Busted Halo

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.

Click this banner to see the entire series.

April 6th, 2009
Some highlights from our columnist's visit to CBS TV's Early Show

This morning, I appeared live on “The Early Show” on CBS to discuss dating and relationship strategies during an economic downturn. Watch the show here and read below for more advice.
When is the appropriate time to bring up finances in a relationship — and is it something you should really be asking about early on? …
Money is one of those subjects that’s off limits on the first date — but if you’ve just been laid off from your job there’s no avoiding the discussion. Get to know someone for who they are, not what they can buy for you: Is she proactive about finding a new job? Is he brainstorming about other career paths? Ambition and perseverance are what’s going to pay

April 2nd, 2009
Debut Episode!

From over-the-top registries to destination weddings, the American wedding industrial complex is a $161 billion consumer bonanza. But a wedding is more than just a party: It’s the beginning of a life-long marriage, an important sacrament in the Catholic Church. Brides want everything to be to their specifications — and priests bristle at being treated like hired help. Friends and family ask about color themes for the reception, and the priest plies pre-Cana compatibility quizzes. It’s a cultural war, and engaged couples are on the front lines.
What happens when the princess planning her “one perfect day” clashes with the priest who would rather preside over a dozen funerals than one wedding?…

March 31st, 2009
Take the Freshman Survival Guide Survey!

When we published Busted Halo‘s® First Annual Freshman Survival Guide in 2005, we thought we had a good idea on our hands; we just didn’t know how good. Since then, the Guide has grown exponentially and we are proud to announce an exciting and important step in that growth: Hachette Book Group will publish the first print edition of Busted Halo…‘s Freshman Survival Guide next year.
Our goal is to take the first print edition of the Guide well beyond what we’ve been able to do online. Of course, it will still encompass a wide range of college-life issues from academics and relationships to dealing with roommates, social life and everything else that affects new college students. What makes

March 30th, 2009
When a friend's life is consumed with Christian group activity, resentment brews

Twenty minutes after our agreed upon meeting time, my best friend Andrea rushed into the coffee shop smiling and apologetic. The devil on my left shoulder won the wrestling match taking place in my conscience and I said, “I don’t think Jesus would have been late.” My tone was not joyfully sarcastic, but biting — with a clenched-teeth smile like a ventriloquist’s dummy.
It was unusual coming from me. Generally, I’m pretty maternal when it comes to my friends. (I spent the weeks before Christmas knitting hats and scarves in pink and purple while listening to hours of relationship complaints. In my Palm Pilot are individual birthday notices accompanied by a list of appropriate…

March 30th, 2009
It isn't boring, it isn't non-Christian and you do have the time for it

ww2-meditation-insideThe promise of meditation is not the 20 minutes of refuge from an otherwise insane day, wonderful as that may be. The promise is to gradually cultivate a way of living that is less insane. I’ve noticed over and over: People struggling with anxiety over things they’re powerless to affect rarely have a daily prayer and meditation practice.

March 25th, 2009
...so we're tossing you a little incentive to keep going

It’s been a month since Lent started and a lot of us are struggling. So to give you a little incentive to get back on board we’re making it easier than ever to enter the drawing for our FastPrayGive Lent Incentive Grand Prize: an iPod Nano….
Up until now, to have your name entered into the drawing we’ve required that in addition to your own email, you give us the email address of a friend you’d like to introduce to BustedHalo.com. For the next week — Thursday March 26 to Thursday April 2 only — just enter your own email on the contest form in both spaces for an email address. You’re free to enter this way once per day during the next week (3/26/09-4/2/09) and your entry will count

March 25th, 2009
Coming Soon! Busted Halo's "The Princess, The Priest and the War for the Perfect Wedding"

From over-the-top registries to destination weddings, the American wedding industrial complex is a $161 billion consumer bonanza. But a wedding is more than just a party: It’s the beginning of a life-long marriage, an important sacrament in the Catholic Church. Brides want everything to be to their specifications — and priests bristle at being treated like hired help. Friends and family ask about color themes for the reception, and the priest plies pre-Cana compatibility quizzes. It’s a cultural war, and engaged couples are on the front lines.

