 15th, 2004
A young woman's reflections on the journey back to her faith

Last month, I freed my rosary from hiding. We’ve had a tumultuous relationship. I never used the thing on my own, dragging it out mainly for various parochial school events. My rosary was a gift. The kind of thing my grandmother suspected I would need after my Confirmation. So far, she was wrong. But getting my rosary out now at the age of 25 sparked the start of reconciliation between me and my religion.
Though I attended a Jesuit university, I haven’t taken Communion since my freshman year. As I was sharpening my critical thinking skills, it didn’t take long for me to aim that razor toward my faith. Severing me from Catholicism were some major points: women’s role in the Church, celibacy…

May 10th, 2004
Women share their thoughts on Mary

Editor’s note: Monday, August 15th is the Feast of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary. With this in mind we offer this two part series on Mary.

She’s called everything from Our Lady of Peace to the Mother of God to the New Eve. She smiles at us from Christmas cards and gazes serenely from Renaissance paintings. There’s no question that Mary is one of the most recognizable women in the world. Her significance in the Catholic tradition is indisputable.

But what is her significance in the lives of women today? How does this iconic figure speak to the twenty-first century female experience? Curious about Mary’s impact on modern women, I surveyed Catholic women from their early thirties to early…

May 10th, 2004
The Comics on Busted Halo

I love those cream-egg Easter candies. Your know the kind – milk chocolate shell with that gooey sweet sugar cream filling…

May 10th, 2004
The Comics on Busted Halo

I often see her around town. Sitting, wandering, she drifts unnoticed through the streets ot Portland.

May 10th, 2004
The Comics on Busted Halo

One thing leads to another… Seems like that’s always how these things happen.

May 10th, 2004
The Comics on Busted Halo

My divorce is now several months behind me and the Diocese is considering the case for annulment.

May 10th, 2004
The Comics on Busted Halo

“Stop worring.” Jesus says, “about what to eat or drink.” And people like Francis of Assisi, Dorothy Day, and Mother Teresa actually lived like that.

May 10th, 2004
A Grad Student's Spiritual Adventure in Brussels

A Grad Student’s Spiritual Adventure in Brusselsby Jessica M. AlampayLeaving homeSt. Mark’s University Parish in Santa Barbara was like my second home. During my time there, I invited and welcomed people to parish activities as if it actually were my own home.
I estimate eating one-third of my dinners at St. Mark’s during my sophomore year of college.
Six months ago I left St. Mark’s and California for Brussels, Belgium. I came to Brussels to complete a one-year M.A. program in International Conflict Analysis, to experience life in Europe, and to get some work experience here.
Different tableauI knew that my experience in Belgium would be different and it certainly has been. The people…

May 10th, 2004
A young mother struggles with the desire to acquire.

Prior to college, I had never heard the phrase “simple living.” Ask most people today about the term, and they’ll probably mention Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie’s highly-rated reality show in which two overindulged children of wealth become tourists in the world of the less fortunate. I spent much of my sophomore year of college pretending I knew what my service-oriented, socially conscious roommate meant when she spoke idealistically of simple living. When I finally admitted I had no idea what she was talking about, she gave me a lengthy discourse on Dorothy Day and the Catholic Worker movement–a group that truly lives out the Sermon on the Mount, giving up material wealth in favor…

May 10th, 2004
Celibacy as Spiritual Practice

You may not envision being called into relationship with God through a classified ad.
Nevertheless, perhaps God is calling you to live the vocation of singlehood—that is, the vocation of celibacy, of intimate union with the Divine.
‘This is celibacy calling, will you accept the charges?’
Single male (at least in portraits) seeks committed relationship with a beloved. Likes music, long walks on the beach. Seeking friends first, maybe more? You: Single, young Catholic, playful, sense of humor, open to adventure.
As young Catholics we hear about the “calling”to religious life and the “calling” to marriage, but rarely do we hear about the calling to be single, or celibacy.…

May 9th, 2004
A Schizophrenic Experiments in Reality Filmmaking

Schizophrenia has often been popularly misconstrued
as split or multiple personality disorder along the lines of what was shown in the 1976 television movie Sybil, the true story of a woman who has 16 different personalities including two males. “People Say I’m Crazy,” John Cadigan’s autobiographical documentary chronicling how he has coped with this mysterious and debilitating disease over the past twelve years, is an astonishingly personal reminder that schizophrenia is actually better defined as a “break with reality.” His unflinching account of the struggle to understand and live with his sickness has the unintentionally ironic consequence of exposing…

