US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Jason Isbell's brilliant lyrics describe the struggle of blue collar life

A review of Jason Isbell's newest album, Something more than free

By Danny Duncan Collum | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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The release of Jason Isbell’s Something More Than Free was as much of a mainstream media event as one can expect in this age of audience fragmentation. The album debuted at the top of the Billboard charts in country, rock, and folk, and it garnered Isbell profiles everywhere from The New Yorker to NPR.  


Isolated brothers rely on movies and each other in ‘The Wolfpack'

By Kathleen Manning | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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The Wolfpack
Directed by Crystal Moselle (Kotva Films, 2015)
After watching Star Wars as kids, no wrapping paper roll in my house was safe; my brothers and I stole them for light saber battles. The Wolfpack opens with a similar scene of kids recreating movies, but only slowly does this documentary reveal the strange necessity of their movie play. 
 

Is social justice the same as socialism?

By Kathy McGourty | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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Lately there have been accusations that a church with a social justice mission is one that supports socialism.

Conservative TV personality Glenn Beck told Christians, "I beg you, look for the words ‘social justice' or ‘economic justice' on your church website. If you find it, run as fast as you can. Social justice and economic justice, they are code words. . . . If you have a priest that is pushing social justice, go find another parish. Go alert your bishop."


Our health care system needs a heart transplant

By Thomas G. Pretlow, M.D. | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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And our politicians need a brain transplant. Universal health care is the most compassionate option we have, argues a Catholic doctor, and it’s the smartest, most economical solution as well.

The Congo’s killing fields

By Kevin Clarke | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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Families separated. Millions left for dead. Do we share some of the blame?

Patrick Mwnyamahord knows where his father is buried because a neighbor showed him that small place. What he doesn't know is how his father got there, and there was no one he could safely ask, not then. Twelve years ago he and his family made one of a series of sudden escapes from the eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) into nearby Burundi. On this particular exodus his father was too ill to travel and the family had to leave him.


Another reason to love ‘Gilmore Girls’

Lorelai and Rory Gilmore are proof that families are forged not by following social and cultural scripts, but by following the heart.

By Pamela Hill Nettleton | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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Oh, to live in Stars Hollow, where crabby but hunky Luke runs the diner, quirky Kirk holds a long string of peculiar jobs, and a single mother and her daughter can be seen as a legitimate and respectable family.

On television and in film, single mothers are too often portrayed as hapless victims, struggling to raise children in the absence of a male breadwinner. Media’s single moms live in dismal apartments in gritty neighborhoods, dress in thrift-shop clothing, and seem wearily defeated by life. They have bad posture, bad hair, and bad luck. 


‘Alwasta’ speaks to fame and power

Rapper Oddisee's new album reflects on life as a Muslim American in a post-9/11 world.

By Nicholas Liao | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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Sudanese American rapper Oddisee inhabits a delicate space in the star-obsessed rap world—bigger than underground, but not yet a household name. Still, the D.C.-born artist is on the rise, beloved by critics and hip-hop purists for his thoughtful, intricate rhymes and self-produced beats that recall the so-called golden age of rap. 


Anthony Weiner and the delusions of American politics

The Anthony Weiner saga forces us to ask questions about the state of our politics.

By Danny Duncan Collum | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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The tradition of fly-on-the-wall documentaries about American political campaigns is a long and mostly honorable one. It starts in 1960 with Primary, which took newly-invented portable equipment behind the scenes with John F. Kennedy and Hubert Humphrey as they fought for the Democratic presidential nomination. And it runs all the way through By the People: The Election of Barack Obama (2009) and Mitt (2014). In between came the greatest of them all, The War Room


The Obamas: How it all began

‘Southside with You’ tells the story of Michelle and Barack Obama's first date and plants the seeds for all that comes after.

By Liz Lefebvre | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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After seeing Barack and Michelle Obama in the public eye for the last eight years, it can be difficult to think of them as anything other than the President and the First Lady. In Southside with You, we get a glimpse of a fictionalized retelling of their first date in Chicago during the summer of 1989. 


Diana Hayes on Black women of God

Out of Black womens' struggle is birthed a spirituality that focuses on community, creativity, and the omnipresence of God.

By Emily Sanna | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
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No Crystal Stair: Womanist Spirituality
By Diana L. Hayes (Orbis Books, 2016)
 

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