What happens when the princess planning her “one perfect day” clashes with the priest who would rather preside over a dozen funerals…

March 25th, 2009
A younger generation expresses their Jewishness in controversial ways

Evocative, disrespectful, proud, antithetic: these are just some of the words used to describe Jews with tattoos. Seth Alamar, who has 30-odd tattoos, calls most of his markings religious or “Jewish.” He has heard all the reasons why a Jew should not get tattooed — including the false myth that he would not be buried in a Jewish cemetery. But despite all the controversy surrounding ink in the Jewish faith, he did not think twice.
“The reason [I got tattoos] is not because I am not religious, it is not because I do not believe in G-d, or even because I am not a devout Jew,” Alamar said. “It is simply because it is my body and I don’t need anyone to make decisions for me.”

March 23rd, 2009
Part 1 - An interview with E. Benjamin Skinner

There are more slaves today than at any other point in human history.
— E. Benjamin Skinner, A Crime So Monstrous
In his 1999 book, Disposable People…, author Kevin Bales declared there were 27 million slaves worldwide — living, breathing, feeling human beings forced to work or suffer punishment, often both.
For most of us, it’s difficult to imagine that in 2009 there are more than 27 million people, most of them women and children, being held against their will. Many are abused or carried across international borders and exploited as servants, forced prostitutes or laborers. Most of them have absolutely no knowledge or power that could have enabled them to avoid entering their slavery situation. And

March 22nd, 2009
Can ambition be a Catholic virtue?

Margot, 31, wants to be the first female partner at the boutique law firm where she’s worked for four years. She’s getting great reviews from her bosses because she works long hours, always delivers for clients and, “when a partner tells me to jump, I ask how high on the way up,” she says. “It’s been my ambition to be a partner at a law firm for years. So many women start out as associates at firms, but so few end up as partners. I really want that success.”
She admits that to me with a sigh, and an apologetic look. She continues: “Women aren’t supposed to have that burning ambition — or at least that’s the message I get from society. I’m 31, I’m…

March 21st, 2009
An early morning epiphany while the world's biggest band played at my Catholic college

I clutched the barricade in front of me with all my strength, afraid to lose my prime spot as the crowd pushed from behind. Feet numb from standing for hours on frozen ground, I approached my fourth hour outside, armed with nothing more than a digital camera and granola bars. At 8:00 a.m. on the dot, it finally happened. U2 coolly strolled down the steps of Keating Hall — the same steps I have walked on the way to class so many times — took their place on stage, and launched into the first few chords of their new, psychedelic rock single, “Get on Your Boots.”
A week of rumors was finally put to rest as Bono, The Edge, Adam Clayton and Larry Mullen Jr. performed at Fordham, as part of a special taping of Good Morning…

March 18th, 2009
A mother is torn when options are limited

I lead a double life.
To some that might sound glamorous; to others, intriguing; and there are those who might think it sounds plain exhausting. To me it is just something I have to do, because my son and daughter attend different schools.
Now, in New York this is not unusual. Our city offers, in general, something for everyone; parents have the choice of public, parochial, or private; single sex or coed.
Back in the day, where I grew up in The Bronx, every kid in a family went to the same school — either the parochial or public one in our neighborhood. The thinking was that it just made sense, and of course it was convenient for parents. There were no interviews or “spend the day with us” days to see if the…

March 16th, 2009
The BustedHalo Show broadcasts live from the steps of St. Patrick's Cathedral

Father Dave Dwyer CSP will host a special daytime edition of his nightly talk show, The Busted Halo® Show, live from noon to 3 p.m. EDT on Tuesday March 17. Catch Father Dave live from the steps of historic St. Patrick’s Cathedral as the parade files by on Fifth Avenue. The Catholic Channel is available to listeners nationwide exclusively on SIRIUS channel 159 and XM channel 117. Don’t have Sirius XM? You’re in luck… you can get a 3-day online trial absolutely free by going to Sirius.com.…
Once you complete your free online registration, go to the Catholic Channel (Sirius channel 159 or XM channel 117) and listen in for all the live details. You get all the action from the parade route and

March 15th, 2009
Going green never felt so good

As the son of an Irish immigrant, I always found it odd that my American mother looked forward to the big holiday more than my Irish father did.
“St. Patrick’s Day is a big deal now … in Ireland,” he told me on the phone recently, “but it never used to be anything to write home about in the old days. It was mostly a religious holiday and we treated it as a solemn day, as opposed to a day to get snockered.”
Now I don’t begrudge anyone a nice pint o’ Guinness, but shouldn’t St. Patrick’s Day be about more than simply getting drunk in a random pub? Instead of heading to some insanely crowded bar why not have a few friends over for one or more of the following Irish cultural

March 12th, 2009
A mixed-media guide to the afterlife

“None of us are perfect but all of us are on a journey toward God” is one of the ways we use to explain what the name Busted Halo® means. Given our name it is no surprise that people often ask us:

“Since I’m not perfect, how can I get into heaven?”

