Advent for Adults

12/10/2013 Comments (19)

Here's a neat tidbit about that very familiar Advent hymn, "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel":  the words are based on the O antiphons, which have been sung since the very early days of the Church.  According to, each of the antiphons is one of the titles of Christ:

O Sapientia (O Wisdom),
O Adonai (O Lord),
O Radix Jesse (O Root of Jesse),
O Clavis David (O Key of David),
O Oriens (O Rising Sun),
O Rex Gentium (O King of the Nations),
and O Emmanuel.

Here's the neat part:  look at the first letter of each title.  From first to last, it reads SARCORE.  Now read the letters backwards, and you get EROCRAS.  So what?  ERO CRAS is Latin for "I am coming," and you have...READ MORE

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I'm Making a List

12/05/2013 Comments (49)

Gifts for everybody!  Here's what I've got so far:

1. I can only guess how much it pains Rush Limbaugh that he's been so stymied in his earnest search to find out anything, anything at all, about basic Catholic social teaching, and how, if at all, it differs from Marxism.  Headscratchy!  To remedy this tragic and embarrassing gap in his intellectual arsenal, I freely offer Mr. Limbaugh 1000 free hours of AOL. Once he figures out some basic internet skills, such as how to use Google, here is a good place to start .  Happy larnin', big guy!

2. To Fran Person, assistant to Joe Biden, a crisp new $10 bill, to pay him back for the money Mr. Biden borrowed when he ordered four sandwiches...READ MORE

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Evil Isn't Private (and Neither Is Good)

12/03/2013 Comments (76)

For infecting at least 46 people with hepatitis C, David Kwiatkowski was sentenced to 39 years in federal prison with no chance of parole.  Kwiatkowski was a hospital lab tech here in NH.  An alcoholic and narcotics addict, he routinely injected himself with powerful pain killers meant for patients.  He would then refill the syringes with saline solution, tainting them with the infection he carried, and send them off to be reused.  Ten thousand patients who might have come into contact with the infected syringes were advised to be tested for the disease -- because NH was not the only place where Kwiatkowski worked. He had been fired from several hospitals in other states, on suspicion of...READ MORE

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Happy Thankcircumcisionsgiving!

11/28/2013 Comments (82)

Do you know what the slowest day on the blogosphere in the U.S. is?  Not Christmas, not Easter, not even Valentine's Day.  It's Thanksgiving.  Everyone is going to be busy cooking turkey, welcoming friends and family, playing football, running charitable marathons, or bringing about the final downfall of western civilization by running out for a consumerist pound of butter.  Anything, anything at all, but not reading blogs.

All bloggers know that feeling of typing into a void -- of expending pixels for naught, dispersing their words into the ether, or possibly the ethernet, whatever that is.  It doesn't really feel bad.  It reminds me of when we used to watch the TV show Cheers when I...READ MORE

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Savor the Name

11/26/2013 Comments (7)

Most fruit seems like a gift, but a pomegranate is the most extravagant.  The seeds burgeon under the skin, and when you tear it open with a tart ripping sound, the byzantine arrangement within tells you that here, there is both order and design, and an unaccountable exuberance.  The seeds shine.  They glow like rubies, and you crunch them with your teeth and lick the blood of rubies off your lips.

Well, that's how I feel about pomegranates. 

I was saying the rosary the other day.  Chesterton says that if a thing is worth doing, it's worth doing badly.  That's the only thing that kept me going with that morning's rosary:  the idea that it's better to pray badly than to not-pray well. ...READ MORE

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The Sun in Winter

11/21/2013 Comments (69)

Catholics and anti-Catholics alike are heaping scorn on the head of Kaya Oakes, the author of a pathetic little piece that was reprinted in Salon this week.  In "My Torment as a Catholic Woman," she laments the fact that she can't be a priest.  She doesn't especially want or feel called to be a priest herself, mind you; but she suffers on behalf of her "hungry" sisters who have been denied.

The commenters on Salon dish out the almost absendminded contempt they routinely lavish on Catholics: 

"You choose to belong to a Church that hates you just because you're female."

"I have also run out of patience for people who willingly allow themselves to be tormented by the Catholic Church."


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Ten Splendid Sequels You Can Expect to See

11/19/2013 Comments (28)

When my oldest kid was about three, she suddenly stood up from the dinner table and announced, "I have a splendid idea!"  She dashed away, and we waited, breathlessly.  In two minutes, she came back with a cup of water, waited until all eyes were on  her, and then triumphantly dumped the water on her head.

It was indeed a splendid idea.

Similar in its splendor and brilliance and all around overwhelming smartness of brain, we have this idea from Hollywood:  a sequel to It's a Wonderful LifeAccording to Variety,

Karolyn Grimes, who played George Bailey’s daughter “Zuzu” in the original, will return for the “Wonderful Life” sequel as an angel who shows Bailey’s unlikeable...READ MORE

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Hobby Horses

11/14/2013 Comments (38)

During our catechism lessons, one of my kids had the habit of answering any question -- any question whatsoever -- with the answer "God." 

"Who made you?"  --  "God." 
"Who is the Good Shepherd?" -- "God." 
"What did Moses say to Pharaoh?"  -- "God."

Now, this was mostly her fault, and not mine.  I had to repeat myself a lot, because it was really important for them to learn by heart what I was telling them.  (And the cure for a snotty little upstart who thinks she knows everything about religion is, of course, to start in on Theology for Beginners by Frank Sheed.  Pause often, and remind the wee ones that this is just for beginners.)

But we've all had teachers who repeat...READ MORE

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About Simcha Fisher

Simcha Fisher
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Simcha Fisher, author of The Sinner's Guide to Natural Family Planning writes for several publications and blogs daily at Aleteia. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and ten children. Without supernatural aid, she would hardly be a human being.