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Dismantling my vision and Dejerria Becton


This long, uncomfortable history must be faced, for the sake of our children.

Originally posted on Accidental Devotional:

The greatest gift teaching has given me is that I see all kids as my kids. I’ve taught a wide variety of students and I claim all of them as mine. I have a pretty open door policy in my classroom. If you have ever been on my attendance list then you can come calling. If you need something come see me, but I reserve the right to holler at you in the hallway when you are acting a fool. You are mine. You are my kid until you graduate and often beyond.

When I saw the video of DaJerria Becton wearing a swimsuit with a grown man brutalizing her in the name of justice, what I saw was my student, what I saw was my kid. I teach freshmen. 14 year olds going on 15. I watch the way the girls twist in their seats and try out new…

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See 13 Great American Woman Suffragists


An important day, and the women who made it happen:

Originally posted on TIME:

June 4 is a big day in the history of American women: it was on this day in 1919 that Congress passed the 19th Amendment, which guaranteed them the right to vote.

The achievement was a long time coming, built on decades of hard—and, in some cases, contentious—work by scores of dedicated women and men. (It also, coincidentally, came six years to the day after another important moment in the history of worldwide women’s suffrage, the day that British suffragette Emily Davison was trampled to death by the King’s horse at Epsom.)

These 13 women—commonly known as suffragettes, though that term more specifically refers to a group of British suffrage supporters—were crucial to that cause.

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This Side of the Sky

OOB-JodyRobertsI was driving to a meeting Thursday evening and heard this heartbreaking, lovely interview on NPR in which Tom Parks shared about his beautiful daughter Molly and his desire not to hide her ultimately fatal struggle with heroin addiction. His love for Molly shone through the whole piece and a few lines of this poem began to rattle through my head. It took time for these verses to take shape, and I hope they honor this brave father and his family:

This Side of the Sky

Without you, my love
there’s always a cloud,
a crack in my heart
where your laughter lives now.

I hope you’re dancing in heaven, and
the angels greeted you with open arms.
But it’s far too soon for me —
I’m standing on this side of the sky
Learning to say good-bye.

Every sunrise, every rainbow
without you reminds me
of eternity, and every breath
I breathe brings me closer to home.

Someday we’ll be dancing in heaven
joining the choirs of angels
praising God.

Until that time,
I’m standing on this side of the sky
learning to say good-bye,
shining with love for you.

Photo credit: Jody Roberts / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA

Dinner at Hooters


Love this piece about my friend’s son flirting with a Hooter’s waitress. Of course, that’s what happens there, but not usually for six year old boys with autism…

Originally posted on {Subject to Change}:

This past weekend the family and I went to Hooters for dinner. Kids eat free on Saturdays and when you’ve got 6-year old twins, well, that’s never a bad thing.

Now I know what some of you are thinking (and probably rolling your eyes while doing so): Well. You only go there because the girls are half-naked. Let me quote Chicago Blackhawks color analyst Eddie Olczyk by saying “Stop it right there.”

Granted, our waitress did go a long way in restoring my long wavering faith that Hooters could, in fact, hire attractive women. She did a fine job of showing off her flat midriff and certainly lived up to the perceived reputation of the restaurant. But truthfully, I really do like the wings.

This night, however, was not memorable because of the food.

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Bearing Witness to the Gospel


I’m so proud of my husband…

Originally posted on United States Catholic Mission Association:

“Faces of Mission” is a bi-weekly blog series produced by the United States Catholic Mission Association highlighting our membership and all their work in and for mission. This week we feature Roberto Bacalski, Program Coordinator at the Diocese of Arlington Office of Mission. Roberto Bacalski attended the USCMA Annual Conference on October 24 – 26, 2014 which was held this year in the Diocese of Arlington.

Called to Mission

Roberto Bacalski, Program Coordinator at the Diocese of Arlington Office of Mission Roberto Bacalski, Program Coordinator at the Diocese of Arlington Office of Mission

As a young actor in Los Angeles, Roberto Bacalski was living the life he had always wanted.

Then a “seemingly random chain of events” began which led him to a new lifestyle, one in which he would dedicate his life to mission.

He married and moved across the country from Los Angeles to Arlington, Virginia, where he took a job as a restaurant manager. But he soon found himself…

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Interview: ‘Poor Teeth’ Writer Sarah Smarsh on Class and Journalism


Love this interview on writing, sources, and authenticity.

Originally posted on Longreads Blog:

Julia Wick | Longreads | November 7, 2014 | 11 minutes (2,674 words)

“I am bone of the bone of them that live in trailer homes.” That’s the first line of Sarah Smarsh’s essay “Poor Teeth,” which appeared on Aeon earlier this month. Like much of Smarsh’s work, “Poor Teeth” is a story about inequity in America. It is also a story about teeth, hers and her grandmother’s and also the millions of Americans who lack dental coverage.

Smarsh has written for Harper’s, Guernica and The Morning News, among other outlets. Her perspective is very much shaped by her personal experiences: She grew up in a family where most didn’t graduate from high school, and she later chaired the faculty-staff Diversity Initiative as a professor at Washburn University in Topeka. I spoke with her about her own path to journalism and how the media cover issues of class. 

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Marriage as Conversion


One newlywed writes: “Bearing the beams of love” has taken on a whole new meaning for me.
That seems so true; I love this mediation on Marriage as Conversion.

Originally posted on A Call to Joy:


As newlyweds, J. and I are often asked the question, “So, how is married life?!” Struggling with this question calls to mind the same feelings as when I returned home from studying abroad, came back after a year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, or re-entered life after a short-term immersion program in El Salvador.  I usually find  myself saying something in between “So great!” and “Umm…how much time do you have?”

On the one hand, it feels impossible to capture the intimate mix of joy and sacrifice, of both lighthearted and difficult conversations, of learning how to balance my own needs with J.’s in a new way. On the other hand, for an external processor like me, it feels impossible not to try to verbalize my experience of this new transition.  If I truly believe that marriage is a vocation – from Latin, to call – what does it mean in the day-to-day when it will take a lifetime to realize…

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