‘A bad guy was killing people’: A parent’s response to the nightmare of gun violence

It’s 3 a.m. and the moon is glowing softly through the wide bedroom window. Why am I awake? I look to the side and see that our six-month-old is sleeping soundly. A repetition of the sound that woke me, “Mama!!”, comes from the room across the hall. It’s our three-year-old who, despite a strong, independentContinue reading “‘A bad guy was killing people’: A parent’s response to the nightmare of gun violence”

Choosing not to live in fear

My feet were numb. It was the night of January 27, 2017, and I was standing outside O’Hare International Airport in Chicago with hundreds of supporters of Muslims.The number of Muslims, immigrants, allies and politicos surged to 1,000 in a few short hours. Many travelers arriving at O’Hare decided to forgo their itineraries and joinContinue reading “Choosing not to live in fear”

A persecuted Church: Images of the Body of Christ in “Romero”

Blessed Oscar Romero will be canonized a saint in Rome this coming Sunday, October 14th. You can view the live Canonization Mass on EWTN starting at 3:30 a.m. ET or again at noon. In honor of the upcoming celebration, I offer you a review of the film about the last three years of his life thatContinue reading “A persecuted Church: Images of the Body of Christ in “Romero””

King’s mountaintop is an Easter invitation for everyone

Happy Easter! And, blessed day of the martyrdom of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  to you all! Rev. King was shot on this day, April 4th, 1968 — 50 years ago. He was only 39 years old. The night before he was killed he gave his final speech, a prophetic message of ringing withContinue reading “King’s mountaintop is an Easter invitation for everyone”

Anxious resistance

I had a knot in my stomach all day. I couldn’t focus at work. I lost my appetite. I felt exhausted as soon as I woke up. My mind was running with a thousand scenarios of things going wrong. I became keenly aware of that familiar feeling: a low-grade but persistent anxiousness; a lump thatContinue reading “Anxious resistance”

Death comes for us all, Oroku Saki

“Death comes for us all, Oroku Saki, but something much worse comes for you … for when you die, it will be without honor.” ~ Master Splinter, to the Shredder, in “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Movie” (1990). At the climax of one of my favorite films, the 1990 cinematic masterpiece “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles,”Continue reading “Death comes for us all, Oroku Saki”

Fear, darkness, and Advent

Lately a certain Gospel instruction is has been grinding challenge into my life, really giving my heart a doozy of a talking to. Jesus says it a lot, in many different ways: Do not be afraid. (Luke 1:30; Mark 5:36; Mark 6:50) Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span? (Matthew 6:27)Continue reading “Fear, darkness, and Advent”

In a time for falling

Lately, falling has been on my mind. The season for this is approaching, as leaf after leaf will soon let go and make its journey downwards, trusting the winds to take them where they need to go. I have been thinking about the sensation of falling, but not for the reasons you might expect. ItContinue reading “In a time for falling”

Work and rest

  This last month was a strenuous one in my youth ministry. It involved back-to-back weekend events, and I found myself putting in tons of extra hours and working for a 21-day stint with only a single day off. It involved late nights and early mornings. It was hard, tiring work. During one evening ofContinue reading “Work and rest”

Fear and sandwiches

  On most days at work, I sit down and eat lunch with at least a few people who are, more or less, on the opposite side of the political spectrum from myself. While we agree on many of the problems our country faces, our ideas on how to solve them vary wildly. There are,Continue reading “Fear and sandwiches”