Our digital twist on the traditional Advent calendar brings a sense of surprise by showing you the whole calendar, but not letting you “open” each day and find out what’s behind the picture until that day comes along. Each day, the link will lead you to a special Advent-themed Daily Jolt and MicroChallenge.
Advent is a time of hopeful anticipation for the birth of Christ and the coming of God’s kingdom…
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Most dating and relationships books, columns and shows won’t go near issues of faith. Author, professor and speaker Dr. Christine B. Whelan assumes faith has some role, and tackles even the toughest questions.
This past Sunday I gave a lecture on sex, dating and relationships at the Newman Center at the University of Iowa. As a professor here, I teach classes on the American family and introductory sociology courses, so I’ve heard a lot about the undergraduate hook-up culture. My students aren’t sure what a hook-up really means, or how to find a lasting relationship when casual sex is the norm. So when the Newman Center invited me to speak to young adult Catholics on these…
Let’s talk about Natural Family Planning. Wait… wait… did you just grab the mouse to click away to another screen? Give me a chance.
When you think of Natural Family Planning (NFP) you might think of barefoot-and-pregnant super-religious types who are out of touch with modern science. The words “conservative” or “creepy” or “weird” might pop into your head. I know. I’ve had those thoughts myself. In fact, until recently, the only thing I knew about NFP …
“Each prayer is more beautiful than the others.
I cannot recite them all and not knowing which to choose,
I do like children who do not know how to read,
I say very simply to God what I wish to say,
without composing beautiful sentences,
and He always understands me.”
— Therese of Lisieux
The Ramona Quimby Diary was my first journal. I was seven, and helpfully it was fill-in-the-blanks. For most of 1985, I recorded my deepest thoughts and darkest secrets in that red, spiral-bound…
The sun pouring through the high window of my dorm at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill was a baptism of sorts, drenching me in my twin bed in slits of light. Sadly, that morning during my freshman year was anything but cleansing. Thoughts of the night before washed over me, and suddenly a memory knocked the euphoria right out of me. A promise I’d made at age 13 had been broken.
As I lay in bed, freshly departed from my virginity, I recalled saying I would not have sex before…
I remember receiving that first oversized calligraphied envelope. I was 22 and giddy with excitement as I opened the multiple envelopes, sifted through the tissue paper and found an impressively engraved invitation. I felt honored to be among the chosen to receive this elaborate missive: One of my oldest friends was getting married to her college sweetheart and I was thrilled.
That was nearly 10 years ago—and the bloom has worn off this wedding rose.
I’m going to speak the…
In my last column I shared a letter from Susan, a longtime reader of Pure Sex, Pure Love, who has been dating a man struggling with depression. “How do you deal with a partner who’s dealing with depression? Can you help—and if so, how?” I asked BustedHalo readers to weigh in on this email, and dozens of you responded.
Nearly 60% of respondents said that, like Susan, they have been in a relationship with someone suffering from depression, and 75% of respondents said Susan …
“Does God really care if we gained ten pounds over the holidays? Yes!” announces The Dieter’s Prayer Book.
“If you’ve struggled with obesity all of your life, you may not even be able to imagine yourself free of the bondage of unwanted fat. But God can,” promises The Bible Cure for Weight Loss and Muscle Gain.
As part of the Templeton-Cambridge Fellowship to study the intersection of science and religion, I explored the world of religious diet books. Surprised that…
Recently I received a request from Susan, a longtime reader of my Pure Sex, Pure Love column:
How do you deal with a partner whose dealing with depression? Can you help—and if so, how? And where the lines are drawn between being supportive and looking after your own emotional needs, since depression doesn’t just affect the person going through it. Do you deal with a loved one’s depression differently if you are married versus dating?
I pondered this email as I left …
My husband, Peter, is a lawyer, and recently accepted a job with Legal Aid, a non-profit organization that provides legal services for the working poor. In states nationwide, community legal services groups are expanding their personal bankruptcy practices as this economy continues to soften, and he’ll be working with many families in financial crisis.
