33 results
October 7, 2013

One of my favorite features in Reader's Digest is "Secrets Your [insert service provider] Won't Tell You." Whether the service provider is your waiter, plumber, landscape architect, human resource manager, Little League coach, veterinarian, or congressman, this feature offers sometimes helpful, sometimes outrageous glimpses into their jobs. You can learn a lot about how to approach these people in the most effective ways to get the services you either need or desire. Why do they...

September 23, 2013

One of my favorite films is The Mission (1986), directed by Roland Joffé, screenplay by Robert Bolt. Bolt also wrote the screenplay for another favorite, A Man for All Seasons...

September 18, 2013

Some people balk at the use of liberal and conservative in a religious context. They argue that these are political terms only, and that questions of religious belief and practice are too varied, too nuanced, to capture with broad-stroke labels.

I’m not one of those people. Words can have different senses in different contexts, so there should be no problem re-purposing them from one to the next. And, sure, I agree that beliefs can be complex and so labels are...

September 16, 2013

One of the common complaints about the Catholic Church, which can be heard from Catholics and non-Catholics alike, is that the Church is chockablock with rules, rules, rules. To hear them tell it, a Catholic dare not let out a wayward squeak for fear of the Ruler of Doom being cracked across his knuckles by Sister Mary Ferocious of the Divine Wrath.

Actually, although it may not appear so, the Church is remarkably quiet on a great many issues that face people in daily life. The Church...

September 12, 2013

Not long ago, I took a call from a woman who was upset over gum chewing at Mass. Hers was not the first such complaint I have heard over the years. In fact, gum chewing at Mass is one of my pet peeves. Just do a little Googling on the subject and you will be amazed at the number of online articles, blogs, and church bulletins that speak out about the problem. Some of the stories are downright disturbing. Like the time someone found a waxy glob of gum stuck on the side of the hymnal rack with...