‘Because You Can’

In 2010, I trained for the Chicago Marathon, and it remains one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, physically and mentally. For months I was exhausted, at times frustrated; I was nervous, excited, worried, and exhilarated. Midway through my training program, I was feeling especially tired and...

How Much Do YOU Know about Mary?

May is a particularly appropriate month for learning more about Mary. Yesterday afternoon, I had the opportunity to hear Chris Padgett speak about Mary, the Mother of God. Despite being a lifelong Catholic, I feel like there are many things I know about Mary, but can’t really explain to anyone. This...

The Element of Surprise

The story about Joshua Bell playing in a Washington, D.C., subway station a few years back surfaced again last week on a Facebook post I saw. The point of the story is that, in 2008, a Washington Post reporter enlisted Bell in an experiment about people’s perceptions—in this case, how many passersby...

Birds of the Air, Bless the Lord

I’m not usually a big fan of birds.  I’ve had a few too many incidents in my life of birds leaving “a deposit” on my head for me to have any great fondness for things flying directly overhead.  But this weekend I had a couple of “bird encounters” that surprised me. On Saturday I armed myself...

Bringing Back the Bluebirds

A couple years ago, a Franciscan friar in my community, Fr. Carl, built and mounted a number of bird houses on the property of our St. Anthony Shrine. The birdhouses are nicely constructed of cedar and are the exact type suited for bluebirds. Because there were no bluebirds around the shrine property, we...

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