As we spent hours talking about the clients he’s going to work with and their difficulties making ends meet, we began…
This weekend, we celebrated our nation’s independence with fireworks and cook-outs. But according to a recent Busted Halo® survey, young adults are struggling for an even more personal kind of independence this summer—financial independence.
More than 40% of respondents said they hold credit card debt, and nearly 50% are floating school loans. We’re the first generation in American history to be less well off at age 30 than our parents were at that…
My last column, "Wives, obey your husbands?" was intentionally provocative… and it worked!
Over the years, as I attended different parishes during college and beyond, I noticed something odd: Depending on the priest, we’d hear different versions of readings from Colossians and Ephesians about how a man and a woman should love and honor each other.
The full text of this New Testament letter from Paul includes this advice: "Wives, be subject to…
Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it.
- Song of Solomon 8:7
In this column, I write a lot about dating and marriage relationships—but there’s another equally important type of relationship that gets a lot less publicity: community relationships and the power of neighbors and friends to lend a helping hand in times of trouble.
I was in England, finishing up the first session of the Templeton-Cambridge Journalism Fellowship when I first heard…
As someone who studies the family and relationships, I usually look forward to the discussion of these big, important issues in the liturgy. At one church I attended during childhood summers, fathers would be recognized on Father’s Day by standing up and receiving applause. At another church, I remember mothers receiving a special blessing on Mother’s Day. And on the feast of the Holy Family, usually the Sunday after Christmas, the readings always caught my attention.…
If the old saying is true that men want to marry a woman like their mother, then this Mother’s Day, let’s thank moms for leading the way toward gender equality for a younger generation.
New York Times’ columnist Maureen Dowd has long complained that today’s men are a bunch of insecure wimps who are intimidated by smart—high achieving women and, she argues only want to marry their mother or some intellectually inferior woman to avoid their masculinity…
The honeymoon is over, and being somebody’s “everything” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Catholics need to break up with the quest for “the one” in favor of a more realistic perspective on relationships.
Recently, my friend Angela called me in tears. Angela, 31, and her husband have been married for three years and they are very well-suited: They can spend hours at a time together talking and laughing, are attracted to each other,…
It only has to work once.
That’s what I told myself after every bad date in my 20s.
If we fell head over heels in love with everyone we met for coffee or dinner, we’d get ourselves into heaps of trouble. Being picky (up to a point) is a good thing. And this means that there are going to be some terrible dates.
Which is why I’ve always thought it’s interesting that blind dates—when your friend, coworker, family member or random neighbor down the block …
Did you make some New Year’s resolutions this year?
If so, you’re in the minority: A 2005 study found that only 45% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions.
Did you make New Year’s resolutions last year—and did you keep them?
If so, you are really in the minority. Only 8 percent of Americans achieve their resolution goals, according to “Living on the Up Beat,” a publisher of self-help books. What’s more discouraging is that…
Lately I feel like my brain is on holiday. I find myself wandering the supermarket unable to remember exactly what I’m supposed to be shopping for, reaching the end of a newspaper article and having no idea what I’ve just read.
It has to be the sleep deprivation. A few happy, isolated incidents aside, I haven’t had more than five hours of uninterrupted shut-eye since my daughter was born six months ago. Maybe once she gets the hang of not waking me up at three in …
Those two words strike fear in the hearts of singles everywhere. And if you’re single past your early 20s, odds are, you’ve been on one.
TAKE THIS SURVEY!!
To Answer the Questionnaire, click here
Name (fake name is fine)
I would be willing to go on a blind date.
How many blind dates have you been on?
e) more than 10
My mother or father has set me up on a blind date.
I would insist upon seeing a photo …
For three months I lied to my husband. I snuck around behind his back and I emailed and talked on the phone with first one—then up to a dozen—different men. I had more than 200 emails secreted away in a folder. When my husband would come into the room, I’d snap my computer shut, or click on a different screen quickly, so he wouldn’t see what I was doing. By the end, nearly every other sentence I uttered was a lie. And even though I was so nervous and jittery, my …