Snappy Peppy

05/03/2012 Comments (28)

Because it's Friday, and I'm about as peppy as a piece of eggplant skin that went through the dishwasher, let's play a game.  I'm calling it "Catholic SEO Mad Libs," because I couldn't decide which joke I wanted to go with.

This is my gift to you, the person who needs to come up with something that is both relevant and edgy, and has words in it.  You remember Mad Libs, right?  One person supplies the required parts of speech, without knowing the context, and the other person fills the words in.  Then they read the completed story aloud.  Hilarity ensues.

Here's the template, which you can use for just about any occasion.  Heck, you can leave it as it is, with the blanks blank, and...READ MORE

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Is It Really Okay To Laugh About Sex?

05/03/2012 Comments (86)

The other day, someone quoted Ephesians 5 at me:

3 But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. 4 Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.

If I understand her properly, she took this to mean that it is wrong to use coarse language in general, and she's probably right about this.  Mea culpa.  (I'm working on it:  just the other day, I heard myself using "Sam-I-am" as an expletive, as in, "Sam-I-am, this chili is spicy!" This strikes me as more weird than virtuous, but I guess it's an improvement.)


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How To Ruin Your Marriage With NFP

05/01/2012 Comments (344)

Couples who use NFP have an incredibly low rate of divorce, and many couples have reported that using NFP to space pregnancies has led to an increase of grace, happiness, and intimacy in their marriage.

Sound too good to be true?  It sure is!  Oh, using NFP can strengthen your marriage, but that doesn't happen automatically.  In fact, there are tons of easy and excellent ways to ruin your marriage while using NFP to postpone pregnancy.  If you're interested in sharing many miserable years with your spouse, here's your action plan:

1.  Men, make you wife feel either "useful" or "useless," depending on her current fertility.  For instance, if you agree to postpone a pregnancy, launch a...READ MORE

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NFP, Providentialism, and Future-You

04/27/2012 Comments (128)

Among the small fraction of married Catholics who don't contracept, there are two camps:  those who space pregnancies by practicing NFP; and providentialists, who may or may not actively pursue pregnancy, but who do nothing to postpone it.  Maybe we have respect for Catholics who are in the other camp, and maybe we don't, but we readily identify ourselves as belonging to one or the other.

Well, stop it.  Why?  First, because if it pits us against other Catholics, it makes us anxious to show that we're right, which is never an attitude conducive to discerning God's will.  Second, because when we identify our marriage as a providentialist type or an NFP type, it implies that we have to...READ MORE

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Good Fiction for Young Adults

04/26/2012 Comments (95)

I haven't read The Hunger Games yet, but I gather that the YA reading list hasn't become especially sunny or optimistic lately.  When I was a YA, everything we read had to be about two or more of the following: the Holocaust, suicide, or bulimia.  Also acceptable were books about racism, provided several lynchings were described in technicolor.  Then, after we finished our assigned reading for the year, the school board would hold a workshop on what could possibly be causing the rampant depression in the student body.

Well, it's too late for me, of course.  As soon as I'm done with this post, I'm going to go huff some wood glue, write a note blaming my parents, and OD on some Xanax I...READ MORE

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Fisher Spirituality

04/24/2012 Comments (47)

Some families are Franciscan in their spirituality; some are more Ignatian.  Some families draw their inspiration from the Rule of St. Benedict.  And some families are just winging it.

Here are a couple of pages from the Fisher Family prayerbook:


Parents' Morning Blessing

Father of mercies, we ask you to bless these children, which, with some uncharacteristically poor judgement,  you have entrusted to our care.  Make them strong enough to follow your ways, kind enough to spread your love, and smart enough not to repeat what Daddy said about people with Obama bumper stickers on their cars.  Let these children be a beacon in a dark world.  Let them be a shining witness for the...READ MORE

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Stealth Lit. 101

04/19/2012 Comments (45)

Behold my triumph in a stealth supplemental classical education!  My nine-year-old son, the one affectionately known as "Rat Boy," came up to me and said, "I really liked that thing you put up, the one about the cows and everything."  He meant the great G. M. Hopkins poem "Pied Beauty," which I had printed out, matted on construction paper, and tacked over his gerbil's tank without comment.

He and his siblings certainly did not want to memorize poems when we were homeschooling!  Boy, did they not want to.   But I'll be darned if I didn't  hear my seven-year-old (also known as "Rat Boy."  What can I say?  They act ratty) muttering, "What the hammer?  What the chain?  In what furnace was...READ MORE

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Prudence and Generosity in Conversation

04/19/2012 Comments (43)

"Ruh roh, someone got quoted out of context."  That was my first thought when I read Jennifer Fulwiler's words in the recent Washington Post story about NFP.  Sure enough, Jen is not entirely pleased about how her comment about clingy children and outdated marketing will sound to someone steeped in a secular worldview.

As she says on her blog,

[T]he contraceptive worldview is like saying that loaded guns can be used as toys as long as you put blanks in the chamber; in contrast, the Catholic view says that guns are not toys, and should always be handled with grave respect. Now, to continue with that analogy, in these latest chats about Catholicism and NFP, folks are seeking 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.