Author: Emily Reimer-Barry

Finding God in the Dishes: Gaudete et Exsultate

In Gaudete et Exsultate, Pope Francis reaffirms the universal call to holiness and says that he explicitly wishes to propose it “in a practical way for our own time, with all its risks, challenges, and opportunities” (2).  My colleagues David Cloutier and Matthew Shadle have already reflected on key themes of the document here and here, so I will try to avoid repeating what they have articulated so well already. I will focus on the theme of spirituality in everyday life, and especially on how the pope describes ordinary work as a path of sanctification. As a lay woman...

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In Gratitude for the Life and Witness of Sister Anne Nasimiyu-Wasike, LSOSF

Sister Anne Nasimiyu-Wasike, Little Sisters of St. Francis, died suddenly this week. Her friends are understandably quite shocked and saddened by this news. I count myself among them, having been privileged to meet Sister Anne in Nairobi ten years ago when she was my teacher and mentor at the Maryknoll Institute for African Studies. Sister Anne served as General Superior of the Religious Institute of Little Sisters of St. Francis from 1992 to 1998 and again from 2010 to 2016 and was Professor of Systematic Theology and Moral Theology in the Philosophy and Religious Studies Department at Kenyatta University...

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Why Catholics in Alabama Should Vote for Doug Jones

I can’t vote in the December 12th election in Alabama, but I know many voters who can. As someone who grew up in Mobile, Alabama, I know from personal experience that Alabama is a complex place and that it does a tremendous disservice to residents of that state to offer oversimplified caricatures of bigots, fundamentalists, racists, and stupid country folk. At the same time, the Roy Moore phenomenon is hard to explain and it is harder still to understand how some Catholics can rationalize a vote for him in the upcoming U.S. Senate race. For anyone on the fence,...

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Holding Sexual Predators Accountable is a Pro-Life Issue

Roy Moore wants to be the next U.S. Senator from Alabama. Today a fifth woman, Beverly Young Nelson, came forward to tell Alabama voters that Moore had assaulted her when she was 16 years old. This disclosure follows the Washington Post story of November 9th in which four women accuse Moore of groping them and initiating sexual acts even though he was in his early thirties and they were teenagers. I looked in vain for a statement from the Archdiocese of Mobile or the Diocese of Birmingham . The website for Youth and Child Protection on the Diocese of Birmingham...

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Toxic Shame and Sin-Talk: Church Militant Has It All Wrong

Church Militant continues to claim that Fr. James Martin is a heretic while misrepresenting his book, Building a Bridge. While it is certainly painful to see a good priest attacked in this public way for his attempts to create spaces for dialogue in the church, what is particularly troubling to me is the way that Church Militant employs sin-talk and shaming discourse. Among the list of their complaints: “Fr. Martin publicly suggests that God created homosexuals that way.” Despite the fact that medical and mental health professionals have long noted the dangers of so-called conversion therapies or reparative therapies,...

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