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True love

Each year between January and March, my family moves out into the wide world. Some of us go to college, others go to work, and the rest of us fall into the travel plans wherever we might be useful. Then, usually sometime in November, my family returns from our travels across the country and hops back into life as one big happy family in Alabama. My dad and my brother-in-law both work jobs that require a lot of travel in ... (Continue reading)

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Felix Culpa

At the bank a few years back, my friendly teller and I were chatting in the way that sometimes happens when you are about the same age as the person helping you, and one of you goes, “Oh my gosh, I love your eyelashes!” And the other one goes, “Oh WOW, that is so sweet. Your necklace is adorable.” Then, “I am so serious, though. What mascara do you use? It’s, like, magical....” I could continue—because this is fascinating, I know—but I have more important ... (Continue reading)

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Fall trees

November 2012 cover

Our November 2012 cover artist, Anne-Marie Doyle, lives in Toronto, selling pumpkin pie and pumpkin spice coffee and finishing her last semester of English Literature studies. She is slowly working toward fluency in the language of charcoal and oils, and hopes to spend a few years training with master painters (if she can sell enough pumpkin pie to pay for it). In the meantime, Christ is teaching her about Himself so that she has something worth speaking about in the ... (Continue reading)

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Sarah’s Helpful Holiday Hints

Do you hear that friends? The ring, ting, tinkling of sleigh bells accosting your ears in the grocery store or while you’re waiting at the bank? Seems like October 31st, at the stroke of midnight, store owners ditched the monsters and ghosts and brought out the evergreens—a violent shove from scary and ghoulish to jolly and cozy. It’s almost as if they can visualize the Christmas dollars flying out of our wallets and into their pockets—and it can’t happen fast enough, ... (Continue reading)

Truth and contradiction

Yesterday, my sister (who is no longer pregnant), my new nephew, my niece, my brother-in-law, and I went grocery shopping. This was my sister's first post-baby shopping trip and, understandably, she got a bit tired about three quarters of the way through. She decided to go sit down and leave my brother-in-law and me in charge of finishing the shopping and looking after the kids. Just a few minutes after my sister left us, the ... (Continue reading)

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My Sister’s Keeper: A Pro-Life Book Review

It all begins with a bruise: a little clover-shaped bruise. While bathing her two-year-old daughter, Sarah finds a trail of little brown bruises running down Kate’s spine. Sarah and her husband Brian follow the trail to an oncologist, and from then on, Kate’s childhood becomes a whirlwind of specialist appointments, emergency surgeries, and nauseating chemo-therapy sessions. Her parents face a mountain of medical bills, pools of blood, and a devastating diagnosis. How far are they willing to go to save ... (Continue reading)

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Feelings: it’s simple.

In many ways we live in an age of “feeling.” If we feel something—anything—we show it, talk about it, dissect it, and take it to our shrinks. This is, apparently, in reaction to earlier more “stoic” ages where feelings were stuffed down, ignored, and thrown out with yesterday’s milk bottles. I am definitely in favor of being aware of one’s feelings—to know where they are coming from, why we are having them, and what we can do about them is, I ... (Continue reading)

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The perfect relationship

Anybody heard of Pinterest? If you haven’t, count your lucky stars because you’ve just "gained" back hours and hours of time to waste on something else. Pinterest is a virtual "ideas" cork-board—a place where anyone and everyone can put up a picture, post an idea or website, or browse and gather ideas for things like wedding stationary, recipes, Halloween costumes, or nailpolish tips and tricks. Occasionally I will come across some fascinating cultural tells, and this morning was one of ... (Continue reading)

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Life is not a fairy tale.

When a person gets everything that she wants, when she has all the things that she thinks she needs, and life is being wonderfully kind; when there is nothing terrible hanging over her head and no looming catastrophe, she might say something along the lines of “it feels just like a fairy tale.” When her lucky streak is over in a day, a week, a month, a year, when life is no longer handing her everything on ... (Continue reading)

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The Poor Souls

"It ain't right, and I'm sick and tired of what ain't right," says a character in the western Silverado. That's how I feel about the treatment the poor souls in Purgatory have been given over the last few decades. "Well, his sufferings are over," people say at the funeral home (I'm talking about Catholic believers). "Your grandmother is in heaven," proclaim priests and deacons at all too many funerals. I have been asked, "Do we still believe in Purgatory?" That Purgatory exists, ... (Continue reading)

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