The Least of My Sisters and Brothers

Monday of the First Week of Lent

Some time ago, I happened upon a story about the old comedian W. C. Fields. According to this story, a friend came into Fields’ dressing room before a show, and noticed that Fields was reading the Bible. The friend found this odd, as Fields had never spoken to him before about the Bible, or religion, so the friend assumed that Fields was not a religious man. When the friend asked Fields why he was reading the Bible, the response came: “I’m looking for loopholes!”  Continue reading “The Least of My Sisters and Brothers”


First Sunday of Lent (B)

In the first reading, the Lord points to the rainbow as the symbol of the covenant He is making with Noah and, through Noah, all humanity. The rainbow is a good symbol for the liturgical year as well. Just as the one white beam of light, passing through a water droplet or a prism, is bent so that its varied colors become visible to us, so, too, the liturgical year “bends” the mystery of what God has done for us in Christ into varied colors that can be seen and contemplated in turn.  Continue reading “Testing”


Ash Wednesday

In my post A Spirituality of Sweets, I tried to make the point that fasting is intended primarily to remove barriers between ourselves and the Lord. We should fast from whatever separates us from the Lord. That is true, of course. Nevertheless, actual physical fasting is an important, even indispensable, part of this conversion.  Continue reading “Fasting”


Sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time (B)

“Cooties! You have cooties!”

Perhaps you heard that childhood chant aimed at you in the schoolyard when you touched (or were touched by) a child of the opposite sex – or a child that stood out as ‘different’ in some way. Perhaps you aimed that chant at some other unfortunate kid caught in the same circumstance. Children, from a very early age, set up among themselves certain boundaries. Some are marked off – for whatever reason – as ‘radioactive’ or ‘unclean’, and woe to those to transgress the boundaries!  Continue reading “Unclean!”

A Spirituality of Sweets

I owe someone an apology.

You know who you are. The one everyone calls “Little Debbie”. The girl whose picture graces a vast collection of inexpensive delights!

For years now – for some unfathomable reason – I regarded myself as being somehow “above” your sweet treats.

I would pass by your smiling face without so much as a wave. How rude! I never, ever, bought a single box from your display. I would hurry on to desserts from the Big City, with exotic names like Tiramisu or faux-folksy names like Ben & Jerry. But Little Debbie? Never.  Continue reading “A Spirituality of Sweets”