Flourishing and Dying

About two months ago, our family moved to a new city and home. Life was on the cusp of a spring breakthrough, though we couldn’t yet perceive all of its wonder and glory. Our new backyard was riddled with sticks and brown, parched grass. Heavily pruned and unidentifiable bushes adorned the brick pathway through the side yard. Life was dormant, […]

Back to School and Back to Soul

This week, my older kids head back to school. That leaves me home with half as many kids, one of whom will be starting half-days in September. This time of year is always exciting for me: I have an inner love and longing for all things school supplies. Fresh notebooks and unsharpened pencils scream “HOPE!” and “FUN!” to me, and […]

20 Lessons I Will Teach My Son

Mother and Child

My little boy should arrive any day now. Having ventured beyond my due date, I’m experiencing Advent as the “season of patient waiting” to a very realistic extent this year. The extra days have given me ample time to reflect and prepare for both his arrival and the celebration of the arrival of the infant Jesus shortly thereafter. I decided […]

Be Counter-Cultural and Name Your Baby Mary

One of the signs that our society has changed is the spate of crazy baby names that began emerging in the Seventies. The decade that brought us sex, drugs, and rock and roll, also brought us Moon Unit 1, the name of Frank Zappa’s oldest daughter. She has three younger siblings, Dweezil, Ahmet, and Diva Muffin.  I don’t know their […]

When I Was “Pro-Choice”

There was a time in my life when I was “pro-choice.”  I was raised by parents who were adamantly pro-life members of the Baptist church in the small Georgia town where I grew up, but their passion for this cause had little effect on me at the time.  When I left the Baptist church as a teenager, my immaturity and […]

The Hand of Hope

In the year 1508, Pope Julius II ordered a reluctant Michelangelo Buonarroti — who considered himself a sculptor and not a painter—to paint the huge vault of the Sistine Chapel, which, since the time of Sixtus IV, displayed nothing more resplendent than a blue field sprinkled with golden stars.  Despite his initial reluctance, Michelangelo soon mastered the difficult technique of […]

Stay-at-Home-Mom Blues

Hey, mama! Yes, you with the baby in your arms… I see you, out there, sitting at your table, your desk, or your kitchen island, and I notice you are a little discouraged. You switched on the computer a few minutes ago to check your mail and a couple websites, the most exciting contact you’ll have with the outside world […]

Why Would You Ever Want a Hubby and a Baby?

I was trapped on the treadmill, eyes fixed on the TV set elevated above me and dumbfounded by the show I found myself watching. It was one of those talk shows—you know, the kind where the hosts and guests spend an hour or so discussing all sorts of “important” topics: celebrity gossip, beauty tips, relationship problems…definitely not my entertainment preference, […]

God is Pro-Choice, but not Pro-Death

A Franciscan nun (whose name we shall not disclose out of respect to her Order’s founder) has written a letter published in a “Catholic” newspaper, in which she argues in favour of abortion because, after all, God Himself is pro-choice.  “Obama may be pro-choice,” she writes, “but so is God.”  She then reminds her readers that “God gave everyone a […]

The Mind of a Woman

Gazing into my newborn son’s eyes told me in an instant what I’d suspected for years: intellectual stimulation is not a prerequisite for contentment. What more could any woman want for than to be the recipient of this precious soul’s love and the provider of his care? The argument that to be “whole” a woman must also have a career lost […]