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Talking everyday prayer, grief, friendship and more

I had a great time on today’s episode of A Seeking Heart with Allison Gingras of Reconciled to You. We covered a lot of bases, including three of my seven books: Everyday Divine, Parenting a Grieving Child, and Walking Together. It was a smorgasbord of my writing with a lot of fun and serious conversation mixed in. Thank you, Allison, for being such a wonderful supporter of Catholic writers and of this Catholic writer in particular.

If you missed the show, you can catch up here. And if you go to Allison’s website, you can catch an entire week of shows devoted to my books — Everyday Divine on Tuesday, Parenting a Grieving Child on Wednesday, and Walking Together on Thursday. Here’s the show:


Well played, Facebook, well played

It was hard enough staying off Facebook for two days when I had multiple people emailing, texting and calling to ask why I had disappeared. Apparently when you deactivate, even when you tell Facebook it’s just temporary, your entire page vanishes, like you’ve been sucked into some black hole, like you never existed in the first place, which is a whole other existential blog post I’m not up for writing today. I heard from a few friends and relatives who wondered if I’d unfriended them or if they’d accidentally unfriended or “erased” me after they tried unsuccessfully to send me a message or write on my wall. Oh, the tangled worldwide webs we weave. Read more

What is the end you’re living for?

I was searching for something in my digital files and came across this column from January 2012. It seemed to ring true all over again, although, to be honest, I had totally forgotten about it — both the words and the lessons. So here it is again, if only for myself.

It amazes me sometimes how a casual comment, a familiar smell or the sound of a name we haven’t heard in a while can send us spiraling back in time to a place or event we’d long ago forgotten. Memories linger on our hearts. Some we’d like to preserve forever; some we wish would stay hidden. Good or bad, they are too often the things that shape us. Read more

Receiving unexpected grace via the U.S. mail

Grace can be hard to put your finger on, like trying to grab at fog or hold onto a breeze. I remember even back when I was writing The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Catholic Catechism that I struggled to define it in a way that would make sense to people, especially people who maybe had never really contemplated that word before and what it might mean in their lives. Read more

I laughed, I cried, I clicked “like”

Every once in a while I think about canceling my Facebook account. Really. But I know that, if for no other reason, my work requires me to be here. I have a love-hate relationship with the social media monster that sucks up so much of my free time. But lately I have to admit that I’ve really been feeling the love for Facebook. Well, maybe not for Facebook but for the people and conversations and connections Facebook brings into my life on a daily basis. Read more

Life in My 50s: Learning to risk a little, love a lot

My August Life Lines column, from the most recent issue of Catholic New York:

When I turned 50 last year, I had some vague notions of how I wanted to mark my half-century on earth. A lot of it had to do with visiting friends I haven’t seen in a while, reflecting on where I’ve been and where I’d like to go next, and getting right with God.

But now that I’m closing in on the end of my year, I find that the past few months have ushered in a time of my life that can best be described as “expansion.” Read more

Sometimes being a “talker” has nothing to do with talking

I walked into Zumba class at our local Y last night and found my spot on the studio floor. Just in front of me was a woman I’d never seen before, but I smiled, said hello, and asked if this was, in fact, a Zumba class since it was normally not in this  particular time slot. And then the floodgates of a one-sided conversation opened. Read more

Finding joy in an unexpected gift of pastry

Have you ever felt the urge to do something totally spontaneous and generous for someone but then pulled back at the last minute for any number of “logical” reasons — too expensive, too complicated, too time-consuming, too something. I know I’ve been there. So many times I’ve had a great idea but never followed through, usually because I let the responsibilities of life overwhelm me and become my excuse. Read more