Heaven is defined by the Catholic Church as “a perfect life with the Holy Trinity” and “ultimate end and fulfillment of our deepest human longings.”

But most of us feel we fall short of deserving to be in full union with God. While all of us sin, though, most of us don’t sin in such a grave way that we cut ourselves off completely from God. And even if we do commit grave sins, many of us seek reconciliation with God throughout our lives.

So, if heaven is this state of perfection… and one dies while being far from perfect… how can one enter heaven? The answer, Father James Martin, SJ, tells us, is purgatory. So just what the hell is purgatory?…

March 12th, 2009
Checking in with our readers on their FastPrayGive progress

You spoke, we listened. The response to FastPrayGive has been overwhelming. We couldn’t be happier that you tackled our challenge head on to make the Lenten season truly unique. This year, Busted Halo tried to do something different for Lent. Instead of asking our readers to give up something simple for 40 days like chocolate or soda, we challenged them to approach each day in a unique way, and each FastPrayGive challenge reflects this.
We’ve compiled the best comments from the first two weeks — to share the growth, struggle, confusion and laughter of our readers. Please keep up the good work and remember: You can’t flunk this …, so don’t give up. It’s never too late to start again,

March 12th, 2009
The creator of NBC's new series Kings discusses how he's brought a modern aesthetic to the Old Testament story of King David

Interview and introduction by Bill McGarvey …
Since breaking into television writing back in 1998, Michael Green has worked on a number of network and cable television shows, including Sex and the City and Smallville. Most recently, he was a writer and co-executive producer on NBC’s Emmy-nominated Heroes. NBC’s new drama series, Kings (two-hour premiere on Sunday March 15 at 8pm on NBC), marks Green’s first opportunity to work on a series he created himself. The modern retelling of the Biblical story of King David stars Golden Globe winner Ian McShane (Deadwood) as King Silas Benjamin who worries that David Shepherd (played by Chris Egan) will supplant him as king of the fictional kingdom

March 11th, 2009
Our inaugural What Works column tackles the toughest question some people ever face

“Am I an alcoholic?” “Am I an addict?” At some point, many of us look back on our drinking or using and question it: question whether it’s sustainable; question whether it’s getting in the way of our life; question whether we’re becoming who we want to be. This happened for me at 23. I’d made quite a mess already in ten years. Some come to these questions even younger. Whenever it happens, we become spiritual seekers. We open to deeper questions of meaning that had been obscured. I’ve met countless others over the years who have come up against this or some other crisis and found that, rather than the end, it was the beginning of their journey.
In this new column,…

March 8th, 2009
Recent comments in the Vatican newspaper raise questions

There’s a new study out from the Vatican: Seems men and women confess to different sins. The most commonly confessed sin for women is pride, while for men, lust and gluttony rule the confessional. Men’s desire for food is surpassed only by the urge for sex.
This analysis is based on a study of confessions carried out by Father Roberto Busa, a 95-year-old Jesuit scholar, and backed up by Vatican theologian, Dominican Father Wojciech Giertych. Recently, Monsignor Giertych told reporters for the Vatican newspaper (and, subsequently, the world) that men were more inclined than women to pursue pleasure.
“Often the most difficult [sin] men face is lust, and then comes gluttony, sloth, wrath,…

March 6th, 2009

Our Fast, Pray, Give calendar is getting some big time attention! National Public Radio’s website, npr.org, asked BustdHalo’s editor-in-chief Bill McGarvey to write a commentary on alternative Lenten fasting practices. They’ve asked us our readers to visit their site and add their comments. The more comments/discussion the piece generates the greater the chance it has of being picked up for NPR radio’s All Things Considered. So click through to here and leave a comment…remember, keep it clean!…
First it was chocolate. Then came foul language. And, finally, there was the earnest commitment to abstain from any “off-color” humor. The litany

powered by the Paulists