Over and Over Again

07/12/2012 Comments (70)

Pro-lifers routinely refer to "the miracle of life," a phrase which isn't really theologically accurate.  A miracle is, technically and strictly speaking, an event which wouldn't happen ordinarily in nature.  It's something which only happens because of the special intervention of God.

If you're going to look at sheer numbers, it's hard to imagine anything less miraculous, or more ordinary and natural than the conception of a child.  It's something that's happened billions of times, often without anyone meaning or wanting it to happen -- often without anyone even realizing that it's happened.  I've seen pro-choice people roll their eyes and patiently explain, "Yes, babies are cute, but...READ MORE

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Standing Out Or Blending In?

07/10/2012 Comments (107)

In the long,  protracted, and altogether hideous debate over whether or not a Catholic woman can ethically wear pants (yeah, that happened, and it will happen again), a few people tried to make their voices heard above the crowd shouting, "Harlot!  How dare you let me know you have legs!" and "Pig!  How dare you notice my bottom when I'm wearing a skin-tight latex micro skirt"

In response to these foolish extremes, a more nuanced and difficult debate sprang up:  These are difficult times.  Things have gotten so stupid, so wretched, that the question of skirts vs. pants is important because it's about more than clothing:  it's about whether nor not we're willing to stand out.  If wearing...READ MORE

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Guy Movies that Aren't

07/06/2012 Comments (121)

One of the things that makes me such a magnificent wife is that I never make my husband watch chick movies; and yet I am usually willing to watch guy movies.

Never mind that this is because I am an almost complete failure as a chick (the last time I wore high heels, I was processing up the aisle.  By the time I was recessing back down, I was barefoot again.  I also think cosmopolitans are disgusting -- I'm sorry, am I a hummingbird? --  and consider Toenail to be the best color for toenails) -- and never mind that, when I'm busy in the evening, my husband pulls out the real guy movies, which start off with exploding zombies and tanks that shoot blood, and then take an abrupt plunge...READ MORE

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Beware the Habit of Irony

07/05/2012 Comments (50)

Our college chaplain used to preach often against sarcasm.  This always baffled me, and made me assume that the poor fellow, though clearly holy, was a little bit clueless.  After all, a stroll through the nearby woods would show him that the students in his care were engaging in much worse sins than a little snarkiness!

Now I think two things:  (a) of course he knew what was going on in the woods; and (b) he was onto something.  Sarcasm is the younger, rather juvenile sister of irony.  Irony is wonderful as a literary vehicle -- but as a lifestyle, it's deadly.  A habitually ironic point of view trains us to see the world at a distance, to never approach our consciences directly.


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Memento Mori

07/03/2012 Comments (56)

The last few weeks of school almost killed us.  Our schedule was just unbelievable:  we woke up so early, had so many events to get to, had to make special treats and arrangements for so many wonderful, unavoidable activities, and had to stay up so late preparing for it all to start again the next day.  When, oh when would vacation begin so we could have some free time instead of being jerked around like a pull toy from one activity to the next?

Well, it finally did.  Sweet, sweet, summertime, with nothing to do but whatever we wanted.  How we enjoyed ourselves!

For about eighteen hours.  And then the kids started to go insane with -- not boredom, exactly, but confusion.  They were...READ MORE

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Independence 'To'

06/29/2012 Comments (56)

No joy in Mudville, eh? 

We've just been told that we're not going to be forced to buy something that we don't want, but we will be taxed for not buying it; that our President is, however, not raising taxes because he wouldn't do us that way; that everything is now free; and that the clothespins we wore on our noses while voting for the last several republican presidents so that they would appoint judges who wouldn't stab us in the back . . . well, they worked a little too well.  And now everything just stinks.

I will admit it, it was hard saying the Litany for Liberty today.  Before the Supreme Court ruling came out, it was a really stirring prayer, very sort of spiritually...READ MORE

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Praying In Your Native Tongue

06/27/2012 Comments (21)

The fabulously goggled Leah Libresco, who recently announced  her conversion from atheism to Catholicism, has some words about how she's approaching prayer:

I like praying the Liturgy of the Hours because, at a bare minimum, it gives me something to say to God.  Not just the words of the prayers but, basically, “I’m really grateful for prayer traditions because I’d pretty much suck at having to make all this up on my own.”  Instead of just being grateful for language period, it’s kind of like being grateful for slang — the shared set of references that characterize a relationship or a community.

Jennifer Fulwiler addresses a related phenomenon when she speaks of praying the...READ MORE

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Why Would An Unmarried Woman Chart Her Cycle?

06/22/2012 Comments (147)

When I first heard the idea that unmarried women, and even teenage girls, may want to learn to chart their cycles, I resisted the idea strenuously.  I have accepted that it's sometimes necessary for me and my family, but I really, really, really hate charting.  So why would someone take on that responsibility before she has to?

I've changed my mind recently, though.  In today's mail, I received some charts intended specifically for teenage girls.  They are very basic, and include space to record menstrual flow, the presence of cervical fluid, and things like "feelings, headaches, cravings for sweets or chocolate, or if your face breaks out."  I called their designer, Kathy Rivet, who...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.