Is Pope Francis Really Pro-Life?

08/08/2013 Comments (69)

When Pope Francis was inaugurated, we all went scrambling to find information about him.  One of the first quotes I heard from him was this:

In our ecclesiastical region there are priests who don’t baptize the children of single mothers because they weren’t conceived in the sanctity of marriage. These are today’s hypocrites… Those who separate the people of God from salvation. And this poor girl who, rather than returning the child to sender, had the courage to carry it into the world, must wander from parish to parish so that it’s baptized!

Well, that was it for me.  I was in love.  Here is a man who loves the baby and loves the mother, and wants to make the world better for both...READ MORE

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Pretty, Gritty, Real:  How to Read Blogs

08/06/2013 Comments (61)

I started blogging almost ten years ago, when most of the mommy blogs I came across were glossy, prettified, carefully arranged tableaux of home life.  I was absolutely drowning; but the worst trial the other moms suffered, it seemed, was the occasional oopsie of spilled juice or mismatched socks.  It was all studio portraits of scrubbed and beaming toddlers clutching a hand-sewed duck stuffed with lavender grown in the herb garden outside ye olde cottage door.  I read these blogs obsessively, and came away hating the other moms and hating myself.

Hallie Lord of Moxie Wife recently opened up a discussion about how we present our lives online:  how to avoid negativity without drifting...READ MORE

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Nine Kids, Wacka Wacka!

08/01/2013 Comments (48)

When I write about stuff like going camping, I always make some crack about how crazy we are to be doing this with nine kids, aged fifteen and under.  Nine kids, wacka wacka! 

The truth is, I'm making these jokes out of habit.  On our way home, husband and I actually marveled at how much crazier it would have been to try to go camping with, say, three or four kids.

Yes, lots of things are harder when you have lots of kids.  But lots of things really are easier.  Part of that is because of who we've become through having nine kids, and part is just because of the actual kids themselves.  Here are a few big family perks that revealed themselves on our recent trip:


It's easier to...READ MORE

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We Put the Hurt in Yurt

07/30/2013 Comments (38)

If you're reading this, I survived. 

We went camping on Sunday, and are just getting back today.  Yep, camping with all nine kids and two decidedly indoorsy adults.  Two things made this plan just a shade less than criminally insane:  we left the puppy with my mother-in-law (and the bird with a friend. The gerbils, the tadpole, and the raccoons who've built their retirement plan around our garbage cans fend for themselves), and we rented a yurt.

To some, the use of anything that makes camping more convenient -- whether we're talking about a change of socks, or a GPS device, or a tin cup in which to simmer your wild caught possum and toadberry stew -- means that you're not actually...READ MORE

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Visual Examination of Conscience

07/25/2013 Comments (85)

This will only take a minute!  Check out this picture from World Youth Day:


and then look at this video




What was your first reaction?  Was it,

(a) "Oh my gosh, look at all those people going to confession!  How great!"

Or was it,

(b) "Why do those confessionals have to be so ugly?  This is what's wrong with the Church today."


(c) "Those confessionals look Masonic to me."


(d) "The asymmetry is a sign of Satanism."


(e) "What a field of monstrosities; it almost look like a graveyard.  CULTURE OF DEATH, CULTURE OF DEATH!!!"

If your answer was (a), then you're fine.  Enjoy your Thursday.

If your answer was (b), (c), (d), (e) or any...READ MORE

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Let's Try Not to Use Babies

07/23/2013 Comments (76)

When Kate Middleton was diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum, lots of women who suffered through the same malady felt a sense of sisterhood.  When she got close to her due date, lots of moms groaned in sympathy -- not so much over the pain of the last few weeks, but over the attention she'd be getting.  What pregnant women want most of all in the third trimester is to be left alone, and this poor woman had more than just the usual wisecracking grocery baggers and curious old ladies watching her -- she had a whole nation, and then some.  Women everywhere felt a connection with her.  Even though she's "royalty" (whatever that means), even though she's poised and lovely and unerringly...READ MORE

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You Can Make It Across

07/18/2013 Comments (21)

It was scorching hot at our little town beach.  I roamed back and forth, from the blueberry bush to the rock, counting the heads of the swimming kids, trying to keep the baby from eating too much sand.  People came for a long stay or a quick, cooling dip, catching up with old friends as they bobbed up and down in the water.

There was a couple with two kids, a baby and a boy about seven.  The young mom was lovely, with a fierce, classical beauty, but her layers of clothing and the way she kept adjusting her top and glancing at her postpartum belly and hips showed that she wasn't feeling it.

The dad was trying his hardest to give everyone exactly the right kind of attention:  asking...READ MORE

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I'm Not the Entire Congregation

07/16/2013 Comments (94)

Last Sunday, our retired pastor (who does an awful lot of work for someone who is retired) gave the sermon.  It was hot, the kids were squirrelly, and I gave a little sigh when I realized that he was planning to focus on something fairly pedestrian:  the idea that everyone is our neighbor, even if they look different from us.  We, as the people of God, should be accepting and welcoming of all peoples, and must love and care for them just like the Good Samaritan did for the  man who fell victim to robbers.  Racism is bad. 

All true, I thought to myself, but not exactly groundbreaking.  Come on, Father!  There are no lynch mobs in this congregation.  Tell us something we actually need to...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.