Posts in: Faith

In my agonizing over an extended family situation, my phone scrolling compulsion yields the fact that there is a patron saint of dysfunctional families: St. Eugene de Mazenod.

Don’t ever tell me God doesn’t speak to us through whatever means He pleases. St. Eugene, pray for us.


I know I’ve talked about having guiding words for my year. In the epistle reading during today’s TLM, I may have found a guiding verse:

Rejoice in your hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. (Romans 12:12, RSV-CE)

I’ll be thinking about this one for a while.



The thick layers of ice surrounding our house (and only a half-cup of melting salt on hand) got me anxious about making it to Sunday Mass and CCD tomorrow. Just got email tonight officially canceling CCD.

Unclear as to whether the Chicago archdiocese COVID Sunday Mass dispensation is still active. (The archdiocesan website doesn’t make that clear.) But I’m taking a cue from this that we’re okay with Mass online tomorrow.

I’ll still bring it up in confession this week, though. Still feel weird about being online instead for Mass, but I’ll feel even weirder if we break a limb on our driveway or end up with our car slipping around the bridge off-ramp to church in the morning. 😐🥶


“[Pope Francis] did not say it’s selfish to not have kids. First of all, this is coming from a guy who has chosen to not have children and is in charge of a bunch of people who do not have children. And I think a lot of people were hurt because childbearing is obviously a fraught issue.

“He’s also not saying that people need to have as many children as possible, regardless of their ability to care for them. There was a time where he’s also said that Catholics don’t need to ‘breed like rabbits.’

More in this transcript from the great podcast “Jesuitical,” which I highly recommend.


Having been a single, childless pet owner in a previous life, I get the indignant hot takes about the pope’s latest remarks. (And I never want to be That Guy who lords my married-with-kid status over others.)

That said, calling one’s dogs and cats “kids” or “furbabies” also makes me cringe.


Very grateful for online homilies that can make up for scary in-person ones – the kind that I worry will drive my kid away from the faith – at morning Mass.



Attended a midday Latin Mass at our parish for today’s feast of the Immaculate Conception.

It was a particularly interesting experience after a vigil Mass the night before at another parish that is decidedly less, well, reverent than ours:

  • fully blinged-out Christmas trees behind the altar;
  • strict adherence to arcane diocesan rules that all but discourage reception of the Eucharist on the tongue;
  • a small army of laypersons armed with hand sanitizers before you receive;
  • and an “extraordinary” Eucharistic minister helping to hand out Communion next to the celebrant, even though there was another priest available to do so.

And for all of that, today’s Latin Mass – in the middle of the day, a somewhat more inconvenient time, really – had more than twice as many people attending, and our pastor distributed the Eucharist himself.

I really don’t want to be one of those stereotypically cranky and indignant TLM types. I’m fine with the so-called Novus Ordo liturgy in the vernacular, so long as it’s celebrated by clergy and parishioners in a reverent and respectful manner. This is rarely the case in the three parishes in our DuPage County suburb, which is one of the reasons why we are registered at a more orthodox parish down the road in a decidedly more working-class Cook County area.

But every time I attend Mass in our town, I’m immensely grateful for our parish, where the faith and the Real Presence is taken seriously. It’s been a gift.


Today’s amusing catechical moment: sitting behind the older CCD boys at Mass and, when the priest mentioned in passing that there would be no video games in Heaven, hearing their audible gasps.