New Year, New Translation: My 2018 Bible Challenge

Ever since I became a Catholic, I’ve used the Revised Standard Version, Second Catholic Edition (RSV-2CE). I have other translations, but I’ve always returned to the RSV-2CE; it’s familiar, comforting, and reminiscient of the old NKJV study bible I used throughout my childhood. When I finally read the bible cover-to-cover, I used the RSV-2CE. In December my beloved Ignatius Bible gave up the ghost, so I bought a large print New American Bible (NABRE). I’m attending a parish that uses the NABRE for bible study, and honestly, I never gave the NABRE a fair shake when I chose my first bible after coming into the Church. It’s about time I gave the United States’ “official” translation a test drive. Continue reading

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Turning to 2018: Resolutions

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Bonfire / Me

Whether I am prepared or not, 2018 will be a turning point. As the saying goes, “When one door closes, another opens.” In May, I will, God willing, graduate from law school. After seven long years of higher education, I’ll finally get to don what I affectionately refer to as “my funny hat” and write Juris Doctor on my resume. I still have a long way to go, but my vision in velvet is fast approaching.

 

With that in mind, I’ve penned a few resolutions I’d like to share. I haven’t managed to stick to many in my short lifetime, but I won’t give up trying to be a better me. As St. Paul reminds us, our ultimate goal is Heaven, and we can’t stop yet: Continue reading

Audience Matters

“Revise, revise, and when you’re done revising, revise some more.” I can still hear my advanced composition teacher when I pick up a pen or sit at a keyboard to write. Rule One: No piece is complete without multiple drafts. Rule Two: Know your audience. With that in mind, I asked myself, “What sort of people do I want to read my blog?” I instantly thought of an amazing Kickstarter project:
 

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Reflections on the Book of Job: Hope in Suffering

The Book of Job is not my favorite book of Scripture, but it is dear to my heart all the same. I often read Job when I need encouragement. Sometimes I ask myself why that is; Job doesn’t have an easy time being tested. He loses his family and his home, and even his friends turn against him. Despite this, the Book of Job encourages me and teaches me. Continue reading

St. JP II: Salvifici Doloris

As a person, and especially a Catholic, with a permanent and sometimes painful physical disability, the doctrine of redemptive suffering resonates with me very deeply. And this idea of patient suffering made me love John Paul II, even before I was Catholic—underneath that slouching, frail body was an indomitable Spirit that even non-religious folks noticed. I think of John Paul II, and I see the fruit Jesus’ words when he said, “Do not be afraid.” This man was to me so brave, and I’m glad he’s interceding for us now in Heaven, asking God to help us patiently bear our own crosses; what a reassurance! And what a reassurance and grace that we have a God who still speaks to us in the Sacraments and from the pages of Holy Scripture proclaiming, “Do not fear, greatly beloved, you are safe! Be strong and courageous!” (Dan. 10:19) Because Friday is traditionally a day of penance and reflection on Jesus’ sacrifice, I’d like to share with you all this excerpt from St. John Paul II’s apostolic letter Salvifici Doloris: Continue reading

Captivated

It is no strain of music, no tinsel of vestment, no pomp of ceremonial which attracts us to our churches, which holds us captive in them. No! For Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament offers the same attractions, commands the same reverent attention, elicits the same humble adoration, whether we assist at His worship amid the poverty and simplicity of an Indian chapel, or assist at it amid the wealth and grandeur of a stately cathedral; it is Christ in the Eucharist Who holds us captive. It matters not to us whether He is worshiped amid the squalor of a stable, as at Bethlehem, by the lowly and the illiterate, or as afterward when offered gold and incense, He is adored by the high-born and learned, by kings and wise men.

—Pere Huby

Conversion Part One: Hopkins Builds a Snowman

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Gerard Manley Hopkins / Photo available via Wikimedia Commons

My journey to the Catholic Church began in the 11th grade. My incredible, now retired English teacher, whose “disappointed face” still inspires me to double-check the grammar in everything I write, assigned us our yearly research paper. That year, she decided we would each write on a famous English poet of her choosing. By choosing, she meant, “I’m drawing names out of a hat, and no, you can’t trade.” You can almost hear the collective groan, but not from me. Finally, a topic I liked! (Last year we’d written on careers. Boring.) I went home with the name of an old dead British guy I knew nothing about—Gerard Manley Hopkins. Continue reading