Almost a quarter of a year has gone by since I left my life as a Jesuit volunteer in Peru. I was not prepared for the struggle to define myself in an old and familiar context but now as someone different.
This year, I tried something new as my Lenten practice: conversation office hours. I came across this idea while reading Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport.
If you’re at all interested in kinship, family structures, or intentional community, you’ve gotta check out David Brook’s cover article in The Atlantic titled “The Nuclear Family Was a Mistake.”
Part of being human is balancing work, leisure, and recreation. For many of us, balancing all of it can be a real challenge.
It’s painful to think back on all the people I’ve loved and lost touch with, but it’s important that I do this, that we do this. All these people were important pieces of the social fabric of my life.
Right now, in Xinjiang, China’s far western province, roughly one million people are being detained in extralegal internment camps (the state calls them “re-education centers”). Those detained are mostly Uyghers, a mostly-Muslim Turkic ethnic group.
I love the imagery and symbolism of pregnancy and birth during this time of Advent, because it is so rich with meanings and also of course because I love accompanying women as they prepare and work to bring new life into the world.
I’m the sort of nerd who likes to articulate my principles. I love being able to recite these words in times of prayer and lean on them in times of stress. My articulations of my principles are largely borrowed from Thich Nhat Hanh’s mindfulness trainings, but I have gone ahead and made some modifications of my own.
After graduating from SCU, I spent time with JVC, L’Arche, and the Maryknoll China Teachers Program. I’ve thought of these experiences as my “formation years,” as something akin to the notoriously long Jesuit formation process, which typically lasts at least ten years.
“They Say” is a poem Meg O’Neill wrote while working in Ritsona refugee camp in central Greece.
Hrotsvitha of Gandersheim was a tenth-century German canoness, dramatist, and poet. (A canoness is basically like a nun, but with less strict vows.) Hrotsvitha is remarkable: she has been called the first Western playwright since antiquity as well as the first known woman playwright. In her six plays, Hrotsvitha takes comic tropes used by Roman playwrights and reworks them into plays that not only glorify God but also deeply honor faith, celibacy, and women.
Quinoa Greens is one of my favorite recipes. It’s tasty. It’s healthy. It’s simple to cook, and it’s easy to modify.
I was excited to see Cal Newport’s recent blog post titled “Digital Minimalism and God (Or, is Social Media Undermining Religion?)” In the post, Newport remarks that he was somewhat surprised by how well received his new book Digital Minimalism has been within religious circles.
I recently read Sarah E. Stevens’ essay “Care Time” in Disability Studies Quarterly, in which she reflects on how her experiences as a care partner affect her relationship to time. Stevens’ essay got me thinking about the two years I spent as a live-in assistant at L’Arche Heartland. Stevens’ description of care time strongly resonated with my experiences as a L’Arche assistant, but I also noticed some interesting points of divergence between care time and “L’Arche time.”
It turns out that grayscaling your screen doesn’t just make your phone boring and less interesting to look at. It also makes your phone’s user interface more confusing and harder to parse with a single glance. Which, thereby, makes me less inclined to spend time on my phone and more inclined to throw my phone across the room and go read or go outside.