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This past week, I have been in San Francisco along side my son who is in the hospital. I relaxed my Facebook restrictions and found I wanted to close the tab after too long. It is nice to ease the vigilance of wondering if there is another message for me. The interest in scrolling is almost dead. In my evenings, once filled with binge watching television shows online, have been filled with 30 minutes of writing and at least one hour of reading Kristen Lavarnsdatter. I look forward to that time as the day goes on.

On to the weekend links!

Religion

Some times we need a reminder that mass is more than meets the eye. This post from the ever clear and concise Fr. Longenecker on why only the ordained can preach at mass provided that for me.

Consumerism

I find the whole American consumerist approach to holidays fascinating. There is a vacuum of culture when religion backs away. Something must fill it. With advertisement saturation, consumerism filled that void. So yes, I do think retailers are giving the people what they want by opening a holiday shop in summer. It may be what they want, but it is not what is best for them.

I am a proponent of “we need to get with the times” and pursue renewable sources of energy. It is frustrating to see how these solar panel rental companies work. I will be following the developments of these Tesla roof tiles.

Art/Literature

Too often in the nitty gritty of parish life, with tight budgets and efforts to manage with few resources, the value of work is downgraded. We need volunteers, it is true, but if you are a freelancers of any kind, be mindful of how much you volunteer. Consider it your pro bono work, be open about the nature of it, and when the desire to give or requests come in asking for me, have your fees ready. This article from Catholic Creatives highlights the impact of working for free has on others in the same industry. In many Catholic parishes, we see this in how some want to hire a musician to play piano and sing and lead a choir at multiple masses for $100 a week.

I copied this here as much for you as for me. Reading Kristen Lavarnsdatter by Sigurd Undset, a boulder of a book with great depth and growth has not only been entertaining, but relaxing and restorative after long days. I hope you find something you like. From the list, I am interested to read Silas Marner, Treasure Island, and The Idiot. In this House of Brede and Brideshead Revisited were begun and set aside. No shame in that!

Education

Beware what you read. When even academic journals are subject to poor publications, imagine what happens by the time it hits the Associated Press and it boiled down further to your newsfeed. See this scientific paper on Star Wars for evidence of why you should read carefully, and evaluate the reputation and quality of the journal.

At my former place of work, I am quoted from a Catchphrase came. The clue: this is an animal that flies. I shout: dragon! I love to learn the origins of mythical and strange creatures. Behold, the Basilisk!

Are you tired of Pearson’s for-profit monopoly on testing supplies and Advance Placement programs? I am. This man has created a college entrance exam focused on classical Christian education. Over 60 colleges will accept it in place of or alongside the SAT and ACT.

Relationships/Family

Not all abuse is physical. This piece published on Aleteia provides some important information on what psychological abuse looks like and how to get help.

Culture

A few weeks ago I shared with you an example of coercing sterilization among prison inmates. I am glad to share this offer has ended.

Racism is real. The view and treatment of the countries in Africa by other nations is unacceptable. Let’s end the ideological imperialism by the West to countries such as these. Citizens of the continent are not in need of contraception and fewer children but food, clean water, access to quality healthcare (the real kind that treats disease rather than bodily functions like fertility), education, and pro-woman laws that protect wives. Can we stop thinking contraception solves all problems that ever existed?

 

 

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