May 9th, 2004
Mudslinging is not a Gospel Value

There’s been yet another casualty in the culture wars that have raged in the United States over the past decade. On August 18, 2004, Deal Hudson, publisher of the conservative Catholic journal, Crisis , resigned his position with the Bush campaign as an adviser on how to court the Catholic vote. The scandal surrounding Hudson stems from an accusation of sexual misconduct with a female student approximately ten years ago at Fordham University where he was a tenured philosophy professor.
This might not even merit a mention, considering the lurid personal tales that the American public has been treated to over the past few years (Bill Clinton, William Bennett, and James McGreevey come to mind), but Hudson’s…

May 6th, 2004
Between Living Simply and Living Poor

I live on a red stripe dividing poverty and fame in Nashville, Tennessee.
My bedroom window frames an intricately twisted metal mass resembling a power station in front of rows and rows of brick buildings that most everyone calls ‘the projects.’ From this government-subsidised housing complex, I hear gun shots, angry voices, emergency sirens, and big-bass-booming low riders.
In contrast, my back deck peers over the roofs of the world-famous Music Row, where music stars record their platinum albums and Nashville Star produces its USA network television series.
Goodbye to simplicity auto-pilotMy decision to live here on 15th Avenue reflects
a personal attempt to live simply . I spent most…

May 4th, 2004
Does turning on the net turn you on?

In the first part of this series, we explored what sexual addiction is and examined how easy access to pornography on the internet poses a problem for those who struggle with sexual compulsivity.
This second installment explores in greater detail how the internet creates problems for those who are prone to sexual addiction. To do so, we need to look at what Patrick Cairnes author of In the Shadows of the Net… calls the arousal templates.
Cairnes cites three primary emotion systems that make up our arousal templates:

a sex drive, commonly called lust, which motivates us to
mate and continue our species.
Attraction or infatuation, which helps us choose a mate.
And Attachment which helps people sustain relationships

May 4th, 2004
BustedHalo looks at Sexual Addiction and Internet Pornography

There can be little doubt that the technological revolution that brought the power of the internet to the average consumer over the past decade has opened up enormous possibilities for sharing and disseminating information and has changed our lives for the better in countless ways. Similarly, there is also little doubt that the loftiest creations of our finest minds are often manipulated for the basest purposes. Despite the obvious virtues of the internet, there is also a shadow side.
According to Nielsen Net Ratings in 2003, 32 million unique individuals visited a porn
site in September alone in the United States . Of those 32 million, 22 million viewers were male. On any given day in cyberspace, 260 million…

May 4th, 2004
A Chicago Play Captures Boston Clergy Sex Scandal As Tragedy

The scandal of Catholic clergy sexual abuse of children is, after two years, still on the front pages of the nation’s papers. But playwright Michael Murphy, director David Zak, and the actors of Chicago’s Bailiwick Repertory Theatre have managed to give the story the feel of a classical tragedy.
SIN—A Cardinal Deposed is a two act drama distilled from transcripts of (now resigned) Boston archbishop Bernard Cardinal Law’s depositions taken between August 2002 and February 2003 in civil actions against priests of the Archdiocese of Boston. The Cardinal is portrayed (with remarkable fidelity to Law’s real-life mannerisms) by actor Jim Sherman.
SIN casts Law as a man of remarkable…

May 3rd, 2004
True tales from the pews #2

Fr. Jim Martin’s recent article recounting the worst homilies ever heard sent an all-too-familiar chill through my born and bred Catholic bones. Unfortunately, I’ve also sat in the pews many times thinking that I’d rather eat paste with kindergarten children than listen to another second of a preacher’s mindless drivel.
While I try to support my parish community as much as I can, I do so under certain conditions. I’ve determined that my family can afford to give $20 a week as our offering. (I’m a lay minister and my wife’s a teacher—you do the math.) But after sitting through countless bad sermons I decided to take matters into my own hands. Let’s face facts,…

May 3rd, 2004
Does the Almighty Bend an Ear to Prayers for Smarty Jones?

With a victory in the Belmont Stakes on Saturday, June 5, 2004, Smarty Jones will have captured horseracing’s most elusive prize—the Triple Crown. No horse has done it since 1978.
Certainly a prayer or two is in order. So maybe it’s not surprising that Smarty was recently blessed by a Philadelphia priest.
“I asked the Lord to give Smarty Jones good health, I asked Him to protect Smarty during the Belmont Stakes, and I asked Him to give Smarty the special gift of the Triple Crown,” said Father Thomas Homa. (Smarty probably thought, “Who are you, and why aren’t you feeding me anything?”)
Is this… necessary?
Haunted hoofprintsWell, it is the track—an inherently…

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