The Professional Catholic

03/01/2013 Comments (146)

If you write (or speak, or produce videos, or appear on TV) about Catholic issues and people see your name more than twice, then sooner or later you are going to be accused of being a "professional Catholic."  This is supposed to be a stinging indictment of your character, although I could never figure out why.  I suppose people have some vaguely pious belief that, when we do things for the Lord, we ought to offer them for free, and perhaps anonymously, so that there's no possibility of getting caught up in greed or the desire for fame.

It's a nice thought, but utterly disregards the way the world actually works for most people.  If a man spends his whole day producing fabulous...READ MORE

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Strange Goings-On in the Secular Media

02/28/2013 Comments (44)

Catholics!  The Vatican!  Pope!  Where, oh where can the secular media find some useful and accurate information about these strange and mysterious things?  Normally, reporters will flip through their rolodexes straight to a reliable source like this guy

 

Or they consult with a panel of experts like these

or, if they need clarity on some heavy doctrinal issues, they consult with someone like this

or, if they're just looking for the word on the street from your average well-catechised Catholic layman, they'll seek out this fellow

 

But there's been an alarming trend in the last few weeks.  The secular, mainstream media is getting their information from . . . wait...READ MORE

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How to Get Up in the Morning

02/26/2013 Comments (62)

The other morning, I went to my daughter's room to wake her up.  She was dead asleep, nestled into her quilts.  I spoke her name, and instantly she was upright, her dark eyes darting with merriment.  She even did this nutty snap-that-turns-into-a-finger-gun thing, like someone warming up the crowd at the Voulez Vous Lounge in Eureka Springs, AR : "Hey, there, Mama-jama!  No sleepyheads here!  How ya doing this beautiful A in the M?  Don't forget to tip your waitress!"

Where we got her was, see, one day this giant seed pod drifted out of the sky and into the back yard, and when we opened it up, she was inside, wide awake. The only thing we can guess is that she is a foundling from...READ MORE

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Praying Like the Devil

02/22/2013 Comments (48)

4 Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2 After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. 3 The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”

 

4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,”he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:

 

“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
and they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your...READ MORE

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Here We Are

02/21/2013 Comments (51)

In my post about reading classic literature to children, one reader responded:

Sigh...  I'm coming at this from a totally different angle now, as child #5 is moderately dyslexic.  As we move up into slightly more advanced literature, he is really struggling with complex sentence and paragraph formations.  My usual standby is listen and read at the same time (thank you for Books on CD!!!) but even that doesn't always work.  I've gotten to the point now where, so help me, I provide him with a summary of the chapter first, which he reads, and then goes on to read/listen to the actual chapter.  It seems to be the only way to provide him with a mental framework that he can "hang" the more...READ MORE

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Swollen Gums and the Holy Ghost

02/19/2013 Comments (105)

The other day, my husband and I went out for possibly the least romantic date ever.  We went to Staples to see if Windows 8 is really as dumb as we've heard, and then we went to Walmart to pick up a toilet snake, and came out just in time to prevent some drunk lady from breaking into our car.  (She would have been sorely disappointed, since the most valuable thing in the trunk is a half a bag of charcoal briquettes.)  Then we got some kind of damp chicken wings.  While we ate them, we had a cheery conversation including the following topics:  a guy who developed a technique for profiling serial killers; the fallout of the Vietnam war, the sex abuse scandal, and teen pregnancy.  Then,...READ MORE

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Fixing the Classics?

02/15/2013 Comments (74)

Every so often, someone decides that it's time to "fix" Huckleberry Finn.  You can't have that n-word in there, especially if you're going to be reading it at school -- especially if you're going to be reading it aloud.

Or can you?  Since I'm not black and I don't have to put up with racial tension of any kind, maybe I'm making the problem out to be simpler than it really is.  But anyone who's actually read the book will easily understand that (a) Mark Twain used that word because the people he was writing about used that word; and (b) Jim is more noble and intelligent than most of the white characters in the story.

It would be a horrible shame to simply miss out on reading this book;...READ MORE

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Happy VaLENTine's Day

02/14/2013 Comments (27)

Get it? Because it's Lent, but it's also Valentine's Day!  Yes, yes, Valentine's Day is a made-up holiday, but it couldn't hurt to at least find out whether your beloved cares about it -- and if so, do something nice.  

But  not too nice!  Because it's Lent!

Well, my husband and I are just gonna celebrate Valentine's Day on Sunday, because Sundayisn'treallypartofLent,there,Isaidit.  But if you gotta do something today, here are a few ideas for how to combine romance and suffering, sweetness and pain.

CAROB  Remember carob?  It looks like chocolate that's been sitting in a dusty corner for a while, and it tastes like a chocolately dusty corner.  Give your significant other a satiny,...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 at I Have to Sit Down. She lives in New Hampshire with her husband and nine children. Without supernatural aid, she would hardly be a human being.