Author: Beth Haile

Families, Ideal and Experienced

This is a guest post by Jacob M. Kohlhaas, Assistant Professor of Theology at Loras College in Dubuque Iowa. “Let us cross the threshold of this tranquil home, with its family sitting around the festive table. At the centre we see the father and mother, a couple with their personal story of love.” Pope Francis, Amoris Laetitia While its opening lines invoke the image of a blissful traditional family, Amoris Laetitia is largely concerned with encouraging families who, for various reasons, fall short of this ideal. To address families in ‘irregular situations,’ as the document terms them, Pope Francis...

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Corpus Christi: Finding Unity in Division

Because the loaf of bread is one, we, though many, are one body, for we all partake of the one loaf. Catholics make a big deal about the Eucharist. We hold by faith that Christ is corporally present in some mysterious way, that what we eat is not substantially bread and what we drink is not substantially wine, but rather, the real and actual body and blood of Jesus. But we also believe that in doing so, we are incorporated corporally into intimate unity with that same Christ Jesus. And we also believe that in our incorporation into Christ’s...

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Priestdaddy Offends and Disgusts. You should read it!

I recently read Patricia Lockwood’s memoir Priestdaddy. Lockwood is a poet with a unique backstory—her father is an ordained Catholic priest. My original intention for picking up the memoir was to gain insights into what it might be like to have married priests with families. Lockwood doesn’t give us much in the regard. Her father is almost a caricature, not a real person. He is overweight, fiercely conservative, spending his time at home in his study lounging in his underwear and listening to Rush Limbaugh and watching football. When his adult children and grandchildren visit, he makes a five...

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This Ain’t Your Mama’s Homeschool

This summer, a group of Catholic homeschooling moms in my mid-sized middle-America town are getting together to read Beauty in World: Rethinking the Foundations of Education, by Stratford Caldecott, a book that explores the history and ongoing relevance of a liberal education to not only educate, but humanize. I know many of these moms from my monthly Well-Read Mom book club, which is a national group that encourages re-encountering (or encountering for the first time) classic literature. This year, we read A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, The Death of Ivan Illych, Screwtape Letters, and Wuthering Heights, among others. When...

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Fourth Sunday of Easter: The Open Gate

ACTS 2:14A, 36-41 1 PT 2:20B-25 JN 10:1-10 The reason this lectionary post will be a bit short and hasty is because I am away visiting family on the occasion of my nephew’s (and godson’s) first communion. I had the great privilege of being an extraordinary minister for the occasion. The parish church invited all of the first communicants and their families to come up first for communion, and it was fascinating to see how few families received together. Almost every child I saw (and about half of them were in Catholic school) had a parent or grandparent who...

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