Why the Internet Will Lead to Mass Conversions to Christianity

08/29/2012 Comments (88)

Greetings from Dallas! I'm here at the Catholic New Media Conference along with tons of great folks involved in Catholic new media. The whole place is abuzz with excitement and ideas about the future of new media, and as I walk around I keep thinking the limitless possibilities that are on the horizon thanks to all our modern forms of communication. I believe that all Catholic media, including traditional forms like television and radio, are indispensable to the New Evangelization. But the new media (which I'm using as a lump term to include blogging, social media, and all other types of online networked content) has three specific characteristics that differentiate it from other kids of...READ MORE

Filed under internet, new media

A New Way to Think About Meat

08/27/2012 Comments (51)

I was at the grocery store this weekend, and as I put a package of ground meat in my cart, I had a spasm of guilt about it.

This happens occasionally. For years I was a vegetarian, a choice made in large part out of concern for cruelty to animals. I eventually went back to eating meat, partially because I realized that "vegetarian" products like cheese and eggs and milk contribute to animal suffering too; unless I was prepared to adopt a strictly vegan diet, I wasn't doing as much as I had thought to help animals. Also, I became more comfortable with the ethics of eating lower life forms. (Jonah Goldberg explains it better than I could when he says that "when chickens give to charity, I...READ MORE

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Do Impoverished Women Really Feel Burdened by Their Children?

08/22/2012 Comments (113)

Have you seen Obianuju Ekeocha's open letter to Melinda Gates? If not, go read it now. It's a powerful example of the fact that what women in developing countries actually want is not always the same thing as what wealthy women from first-world countries think they might want. An excerpt:

And of course there are bound to be inconsistencies and failures in the use of these drugs and devices, so health complications could result; one of which is unintended abortion. Add also other health risks such as cancer, blood clots, etc. Where Europe and America have their well-oiled health care system, a woman in Africa with a contraception-induced blood clot does not have access to 911 or an...READ MORE

Filed under contraception, poverty, social justice

The Silent Suffering of Women Denied Children

08/20/2012 Comments (190)

The other day I got an email from a woman whom I'll call "Jane." She wrote to me with a heartbreaking story: After her second child was born, Jane was delighted by her growing family and looked forward to having more babies. Her husband, however, decided that their family was complete. He was worried about the expense and work involved with raising any more children, and wasn't interesting in taking the time to learn natural family planning methods. Against her wishes he had a vasectomy, and also refused to discuss the possibility of adoption. 

Jane is one of many women who has reached out to me in recent years to talk about this kind of situation, and she added something that I've...READ MORE

Filed under contraception, culture of death, sterile marriages, sterilization

The Complicated Legacy of Helen Gurley Brown

08/14/2012 Comments (41)

Helen Gurley Brown passed away at age 90 yesterday, and modern feminism is left to ponder her legacy.

She is sometimes held up by secular culture as a pioneer and a role model, yet feminists could never quite get comfortable with her. She championed women in the workplace and encouraged no-strings-attached sex, which earned her much praise, yet her feminist sisters often rejected her for her intense focus on attracting the attention of men. Brown said in her famous book Sex and the Single Girl that "if you aren't meeting any men through your job, you are in the wrong job." She advocated for sleeping with married men, and she summed up her thoughts on the impact it might have on wives by...READ MORE

Filed under feminism, secular society

Barbara Marx Hubbard and Our Fear of Diminishment

08/13/2012 Comments (85)

I finally got a chance to watch that Barbara Marx Hubbard video that everyone's been buzzing about, and...wow. (If you haven't seen it yet, Fr. Z has it here.) After double-checking the ingredient list on the bottle of wine I'd just opened to make sure it didn't contain any hallucinogens, I watched the video again and realized that Ms. Hubbard really did use all those words I thought I'd heard.

Like many others who watched the clip, I shook my head, wondering why Catholic nuns would want a keynote speaker who adheres to an odd and belief system that is not in line with Christian teaching (Thomas L. McDonald described it as "a combination of X-Men comics, techno-fetishizing, narcissism,...READ MORE

Filed under lcwr

Why I Threw Away My Bucket List

08/08/2012 Comments (26)

The other day I was rooting around in a seldom-used drawer, and I came across some old documents from back in my early 20s. There were work papers, notes from college classes, as well as some jumbled receipts and bills. I glanced at each item to see if it was worth keeping, and paused when I came across a familiar notebook. It was a pocket-sized, with a faux leather black cover, and on the first page was a list of things I wanted to do before I died. I didn't know this term at the time, but it was a "bucket list."

I spent a lot of time putting that thing together. I thought hard about what activities I found most interesting, what kinds of places I thought I would most enjoy. When I...READ MORE

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"Do You Want to Spend the Rest of Your Life Changing Diapers?!"

08/06/2012 Comments (34)

The other day an acquaintance was with me when my 13-month-old daughter made her first attempt at walking. My friend and I both threw our arms in the air and raised our voices the obligatory two octaves as we told her she was "SOOOO BIG!" The baby responded by putting her own chubby arms up, which meant that we had to do it again, which promoted her to do it again, and, long story short, my cardio for the day was playing the "SO BIG!" game about 78 times.

After the baby moved on to the more interesting activity of eating food items on the kitchen floor (what I call "sweeping"), I remarked with a wistful sigh that I was happy that the newborn phase was over. I'm not a natural baby...READ MORE

Filed under culture of death, culture of life, motherhood, natural family planning, open to life

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About Jennifer Fulwiler

Jennifer Fulwiler
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Jennifer Fulwiler is a writer and speaker who converted to Catholicism after a life of atheism. She's a contributor to the books The Church and New Media and Atheist to Catholic: 11 Stories of Conversion, and is writing a book based on her personal blog, ConversionDiary.com. She and her husband live in Austin, TX with their five young children, and were featured in the nationally televised reality show Minor Revisions. You can follow her on Twitter at @conversiondiary.